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skirt, and rustles through the sky! Dost thou not behold thy father, at the stream of night! The chiefs of Morven sleep far distant. They have lost no son: But ye have lost a hero, chiefs of resounding Morven! Who could equal his strength, when battle rolled against his side, like the darkness of crowded waters'? Why this cloud on Ossian's soul? It ought to burn in danger. Erin is near with her host. The king of Selma is alone. Alone thou shalt not be, my father, while I can lift the spear !

I rose, in all my arms. I rose and listened to the wind. The shield of Fillan is not heard. I tremble for the son of Fingal. “Why should the foe come by night? Why should the darkhaired warrior fail ?” Distant, silent murmurs rise : like the noise of the lake of Lego, when its waters shrink, in the days of frost', and all

* When battle rolled against his side, like the darkness of crowded waters.] The nations shall rush like the rushing of many waters. Isaiah, xvii. 13. The simile is unintelligible till the imitation be explained.

2 Distant, sullen murmurs rise: like the noise of the lake of Lego, when its waters shrink in the days of frost.] Tromson's Winter.

Their sullen deeps
Transparent, open to the shepherd's gaze,

He heard my

its bursting ice resounds. The people of Lara look to heaven, and foresee the storm! My steps are forward on the heath. The spear of Oscar is in my hand! Red stars looked from high. I gleamed, along the night ?.

I saw Fillan silent before me, bending forward from Mora's rock. He heard the shout of the foe. The joy of his soul arose. sounding tread, and turned his lifted spear. “Comest thou, son of night, in peace? Or dost thou meet my wrath? The foes of Fingal are mine. Speak, or fear my steel. I stand not, in vain, the shield of Morven's race.”

" Never mayst thou stand in vain, son of blue-eyed Clatho! Fingal begins to be alone.

Darkness gathers on the last of his days. Yet he has two sons 4 who ought to shine in war,

Who ought

And murmur hoarser at the fixing frost. " And all its bursting ice resounds.Id.

And hark! the length’ning roar continuous runs
Athwart the rifted deep : at once it bursts,

And piles a thousand mountains to the skies.
3 I gleamed, along the night.] Highlander, i. 215.

His armour bright Reflects the fire, and shines along the night. * That is, two sons in Ireland. Fergus, the second son of Fingal, was, at that time, on an expedition which is mention

to be two beams of light near the steps of his departure.”

“Son of Fingal,” replied the youth, “it is not long since I raised the spear. Few are the marks of my sword in war. But Fillan's soul is fire! The chiefs of Bolgas crowd around the

ed in one of the lesser poems. He, according to some traditions, was the ancestor of Fergus the son of Erc or Arcath, commonly called Fergus the second in the Scotch histories. The beginning of the reign of Fergus over the Scots, is placed, by the most approved annals of Scotland, in the fourth year of the fifth age; a full century after the death of Ossian. The genealogy of his family is recorded thus by the Highland Senachies; Fergus Mac-Arcath Mac-Chongael, Mac-Fergus, MacFion-gäel na buai'; i. e. Fergus the son of Arcath, the son of Congal, the son of Fergus, the son of Fingal the victorious. MACPHERSON.

Destroy his fib, or sophistry, in vain;

The creature's at his dirty work again. No sooner was one fiction destroyed by Innes, than another was created by our Celtic bards. Fergus, the son of Fingal, who is now employed on an expedition mentioned in one of the lesser poems never published, is thus converted into the fabulous Fergus I. of Scotland ; and instead of the forty kings of the Milesian race, the translator, in a dissertation annexed to the former editions of Ossian, gives us six generations of kings never known before; namely, Trenmor, Trathal, Comhal, Fingal of victories, Fergus I. Congal, Arcath, and Fergus II. If we ask what authority there is for this unheard of dynasty of new kings, the answer is, that they depend upon the same authentic, and never-failing traditions with the rest of Ossian.

5 The southern parts of İreland went, for some time, under

shield of generous Cathmor. Their gathering is on that heath. Shall my steps approach their host? I yielded to Oscar alone, in the strife of the race, on Cona!”

“Fillan, thou shalt not approach their host; nor fall before thy fame is known. My name is heard in song: when needful I advance. From the skirts of night I shall view them over all their gleaming tribes. Why, Fillan, didst thou speak of Oscar? Why awake my sigh! I must forget the warrior, till the storm is rolled away. Sadness ought not to dwell in danger, nor the tear in the eye of war. Our fathers forgot their fallen sons, till the noise of arms was past. Then sorrow returned to the tomb, and the song of bards arose.” The memory of those, who fell, quickly followed the departure of war: When the tumult of battle is past, the soul, in silence, melts away, for the dead.

the name of Bolga, from the Fir-bolg or Belgæ of Britain, who settled a colony there. Bolg signifies a quiver, from which proceeds Fir-bolg, i. e. bowmen ; so called from their using bows, more than any of the neighbouring nations. MACPHERSON.

The Fir-bolg, or Belgæ, are frequently mentioned in Irish history. But in this fictitious etyniology, bolg signifies merely a tag or budget, the belly, or a pair of bellows, and bolg-saighit, (sagitta,) is a quiver, or bag for arrows.

Conar was the brother of Trathal, first of mortal men. His battles were on every coast. A thousand streams rolled down the blood of his foes. His fame filled green Erin, like a pleasant gale?. The nations gathered in Ullin, and they blessed the king; the king of the race of their fathers, from the land of Selma.

The chiefs of the south were gathered, in the darkness of their pride. In the horrid cave of Muma, they mixed their secret words. Thither often, they said, the spirits of their fathers came; shewing their pale forms from the chinky rocks 8.

6 Conar, the first king of Ireland, was the son of Trenmor the great-grand-father of Fingal. It was on account of this family-connection, that Fingal was engaged in so many wars in the cause of the race of Conar. MACPHERSON.

7 A thousand streams rolled down the blood of his foes. His fame filled green Erin like a pleasant gale.] Pope's Essay on Man.

Oh! while along the stream of time thy name
Expanded flies, and gathers all its fame ;
Say, shall my little bark attendant sail,

Pursue the triumph, and partake the gale ?
Shewing their pale forms from the chinky rocks.]
through the chinky hut the beam.” MACPHERSON's Cave.
From Mason's Elfrida, infra, 28.

Where at pale midnight's stillest hour,
Through each rough chink the solemn orb of night
Pours momentary gleams of trembling light.

8

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