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Metadata for text 305
No. words in text35409
Title Gainmheach an fhasaich
Author Nic Gill-Eathain, Mairi M.
Editor N/A
Date Of Edition 1971
Date Of Language 1950-1999
Publisher Club Leabhar
Place Published Inverness
Volume N/A
Location National, academic, and local libraries
Geographical Origins Uist
Register Literature, Prose
Alternative Author Name Mary M. MacLean
Manuscript Or Edition Ed.
Size And Condition 18.3cm x 12.2cm
Short Title Gainmheach an Fhasaich
Reference Details NLS: 5.5002
Number Of Pages vi, 104
Gaelic Text By N/A
Illustrator N/A
Social Context Màiri Mairead MacGill-Eathain (Mary Margaret Maclean) was born 3 June 1921 at Knockqueen, North Uist, daughter of William Maclean, grocer, Carnish, and Catherine Cameron, Knockqueen. The family moved to Grimsay in July 1935. She attended Glaic Primary School, then Claddach Carnish, and thereafter educated herself by taking correspondence courses. At the outbreak of World War II she joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service. She was trained in Edinburgh and served in a clerical capacity in Thurso, Wick, Orkney and Inverness. At the end of the war she was employed as a secretary in Oban, first with Cefoil and then with the Admiralty Repair Base. In 1950 she returned to Grimsay to look after her elderly mother. She decided to remain on the island. In 1951 she won the prestigious Bardic Crown, a literary competition run by An Comunn Gàidhealach, the second female to do so. Her published work includes a booklet in English and Gaelic, Sunbeams and Starlight (1947), a short-story collection Lus-Chrùn à Griomasaidh (1970) (see Text 43) and the novella Gainmheach an Fhàsaich (1971). In The Voice of the Bard (1999), she speaks of her life and poetry, recounting how she broke her engagement to a fellow Uist poet Donald John MacDonald (1919-1986) (for whom see Text 311), and joined the Free Church. Her poems, short stories and articles have appeared in various publications.
Contents Before the title-page (p. iii), a dedication appears to her friend Daphne from Kilmarnock (p. ii). The main text (pp. 7-104) is divided into 20 short chapters.
Language The text is written in an engaging style and is for the most part fairly easy to comprehend. The main characters are one dimensional and the plot is somewhat clichéd.
 
The copula is realised, somewhat inconsistently, as follows: gur h-ann (p. 8), ’S ann (p. 12), Is e (p. 13), gur h-e (p. 17), gur e (p. 26).
 
Dative plural occasionally appears, e.g., glacaibh (p. 11), clannaibh (p. 52), guaillibh (p. 74).
 
Very occasionally an English idiomatic phrase appears, e.g.: “’S cinnteach gu bheil program làn agad fhad ’s a bhitheas tu anns a’ bhaile,” (p. 36).
 
Occasionally an English word appears: crochet (p. 40), living-room (p. 55), tractor (p. 68), garage (p. 90).
 
Very occasionally an unusual word or neologism is glossed, e.g., beairt-sgrìobhaidh ‘typewriter’ (p. 34); iarrann-preaseach ‘corrugated iron’ (p. 54), leann-tàth ‘cement’ (p. 55), saighdearan-tochlaidh ‘pioneers’ (p. 56).
 
Some Gaelicised English words occasionally appear, e.g., a’ mhomaint (p. 65).

The language reflects the Gaelic dialect of Grimsay, North Uist.
Orthography The spelling conforms generally to the orthography of the late-twentieth century. Acute and grave accents are retained. No accents appear on capital letters.
Edition First edition.
Further Reading Black, Ronald I. M. (ed.), An Tuil: Anthology of 20th Century Scottish Gaelic Verse (Edinburgh, 2002: Birlinn), 438-45, 783-84.
MacMillan, Dorothy and Byrne, Michel (eds.), Modern Scottish Women Poets (Edinburgh, 2003: Canongate).
Maclean, Mary M., Sunbeams and Starlight ([n. p.], 1947: [n. pub.]).
Neat, Timothy, Voice of the Bard: Living Poets and Ancient Tradition in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland (Edinburgh, 1999: Birlinn).
NicGill-Eathain, Màiri M., Lus-chrùn à Griomasaigh (Inbhirnis, 1970: Club Leabhar).
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