Reference Number207001
TitleWaifs and Strays of Celtic Tradition
AuthorCampbell, Rev. John Gregorson; MacDougall, Rev. James; MacInnes, Rev. Duncan
EditorCampbell, (Lord) Archibald
Date Of Edition1889-1895
Date Of Languagelate 19th c.
Date Of Language Ed19th c.
DateMacroLate 19th c.
Date Of Language Notes
PublisherDavid Nutt
Place PublishedLondon
VolumeVol. 1 of 5
LocationNational, academic, and local libraries
Geographical OriginsHighlands and Islands of Scotland
Geographical Origins EdVarious
Geographical Origins Notes
RegisterLiterature, Prose, Verse (Oral)
Register EdLiterature, Prose and Verse
MediumProse & Verse
RatingB (TBC)
Major contribution to Scottish Gaelic folklore collections.
Contributions from three ministers under the guidance and editorship of Lord Archibald Campbell.
Contains representative items from folklore repertoires of nineteenth century Gaelic-speaking reciters.
Alternative Author NameN/A
Manuscript Or EditionEd.
Size And Condition23.8cm x 15cm
Short TitleWaifs and Strays
Reference DetailsNLS: Lit.S.62
Number Of Pagesxv, 98
Gaelic Text ByN/A
Social ContextLord Archibald Campbell (1846-1913), second son of George Douglas Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll, and Lady Elizabeth Georgiana Campbell, née Sutherland-Leveson-Gower, was a soldier, financier, Justice of the Peace and writer. Born on 18 December 1845 in Stafford House, London, Lord Archibald Campbell was one of twelve children. His brothers were John George Edward Henry Douglas Sutherland, the Marquess of Lorne (b. 1845), Walter Campbell (b. 1848), George Granville, a lieutenant in the Royal Navy (b. 1850) and Colin Campbell, M.P. for Argyllshire from 1878 to 1885 (b. 1853). His sisters were Edith, Countess Percy (b. 1849), Elizabeth (b. 1852), Victoria (b. 1854), Evelyn (b. 1855), Frances (b. 1858), Mary Emma (b. 1859) and Constance Harriet (b. 1864). He was educated at Edinburgh Academy, Eton, St Andrews University and at Göttingen University, Germany. Before entering the business world he had been a Captain in the 5th Battalion Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. In 1873 he became a partner in the banking firm of Coutts and Co. bankers at 440 Strand, London and subsequently became one of the senior managing partners in 1894. He was appointed the first President of the Highland Association (An Comunn Gaidhealach) in 1892, and was elected in subsequent years until 1895. He was also President of the Highland Society of London from 1893 to 1895. He was a member of the St James’s Club in London. He was a Justice of the Peace and Deputy-Lieutenant for Argyllshire. His publications include Records of Argyll: Legends, Traditions, and Recollections of Argyllshire (1885), Children of the Mist; or, The Scottish Clansmen in Peace and War (1890), Notes on Swords from the battle-field of Culloden (1894), Highland Dress, Arms, and Ornament (1899), Armada Canon (1899), Reveries, Poems (1902) and Argyllshire Galleys: Some Typical Examples from Tomb Slabs and Crosses (1906). On 12 January 1869, he married Janey Sevilla Callendar (1846-1923), third daughter of James Henry Callendar of Ardkinglas and Craigforth, Stirling, with issue: Niall Diarmid (1872-1949), who succeeded his uncle, Marquess of Lorne, as the 10th Duke of Argyll, and Elspeth Angela (1873-1942). Lord Archibald Campbell died, aged sixty-six, on 29 March 1913 from influenza at Rhu na Craig, Inveraray, Argyll.
Those who not only supplied texts but also assisted Lord Archibald Campbell in an editorial capacity were the Rev. John Gregorson Campbell (see Text 276 for biography), the Rev. James MacDougall (see Text 216 for biography), the Rev. Duncan MacInnes and Alfred Nutt.
The Rev. Duncan MacInnes (c. 1820-1903) was born in Luing, near Oban, Argyll, the eldest son of Captain Duncan MacInnes, 42nd Royal Highlanders (the Black Watch). After attending school in Oban, he entered the University of Glasgow where he was a student, and was a classmate of the Rev. John MacDougall, in both Arts and Divinity. He also attended the University of Edinburgh for one session. After working as a missionary for some months in the Highlands under the aegis of the Royal Bounty Committee of the Church of Scotland, MacInnes returned to Oban and was licensed by the Presbytery of Lorn and was subsequently ordained at the Chapel-of-Ease on 4 August 1853. He continued in his role as pastor for the next three years and afterwards was presented by John, Earl of Seafield, and transferred to Cromdale and admitted 16 December 1856 where he ministered for the next thirty years. Due to ill-health he had to give up his charge in 1886. MacInnes was of a modest, retiring disposition and devoted much of his time to literary work. One of his favourite studies, apart from Highland folklore, was theology and philosophy. Apart from his contributions to Waifs and Strays of Celtic Tradition, he also authored a book of bilingual dialogues, entitled Comhraidhean ’an Gaelig ’s ’am Beurla (1880), with an introduction by Professor John Stuart Blackie. He also translated into Gaelic The World’s Birthday: A Book for the Young by Professor L. Gaussen, Geneva. He passed away at Cawdor Place, Oban, on 13 February 1903.
Alfred Trübner Nutt, the eldest and only surviving son of David Nutt and his wife Ellen Carter, was born in London on 22 November 1856. He is chiefly remembered for being a publisher and for his writings on folklore and for being a Celticist. He was educated at the University College London School and also at College de Vitry-le-François. Before taking over his father’s publishing firm, Nutt spent three years serving in a business apprenticeship in Leipzig, Berlin and in Paris. Nutt founded The Folk-Lore Journal (now Folklore) and was elected president of the Folklore Society in 1897 and also the following year. With his interest in Celtic studies, Nutt maintained friendships with other Celtic scholars as Whitley Stokes, Eleanor Hull and Kuno Meyer. Nutt was instrumental in helping to establish the Irish Texts Society and his firm published their early volumes from 1899 to 1914. He was a prolific author and his publications include Studies on the Legend of the Holy Grail (1888), and he also collaborated with Meyer on The Voyage of Bran (1895-97). At the time of his death he was working upon an annotated edition of Matthew Arnold’s Study of Celtic Literature. Nutt’s untimely death on 21 May 1910 was caused by drowning in the Seine when he attempted to rescue his seventeen-year-old disabled son. His wife succeeded him as the head of Nutt’s publishing firm.
ContentsThese five volumes consist of around 100 separate items, ranging from a pithy anecdote (covering a mere page) to some of the most prestigious tales from any given storyteller’s repertoire, such as ‘Coise Céin / Koisha Kayn, or Kian’s Leg’ (iii, pp. (pp. 206-77). Other types of material are also included, such as animal, heroic, romantic, legendary and historical tales, and Fenian tales as well as Fenian/Ossianic verse.
Volume 1 [Craignish Tales]: The text begins with prefatory material and opens with a dedication to Anne, Countess of Cromartie, Viscountess of Tarbat, Duchess of Sutherland (p. iii), followed by a preface (pp. v-vi), contents (p. vii), illustrations, (p. viii) and an introduction (pp. ix-xv) and a list of errata (pp. xvi). The bulk of the text comprises 9 chapters (only two have appeared as the Gaelic originals), and then a translation, as follows: ‘Craignish Tales’ (pp. 1-45), which is further subdivided into separate items with the following headings: ‘The Fight between Bran and Foir or For’ (pp. 4-7), ‘How Bran killed the Black Dog’ (pp. 7-12), ‘The Hoof-prints of Scota’s Steed at Ardifour Point’ (pp. 12-14), ‘A Craignish Fence’ (pp. 14-24), ‘Raonull og Chreiginnis (Young Ronald of Craignish)’ (pp. 24-28), ‘Baintighearna Bhán Chreiginnis (The Fair-haired Lady of Craigish)’ (pp. 28-31), ‘McIvor’s Revenge’ (pp. 31-32), ‘MacLabhartaich na h-Airde (McLarty of Aird)’ (pp. 33-39), ‘Glengarisdale’ (pp. 39-41), ‘A Barbreck-Craignish Tradition.—Cairn Dòmhnuill or Donald’s Cairn’ (pp. 41-45), ‘Mar a Fhuair Mìchell Scot Fios na h-Inid as an Ròimhe agus a Chuir e Crìoch air a’ bhi ’dol an sin g’a Sireadh / How Michael Scott Obtained Knowledge of Shrove-tide from Rome’ (pp. 46-53), ‘A Bhean Tighe mhath ’s Obair-Oidhche / The Good Housewife and her Night Labours’ (pp. 54-70), ‘The Fairies’ Hill’ (pp. 71-72), ‘The Skull in Saddell Church and the Serving Girl’ (pp. 73-75), ‘Traditions of the Bruce’ (pp. 76-78), ‘The Stag-haunted Stream’ (pp. 79-81), ‘The Questions Put by Finn to the Maiden, and her Answers’ (pp. 82-83), and ‘The War Dress of the Celt’ (pp. 83-98). This volume does not contain an index.
Volume II [Folk and Hero Tales]: After the title-page and contents (pp. v-vi), the text opens with a short preface by Lord Archibald Campbell (p. vii), then an introduction (pp. x-xixi) by the Rev. Duncan MacInnes who contributed the material for this volume and also a short list of errata (p. xx). The bulk of the text is divided into 12 sections, whereby the original Gaelic is printed on the l4eft-hand side of the page and the translation appears on the other, as follows: ‘I. Mac Rìgh Eirinn / The Song of the King of Eirin’ (pp. 2-31), ‘II. Fionn Mac Cumhail ’s an Gille Crom, Glas / Feunn Mac Cüail and the Bent Grey Lad’ (pp. 32-67), ‘III. Rìgh a bh’ air Albainn / A King of Albainn’ (pp. 68-93), ‘IV. Buachaillechd Chruachain / The Herding of Cruachan’ (pp. 94-125), ‘V. Rìoghachd nam Beann Gorma / The Kingdom of the Green Mountains’ (pp. 126-59), ‘VI. An Long a Chaidh do dh’America / The Ship that Went to America’ (pp. 160-205), ‘VII. Coise Céin / Koisha Kayn, or Kian’s Leg’ (pp. 206-77), ‘VIII. Lod, Mac an Aoirein / Lod, The Farmer’s Son’ (pp. 278-305), ‘IX. An Dà Dhuin’ Uasal Òg / The Two Young Gentlemen’ (pp. 306-37), ‘X. Sgeulachd Mhànuis Òig, Mac Rìgh Lochlainn / The Tale of Young Manus, Son of the King of Lochlann’ (pp. 338-75), ‘XI. Leòmhan Cridheach, Mac Rìgh Eirinn, agus Ceudamh, Mac Rìgh nan Cola / Leoän Creeäch, Son of the King of Eirin, and Kaytav, Son of the King of the Cola’ (pp. 376-83), ‘XII. Blàr a bh’ aig na Lochlannnaich an Dùn-Mac-Snitheachain / A Battle Fought by the Lochlanners in Dun-Mac-Sneeächain’ (pp. 384-91). Bibliographical notes by Alfred Nutt (pp. 393-98) to the various items then appear. A section ‘Development of the Fenian or Ossianic Saga’ (pp. 399-430) then appears followed by detailed notes (pp. 431-92) to the various above items, and finally an index (pp. 493-97).
Volume III [Folk and Hero Tales]: After the title-page and contents (pp. v-vi), the text opens with a short preface (p. vii) by Lord Archibald Campbell followed by an introduction (pp. ix-xii) by the Rev. James MacDougall which is followed by yet another introduction (pp. xiii-xxix) by Alfred Nutt. The bulk of the text is divided into 10 chapters, whereby the English translation is given first followed by the Gaelic original, as follows: ‘I. How Finn Kept his Children for the Big Young Hero of the Ship, and How Bran was Found / Mar Ghleidh Fionn a Chuid Cloinne Do dh’Òglach Mòr na Luinge, agus mar Fhuaras Bran’ (pp. 1-16), ‘II. Finn’s Journey to Lochlan, and How the Grey Dog was Found Again / Turus Fhinn do Lochlann, agus mar Fhuaras a Rithist an Cù Glas’ (pp. 17-26), ‘III. The Lad of the Skin Coverings / Gillen an Cochla-Craicinn’ (pp. 27-55), ‘IV. How Finn was in the House of the Blar-Buie (Yellow-Field), without the Power of Rising Up or Lying Down / Mar Bha Fionn ’an Tigh a’ Bhlàir-Bhuidhe, gun Chomas Éiridh no Luidhe (pp. 56-72), ‘V. The Smith’s Rock in the Isle of Skye / Creag a’ Ghobha ’s an Eilean Sgitheanach’ (pp. 73-75), ‘VI. The Bare-Stripping Hangman / An Crochaire Lom-Rusgach’ (pp. 76-144), ‘VII. A Tale of the Son of the King of Ireland and the Daughter of the King of the Red Cap / Sgeulachd air Mac Righ Éirionn agus Nighean Righ a’ Churraichd Ruaidh’ (pp. 145-86), ‘VIII. The Son of the Strong Man of the Wood, Who was Twenty-one Years on his Mother’s Breast / Mac Ceatharnach na Coille ’bha Bliadhn’ thar Fichead air Cìch a Mhàthar (pp. 187-215), ‘IX. The Farmer of Liddesdale / Tuathanach Lìodassail’ (pp. 216-21), ‘X. A Tale about the Son of the Knight of the Green Vesture, Performing Heroic Deeds which were Famed on Earth Seven Years before he was Born / Sgéul air Mac Fear an Earraidh Uaine ri Gaisge, a bha Ainmeil air Thalamh Seachd Bliadhna mu ’n d’ rugadh E’ (pp. 222-57). There follow detailed notes (pp. 259-304) on the various above items, and finally an index (pp. 305-11).
Volume IV [The Fians]: After the title-page and contents (pp. v-vi), the text opens with a short preface (p. vii) by the Rev. John Gregorson Campbell, which is followed by an introduction (pp. ix-xxxviii) by Alfred Nutt, which is followed by a short note (p. xxxix) by Lord Archibald Campbell. The bulk of the text is then divided into 31 sections as follows: ‘The Fians’ (pp. 1-72) which is further subdivided as the following: ‘The Fians’ (pp. 1-5), ‘Conlaoch and Cuchulain’ (pp. 6-8), ‘Deirdre’ (pp. 8-9), ‘The Fians’ (pp. 10-15), ‘I.—Fionn Mac Cumhail’ (pp. 16-28), ‘II.—Oscar’ (pp. 29-48), ‘III.—Goll’ (pp. 49-51), ‘IV.—Dermid’ (pp. 52-63), ‘V.—Caoilte’ (pp. 64-72), ‘VI.—Conan’ (pp. 73-74), ‘The Cattle of the Fians’ (pp. 75-76), ‘End of the Féinne’ (pp. 77-81), ‘Ossian After the Fians’ (pp. 82-91), ‘Lay of the Red Cataract’ (pp. 91-101), ‘Stormy Night’ (pp. 102-06), ‘Manus’ (pp. 106-13), ‘Alvin’ (pp. 113-19), ‘Conn, Son of the Red’ (pp. 120-30), ‘The Muileartach’ (pp. 131-58), ‘The Lay of the Smithy (Duan na Ceardach)’ (pp. 159-64), ‘Brugh Farala’ (pp. 165-71), ‘The Day of the Battle of the Sheaves, in the True Hollow of the Tree’ (pp. 172-74), ‘Fin Mac Coul in the Kingdom of the Big Men’ (pp. 175-91), ‘How Fionn Found his Missing Men’ (pp. 192-96), ‘Fionn and His Men’ (pp. 197-203), ‘How Fionn Found Bran’ (pp. 211-24), ‘Ceudach Son of the King of Colla Men’ (pp. 225-32), ‘How Fionn was in the House of the Yellow Field, without Leave to Sit Down or Power to Stand Up’ (pp. 233-38), ‘Fionn’s Ransom’ (pp.239-57), ‘Numbering of Duvan’s Men (Aireamh Fir Dhubhain)’ (pp. 258-59), and ‘The Lad with the Skin Coverings, or, Ceudach, Son of the King of the Colla Men’ (pp. 260-79). This is then followed by bibliographical notes (pp. 281-89) and finally an index (pp. 290-92).
Volume V [Clan Traditions and Popular Tales]: After the title-page and contents (pp. v-vi), there appears a short preface (p. vii) by Lord Archibald Campbell, followed by an introduction (pp. ix-xx), a memoir of the Rev. John Gregorson Campbell, by Alfred Nutt. The main bulk of the text then follows, divided into 6 sections, each of which is further divided into constituent chapters, as follows: ‘Clan Traditions’ (pp. 1-73), ‘MacLeans of Duart’ (pp. 1-4), ‘Death of Big Lachlan MacLean, Chief of Duart,—(Lachunn Mòr Dhuart)’ (pp. 5-6), ‘MacLeans of Coll’ (pp. 7-12), ‘Browns of Tiree. (Clann-a-Bhruthain)’ (pp. 12-17), ‘The Story of Mac-an-Uidhir’ (pp. 18-23), ‘Steeping the Withies’ (pp. 24-25), ‘Little John of the White Bag. (Iain a’ Bhuilg Bhain) (pp. 25-26), ‘The Killing of Big Angus of Ardnamurchan (Aonghas Mòr Mac’Ill’-Eoin), Big Angus, son of John, at Cor-Ospuinn in Morven’ (pp. 26-28), ‘The Last Cattle Raid in Tiree’ (pp. 29-32), ‘Lochbuie’s Two Herdsmen’ (pp. 32-42), ‘MacNeil of Barra, and the Lochlinners’ (pp. 42-43), ‘Finlay Guivnac’ (pp. 44-50), ‘Big Dewar of Balemartin, Tiree’ (pp. 51-53), ‘The Big Lad of Dervaig’(pp. 53-58), ‘Story of Donald Gorm of Sleat’ (pp. 59-61), ‘Donald Gorm in Moidart’ (p. 62), ‘The Black Raven of Glengarry’ (pp. 63-65), ‘Cailleach Point, or the Old Wife’s Headland’ (pp. 65-67), ‘A Tradition of Islay’ (pp. 67-69), ‘Fair Lachlan, Son of Fair Neil of Dervaig. (Lachunn fionn mac Neil bhàin, Fear Dhearbhaig)’ (pp. 70-73), ‘Legendary History’ (pp. 74-82), ‘Princess Thyra of Ulster and her Lovers. A Story of Lochmaree’ (pp. 74-79), ‘Garlatha. A Tradition of Harris’ (pp. 80-82), ‘Stories About the Fairies’ (pp. 83-90), ‘The Tradition of a Housewife and her Fairy Visitor’ (pp. 83-86), ‘The Wise Woman of Duntulm and the Fairies’ (pp. 86-90), ‘Folk Tales’ (pp. 91-114), ‘The Two Brothers. A Tale of Enchantment’ (pp. 91-95), ‘The Two Sisters and the Curse’ (pp. 95-100), ‘The Dark, or Pitch-Pine, Daughter of the Norse King, and How She Thinned the Woods of Lochaber’ (pp. 101-09), ‘O’Neil, and How the Hair of his Head was made to Grow’ (pp. 108-14), ‘Beast Fables’ (pp. 115-27), ‘The Wolf and the Fox’ (pp. 115-18), ‘The Fox and the Bird’ (p. 119), ‘The Wren ’(pp. 120-23), ‘The Two Deer’ (pp. 123-24), ‘The Two Horses’ (p. 124), ‘The Two Dogs’ (pp. 124-25), ‘The Cat and the Mouse’ (pp. 126-27), ‘Boy’s Games’ (pp. 128-32), ‘King and Kite’ (pp. 128-30), ‘Parson’s Mare Has Gone Amissing’ (pp. 130-31), and ‘Hide and Seek’ (pp. 131-32). There then appears an appendix (pp. 133-50) which is as follows: ‘I.—Finlay Guivac’ (p. 133), ‘II.—Port-nan-Long’ (pp. 133-34), ‘III.—A Tradition of Morar’ (pp. 135-37), and finally IV.—Correspondence between J. F. Campbell of Islay and J. G. Campbell’ (pp. 1-5). This volume does not contain an index.
SourcesMany of the items, though not all, are given a source which is usually mentioned in the prefatory material. The transcriptions were written from the dictation of each contributor. This may help to explain the various and somewhat inconsistent spellings that appear throughout these volumes. It remains unclear whether any of the manuscript material of which most of the contents of the volumes consist are currently extant or not.

Volume 1 [Craignish Tales]: The preface by Lord Archibald Campbell (pp. v-vi) states that the items were supplied by the Rev. Duncan MacInnes, the Rev. James MacDougall and the Rev. Duncan M. Campbell of Tyrnribbie. Three sources are cited from whom each of the items was collected, the first of which was Fionn’s questions supplied by George Clerk, head-keeper at Roseneath, Argyll; another was for a fairy story from ‘J.W’, presumably Jessie Wallace, sister of the Rev. John Gregorson Campbell; and the item about the fairies’ hill was supplied from Mrs Annie Thorpe, née MacDougall of Lunga, Ardbecknish, Lochow [sic].
Volume II [Folk and Hero Tales]: The preface by Lord Archibald Campbell (p. vii) states that the items were supplied by the Rev. Duncan MacInnes who recorded the bulk of them during the years 1881-82 from Archibald MacTavish, shoemaker, Oban, and also from Donald MacLachlann, Oban, Neil Livingstone, Oban, and Donald MacGregor, Bailegarve, Lismore. MacTavish was a native of Lagan, Lochbuie, Isle of Mull, and heard the stories from a tailor called Hugh MacLachlann, also from the same place.
Volume III [Folk and Hero Tales]: These items were taken down by the Rev. James MacDougall of Duror between the summer of 1889 and the spring of 1890. They were recited by Alexander Cameron, a native of Ardnamurchan, a roadman between Duror and Ballachulish. Cameron originally heard most of these tales either from Donald MacPhie, also a native of Ardnamurchan, or from his father, John Cameron. Before committing any given text to paper they were rehearsed by the reciter, then copied down in pencil before being fully transcribed with a pen.
Volume IV [The Fians]: These items were taken down by the Rev. John Gregorson Campbell mainly from reciters in Tiree. Allan MacDonald, Mannal; Donald Cameron (constable); Murdoch MacIntyre; Malcolm MacDonald, Scarnish; Malcolm MacLean, Kilmoluaig; Hugh MacDonald, Kilmoluaig; John MacLean, (bard), Balemartin; Donald Mackinnon, Balevoulin; John Cameron (Iain MacFhearchair), Balevoulin; Archibald Mackinnon, (Gilleasbuig Ruadh nan Sgeirean Dubha); Donald Cameron, Ruaig; Donald Macdonald, Mannal; Malcolm Sinclair, Balephuil; John MacArthur, (tailor), Moss; Duncan MacDonald, Caolas; and Neil MacLean (the elder), Cornaig, all of whom were residents of Tiree; Angus MacVurrich, Portree, Skye, and Hugh Macmillan (tailor), Tobermory. Generally each item has not been identified from whom the material was collected.
Volume V [Clan Traditions and Popular Tales]: see Volume IV above.
LanguageThe stories in the main reflect an informal, story-telling register and range from fairly simple tales, such as those concerning animal lore, which are told in colloquial style easy enough to comprehend, which contrasts almost completely with some of the heroic tales, which contain obscure or elaborate rhetoric, such as runs, which are termed a’ chruaidh-Ghàidhlig dhomhain, ‘deep, hard Gaelic’ which is not so easy to comprehend, even for the reciters themselves. In either case, the Gaelic tends to flow in a colloquial style and contains a large amount of direct speech, which lends immediacy to any given theme contained in any given text.
The following are examples of story-telling register such as in formulaic opening and ending lines as well as idiomatic phrases such as runs, e.g., ‘Aon uair o’ cheanna nan cian bha’ (i, p. 56), ‘LÀ bha Fionn agus a chuid daoin’ anns a’ Bheinn-sheilg’ (iii, p. 9) and (iii, p. 22), ‘LÀ àraidh bho shean’ (iii, p. 46), ‘Bha Righ roimhe so ’an Éirinn’ (iii, p. 112), ‘BHA Fionn ’s a dhaoine an Eirinn, agus bu bhidheanta leotha ’bhi ’sealgaireachd.’ (ii, p. 32), ‘Là de na làithean’ (ii, p. 32), ‘Thog iad na siùil bhreaca, bhaidealach ris na crannan caola, fulangach, fiùbhaidh, nach fàgadh ball gun tarruing no fuar bhòrd gun sàrachadh. An fhaochag chrom, chiar, a bha bho cheann sheachd bliadhna air grunnd an aigeil, bheireadh i fead air a beul-mòr is cnag air a h-ùrlar, lùbartaich easgan is feadartaich fhaoileann, a’ bhéist bu mhò ag itheadh na béiste ’bu lugha, ’s a’ bhéist a bu lugha ’deanamh mar a dh’ fhaodadh i, brìosan beag laghach mar a thogradh ’s mar a dh’ iarradh iad-fhéin, a bheireadh fraoch a beinn ’s duilleach a coille, ’s seileach òg as a bhun ’s as a fhriamhaich. An coinlean, cruaidh coirce nach do chuireadh an uiridh ’s nach do bhuaineadh am bliadhna ghearradh i le ro fheabhas a stiùraidh, croin àrda ’g an lùbadh, ’s siùil ùra ’g an reubadh, a’ caitheamh na fairge fiolcanaich, falcanaich, leobhar-ghuirm, leabhar-uaine, ’s leabhar-dheirge Lochlannaich.’ (ii, p. 60), ‘Bha e ’falbh an sin fada cian, agus trian, agus tamull gus an robh dubhadh air a bhonnaibh agus tolladh air a ghruaidhean, gach ian ceanna-bhuidhe a’ gabhail tàimh am bun nam preas ’s am bàrr nan dos, neula dorcha na h-oidhche ’tighinn air, agus neula an là ’dol dheth, agus chunnaic e tigh fada bhuaithe, ’s ge b’ fhada bhuaithe cha b’ fhada ’g a ruighinn e.’ (ii, p. 104), ‘Mar do shiubhail iad uaithe sin tha iad beò fhathast’ (ii, p. 204), ‘Uair de na h-uairean’ (ii, p. 238), ‘Dheanadh iad a bhogain a bhogain, a chreagain a chreagain, tobar fala fìor-uisge am fìor aodann gach creagain, far am bu bhuige gu’n sùilean, ’s far am bu chruaidhe gu’n glùinean, ’s far am bu mheadhonaiche gu ceann reamhar na sléiste.’ (ii, p. 296), ‘Tha mise ’cur ort mar gheasaibh, ’s mar chroisibh, ’s mar naoidh buaraichean mnatha sìthe, siùbhla, seacharain, laochan beag a’s meataiche ’s a’s mi-theòiriche na thu féin a thoirt a’ chinn, ’s nan cluas, ’s nan comada beatha dhiot, mur faigh thu mach fios do mhuime.’ (ii, p. 346), ‘air chùl gaoith’ agus air aodann gréine’ (iii, p. 9), ‘Bheannaich e Fionn gu briosglach, brosglach, briathrach; agus bheannaich Fionn e le comain nam briathra ceudna’ (iii, p. 9) and (iii. p. 22), ‘“Tha mi ’cur mar chroisean ’us mar gheasan ort agus mar sheachd buaraichean sìthiche, siùbhla, ’s seachrain gu ’m bi thu leam-as mu ’n ith thu biadh no mu ’n òl thu deoch no mu ’n dùin thu sùil ’an cadal.’ (iii, p. 10), ‘A chur an sgeòil an giorrad’ (iii, p. 22), ‘agus gaoth luath a’ Mhàirt a bh’ air thoiseach air bheireadh e oirre, agus gaoth luath a’ Mhàirt a bh’ air dheireadh air cha chumadh i ris’ (iii, p. 45), ‘agus mar do chaochail e bho sin tha e beò fhathast.’ (iii, p. 55), ‘Bha ’m feasgar a’ tighinn air, neòil shìobhalta, shàmhach an là a falbh, agus neòil dhubha, dhorcha na h-oidhche ’teachd, na h-eòin bheaga, bhuchallach, bhachlach, bharra-bhuidh a’ gabhail mu thàmh ’am bunaibh nam preas, agus ’am barraibh nan dos, agus anns na h-innseagaibh fasgach, bòidheach, a bu laghaiche athaghadh iad dhoibh féin.’ (iii, p. 138), ‘Chum e air aghaidh cian fhada agus làn fhada gus an robh e fàs sgìth, agus dorchadh na n tràtha’ tighinn.’ (iii, p. 140), ‘An déigh do ’n phòsadh a bhi seachad rinn iad cuilm mhòr a mhair là agus bliadhna.’ (iii, p. 143), and ‘Agus cha d’ fhuair mise ach ìm air éileig, brochan ’an craidhleig, brògan paipeir. Chuir iad an allt mi, ’s theirig iad.’ (iii, p. 144), ‘Bha iad an sin gu sòghail, soisneach, agus ma tha iad beò tha iad ann fathast.’ (iii, p. 215).
Occasionally an intrusive h appears in a number of spellings, e.g., an t-sheobhag (iv, p. 5), bho ’n t-shlinnean (iv, p. 209).
The copula is realised as gur h-ann (ii, p. 18), gur h-e (ii, p. 30), ma ’s e (iii, p.113), ’S e (iii, p. 180).
Occasional use of contraction for agus as ’us (iii, p. 113).
Occasionally the subject pronoun occurs with an initial s- stem, e.g., a dhìrich se (iii, p. 10), leag se e (iii, p. 122), Dh’fhairich se e (iii, p. 176).
The schwa vowel is regularly written as u rather than a, e.g., dorus (p. 9), dochunn (p. 11), dorus (i, p. 50), tarrsuinn (i, p. 60), solus (i, p. 52), tarruing (i, p. 58).
Prepositions tend to retain the apostrophe, e.g., do’n (i, p. 46), r’a chall (i, p. 47), de’n (i, p. 60), do ’n (ii, p. 86), mu’n (ii, p. 94), gu’n (ii, p. 94).
Passive voice occasionally appears, e.g., chluinnte (i, p. 60), dhearbar (i, p. 64).
Inconsistent use of the personal pronouns, e.g., ’n a (i, p. 60) and also ad fhearann-sa (ii, p. 96), and ’ad choinneimh (ii, p. 122).
Epenthetic vowels are occasionally realised, such as gu h-anamoch (ii, p. 98) and seanachas (ii, p. 132).
Fairly frequent appearance of intrusive apostrophes, e.g., ’mhic (i, p. 61) and ’sam bith (iv, p. 272).
Dative plural occasionally appears, e.g., geasaibh (ii, p. 348), ghuailnibh (iii, p. 10), craicnibh (iii, p. 13), bonnaibh (iii, p. 54), dìolladaibh (iii, p. 114), carcaisibh (iii, p. 115), nigheanaibh (iii, p. 122), ghleanntaibh (iii, p. 123), bheanntaibh (iii, p. 123), ghlacaibh (iii, p. 123), alltaibh (iii, p. 124), curaidhnibh (iii, p. 125), uinneagaibh (iii, p. 128), buillibh (iii, p. 133), làmhaibh (iii, p. 137), Caistealaibh (iii, p. 138), gheisibh (iii, p. 138), iteagaibh (iii, p. 140), casaibh (iii, p. 140), bruachaibh (iii, p. 141), glùinibh (iii, p. 142), mhnathaibh (iii, p. 167), nithibh (iii, p. 177), cleasaibh (iii, p. 186), pocaibh (iii, p. 211), greimibh (iii, p. 212), uaislibh (iv, p. 10), maithibh (iv, p. 10), and uairibh (iv, p. 149).
Irregular verbs are occasionally used, such as fhuaras (iii, p. 16), chualas (iii, p. 26), gabhar (iii, p. 206).
Other spellings are of note, e.g., ’g a leanachd (i, p. 46), so (i, p. 46), Phàp (i, p. 46), cha-n fhaodteadh (i, p. 46), seachduinnean (i, p. 46), curranda (i, p. 47), foghluimte (i, p. 47), gu-m fàg (i, p. 47), cha-n ’eil (i, p. 52), Bean an tighe (i, p. 58), stigh (i, p. 58), tigh (i, p. 58), ’mheadhon (i, p. 60), leo (i, p. 64), dh’ fheudas mi (i, p. 66), Cha ’n ’eil (ii, p. 2), a-staigh (ii, p. 4), là’r na mhàireach (ii, p. 12), cia-mar (ii, p. 22), eudan (ii, p. 24), eudach (ii, p. 24), béidh (ii, p. 62), airgiod (ii, p. 92), caoimhneil (ii, p. 92), ’d é (ii, p. 94), mada-ruadh (ii, p. 108), dòran (ii, p. 110), thoigheach (ii, p. 112), oidheirp (ii, p. 116), cumanda (ii, p. 134), am màireach (ii, p. 140), cùlaobh (ii, p. 140), roimhid (ii, p. 140), an dràst (ii, p. 140), bidheanta (ii, p. 142), dubhairt (ii, p. 162), dìth (ii, p. 168), thubhairt (ii, p. 174), rud-eigin (ii, p. 182), co dhiubh (ii, p. 182), beulaobh (ii, p. 184), builionnan (ii, p. 190), ’bhàruinn (ii, p. 208), sid (ii, p. 214), stéigh (ii, p. 236), gu’m b’ fheadh (ii, p. 300), air-son (ii, p. 326), leantuinn (iii, p. 11), (iii, p. 12), gàt (iii, p. 13), so (iii, p. 13), sud (iii, p. 13), d’ e (iii, p. 14), ciod (iii, p. 15), dh’ ionnsaidh (iii, p. 15), dhachaidh (iii, p. 22), air son (iii, p. 23), briadh’ (iii, p. 25), timchioll (iii, p. 43), urad (iii, p. 43), cùlaobh (iii, p. 44), turus (iii, p. 51), gnothuch (iii, p. 65), air chor-eiginn (iii, p. 66), aobhar (iii, p. 121), craicionn (iii, p. 122), boirionnach (iii, p. 125), naigheachd (iii, p. 171), fagus (iii, p. 184), dheire thall (iv, p. 51), e-san (iv, p. 186), tapaid (iv, p. 220), as deighinn (iv, p. 236), lathan (iv, p. 271), deadh (v, p. 46), laidheadh (v, p. 105), trà (v, p. 107), chualaic (v. p. 107), faighteadh (v, p. 107).
Typographical errors, some of which appear on a regular basis, are few and are mainly due to an inconsistent use of accents, or lack of, or the appearance of an intrusive apostrophe, but which do not affect comprehension of the text, e.g., theìreadh (i, p. 46), cialleachadh (i, p. 56), da-ríreadh (i, p. 58), ghluaisadh (i, p. 60), (i, p. 60), ris a’ chuibhle (i, p. 64), ris a bhonnach (i, p. 68), ìnnte (ii, p. 4), urramaíche (ii, p. 8), soilinn (ii, p. 10), ghabhlas (ii, p. 24), dhaoite (ii, p. 26), mhinnistear (ii, p. 30), an-i (ii, p. 56), b’ urrannear (ii, p. 58), caoinedh (ii, p. 74), thìlg (ii, p. 76), rígh (ii, p. 92), theiradh (ii, p. 100), riughinn (ii, p. 106), ùillt (ii, p. 110), ghoirrid (ii, p. 130), leusgeul (ii, p. 156), bìadh (ii, p. 164), airgiòd (ii, p. 216), Tiugainn (ii, p. 226), drast (ii, p. 272), moine (ii, p. 278), daonan (ii, p. 282), a nun (ii, p. 290), goirrid (ii, p. 328), tigadh (ii, p. 304), fàr (iii, p. 9), léum (iii, p. 9), féur (iii, p. 9), a ’s tigh (iii, p. 12), air neò (iii, p . 42), ’n t-ionganntas (iii, p. 43), dhòirt (iii, p. 45), a thabhairt (iii, p. 70), béul-àtha na h-amhann (iii, p. 70), blìonadh (iii, p. 116), còr (iii, p. 117), tròm (iii, p. 122), iomagainn (iii, p. 124), thòm (iii, p. 124), drùim (iii, p. 125), siòs (iii, p. 125), aír (iii, p. 125), du (iii, p. 137), thuhhairt (iii, p. 138), shiùblas (iii, p. 139), shuàmh (iii, p. 139), ób (iii, p. 169), aìlleachd (iii, p. 176), chunuaic (iii, p. 182), doll (iii, p. 205), lòng (iii, p. 246), cluintinn (iv, p. 150), d’ uair (iv, p. 210), prìpa (iv, p. 223), tilleidh (iv, p. 251), c’dhiu (iv, p. 270), an fheadhain (iv, p. 273), and an t-ím (v, p. 117).
Occasionally loan-words appear and are sometimes italicised, e.g., shergeant (ii, p. 126), corporal (ii, p. 126), pailis (ii, p. 126), coitse (ii, p. 136), rochdan (ii, p. 160), chabin (ii, p. 186), bargan (ii, p. 234), canal (ii, p. 244), trunk (ii, p. 296), chances (ii, p. 318), reseat (ii, p. 320), ludgins (ii, p. 326), robairean (iii, p. 116), turait (iii, p. 131), buidealair (iii, p. 184), rub (iii, p. 185), and palace (iv, p. 186).
The occasional use of some unusual diacritics may also be noted, e.g., thôisich (iii, p. 10).
Rare or unusual words occasionally make an appearance, such as aimhreidh (i, p. 64).

An attempt has been made to reflect the different dialects of Gaelic from the various reciters, but it is sometimes difficult, if not impossible, to tell whether these are typographical errors or otherwise. Only a systematic comparison of the manuscripts, if they are still extant, from which the texts have been created may reveal whether or not they are in fact typographical errors, e.g., dhoibh (i, p. 50), dara (i, p. 50), a’d bheul (i, p. 50), déighinn (i, p. 56), digeadh (i, p. 56), co fad (i, p. 58), dar (i, p. 58), maith (i, p. 60), feaghainn (i, p. 60), riabh (i, p. 60), cluinnteadh (i, p. 60), ’nar (i, p. 64), cha’n uarrainn mi (i, p. 66), mu dheire (i, p. 68), briagh (ii, p. 24), nunn (ii, p. 30), chualaig (ii, p. 80), diot (ii, p. 106), deth (ii, p. 122), bhì (ii, p. 138), Skéithe (ii, p. 244), féin (iii, p. 11), dara (iii, p. 12), tuillidh (iii, p. 16), còmhladh (iii, p. 22), smaointeachadh (iii, p. 26), chleachdainn (iii, p. 42), fearr (iii, p. 43), domh (iii, p. 44), Mata (iii, p. 44), fathast (iii, p. 50), fòpa (iii, p. 53), faide (iii, p. 65), dhuit (iii, p. 65), air bith (iii, p. 66), fair (iii, p. 67), ni-éiginn (iii, p. 68), faidh (iii, p. 69), fuathasach (iii, p. 70), air a h-ais (iii, p. 70), a rìs (iii, p. 115), braiceas (iii, p. 118), duit (iii, p. 120), uam (iii, p. 122), h-ighinn (iii, p. 125), faighteach (iii, p. 126), eatarra (iii, p. 168), iomad (iii, p. 179), feagh (iii, p. 204), aghairt (iii, p. 204), gahh (iv, p. 169), faicin (iv, p. 187, and tighin (iv, p. 187).
OrthographyThe orthography conforms to the late-nineteenth century, whereby the grave and acute are retained. Accents are shown very occasionally on capital letters.
EditionFirst edition.
Other Sources
Further ReadingAnon., ‘Death of Rev. D. MacInnes’, The Oban Times, 2517 (21 February 1903), 5.
Anon., ‘Obituary: Lord Archibald Campbell,’ The Times, 40,173 (31 March 1913), 9.
Campbell, (Lord) Archibald, Records of Argyll: Legends, Traditions, and Recollections of Argyllshire Highlanders (Edinburgh, 1885).
Campbell, (Rev.) Gillespie, ‘Lord Archibald Campbell’, The Celtic Review, vol. 9, no. 33 (Aug., 1913), 65-70.
Campbell, John Gregorson, The Gaelic Otherworld, ed. by Ronald Black (Edinburgh: Birlinn, 2005), esp. 608-700.
Dewar, John, The Dewar Manuscripts Vol. 1: Scottish West Highland Folk Tales, ed. John Mackechnie (Glasgow, 1964: William MacLellan & Co.).
Clodd, Edward, ‘In Memoriam: Alfred Nutt (1856-1910)’, Folk-Lore, 21 (1910), 512-14.
Dorson, Richard M., The British Folklorists: A History (London, 1968: Routledge).
Hull, Eleanor, ‘In Memoriam: Alfred Nutt (1856-1910)’, The Celtic Review, vol. 7, no. 26 (May, 1911), 143-46.
MacInnes, Rev. Duncan, ‘Notes on Technical Terms’, Transactions of the Gaelic Society of Inverness, XIX (1893-94), 213-16.
Vendryes, J., ‘Nécrologie: Alfred Nutt’, Revue Celtique, 31 (1910), 271-72.
Wood, Juliette, ‘Folklore Studies at the Celtic Dawn: The Rôle of Alfred Nutt as Publisher and Scholar’, Folklore, 110 (1999), 3-12.
Scott, Hew, Fasti Ecclesiæ Scoticanæ: The Succession of Ministers in the Church of Scotland from the Reformation, VI (Edinburgh, 1926: Oliver and Boyd), 359.
Tedder, H.R. rev. Basu, Sayoni, ‘Nutt, Alfred Trübner (1856-1910)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, vol. 41 (Oxford, 2004: Oxford University Press), 290-91.
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