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Irish Druids And Old Irish Religions

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Author Topic: Irish Druids And Old Irish Religions  (Read 5762 times)
Crissy Herrell
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Posts: 3407

« Reply #255 on: February 22, 2009, 12:51:20 am »

A WILD storm of controversy once raged, when Macpherson put forth a work purporting to be a collection of old Gaelic songs, under the name of the "Poems of Ossian," who was the last of the Fenian Chiefs, and who, reported, on his return to Ireland after his enchantment, failed to yield his paganism to St. Patrick's appeals.

While generally condemned as the inventor of the lays, the charms of which enthralled even Byron and Goethe, he must surely have been a poet of great merit, if they were of his own composition. But if they were remains of ancient traditions, carried down by word of mouth, Macpherson might at least be credited with weaving them into more or less connected narratives.

There has been much debate as to the possibility such rude people, as in Erin and on the opposite shore of North Britain, having so retentive a memory, with the ability to transmit ideas at once beautiful and refined, in language of imagination and taste. But, as with Edda, and the folklore of other semi-barbarous nations, facts prove the reality of extraordinary memory. It is not generally known that many Jews could repeat faithfully the whole of their sacred scriptures.

The history of the poems is interesting. The Rev. John Home, the author of Douglas and other publications, found a Tutor with transcripts taken down from old

p. 275

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