Letter to Richard Fleming February 1918

Castlelyons, Co. Cork

Feb. 27. 1918

My dear Fr. Richard

I feel very well today baochas le Dia! The doctor who attends me has a certain rule fixed for me and as long as I stick rigidly to that rule I get on very well. The colour is still out of order, but as long as the rule is observed I get on very well and can write away.

I have taken out and rewritten the page of the Life where that note of Haydock’s set me astray. What a stupid note! It is all right now. Many thanks for your help.

Ní duine mise gur maith liom. Ní duine thusa gur maith leat. Ní daoine sinne gur maith linn. Ní daoine sibhse gur maith libh.

or

Níor dhuine mise gur mhaith liom, &c, &c.

or

Ní duine mise gur mhaith liom = “I am not a person who would wish”.

I have tried my instinct on the form Ní duine mise gur mhaith leis, but I don’t like it where1 I seem to pass suddenly from myself to some third party.

Cuideachtanas is the same I think as “companionship”. But i gcómhluadar a chéile = “in each other’s company”. I gcuideachtanas a chéile would emphasise the enjoyment of each other’s companionship.

1.) Lasmu’ means “in front”, as well as “outside” and laistiar means “at the back”, or “behind”, as well as “in the west”.

I would prefer to say an bóthar ceart. Perhaps long ago, when slí was the word for bóthar, an tslí chóir was used for an bóthar ceart. We have a proverb cuir an tsrathar ar an gcapall gcóir = “put the straddle on the right horse”. The language of that proverb must be very old. You have both capall and cóir eclipsed, which is not usual in the living speech. We say ar an gcapall dubh, not …ndubh.

2.) yes, but then I would put the whole thing this way on lá ’ bhíos ábalta ar an gcéad pheaca ’ dhéanamh. It is all a question of usage, which, of course, varies in different places. Dochar = damage; detriment. Díobháil = harm either in a physical way or in a moral way, anchor = literally, a wrong turn, e.g. suicide. Thug sé anchor dò féin = he gave himself a wrong turn i.e. he committed suicide.

3. Ag teacht crosta ort, happening in such a way as to interfere with you, not necessarily annoying you.

4.) I suppose cráifeacht = piety and débhóide = devotion. Probably the last has been adopted from the Latin devotio.

5.) Tháinig mian dom = “A desire came to me so as that I felt it; so as that I had it as a desire, even though against my will. Dea-shampla, pron. da hampla. Dea-bhean, pron. deigh-bhean; dei-bhean. Bídhse pron. bíse. In fact I am always tempted to write it bí-se.

6.) A mhairfá or a mhairfir, just as you contemplate the result as actually following on, or, as desirable only.

6). A very nice point. Líonmhar is an adjective. Líonmhaire is the name of the quality which líonmhar ascribes to a noun. But líonmhaire is not a quantity.

A líonmhaire atáid siad ann = they are so numerous there. There is no possibility of saying “there is such a numerous of them here”. The a is what causes the trouble. It expresses the degree of líonmhaire, not the líonmhaire itself. I could say tá líonmhaireacht mhór ann díobh and it would be perfectly crorrect. E.g. a luíghead atáid said ann = “They are so small there”. (i.e. each of them is so small). But, a luíghead atá ann díobh = there are so few of them, (although each of the few may be very big).

T’oide is do chara

Peadar Ua Laoghaire

1unclear part of the text – check original.

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