Hi there! I would like to learn how to craft a praise-poem in the style of the Irish bards. Do you have any suggestions for finding examples with as little Christianization as possible? My persona is 10th c., so anything that old or older would be helpful.

One of the ways we librarians answer questions is by finding people who know the answer. People are resources too! So this answer was brought to you by the letter P and Master Owen Alun and Brendan O’Corraidhe.

Websites

Overview of Irish Poetry: [Link]

Side-by-Side English/Gaelic of Pangur Ban (a cat poem): [Link]

More side-by-side early Irish poetry: [Link]

Brendan’s Link Library for Irish Poetry, etc.: [Link]

Brenden’s Handout and Lecture notes for his Irish Myth and Legend class
[Handout][Lecture Notes]

Brenden’s notes and Redaction of Pangur Ban: [Link]

Books

Silva Gadelica: A Collection of Tales in Irish With Extracts llustrating Persons and Places
by Srandish H O’Grady
Published 1892 (so take with salt)
Silva Gadelica is a collection of tales in Irish with extracts illustrating persons and places. In this edition, the English translations are to the front, while the Irish originals are at the back.O’Grady describes his work like a straw being tossed up to see how the wind blows. In other words, he was testing the judgment of those who urged for this book to be given a good reception. These popular English versions of the Irish tales earned him the title of “father of the Irish literary revival.”Standish Hayes O’Grady (1832 – 1915) learned Irish from the native speakers of his locality and was later educated at Rugby School and Trinity College Dublin. His profession was as a civil engineer, but he is best remembered for Silva Gadelica.After moving to America, he contributed to an essay on Anglo-Irish Aristocracy to a collection entitled Ideals in Ireland edited by Lady Augusta Gregory in 1901. O’Grady was unable to his finish his final work – Catalogue of the Irish Manuscripts in the British Museum – before his death, although it was later completed by Robin Flower.
[Archive.org][Forgotten Books]

Medieval Irish Lyrics with The Irish Bardic Poet
by James Carney

The text and translation of early Irish poems, both secular and religious. “"These translations…from the point of view of a telling economy and a regard for the original image, its absolute rightness, are far and away superior to anything else I have read”“ – Cork Examiner. ”“Carney has thrown light where there were shadows before, and for this he is, as scholar and poet, due our gratitude”“ – Dublin Magazine. Carney’s noted lecture `The Irish Bardic Poet’, is also included. 

Hope these help! Let me know if you need more, and I can see if I can get more out of Owen and Brenden, or put you in touch with them. 

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