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TITLE
Mo Shoraidh leis a 'Chòigich (Farewell to Coigach)
EXTERNAL ID
PC_FIONA_MACKENZIE_DROVING_02
PLACENAME
Coigach
DISTRICT
Lochbroom
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Lochbroom
DATE OF RECORDING
2008
PERIOD
2000s
CREATOR
Murdo Maclean
SOURCE
Fiona J Mackenzie
ASSET ID
41303
KEYWORDS
drovers
droving
cowboys
cattle drives
Farewell to Coigach
audios

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Mo Shoraidh leis a 'Chòigich (Farewell to Coigach)

This drovers' song, sung here by Fiona J Mackenzie, was composed by Murdo Maclean in 1910. Murdo was a migrant crofter who travelled from his home in Wester Ross to Billings, Montana, in 1900. He became part of a group of Highland cattle hands and shepherds who stayed in a local hotel run by Gaelic speakers. He eventually returned to Scotland, married his sweetheart, and set up a farm on the Black Isle in 1907. (Gibson, Rob. 'Plaids & Bandanas' (2003), pp 153-4)

'S ann a fhuair mi m'àrach an taobh tuath de Alba mhòr
Far 'm bheil beanntaichean tha fasgathach is gleanntanan gu leòr
Far 'm bheil chlann-nighean as bòidhche 's as fìnealta tha beò
Is truagh nach robh mi thall leo ged bhithinn gann de'n òr.

Mo bheannachd mhòr le Mairi bho'n 's I piuthar m'athair I
B'aoibhneach a bhitheadh I's I feitheamh nochd rium fhèin
Ach 's duilich nochd's is cianail I, 's mi sgriob a-null air sail
'S mi corr's tri mile mile bho Alba ghorm an fheòir.

Mo shoraidh leis a'Choigich 's le Beinne Mhor a' cheò
Meall Dubh is Spicean Cointich far'n robh mi aotrom Òg
Tha chaora mhaol as bòidhche a' cromadh bàrr an fheòir
Is buachlaichean le suain orra a'buaichailleachd nan uan Òg

Tha còrr is seachd bliadhna le thriall mi as air falbh
'S a ghabh mi slàinte le Alba 's gach caraid innt' tha tàmh
is ged bu chruaidh an sàr e gun fhios an tillinn beò
'S e chailin donn a dh'fhàg mi a sgàin mo chridhe le bròn.

O Eilean Alba dhomhsa seach còs tha fon a' ghrèin
Chan iarrainn òr no airgead ann no fortan bhith da rèir
Ach dh'fhanainn fad mo là ann le saibhreas a bhiodh crìon
Le n' rìbhinn mhaiseach bhòidheach à Eilean Dubh mo mhiann.

The English translates as:

'I was reared in the North of Scotland
Where there are mountains sheltering many glens
Where there are young women who are more beautiful
And polite than women elsewhere
Such a pity that I was not now with them although I would be short of money

I was very young when I used to climb the pinnacles
With my hazel walking stick and my new tartan plaid
And with my rough haired young dog, the best that ever rounded up the sheep tacks
And red haired Mary scolding me in a language without substance

My great blessings with Mary because she is my fathers sister
How joyful she would be waiting for me coming home at night
But tonight she is sad and pensive while I am a long way across the sea
More than twice three thousand miles from the green grass of Scotland

My farewell to Còigich and Ben Mòr of the mists
With its outcrops of Spicean Cointich and Black Rock cone-shaped
I was young and light footed where the glad sheep are bonny cropping the tips of the grass
And shepherds, having forty winks, herding the young lambs.

There are more than seven years since I left my home
And left good health to Scotland and all who live there
And although the difficulties were stressful
And that I might not return alive
What distressed me the most was leaving
My broken hearted sweetheart

Oh for the Island of Scotland
For me above any place under the sun
I would not need to have great silver or gold
I would remain there, with my little wealth
With the beautiful young maiden from the Black Isle, of my desire'

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Mo Shoraidh leis a 'Chòigich (Farewell to Coigach)

ROSS: Lochbroom

2000s

drovers; droving; cowboys; cattle drives; Farewell to Coigach; audios

Fiona J Mackenzie

Droving in the Highlands - Songs

Mo Shoraidh leis a 'Chòigich (Farewell to Coigach)<br /> <br /> This drovers' song, sung here by Fiona J Mackenzie, was composed by Murdo Maclean in 1910. Murdo was a migrant crofter who travelled from his home in Wester Ross to Billings, Montana, in 1900. He became part of a group of Highland cattle hands and shepherds who stayed in a local hotel run by Gaelic speakers. He eventually returned to Scotland, married his sweetheart, and set up a farm on the Black Isle in 1907. (Gibson, Rob. 'Plaids & Bandanas' (2003), pp 153-4)<br /> <br /> 'S ann a fhuair mi m'àrach an taobh tuath de Alba mhòr<br /> Far 'm bheil beanntaichean tha fasgathach is gleanntanan gu leòr<br /> Far 'm bheil chlann-nighean as bòidhche 's as fìnealta tha beò<br /> Is truagh nach robh mi thall leo ged bhithinn gann de'n òr.<br /> <br /> Mo bheannachd mhòr le Mairi bho'n 's I piuthar m'athair I<br /> B'aoibhneach a bhitheadh I's I feitheamh nochd rium fhèin<br /> Ach 's duilich nochd's is cianail I, 's mi sgriob a-null air sail<br /> 'S mi corr's tri mile mile bho Alba ghorm an fheòir.<br /> <br /> Mo shoraidh leis a'Choigich 's le Beinne Mhor a' cheò<br /> Meall Dubh is Spicean Cointich far'n robh mi aotrom Òg<br /> Tha chaora mhaol as bòidhche a' cromadh bàrr an fheòir<br /> Is buachlaichean le suain orra a'buaichailleachd nan uan Òg<br /> <br /> Tha còrr is seachd bliadhna le thriall mi as air falbh<br /> 'S a ghabh mi slàinte le Alba 's gach caraid innt' tha tàmh<br /> is ged bu chruaidh an sàr e gun fhios an tillinn beò<br /> 'S e chailin donn a dh'fhàg mi a sgàin mo chridhe le bròn.<br /> <br /> O Eilean Alba dhomhsa seach còs tha fon a' ghrèin<br /> Chan iarrainn òr no airgead ann no fortan bhith da rèir<br /> Ach dh'fhanainn fad mo là ann le saibhreas a bhiodh crìon<br /> Le n' rìbhinn mhaiseach bhòidheach à Eilean Dubh mo mhiann.<br /> <br /> The English translates as:<br /> <br /> 'I was reared in the North of Scotland<br /> Where there are mountains sheltering many glens<br /> Where there are young women who are more beautiful<br /> And polite than women elsewhere<br /> Such a pity that I was not now with them although I would be short of money<br /> <br /> I was very young when I used to climb the pinnacles<br /> With my hazel walking stick and my new tartan plaid<br /> And with my rough haired young dog, the best that ever rounded up the sheep tacks<br /> And red haired Mary scolding me in a language without substance<br /> <br /> My great blessings with Mary because she is my fathers sister<br /> How joyful she would be waiting for me coming home at night<br /> But tonight she is sad and pensive while I am a long way across the sea<br /> More than twice three thousand miles from the green grass of Scotland<br /> <br /> My farewell to Còigich and Ben Mòr of the mists<br /> With its outcrops of Spicean Cointich and Black Rock cone-shaped<br /> I was young and light footed where the glad sheep are bonny cropping the tips of the grass<br /> And shepherds, having forty winks, herding the young lambs.<br /> <br /> There are more than seven years since I left my home<br /> And left good health to Scotland and all who live there<br /> And although the difficulties were stressful<br /> And that I might not return alive<br /> What distressed me the most was leaving<br /> My broken hearted sweetheart<br /> <br /> Oh for the Island of Scotland<br /> For me above any place under the sun<br /> I would not need to have great silver or gold<br /> I would remain there, with my little wealth<br /> With the beautiful young maiden from the Black Isle, of my desire'