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" the storm. Partake the feast within my hall. • It is the house of strangers.”
“ The maid stood trembling by my side. He “ drew the bow. She fell. Unerring is thy hand,” I said, “ but feeble was the foe. We fought, nor " weak the strife of death. He sunk beneath
my sword.” We laid them in two tombs of stone; the hapless lovers of youth! Such bave I been in my youth, O Oscar! be thou like the age of Fingal. Never search thou for battle ; nor shun it when it comes.
“ Fillan and Oscar of the dark-brown hair! " ye, that are swift in the race! fly over the heath “ in my presence. View the sons of Lochlin. e Far off I hear the noise of their feet, like dis* tant sounds in woods. Go; that they may not “fly from my sword, along the waves of the “ north. For many
chiefs of Erin's race lie here on the dark bed of death. The children of war are low; the sons of echoing Cromla.”
The heroes flew like two dark clouds: two dark clouds that are the chariots of ghosts; when air's dark children come forth to frighten hapless
It was then that Gaul,* the son of Morni,
• Gaul, the son of Morni, was chief of a tribe that disputed long the pre-eminence with Fingal himself. They were reduced at last to obedience, and Gaul, from an enemy, turned Fingal's best friend and greatest hero. His character is something like that of Ajax in the Iliad ; a hero of more strength than conduct in battle. He was very fond of military fame, and here he demands the next battle to him. self. The poet, by an artifice, removes Fingal, that his return may be the more magnificent.
stood like a rock in night. His spear is glittering to the stars; his voice like many streams.
“Son of battle,” cried the chief, “ O Fingal,
king of shells ! let the bards of many songs “ sooth Erin's friends to rest. Fingal, sheath “ thou thy sword of death; and let thy people “ fight. We wither away without our fane; " our king is the only breaker of shields! When
morning rises on our bills, behold, at a distance,
our deeds. Let Lochlin feel the sword of “ Morni's son; that bards may sing of me. Such was the custom heretofore of Fingal's noble Such was thine
own, thou king of swords, • in battles of the spear.”
“O son of Morni," Fingal replied, “I glory “ in thy fame. Fight; but my spear shall be
near, to aid thee in the midst of danger. Raise, “ raise the voice, ye sons of song! and lull me « into rest.
Here will Fingal lie, amidst the “ wind of night. And if thou, Agandecca, art
near, among the children of thy land ; if thou “ sittest on a blast of wind, among the high“ shrouded masts of Lochlin ; come to my “ dreams,* my fair one. Show thy bright face
soul.” Many a voice and many a harp, in tuneful sounds arose. Of Fingals noble deeds they sung: of Fingal's noble race : and sometimes, on the lovely sound, was heard the name of Ossian. I * The poet prepares us for the dream of Fingal in the next book
often fought, and often won, in battles of the spear. But blind and tearful, and forlorn I walk with little men! O Fingal, with thy race of war I now behold thee not. The wild roes feed on the green tomb of the mighty king of Morven ! Blest be thy soul, thou king of swords, thou most renowued on the hills of Cona!
ARGUMENT -The action of the poem being suspended by night, Ossian takes that opportunity to relate his own actions at the lake of Lego, and his courtship of Everallin, who was the mother of Oscar, and had died some time before the expedition of Fingal into Ireland.
Her ghost appears to him, and tells him that Oscar, who had been sent the beginning of the night to observe the enemy, was engaged with an advanced party, and almost overpower. ed. Ossian relieves his son: and an alarm is given to Fingal of the approach of Swaran. The king rises, calls his army together, and, as he had promised the preceding night, devolves the command on Gaul, the son of Morni, while he himself, after charging his sons to behave gallantly and defend his people, retires to a hill, from whence he could have a view of the battle. The battle joins : the poet relates Oscar's great actions. But when Oscar, in conjunction with his father, conquered in one wing, Gaul, who was attacked by Swaran in person, was on the point of retreating in the other. Fingal sends Ullin his bard to encourage him with a war song, but notwithstanding Swaran prevails ; and Gaul and his army are obliged to give way. Fingal, descending from the hill rallies them again : Swaran desists from the pursuit, possesses himself of a rising ground, restores the ranks, and waits the approach of Fingal. The king having encouraged his men, gives the necessary orders, and renews the battle.
Cu. thullin, who with his friend Connal, and Carril his bard, had retired to the cave of Tura, hearing the noise, came to the brow of the hill, which overlooked the field of battle, where he saw Fingal engaged with the enemy, He, being hindered by Connal from joining Fingal, who was himself upon the point of obtaining a complete victory,
sends Carril to congratulate that hero on his success. WHO comes with her songs from the hill, like the bow of the showery Lena? It is the maid of
* Fingal being asleep, and the action suspended by night, the poet introduces the story of his courtship of Everallin the daughter of Branno. The episode is necessary to clear up several passages that follow in the poem, at the same time that it naturally bring on the ac
the voice of love! The white-armed daughter of Toscar! Often hast thou heard my song; often given the tear of beauty. Dost thou come to the wars of thy people ? to hear the actions of Oscar? When shall I cease to mourn, by the streams of resounding Cona? My years have passed away in battle. My age is darkened with grief!
Daughter of the hand of spow! I was not so * mournful and blind, I was not so dark and « forlorn, when Everallin loved me! Everallin “ with the dark-brown hair, the white-bosomed “ daughter of Branno. A thousand heroes sought “ the maid, she refused her love to a thousand. " The sons of the sword were despised : for
graceful in her eyes was Ossian. I went, in “ suit of the maid, to Lego's sable surge. Twelve “ of my people were there, the sons of streamy * Morven! We came to Branno, friend of stran“gers! Branno of the sounding mail. From “ whence,' he said, are the arms of steel ? “ Not easy to win is the inaid, who has denied “the blue-eyed sons of Erin. But blest be thou, “O son of Fingal! Happy is the maid that " waits thee. Though twelve daughters of beau“ ty were nine, tbipe were the choice, thou son “ of fame!'
tion of the book, which may be supposed to begin about the middle of the third night from the opening of the poem. This book as many of Ossian's other compositions, is addressed to the beautiful Malvina, the daughter of Toscar. She appears to have been in love with Oscar, and to have affected the company of the father after the death of the son, VOL, II,