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Metadata for text 164
No. words in text21070
Title Comh-chruinneachidh Orannaigh Gaedhealach agus Bearla (A Collection of Gaelic and English Songs)
Author Loudin, Donacha
Editor N/A
Date Of Edition 1780
Date Of Language 18th c.
Publisher J. Chalmers (Seumas Chalmers)
Place Published Aberdeen (Aberrain)
Volume N/A
Location National Library of Scotland
Link Digital version created by National Library of Scotland
Download File PDF / plain text 
Geographical Origins Various
Register Literature, Verse
Alternative Author Name Duncan Lothian
Manuscript Or Edition Ed.
Size And Condition 16cm x 10.5cm
Short Title Comh-chruinneachidh Orannaigh Gaedhealach agus Bearla
Reference Details NLS: NG.1527.a.2(1-3)
Number Of Pages 82 pages
Gaelic Text By N/A
Illustrator N/A
Social Context Duncan Lothian was born in Glen Lyon around 1730. He was for a time a miller in ‘Coire-Chòinnlidh’ (Corriechoille?) in Lochaber. While he was there, a little girl drowned under the mill wheel and, after the incident, Lothian composed the hymn Laoidh na Leabach. When he left Lochaber, Lothian became a turner and a maker of spinning-wheels, and he worked for a time with Dughall Buchanan at Kinloch Rannoch. Lothian later spent a few years in Glen Errochty, near Struan in Perthshire, before moving to Glen Fincastle. Lothian lived in Fincastle until his death, around 1812, at the age of 87. Paul Cameron states that Lothian was na dhuine diadhaidh, dleasnachail, a’ gabhail tlachd ann an eolas an Tighearna Iosa Criosd a chraobh-sgaoileadh (1891-92, p. 341).

In addition to this volume, Lothian published Deasbaireachd eadar am Papa agus an t-Athleasacha in 1834 (Text 163), and translated John Ewart’s Protestant Catechism, which was published as Leabhar Ceasnuighe Aithleasuighte in 1779 (Text 166).
Contents This volume opens with a Preface (pp. 1-2), by the author, in which he introduces us to the Gaelic language. In it Lothian remarks that ‘It were to be wished, that some Standard was set up by the Literati in the Gaelic, for the Study of it; for I may venture to affirm, That there are not Six Persons in the Highlands who agree in every particular in the Orthography of this Language’.

The main body of the text contains 41 songs by various authors (pp. 3-80), including Lothian. The typesetting of song titles varies occasionally. Seven of the 41 songs are in English or Scots, and Gaelic translations accompany each of them. The songs are Alloa House, The Flowers of the Forest, My Peggy is a Young Thing, My Laddie no more, Auld Lang Syne, Wat ye wha I met the streen?, and The Sailor’s Lament for the Loss of his Sight. There are therefore 27 original songs in Gaelic, one of them being a macaronic in English and Gaelic (pp. 5-7), and another containing snatches of English from the English song to which it is set (pp. 17-20). The English title-page states that the songs in this volume are ‘by Duncan Lothian, and Other Hands’. Only one of the songs carries the name of the author: Oran, le Mac-Mhic Raonuil na Ceapaich (pp. 9-11). It is not clear whether all the other songs were composed by Lothian.

An Clar-Inniseach covers two pages at the end of the book. Songs are listed alphabetically by first line.
Sources
Language This volume contains songs on a number of themes. There are a large number of love songs (the first ten songs, for example), including Oran Gaoil (pp. 3-5), Malli mo Stor (pp. 7-9), and An Caillin donn daite (pp. 17-20), which includes these lines: ‘Gruaidh dhearg mar an corcan, \ Fiamh cailc’ ar do bhraghad; \ Tha do shlios mar an canach, \ Na mar aitteal a phaipeir; \ Suil ghorm is glan lionadh, \ ’Si mar libhe an airgid; \ ’S mis a dh ainnich am bliadhna, \ Gur h i Chiatai a b’ainm dhuit’ (pp. 17-18). Oran Gaoil (pp. 15-17) is a love song with a different attitude towards love: ‘’S iomadh fear a rinn posa’, \ Re mnaoi aimidich oig, gun bhi glic; \ Nam bitheadh i boidheach, \ Dh’ fhoghnadh sin air son storais, is nich. \ ’Nuair a ni sibh an ceangal, \ As an gabh sibh an t aireachas tric, \ Muidhidh cach u mar bhleid-fhear, \ ’S duine truagh u, cha chreiddeadh tu mis. \\ ’S iumadh fear a fhuair tochradh, \ Leis am b’ fhearr dol le musgaid do’n ’Raing; \ Na bhi ’g eisteachd re drandail, \ ’Nuair thiontadh ’n fhòid theinne na laimh: \ …’ (p. 16).

There are also a number of light-hearted songs on love and sex, including Oran air Bodach Fioghdair' (pp. 35-37), Oran an Tail-fhear (pp. 37-40), and Oran Dhomhnuill Mhic-Ruari (pp. 40-42). Iorram Sugraidh (pp. 33-35) concludes: ‘’Nuair a theid sibh laighe am plangaid, \ Biodh gach aon neach an re sodan, \ ’S biodh gach neach a’g oll air slàinte, \ ’S bidhuibh Greannar air an Fhoddar. \ ’S iomadh Fleasgach ann sa’n duthaich, \ Dhàs gu soimhe sùgrach soisneach, \ Na m’ bith nionag air a chùl-thaobh. \ Luighe dlù ris air an Foddar’ (p. 35).

This volume also contains a number of praise songs, including Oran air Fear Cille-mhoirre (pp. 25-27), Oran do Phadric (p. 44-46), Oran a’ Ghothain (pp. 48-49), and Oran do fleasgach, ris an abairte, an Gilleadh Ruadh (pp. 31-33), which includes the following lines: ‘’S Maith thig còta sassannach, \ ’Don chuid is daite an aodach, \ Ga d’ bhi è ginnidh h’uile slat, \ Cha bhi thu ceart as èàgmhais. \\ ’S màith thig Eileadh Bhreacain daite \ Paisgt’ an a Crios taobh ort, \ ’S cha mhios thig Briggis dhuit air achd, \ D chumail smachd air taolman’ (p. 32).

Iorram air America (pp. 22-25) is possibly the only song in this volume to address directly the social issues of the time. In it, the poet talks of the clearances and of the American wars, as in the following lines: ‘Tha ’n t eillean fada a chean agnn, \ ’S New York, am baille mòr sin, \ ’S chuaidh ’n teicheadh air na Reubaltaich, \ ’S na cèudan air an leònadh. \\ Chuir Mòr-fhear Howe ’n re trèit orra, \ ’S Burgoyne a’ teachd na còdhail, \ ’S ma tharlas iad le cheil orra, \ Cha ’n urrain cèud bhi beo dhiu’’ (p. 23). The same poem continues: ‘Ach tha na Goill aig eibheach, \ Gu ’n fèum sinn dol air fògradh; \ ’S gur h iad na Caoirich cheann-riathach, \ A thiondas as air coir sinn. \\ … \\ Tha h uile neach chuaidh null, \ A’ toirt cunntas maith na ’s leor air, \ O ’n gheabh iad fearran saor ann, \ Cha ’n fhan ach daoine Gòrach’ (pp. 24-25).

The last six songs are on a religious theme, and include Laoidh mu Chruthachadh an t Saoghoil (pp. 65-67), Laoidh mu Abram agus Aoidh araid (pp. 70-71), and Mu la Bhreitheamnais (pp. 71-75). The last stanza of Laoidh mu dhiamhnas an t Saoghoil (pp. 77-80) reads ‘Ach ma gheabhar ù ’n criosda’, \ Ge do tha ù gu h iosal fui’ ’n chloich; \ Tha t uaigh air a samhladh, \ Ri leaba, chum tamh agus fois; \ Uime sin bi re dìchoil, \ Gu ’n dean ù do shìo’chaimh a bhos; \ Mu ’n fograr gu siorruidh, \ Chum lassraichin diän ù ga d’ losg’ (p. 80).

There are occasional footnotes explaining the meaning of words and phrases. For example, we are told that Ròd means a ‘Sea Wreck’ (p. 38), and that an giadh means ‘A Taylor’s Iron’ (p. 40).
Orthography The orthography is typical of the late eighteenth century. Of interest is the use of double letters, especially dd, e.g. Caddal (p. 3), Ann ’sa bhaddan (p. 4), gu maddain (p. 22), Scaddain (p. 39), etc. We also find iommad (p. 24), rannuig (p. 25), air mo Shuillinn (p. 28), am Bottal (p. 49), and an Coppan (p. 49). The author vacillates between the use of ù (e.g. p. 22) and thu (e.g. p. 32).

In terms of language, a number of the poems include interesting words, e.g. bunndadh, thègail and minseach, and forms, e.g. pùsadh and buitheadh (all on p. 34). Also of interest is the author’s term ann an eachdaireachd na’n Stòrai to represent ‘in the history of Literature’ (p. 23).
Edition First edition.
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