Ùrachadh mu Dheireadh 18/09/2017
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TIOTAL
The Highland Seer' (2 of 2)
EXTERNAL ID
AB_LL_ALEXANDER_SMITH_10
SGÌRE
An t-Eilean Sgitheanach
SIORRACHD/PARRAIST
INBHIR NIS
DEIT
2008
LINN
2000an
CRUTHADAIR
Alexander Smith
NEACH-FIOSRACHAIDH
Am Baile
AITHNEACHADH MAOINE
1238
KEYWORDS
claistinneach
cruthan-tìre litreachais

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Tha a' chuibhreann chlaistinneach seo o 'A Summer in Skye' le Alexander Smith, foillsichte an 1865. Tha e air a leughadh an seo le Tormod Newton.

'Just as there are poets who are more open to beauty than other men and whose duty and delight it is to set forth that beauty anew; so in the Hebrides there are seers who bear the same relation to the other world that the poet bears to beauty, who are cognisant of its secrets and who make those secrets known. The seer does not inherit his power. It comes upon him as haphazard, as genius or personal beauty might come. He is a lonely man among his fellows; apparitions cross his path at noon-day; he never knows into what a ghastly something the commonest object may transform itself - the table he sits at may suddenly become the resting-place of a coffin; and the man who laughs in his cups with him may, in the twinkling of an eye, wear a death shroud up to his throat. He hears river voices prophesying death and shadowy and silent funeral processions are constantly defiling before him.

When the seer beholds a vision his companions know it; for the inner part of his eyelids turn so far upwards that, after the object disappears, he must draw them down with his fingers and sometimes employs others to draw them down, which he finds to be much the easier way.

From long experience of these visions and by noticing how closely or tardily fulfilment has trodden upon their heels, the seer can extract the meaning of the apparition that flashes upon him and predict the period of its accomplishment. Other people can make nothing of them, but he reads them.

These visions, it would appear, conform to rules, like everything else. If a vision be seen early in the morning it will be accomplished in a few hours; if at noon, it will usually be accomplished that day; if in the evening, that night; if after candles are lighted, certainly that night. When a shroud is seen about a person it is a sure prognostication of death. And the period of death is estimated by the height of the shroud about the body. If it lies about the legs, death is not to be expected before the expiry of a year and perhaps it may be deferred a few months longer. If it is seen near the head, death will occur in a few days, perhaps in a few hours. To see houses and trees in a desert place is a sign that buildings will be erected there anon. To see a spark of fire falling on the arms or breast of a person is the sign that a dead child will shortly be in the arms of those persons. To see a seat empty at the time of sitting in it is a sign of that person's death being at hand.

The seers are said to be extremely temperate in habit; they are neither drunkards nor gluttons; they are not subject to convulsions nor hysterical fits; there are no madmen amongst them; nor has a seer ever been known to commit suicide.

The literature of the second sight is extremely curious. The writers have perfect faith in the examples they adduce; but their examples are far from satisfactory. They are seldom obtained at first hand, they almost always live on hearsay; and even if everything be true, the professed fulfilment seems nothing other than a rather singular coincidence. Still, these stories are devoutly believed in Skye and it is almost as perilous to doubt the existence of a Skyeman's ghost as it is to doubt the existence of a Skyeman's ancestor.'

Rinn Alexander Smith, no Alasdair Mac a' Ghobhainn, tòrr obair sgrìobhaidh de bhàrdachd is de dh'aistean ann am meadhan linn Bhictoria, ach ged a rinn, cha do choisinn e an cliù ris a bha e a' strì.

Rugadh Mac a' Ghobhainn ann an Dùn Èideann an 31mh Dùbhlachd 1829 agus rinn e fèin-fhoghlam, a' leantainn athar na cheàrd le aodach fighte, gus an deach cruinneachadh bàrdachd aige fhoillseachadh ann an 1853. Bha seo air nochdadh an toiseach san iris 'The Critic' fon ainm 'A Life Drama'. Chaidh a mholadh gu mòr le muinntir litreachas Alba agus choisinn a bhàrdachd dha dreuchd ann an 1854 mar Rùnaire Oilthigh Dhùin Èidinn.

An dèidh foillseachadh 'Poems' (1853), rinn Smith co-obair còmhla ri Sydney Dobell air pìosan caran rabhdach air Cogadh a' Chrimea, 'Sonnets on the War' (1855). Tharraing seo càineadh thuige agus ann an 'City Poems' (1857) dh'fheuch e ris an dreach sgrìobhaidh aige a thogail, a' sgrìobhadh cuid den obair a b' fheàrr a rinn e. Gu mì-fhortanach, nuair a chuir cuid dhaoine às a leth gun do ghoid e pàirt dhen obair, tharraing seo barrachd dhroch bheachdan sgrìobhte air obair.

Phòs Alexander Smith Flòraidh NicDhòmhnaill, tè aig an robh càirdeas fad às don tè a thug cobhair don Phrionnsa Teàrlach, aig Taigh an Ùird san Eilean Sgitheanach ann an 1857. Thill iad dhan Eilean a h-uile Lùnastal fad naoi bliadhna gus an tug am fiabhras ballach bàs dha an 5mh Faoillich 1867. Bha e a' fulang le droch shlàinte fad an dà bhliadhna mu dheireadh de a bheatha agus bha e gu math truagh nuair a ghlac e am fiabhras ballach.

Thuirt Simon Berry, san 'Oxford Dictionary of National Biography' (2004):

The annual month's retreat on Skye allowed his psychological defences
against urban pressures to be lowered. His creative, dionysian side fed
on the unpredictable and irrational features of the island: the sudden
contrasts of storm and calm, the semi-surrealistic mountain shapes and
colours, the superstitions and fantastic tales of its inhabitants. All these
went into 'A Summer in Skye', making it a fascinating hotchpotch of
travelogue and speculation with no obvious models. In the same way
as Scott's poetry had drawn visitors to Perthshire earlier in the century,
so Smith's work (allied to the growth in the railway network) benefited
the west highland tourist trade.

Chaidh 'A Summer in Skye' a chlò-bhualadh dà uair o chionn ghoirid, ann an dreach a bha deasaichte agus gu math nas giorra, ach tha bàrdachd Alexander Smith fhathast a' feitheamh ach an lorg leughadairean an là an-diugh e.

Tha ro-ràdh feumail san ath-chlobhualadh gheàrrte o 1983 de 'A Summer in Skye' le Uilleam F. Laughlan. Tha air aithris an sin gur e athair-cèile Smith, Teàrlach MacDhòmhnaill, 'MacIain an Ùird' agus gur e Coinneach MacLeòid Ghrìsinnis 'an t-Uachdaran', ach cha deach caractaran eile a tha a' nochdadh san obair an aithneachadh fhathast.

Airson stiùireadh mu bhith a’ cleachdadh ìomhaighean agus susbaint eile, faicibh duilleag ‘Na Cumhaichean air Fad.’
’S e companaidh cuibhrichte fo bharantas clàraichte ann an Alba Àir. SC407011 agus carthannas clàraichte Albannach Àir. SC042593 a th’ ann an High Life na Gàidhealtachd.
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The Highland Seer' (2 of 2)

INBHIR NIS

2000an

claistinneach; cruthan-tìre litreachais

Am Baile

Literary Landscapes: Alexander Smith

Tha a' chuibhreann chlaistinneach seo o 'A Summer in Skye' le Alexander Smith, foillsichte an 1865. Tha e air a leughadh an seo le Tormod Newton.<br /> <br /> 'Just as there are poets who are more open to beauty than other men and whose duty and delight it is to set forth that beauty anew; so in the Hebrides there are seers who bear the same relation to the other world that the poet bears to beauty, who are cognisant of its secrets and who make those secrets known. The seer does not inherit his power. It comes upon him as haphazard, as genius or personal beauty might come. He is a lonely man among his fellows; apparitions cross his path at noon-day; he never knows into what a ghastly something the commonest object may transform itself - the table he sits at may suddenly become the resting-place of a coffin; and the man who laughs in his cups with him may, in the twinkling of an eye, wear a death shroud up to his throat. He hears river voices prophesying death and shadowy and silent funeral processions are constantly defiling before him. <br /> <br /> When the seer beholds a vision his companions know it; for the inner part of his eyelids turn so far upwards that, after the object disappears, he must draw them down with his fingers and sometimes employs others to draw them down, which he finds to be much the easier way. <br /> <br /> From long experience of these visions and by noticing how closely or tardily fulfilment has trodden upon their heels, the seer can extract the meaning of the apparition that flashes upon him and predict the period of its accomplishment. Other people can make nothing of them, but he reads them. <br /> <br /> These visions, it would appear, conform to rules, like everything else. If a vision be seen early in the morning it will be accomplished in a few hours; if at noon, it will usually be accomplished that day; if in the evening, that night; if after candles are lighted, certainly that night. When a shroud is seen about a person it is a sure prognostication of death. And the period of death is estimated by the height of the shroud about the body. If it lies about the legs, death is not to be expected before the expiry of a year and perhaps it may be deferred a few months longer. If it is seen near the head, death will occur in a few days, perhaps in a few hours. To see houses and trees in a desert place is a sign that buildings will be erected there anon. To see a spark of fire falling on the arms or breast of a person is the sign that a dead child will shortly be in the arms of those persons. To see a seat empty at the time of sitting in it is a sign of that person's death being at hand. <br /> <br /> The seers are said to be extremely temperate in habit; they are neither drunkards nor gluttons; they are not subject to convulsions nor hysterical fits; there are no madmen amongst them; nor has a seer ever been known to commit suicide. <br /> <br /> The literature of the second sight is extremely curious. The writers have perfect faith in the examples they adduce; but their examples are far from satisfactory. They are seldom obtained at first hand, they almost always live on hearsay; and even if everything be true, the professed fulfilment seems nothing other than a rather singular coincidence. Still, these stories are devoutly believed in Skye and it is almost as perilous to doubt the existence of a Skyeman's ghost as it is to doubt the existence of a Skyeman's ancestor.'<br /> <br /> Rinn Alexander Smith, no Alasdair Mac a' Ghobhainn, tòrr obair sgrìobhaidh de bhàrdachd is de dh'aistean ann am meadhan linn Bhictoria, ach ged a rinn, cha do choisinn e an cliù ris a bha e a' strì.<br /> <br /> Rugadh Mac a' Ghobhainn ann an Dùn Èideann an 31mh Dùbhlachd 1829 agus rinn e fèin-fhoghlam, a' leantainn athar na cheàrd le aodach fighte, gus an deach cruinneachadh bàrdachd aige fhoillseachadh ann an 1853. Bha seo air nochdadh an toiseach san iris 'The Critic' fon ainm 'A Life Drama'. Chaidh a mholadh gu mòr le muinntir litreachas Alba agus choisinn a bhàrdachd dha dreuchd ann an 1854 mar Rùnaire Oilthigh Dhùin Èidinn.<br /> <br /> An dèidh foillseachadh 'Poems' (1853), rinn Smith co-obair còmhla ri Sydney Dobell air pìosan caran rabhdach air Cogadh a' Chrimea, 'Sonnets on the War' (1855). Tharraing seo càineadh thuige agus ann an 'City Poems' (1857) dh'fheuch e ris an dreach sgrìobhaidh aige a thogail, a' sgrìobhadh cuid den obair a b' fheàrr a rinn e. Gu mì-fhortanach, nuair a chuir cuid dhaoine às a leth gun do ghoid e pàirt dhen obair, tharraing seo barrachd dhroch bheachdan sgrìobhte air obair.<br /> <br /> Phòs Alexander Smith Flòraidh NicDhòmhnaill, tè aig an robh càirdeas fad às don tè a thug cobhair don Phrionnsa Teàrlach, aig Taigh an Ùird san Eilean Sgitheanach ann an 1857. Thill iad dhan Eilean a h-uile Lùnastal fad naoi bliadhna gus an tug am fiabhras ballach bàs dha an 5mh Faoillich 1867. Bha e a' fulang le droch shlàinte fad an dà bhliadhna mu dheireadh de a bheatha agus bha e gu math truagh nuair a ghlac e am fiabhras ballach.<br /> <br /> Thuirt Simon Berry, san 'Oxford Dictionary of National Biography' (2004):<br /> <br /> The annual month's retreat on Skye allowed his psychological defences<br /> against urban pressures to be lowered. His creative, dionysian side fed<br /> on the unpredictable and irrational features of the island: the sudden<br /> contrasts of storm and calm, the semi-surrealistic mountain shapes and<br /> colours, the superstitions and fantastic tales of its inhabitants. All these<br /> went into 'A Summer in Skye', making it a fascinating hotchpotch of<br /> travelogue and speculation with no obvious models. In the same way<br /> as Scott's poetry had drawn visitors to Perthshire earlier in the century,<br /> so Smith's work (allied to the growth in the railway network) benefited<br /> the west highland tourist trade.<br /> <br /> Chaidh 'A Summer in Skye' a chlò-bhualadh dà uair o chionn ghoirid, ann an dreach a bha deasaichte agus gu math nas giorra, ach tha bàrdachd Alexander Smith fhathast a' feitheamh ach an lorg leughadairean an là an-diugh e. <br /> <br /> Tha ro-ràdh feumail san ath-chlobhualadh gheàrrte o 1983 de 'A Summer in Skye' le Uilleam F. Laughlan. Tha air aithris an sin gur e athair-cèile Smith, Teàrlach MacDhòmhnaill, 'MacIain an Ùird' agus gur e Coinneach MacLeòid Ghrìsinnis 'an t-Uachdaran', ach cha deach caractaran eile a tha a' nochdadh san obair an aithneachadh fhathast.