Fair of Carman

From Irish Druids and Old Irish Religions, 1894

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Dr. W. R. Sullivan has a translation of the Fair of Carman, concerning three magicians and their mother from Athens:—

"By charms, and spells, and incantations, the mother blighted every place, and it was through magical devastation and dishonesty that the men dealt out destruction. They came to Erin to bring evil upon the Tuatha de Danann, by blighting the fertility of this isle. The Tuatha were angry at this; and they sent against them Ai, the son of Allamh, on the part of their poets, and Credenbel on the part of their satirists, and Lug Laeban, i. e. the son of Cacher, on the part of their Druids, and Becuille on the part of the witches, to pronounce incantations against them. And these never parted from them until they forced the three men over the sea, and they left a pledge behind them, i. e, Carman, their mother, that they would never return to Erin."

A counter-charm is given in the Senchus Mor. When the Druids sought to poison St. Patrick, the latter wrote over the liquor:—

"Tubu fis fri ibu, fis ibu anfis,
Fris bru uatha, ibu lithu, Christi Jesus."

He left it on record that whoever pronounced these words over poison or liquor should receive no injury from it. It might be useful with Irish whisky; only the translator adds that the words of the charm, like most of the charms of the Middle Ages, appear to have had no meaning.

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