Gaelic Literature of the Isle of Skye: an annotated  bibliography   


Traditional poets and songmakers:  MacLeòid: I - Z







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MACLEOID, Iain  (1843 - 1901)


Iain MacLeòid, Iain Dubh, was born in Glendale, Skye; son of the poet Domhnall MacLeòid, Domhnall nan Oran (q.v.) and brother of Niall MacLeòid, author of Clàrsach an Doire (q.v.).  The two brothers were very different in temperament and way of life: Niall settling in Edinburgh as a tea merchant and pillar of the Gaelic community there and Iain spending all his adult life as a sailor.  The Rev. Iain MacAonghais in his article ‘Bàrdachd Iain Duibh Mac Dhomhnaill nan Oran’ (Gairm, 82:113-121) mentions the oft-repeated assertion that Iain Dubh dabbled in the Black Arts, but his recollection of his one meeting with him when a small boy  would seem to indicate that Iain Dubh was a conjuror rather that a practitioner of the Black Arts. Iain Macleod suggests that he may also have been a hypnotist (Thomson 1983:183).  Iain Dubh died in Canada on the 9th September 1901 and was buried in Montreal’s Mount Royal Cemetery.  The Rev. Tormod Domhnallach relates how another Skye poet and sailor, Màrtainn MacMhaoilean, had a memorial stone erected above his grave (Domhnallach 1965:34).


Apparently Iain Dubh, unlike his father and brother, did not attempt to commit any of his poetry to writing.  The Rev. Donald MacCallum collected what he could of it, with the intention of having it published, but apparently he

never succeeded in doing this (MacLeod 1980:130). 


(1)   Iain MacLeòid.  ‘Anna Nic Leòid’.  An Gaidheal, 33 (1937-1938), 197


A love song to a girl who lived in Rudhan Dùnain, Skye.  The words were sent by Calum Mac-a-Phi of Kilmarnock to the editor, who believed that this was the song’s first appearance in print,


There are six eight-line stanzas, beginning ‘Soraidh uam le beannachd / Gu Anna Nic Leòid’, in an amhran metre.


(2)  Aoir Dhomhnuill Ghrannda


i   An Deò-Gréine, 17 (1921-1922), 43-44


ii  Gairm, 82 (An t-Earrach 1973), 115-117


The first version is entitled ‘Rann Chille-Chomghain’ and has eleven eight-line stanzas beginning with ‘ ‘N uair bha Domhnullga phianadh’.  The second version, which is from the Rev. Iain MacAonghais’ article ‘Bàrdachd Iain Duibh Mac Dhomhnaill nan Oran’ (Gairm, 82:113-121), shows several textual variations from the first.  It has three eight-line

stanzas, beginning ‘Nuair bha Domhnall Grannda air a phianadh’, followed by sixty-seven lines arranged in stanzas of varying length.


The subject of the song had removed some branches from a tree growing over the grave of a long dead Norse prince in the graveyard of Kilchoan.  Upon hearing of this, Iain Dubh composed his song in which the hapless Domhnall Grannd is visited by the prince’s ghost.  In the radio programme to which I have alluded in my introductory notes above, James Ross said that Domhnall’s sister Catriona was very upset by the slight upon her brother and Iain Dubh composed a love song, ‘Oran Catriona Ghrannda’ to her as a peace offering.


Iain Dubh appears to have composed ‘Aoir Dhomhnuill Ghrannda’ upon the model of a poem by his father Domhnall nan Oran (MacLeòid 1811:186-194), in which the poet encounters the ghost of a long dead Norseman in the same graveyard.  The father’s poem is much more solemn and didactic in tone than the son’s.


(3)  Iain MacLeòid.  An gamhainn a bha aig mo mhàthair’.  Gairm, 82 (An t-Earrach 1973), 120-121.


Amusing song about a calf with a voracious appetite.  From the Rev. Iain MacAonghais’s article ‘Bàrdachd Iain Duibh Mac Dhomhnaill nan Oran’ (Gairm, 82:113-121).  The Rev. MacAonghais got this version from Iain Ruairidh Chaluim Bhàin of Glendale and believes defects in the metre to indicate variations from Iain Dubh’s original composition.  There are five four-line stanzas.


(4)  Gillean òga tapaidh


i     An Deò-Gréine, 17 (1921-1922), 52


ii    Gairm, 82 (An t-Earrach 1973), 114-115


iii   Orain an Eilein.  Cairistiona Mhàrtainn.  An t-Eilean Sgiatheanach: Taigh na Teud, 2001, p.18


Probably the most popular of Iain Dubh’s songs, this is also known as ‘Gillean Ghleanndail’.  The second version is from the Rev. Iain MacAonghais’ ‘Bàrdachd Iain Duibh Mac Dhomhnaill nan Oran’ (Gairm, 82:113-121).  Rev. MacAonghais relates how the song came to be composed.  Iain Dubh was in the company of some young glensmen and upon being questioned about a sailor’s life replied with this song.


The first version has ten eight-line stanzas and the second has eight.  The metre is amhran.  The third version is printed as five four-line stanzas and has the music in staff notation.


(5)  Iain MacLeòid (Iain Dubh).  ‘Mo Mhàthair an Airnicreap’.  Orain an Eilein.  Cairistiona Mhàrtainn.  An t-Eilean Sgiatheanach: Taigh na Teud, 2001, p.19.


A moving song of the sailor leaving behind people and places he loves.  Six four-line stanzas with the music in staff notation.  From the singing of George Clavey.  While perhaps lacking the technical polish of his brother’s Niall’s poetry, this song conveys a depth of emotion which I cannot find in the latter’s work.


(6)  Oran a’ Cheannaiche


i    An Deò-Gréine, 16 (1920-1921), 183


ii   Gairm, 82 (An t-Earrach 1973), 118-119


The Cennaich is a high, steep rock by the shore near Gob na h-Eiste, well known to the fishermen of Glendale.  The song takes the form of a dialogue between the poet and the rock.


The first version is printed as sixteen short four-line stanzas beginning ‘ ‘N uair a chuir mi fàilt air an Aigeach / ‘S cha d’ aithnich e mi’.  The second version is from the Rev. Iain MacAonghais’ ‘Bàrdachd Iain Duibh Mac Dhomhnaill nan Oran’ (Gairm, 82:113-121).  It is printed as eight four-line stanzas.  I would describe the metre as amhran.


(7)  Oran an Aigeich


i    An Deò-Gréine, 17 (1921-1922), 6


ii   Gairm, 82 (An t-Earrach 1973), 119-120


The Aigeich is a dangerous rock near Gob n h-Eiste and four miles from Iain Dubh’s old home at Poloskin.  In this song he sees it as a symbol of permanence and a reminder of his vanished youth.


There are six four-line stanzas, beginning ‘O, fàilte dhuit, Aigeich,  tha riamh far an d’ fhàs thu’ in the first version.  The metre is similar to that of Donnchadh Bàn’s ‘Cumha Coire a’ Cheathaich’.


(8)  Oran do dh’ Fhear Husabost


i     Mac-Talla (8th January 1904), p. 112


ii    Old Skye Tales.  William MacKenzie.  Glasgow: Alex. MacLaren and Sons, 1934, pp. 87-88.


Composed in praise of Captain Nicol Martin, on whose estate Iain Dubh’s family lived and who had shown them many kindnesses.  It is a good example of a modern praise poem, with enthusiastic praise of the subject expressed in an easy, pleasant style.  Interestingly, it includes one of the most distinctive features of the older type of praise poem, a hunting episode.


The first version of the poem has nine eight-line stanzas, beginning ‘Cha ‘n eil mo chainnt ach gann leam  The second version has five eight-line stanzas beginning ‘Tha moit am measg nam bàrd orm’.  There are considerable textual variations between the two versions.  The metre is amhran.




Eventually, all of Iain Dubh's identifiable poems, many of them previously unpublished, were collected and edited by Meg Bateman in this anthology of works by Iain Dubh, his father Domhnall nan Oran and his brother Niall.


Meg Bateman and Anne Loughran (eds).  Bàird Ghleann Dail: the Glendale Bards.  Edinburgh: John Donald, 2014.


This work brought together the work of Domhnall nan Oran and his two sons, with a representative selection from Domhnall's 1811 and 1871 collections, along with a selection of works from Niall's Clàrsach an Doire and all of Iain Dubh's identifiable and previously unpublished works.




MACLEOID, Iain  (19th/20th Century)


This poet belonged to Tormore, Sleat, Skye.


Iain MacLeòid.  Oran Molaidh an t-Saighdeir Ghaidhealaich’.  Celtic Annual: Yearbook of the Dundee Highland Society, (1916), 82.


Praise of the soldiers from Skye who went to fight in the First World War.  A pleasant, lilting song which, while mentioning death and bereavement, does not dwell much upon them.


There are eight four-line stanzas and a refrain, beginning ‘Seinnibh cliù nam fear ùr’.  Composed upon the tune ‘Cruachan Beann’.




MACLEOID, Mrs. Madsair  (obit. 1834)


Annie, a daughter of Flora MacDonald and her husband Allan MacDonald of Kingsburgh, married Major Alexander MacLeod of Lochbay, Skye and of Glendale, Moore County, U.S.A.  She died in 1834 (MacDonald 1904: 511).  A lively character sketch of Mrs. MacLeod is to be found in Carmina Gadelica, I (Carmichael 1900:170-171).


Mrs. Madsair MacLeòid.  Oran do Shir Ian MacPherson’.  Oran Nuadh Ghaeleach.  Domhnul MacLeoid.  Inbhirnis: Eoin Young, 1811, dd. 104-106.


Sir John MacPherson, 1744-1821, was the son of the Rev. Dr. John MacPherson of Sleat.  A noted benefactor of his native parish, he was Governor-General of India from 1785 to 1786 (Nicolson 1930:336-337;  Grant 1959:520).


This praise poem appears to have been composed during Sir John’s absence from Skye and at a time when life was proving difficult for Mrs. MacLeod.  There are twelve stanzas in a strophic metre, beginning ‘Chunnig mis ann am chodail’.




MACLEOID, Murchadh  (19th Century)


Murchadh MacLeòid, ‘An Saighdear Sgiathanach’, may have been a brother of another Skye poet, Major Neil MacLeod of Waternish (q.v.).  Magnus MacLean discusses two brothers of Major MacLeod, Murdo and Roderick, who were also poets (Highland Monthly, 5:99).  There appears to be some confusion concerning the identity of the composer of the song noted and discussed below.  The fourth version is entitled ‘Oran a’ Mhaidseir’, and in a note is attributed to ‘the Skye soldier’.  If Murchadh MacLeòid, ‘An Saighdear Sgiathanach’, was indeed Major Neil MacLeod’s brother Murdo this could explain the possible confusion of authorship.


‘ ‘S ann air Feasgar Di-Ciadain


i     An t-Oranaiche.  Edited by Gilleasbuig Mac-na-Ceardadh.  Glasgow: Archibald Sinclair, 1879, pp. 503-504.


ii   The Celtic Monthly, 16 (1907-1908), 160.


iii   Gaelic Songs in Nova Scotia.  Edited by Helen Creighton & Calum MacLeod.  Ottawa: Dept. of the Secretary of State, 1964, pp. 182-185.


iv   Tocher, 22 (Summer 1976), 212-215.


v    From the Farthest Hebrides.  Edited by Donald A. Fergusson.  Toronto: Macmillan of Canada, 1978, pp. 150-153.


The first version is attributed to ‘Murchadh MacLeòid, an Saighdear Sgiathanach’; this attribution being repeated in English with the second version.  A note to the third version states that Dr. Farquhar Macrae of Ross-shire attributes the song to a John MacLeod of Scalpay, Harris.  The attribution of the fourth version has been noted above, and a note to the fifth version repeats the An t-Oranaiche attribution.


The texts of the first and second versions are similar.  The text of the third version, apart from an extra eleventh stanza contributed by Dr. Farquahar Macrae, has been transcribed from the singing of Frank MacNeil of Cape Breton.  The fifth version, entitled ‘Gàradh nan Ròs’, has been transcribed from the singing of Mrs. Katie MacAuley, originally of North Uist.  I might add that the texts of Mrs. MacAuley’s and Mr. MacNeil’s versions bear such a close relationship

to that in An t-Oranaiche that I have no doubt that it is their source.  The fourth version is a transcription of a recording of the Harris singer Margaret MacKay in the School of Scottish Studies in the University of Edinburgh (SA 952/108/9).


The song’s theme, that of young lovers kept apart by disapproving parents, and one of them dying for love, is not an uncommon one in the poetry and song of many countries.  The treatment of the theme in this particular song owes little, if anything, to the Gaelic tradition, and it most resembles a type of English sentimental ballad popular in Victorian

and Edwardian times.


In versions one, two, three and five there are ten four-line stanzas, Beginning with ‘Ni mi innse le fìrinn, an , an rinn mo chràdh’.  As already stated, the third version has an eleventh stanza.  The fourth version has fourteen stanzas, beginning with ‘Moch maduinn Di-Ciadain. ‘nuair bhaghrian a’s na neòil.




MACLEOID, Niall  (1825 – 1898)


Am Maidsear Niall MacLeòid, Major Neil MacLeod, was born in Waternish, Skye.  Both his parents were noted for their piety and the family was deeply influenced by the Disruption.  Major MacLeod was a first cousin of the poet Niall MacLeòid (see below), son of Domhnall MacLeòid (Domhnall nan Oran).


Neil joined the Royal Artillery in 1850 and had a distinguished military career, serving in the Crimea, the Indian Mutiny and in Ireland.  He joined the first military Bible class and was a total abstainer.


He was very involved in the affairs of the Free Church.  After his death at Dalkeith in November 1898 he was buried in the churchyard of Trumpan, Waternish.


(Information from Lt. Col. John MacInnes’ The Brave Sons of Skye  (MacInnes 1899: 197-201;  Gordon MacLeod’s ‘The MacLeods of Trumpan Reconsidered’ (MacLeod 2011), 


In his ‘Skye Bards’, Magnus MacLean writes that Major MacLeod had two brothers, Roderick and Murdo (Highland Monthly 5:99).  It is possible that Murdo is the poet Murchadh MacLeòid, ‘An Saighdear Sgiathanach’.  In Major Neil MacLeod’s obituary in An Fhianuis (Ianuaraidh 1899:546) only one brother,

Ruairidh (Roderick) is mentioned.


(1)  Maidsear MacLeòid.  ‘Air pilltean o na blàraibh’.  An Gaidheal, 39 (1943-1944), 82.


A variation on the ‘returning exile’ theme.  The soldier returns from the wars to find that the scenes of his youth are changed and desolate.  Similar in theme and in metre to Major MacLeod’s more famous namesake’s ‘An gleann ‘s an robh mi òg’.  It would be interesting to know which song was composed first.  I suspect that it may have been the Major’s, which I find the more emotionally convincing of the two.  The final stanza appears to be about Norman MacLeod, Tormod Saighdear, the evangelical poet of Waternish who died in 1858.


There are four eight-line stanzas, and the tune is given in tonic sol-fa notation.  This version was collected by Catriona Dhughlas and was the song’s first appearance in print.


(2)  Neil MacLeod.  Oran an t-Saighdeir’.  Journal of the Folk Song Society, No. 16 (1911) [The Frances Tolmie Collection], 269-270.


No. 105 in Miss Tolmie’s collection.  It was sung by Patrick MacLeod, a young shepherd, at Rudhan Dùnain in 1853.  Miss Tolmie writes that the song was composed by Major MacLeod in his youth.  She erroneously gives the Major’s date of death as 1879.


There is only one stanza, beginning ‘ ‘N uair bhios mo chàirdean nan cadal’.  There is an English translation and the tune is in staff notation.  This song has been reproduced in Orain an Eilein (Mhàrtainn 2001:20).


(3)  Major MacLeod.  Oran do ‘n Reisemeid Chataich’.  An Deò-Gréine, 15 (1919-1920), 165-167.


A long and rather tedious poem in praise of the Sutherland Highlanders.  There are twenty-eight four-line stanzas, beginning with ‘Ag éirigh tha m’ aigne mar reulta na maidne’.  Metrically similar to Murdo MacKenzie’s popular song ‘bu chaomh leam bhi mireadh’.




MACLEOID, Niall  (1843-1913)


Niall MacLeòid was born in Glendale, Skye, a son of the poet Domhnall MacLeòid, Domhnall nan Oran.  He came to Edinburgh about 1862 and joined the tea firm of his cousin Roderick MacLeod.  He achieved early

popularity as a poet and in 1883 the first edition of an anthology of his work, Clàrsach an Doire was published.  He lived to see the fourth edition of this work in 1909.  No other Scottish Gaelic secular author saw a fourth edition of his work during his lifetime.  The popularity of Clàrsach an Doire endured: a sixth edition appearing in 1975.

(Information from Professor MacKinnon’s ‘Neil MacLeod’, Celtic Review, 9

(1913), 151-156) )


In trying to arrive at a critical assessment of the work of Niall MacLeòid it is useful to consider two highly contrasting views of it.  The first, written shortly after the poet’s death, is that of Professor Donald MacKinnon (CelticReview, 9: 151-156) and the second, that of Professor Derick Thomson, is more recent (Thomson 1977:223-233).  Professor MacKinnon knew Niall MacLeòid personally and speaks of his “equable temper and gentle disposition” and he also clearly shared Niall MacLeòid’s romantic and idealised view of the Gaelic

homeland.  Professor Thomson takes a much more critical view of Niall as a poet, expressing the view that some of his work casts doubts on his artistic integrity.


Sorley MacLean has examined the work of Niall MacLeòid within the context of nineteenth century Gaelic political poetry in his article ‘Poetry of the Clearances’ (TGSI, 38:293-324).  Professor Donald Meek has done the same in his article ‘Gaelic Poets of the Land Agitation’ (TGSI, 49:309-376).  This article gives what is probably the most penetrating and useful overall view of the poet’s work and his influence on Gaelic literature.


In style and metre Niall MacLeòid’s verse was strongly influenced by popular English verse of the period.  The majority of the eighty-eight poems in Clàrsach an Doire demonstrate this influence and it may be of some interest to note here that MacLeòid published an epic poem on William Wallace in English (MacLeod 1896).  As far as theme is concerned, his work could be divided into five categories: homeland, love, religious and didactic, political, humorous; with the first two categories frequently overlapping.


It is reasonable to assume that Niall MacLeòid was possessed of a good store of oral literature, having been born and brought up in Skye when the oral tradition was still strong, and it is a matter of regret that he committed so little of this material to print.  For details of what he did commit to print, see here the Niall MacLeòid Collection.  It is also a matter of regret that Niall apparently took so little interest in his father Domhnall nan Oran’s work.  He would surely have been in a better position than anyone else to attempt to re-edit Domhnall’s 1811 collection and to commit to print at least part of his unpublished work which we know existed in manuscript form at the time of his death (MacDiarmid 1888).


(1)  Editions of Clàrsach an Doire:


i     Neil Macleod.  Clàrsach an Doire: Gaelic Poems and Songs. Edinburgh: MacLachlan and Stewart; Inverness: A. and W. MacKenzie, 1883


Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin agus Orain.  Duneideann: MacLachlainn agus an Stiubhartach;  Inbhirnis: A. agus U. MacCoinnich, 1883.  viii, 180d.


Reproduced by BiblioBazaar (Charleston, SC: 2009).


ii    Neil Macleod.  Clàrsach an Doire: Gaelic Songs, Poems and Readings. Second edition, enlarged.  With portrait of the author.  Glasgow: Archibald Sinclair; Edinburgh; Norman Macleod, 1893.


Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin, Orain agus Sgialachdan.  An dara clò-bhualadh.  Le dealbh an ùghdair.  Glaschu: Gilleasbuig Mac-na-Ceardadh; Duneideann: Tormaid MacLeòid, 1893.  ix, 278d.


iii   Neil Macleod.  Clàrsach an Doire: Gaelic Poems, Songs and Tales.  Third edition, revised and enlarged.  With portrait of the author.  Edinburgh: Norman Macleod, 1902.


Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin, Orain, is Sgeulachdan.  An treas clò-bhualadh.  Le dealbh an ùghdair.  Duneideann: Tormaid MacLeòid, 1902.   xii, 268d.


iv   Neil Macleod.  Clàrsach an Doire: Gaelic Poems, Songs and Tales.  Fourth edition, revised and enlarged.  With portrait of the author.  Edinburgh: Norman Macleod, 1909.


Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin, Orain, is Sgeulachdan.  An ceathramh clò-bhualadh.  Le dealbh an ùghdair.  Duneideann: Tormaid MacLeòid, 1909.   xii, 267d


v    Neil Macleod.  Clàrsach an Doire: Gaelic Poems, Songs and Tales.  Fifth edition.  With portrait of the author.  Glasgow: Alexander MacLaren and Sons, 1924.


Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin, Orain, is Sgeulachdan.  An coigeamh clò-bhualadh.  Le dealbh an ùghdair.  Glascho: Alasdair MacLabhruinn ‘s a Mhic, 1924.  xiv, 274p.


vi   Niall MacLeòid.  Clàrsach an Doire: Dàin, Orain, is Sgeulachdan.  An treas clò-bhualadh.  Le dealbh an ùghdair.  Glaschu: Gairm, 1975.  xiii, 274d.


Niall MacLeòid was forty years old when the first edition of Clàrsach an Doire with its sixty poems was published.  For the second edition, thirteen more poems were added; for the third nine; and for the fourth, the last edition published during Niall’s lifetime, six.  From this we can see that at a comparatively early age the greater part of Niall MacLeòid’s published work had already appeared.


In the sixth edition there are no pages 193-228; the gap being caused by the omission of the English rendering of some of the poems which appear in the second and later editions.  Otherwise the pagination of the verse and prose sections is identical with that of the fifth edition.


The prose tales are noted and discussed in the sections for creative and traditional prose in this bibliography.


(2)  Published tunes of songs appearing in Clàrsach an Doire:


The following is not a comprehensive list of all published sources of the tunes for songs in this book.  It is on the whole confined to those songs for which Niall MacLeòid has not named a specific tune, or songs for which tunes different to those specified by Niall have been published.  It should be noted that not all editions of Clàrsach an Doire include the full range of named tunes.


i     ‘A’ Bhean agam fhìn’.  Celtic Monthly, 20 (1912), 239.


ii     ‘Am faigh a’ Ghàidhlig bàs?’.  Songs of the Highlands.  Malcolm MacFarlane.  Inverness: Logan and Co., [1902], pp. 188-190.


iii    ‘Am fear a chaill a leannan’.  Celtic Monthly, 25 (1917), 60.


iv     ‘An gaol a thug mi og’.  Orain an Eilein.  Cairistiona Mhàrtainn.  An t-Eilean Sgiatheanach: Taigh nan Teud, 2001, p. 22.


v      ‘An Gleann ‘s an robh mi òg’.  MacLaren’s Hebrides Collection of Scottish Songs.  No. 2.


vi     ‘An téid thu leam, a rìghinn òg’.  MacLaren’s Hebrides Collection of Scottish Songs.  No. 7.


vii   Choille Chaoil’.  MacLaren’s Hebrides Collection of Scottish Songs.  No. 1.


viii  Duanag an t-Seòladair’.  An Gaidheal, 35 (1939-1940), 175.


ix    Dùghall na Sròine’.  Celtic Monthly, 21 (1913), 140.


x     Fàilte do ‘n  Bhliadhn-ùir’.  An Deò-Gréine, 4 (1908-1909), 87.


xi    Fàilte do ‘n Eilean Sgitheanach’.  An Deò-Gréine, 2  (1906-1907), 54.


xii   ‘Far an robh mi ‘n raoir’.  MacLaren’s Hebrides Collection of Scottish Songs.No. 6.


xiii  Màiri Bhaile-chrò’.  An Deò-Gréine, 5 (1909-1910), 59.


xiv   ‘Mi-fhìn is Anna’.  Celtic Monthly, 20 (1912), 80.


xv    ‘Mo Dhòmhnullan fhéin’.  Songs of the Highlands.  Malcolm MacFarlane.  Inverness: Logan and Co., [1902], pp. 40-42.


xvi   ‘Mo Leannan’.  Orain an Eilein.  Cairistiona Mhàrtainn.  An t-Eilean Sgiatheanach: Taigh nan Teud, 2001, p. 20.


xvii   ‘Na Croitearan Sgiatheanach’.  An Sgeulaiche, 1 (1909), 26-29. 


xviii   ‘Na Gàidheil’.  An Deò-Gréine, 1 (1905-1906), 183.


xix    Oran na Seana-Mhaighdinn’.  Songs of the Highlands.  Malcolm MacFarlane.  Inverness: Logan and Co., [1902], pp. 32-34.


xx      'Tigh a’ Mhisgeir’.


May be sung to the same tune as the poet’s brother Iain Dubh’sGillean òga tapaidh’, Màiri Mhór nan Oran’s ‘Ged tha mo cheann air liathadh’, and others.  See note to song by Donald MacLean, Sruth (22nd January 1970), p. 7.



(3)  Neil MacLeod.  Còmhradh eadar Oganach agus Oisean’.  Gailig (An Deò-Gréine), 18 (1922-1923), 58-59, 77-78.


First publication of a poem composed in March 1868 when the poet was twenty-five.  A prefatory note remarks that it is ‘marked by force and energy, some part of which may have been exchanged for ease and polish in the bard’s later work’ – a fair comment.  The formula is a well-used one, in which Oisean appears to the poet and converses with him.  Here Oisean laments the decline of Gaelic, the language of his youth and of Eden.  There follows an attack upon the new alien occupiers of the land which is marked by a bitterness rarely found in Clàrsach an Doire.  It is of interest to compare this poem with one in Clàrsach an Doire: ‘Sealladh air Oiseanhas a similar formula and even some textual similarities, but in its romantic sentimentality is very different from the apparently earlier poem.


There are twenty-three eight-line stanzas, beginning with ‘Feasgar dhomh ‘s mi air an t-sliabh’.  The metre is amhran.


(4)   Niall MacLeòid.  ‘Am Bàt Uaine’.  Celtic Annual: Yearbook of the Dundee Highland Society, (1914), 31.


Light-hearted praise of a boat.  There is a reference to the Americas Cup yacht race, when the poet speaks of the ‘Columbia’ winning against the ‘Shamrock’.  Of Sir Thomas Lipton’s five yachts named ‘Shamrock’, the first two raced against a yacht named ‘Columbia’ in the 1899 and 1901 races (see Encyclopaedia Britannica’s entry for sporting records).  The song may then be dated to either of these two years, or afterwards.


There are sixteen quatrains, beginning ‘Tha mi ‘g ràdh, ‘s bidh mi ‘g  ràdh’, composed upon the tune of ‘Mali Dhonn ‘s i ruith dhachaidh’.






MACLEOID, Tormaid.  See MACLEOD, Norman  (1745-1824)






















Traditional: known authorship

A-C       D-Domhnall       Domhnallach-Dz        E–G       H–L       M–MacA       MacB–MacC        MacD        MacE-MacK,  MacLa-MacLeod        MacLeòid A-H        MacLeòid I-Z        MacM-MacN       MacO-MacZ      M      N      O-Q      R-Z


Traditional: anonymous

A-B      C-D      E-K      L-N       O       P-Z     


Traditional: collections

Annie Arnott       An Cabairneach        Carmina Gadelica        Catriona Dhùghlas        Tormod Domhnallach                  Marjory Kennedy-Fraser         Angus Lamont        K. N. MacDonald         Johan MacInnes          Hugh MacKinnon          Calum I. MacLean         Sorley MacLean        Kenneth MacLeod         Niall MacLeòid        Màiri Nighean Alasdair

Cairistiona Mhàrtainn         Alexander Morison          Kenneth Morrison         Angus Nicolson          Portree HS Magazine   Lachlann Robertson         Frances Tolmie I          Frances Tolmie II



Somhairle MacGill-Eain         The New Poetry



Books etc: A-L         Books etc: MacA-MacL         Books etc: MacM-Z   Periodicals, MSS, AV



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