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description of one at Galerus, near Limerick, in that county. A small plate of copper in my possession, lately dug up at Ayle in the county of Clare, (the seat of James Mac Namara, Esquire, by whom it has been obligingly communicated,) bears the following inscription, engraven in Irish characters, under the date 1041, all distinctly legible.

Ha búinneach neách le brát,

Le padáirín, lebár, ná mía̸s lom,
Há fos le ha̸onruibe réid

Opole an dichridhigh chínn-leith.

Worldling away! the frugal dish--the book
Of holy truths-the beads-the hermit's cloak
Can tempt thee not-the locks that shade his brow,
The power that whitened guards-profane not thou.

3

This curious piece of antiquity, is supposed to have been affixed to the entrance of one of these penitential retreats. Milton's sonnet, “When the assault was intended on the City," may here occur to the recollection of the reader.

1

dockmhlach would be more correct.

The <bhrán, ceángál, versicle or combination which sometimes concludes Irish poems, has been already noticed p. 105. Similar terminations have been used by Lopez de Vega, and other Spanish poets. They are also to be found in Arabian authors.

1 MARY A ROON.

Our highly talented and equally patriotic countryman, Moore, has adapted pleasing words to the air of this songSee his “ Irish Melodies," air-Moll Roone.

: « Lest the Munster man's flattery"Na mealladh Muimhneach thu, a gradh _“Let not the Munster man deceive thee, my love!” The persuasive powers of some of our southern countrymen have long been proverbial. My worthy friend Mr. Brewer, in his “ Beauties of Ireland," informs us, that in the highest part of the castle of Blarney, in the county of Cork, is a stone which is said to have the power of imparting to the person who kisses it, the unenviable privilege, of hazarding, without a blush, that species of romantic assertion which may be termed falsehood.—This statement, is not, however, altogether correct. To the well known “ Blarney Stone,” there is, no doubt, attributed the virtue of imparting to whoever, at the bazard of his neck, shall venture to kiss it, not the privilege of uttering falsehood, as stated, but an indomitable propensity towards practising the gentle, yet all effective, art of flattery. To praise “in season, and out of season," and against this dangerous quality, our fair female is cautioned in the words of the song.

I cannot avoid observing here, that vulgar stories of this kind, which reflect on the morals or character of a people, should ever be treated with the contempt they deserve. In the despicable pages of the deceived and deceiving “travellers," who libel our country, and the fry of conceited English, or Cockney, “tourists,” et hoc genus omne, which annually visits our shores, I should not be surprised to meet with such trash; but to find it gravely detailed in the work of so learned and enlighteved a writer as Brewer, is, certainly, matter of just regret.

3

When on Mullamore's summit.

"Mulla, or Mullaghmore, near Tuam, in the county of Galway; an ancient residence of the Blake family.

+ “ Beside Murneen Bawn. This is another of the many endearing expressions of the Irish, which cannot be transferred to a foreign language. It means, literally, “my fair or resplendant darling, or heart's treasure.”

I MARY OF MEELICK.

This is one of our finest songs both in sentiment and composition, and the Irish reader will perceive, that the talented translator has executed his task with due attention to the spirit and meaning of the original.

Who the fair female here celebrated was, or when or by whom the verses were composed, I have not been able to determine. From the last line of the third stanza, it may

be inferred, that she dwelt at a place called Meelick, and of that name there are two noted places in Conaught; one in Galway county, where there are extensive remains of an ancient castle, the once proud residence of the princely race of O’Madden, of Longford, (of which family, my valued friend, Gregory Ffrench Madden, esq. of Shannon-view, in that county, is now I believe, the acknowledged representative,) and the other in Mayo, where I conjecture our fair one to have resided.

2

In yon bright distant IsleWe have already seen that it was usual with our bards to wish for retirement, with the objects of their love, in some shady grove, or sequestered island, which often existed only in idea,

and I have endeavoured to explain the motives which governed these wishes. In the present instance, the "distant," or rather "western" isle, án óíleán shiár, mentioned in the original, is, one of those "happy islands," which the inhabitants of the Western coasts of Ireland, think they frequently see emerging from the ocean,* and suppose to be bound by some ancient power of enchantment. The belief in the existence of these Miranda loca, seems in former times not to have been confined to the vulgar. In the unpublished History of Ireland, remaining in Manuscript, in the Library of the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, before referred to, p. 183 of this volume, we are gravely told, that "The Tuathdedanans coming in upon the Fearbolgs, expelled them into the out islands which lay scattered on the north coasts, and they themselves were served the same measure by the Clanna Milidhes, but what became of the remainder of them I cannot learne, unless they doe inhabitt an iland, which lyeth far att sea, on the west of Connaught, and sometimes is perceived by the inhabitants of the Oules and Iris. It is also said to be sometime seene from Saint Helen Head, being the farthest west point of land beyond the haven of Calbeggs, (Donegall.) Likewise severall seamen have discovered it att sea, as they have sailed on the western coasts of Ireland; one of whom, named Captain Rich, who lives about Dublin, of late years had a view of the land, and was so neere that he discovered a harbour, as he supposed, by the two head lands on either side thereof, but could never make to land, although when he had lost sight thereof in a mist which fell upon him, he held the same course several hours afterward. This I am bold to insert by the way, because I have heard a relation hereof from many credible persons, and particularly from the said Captain Rich, allsoe in many old mapps, (especially

Usher informs us, that they were seen by St. Brendan.-" Ultra quam ad occasum, nulla invenitur habitabilis terra nisi Miranda loca quæ vidit S. Brandanus in Oceano."-Usher, de Hibernia, p. 813.

mapps of Europe, or mapps of the world,) you shall find it by the name of O'Brasile,* under the longitude of 03° 00', and the latitude of 50° 20'. So that it may be, those famous enchanters now inhabitt there, and by their magick skill conceal their iland from forraigners. Yett this is my own conceipt, and would have it taken for no other."-Orig. MS.

But the most complete account of this fanciful island, is to be found in a letter from a gentleman in Derry, to his friend in England, printed in London, in the year 1675. The narrative is so curious, and the pamphlet in which it appeared so scarce, that I am induced to lay it entire before the reader. To those possessing strong imaginative powers, it presents an ample field for romantic fiction.

0-Brazile, or the Enchanted Island, being a perfect relation

of the late Discovery, and wonderful Dis-inchantment of an Island on the North of Ireland, &c.

« Honoured Cousen,

“I have received yours of the 12th of February, and the printed relation of the certain death of that arch pirate Captain Cusacke; of whose death, all our Merchants here in Ireland, are very glad; especially my Cousen Mathew Calhoon, from whom, Cusacke took the last vessel; which, it seems, brought him to his deserved fatal end. And in requital of your news concerning Cusacke, I shall acquaint you with a story no less true; but I believe much more strange and wonderful concerning the discovery of that long-talk't-of island 0-Brazile, which (I believe) you have often heard of.

“ I know there are in the world, many stories and romances, concerning inchanted islands, castles, and towers, &c.

* This name may be compounded of brår, fiction, Koi, an island, and ile, great.–Vide O'Brien's Irish Dictionary.

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