Ó DÁLAIGH, Aonghus Fionn (c.1548–c.1602) (fl.1585-1601) Aonghus Fionn Ó DÁLAIGH c.1548 c.1602 Cluain Mín, Co. Chorcaí Cill Chré, Co. Chorcaí M file Diarmuid Breathnach Máire Ní Mhurchú Fiontar, Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath i gcomhar le Cló Iar-Chonnachta agus bunúdair na mbeathaisnéisí, Diarmuid Breathnach agus Máire Ní Mhurchú Foilsiú ar líne These pages may be freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Please go to http://www.ainm.ie/ for more information. 2010

Cuirtear fainic ar an duine a d’fhéachfadh le haon ní lándeimhnitheach a rá i dtaobh na bhfilí a bhfuil an t-ainm ‘Aonghus Ó Dálaigh’ orthu, nó fiú ‘Aonghus Fionn Ó Dálaigh’ agus ‘Aonghus Ó Dálaigh Fionn’. Gheofar tuairim i dtaobh a mhearbhlaí a d’fhéadfadh aon tuairisc ar a leithéid a bheith in aiste le Cuthbert McGrath in Éigse, geimhreadh 1946 (‘Ó Dálaigh Fionn Cct.’). In Dánta do chum Aonghus Fionn Ó Dálaigh, 1919 chuir an tAthair Lámhbeartach Mac Cionnaith [B2] eagar ar cheithre dhán is caoga a leagtar ar Aonghus Fionn Ó Dálaigh áirithe. Sa réamhrá deir Osborn Bergin[B2]: ‘This volume contains the most considerable body of bardic poetry yet published. It consists of fifty-four poems ascribed to a single author, and, while the ascription may in some cases be erroneous, most of them may well be the work of Aonghus Ó Dálaigh. With five exceptions they are religious poems.’

Tá an tagairt seo dó ag Tomás Ó Rathile [B2] in Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy XXXVI, C, 1922 (‘Irish poets, historians, and judges in English documents, 1538–1615’): ‘(a) “Enis P Dallye alias O Dallye,” 14 Jan., 1585 [no. 4576]. (b) “Eanes O Dally, of same (viz. of “Cloynomine”), 1601 [no. 6658], i.e. of Clonmeen (Cluain Mín), the seat of Ó Ceallacháin, near Banteer, in Duhallow, Co. Cork. Here we have the poet Aonghus Ó Dálaigh Fionn. In (a) his name occurs imediately after those of “Donald, earl of Clancarr,” and his family.... Aonghus, as we know, was head of his name; hence the “alias O dallye” of the Fiant. Furthermore, we know that he was as closely connected with Mac Carrthaigh Mór as with Ó Caoimh of Duhallow...’.

Tá an cuntas seo a leanas bunaithe ar a bhfuil ag Mac Cionnaith. Meastar ar fhianaise a dháin féin ‘Soraidh led chéile a Chaisil’, marbhna ar a chara is a dhalta Domhnall Mac Cárthaigh, Iarla Clainne Cárthaigh (d’éag 1596), gur bhain sé leis an gcraobh de mhuintir Dhálaigh a bhí ina bhfilí ag Cárthaigh Dheasmhumhan ó lár an dóú haois déag amach. In ‘Bean dá chumhadh críoch Ealla’ luann Fear Feasa Ón Cháinte [q.v.] é mar cheann fine acu, gurbh Amhlaoibh ab ainm dá athair, agus gur chara agus múinteoir é ag Domhnall Ó Caoimh, arbh as Pobal Ó Caoimh i nDúth Ealla dó. Ar bhás na beirte timpeall an ama chéanna a chum Ón Cháinte an dán. Tá sé curtha i mainistir Chill Créidhe. Bhí scoil filíochta aige agus luann Ón Cháinte a mhic léinn a bheith ar cuairt ar Ó Caoimh agus ag fáil bronntanas uaidh. Deir Aonghus Fionn féin anseo is ansiúd gur scorn leis taoisigh a adhmholadh; b’fhearr leis, ní foláir, a bheith ag cumadh dánta diaga. Pléann Mac Cionnaith meafair, samhlaoidí, diagacht agus foinsí na ndánta agus go háirithe na seacht ndán déag a chum Aonghus in onóir na Maighdine Mhuire. Deir sé: ‘Some of these are simply eulogies of the personal beauty of Our Lady. This type of composition seems to be of native origin, and to have been merely an adaptation of a very usual form of poem addressed to the wives and daughters of the Irish clan rulers. In these eulogies each part of the body, the hair, cheeks, eyes, mouth, hands, &c., is taken up and praised for its beauty. It is a form of poetry which does not appeal to modern taste – quite the contrary: but, when addressed to the Blessed Virgin, it at least serves to express very ardent admiration and love. The copious Irish vocabulary for the parts of the body, the boldness of the comparisons permitted, the richness of the language in adjectives, and the freedom with which it can fuse together in picturesque compounds adjectives with adjectives, nouns with nouns, and nouns with adjectives, all combine to produce on the reader’s imagination the effect of an intricately drawn and richly coloured Flemish painting...’.

Pléann Cuthbert McGrath an mearbhall agus na hiomraill aithne a bhaineann leis an ainm. Bhí an teideal ‘Ó Dálaigh Fionn’ mar cheann fine ag Aonghus na Diagachta Ó Dálaigh, mar shampla. Deir sé: ‘To return to Aonghus na Diadhachta. One MS gives his father’s name as Amhlaoibh. The only Aonghus mac Amhlaoibh, of whom we have record at the end of the sixteenth century, is said by Fearfeasa Ón Cháinte to have been ollamh to Ó Caoimh; conducted a school at Baile Í Dhálaigh, the home of the Clann Chárthaigh poets; and died 1598–1609. Fearfeasa also adds that he was proficient in eulogy and satire. There is no reference to his preference for religous themes. Neither is there any hint that he had any connection with the Earls of Desmond.’ Ach níl Mhág Craith lánchinnte gurbh ionann Aonghus Fionn Mhic Chionnaith agus Aonghus na Diagachta ná fiú gurbh i ndeireadh an 16ú haois a mhair an dara hAonghus sin. Mar bharr ar an mearbhall is Aonghus Ó Dálaigh Fionn eile ar fad atá i gceist ag Pádraig Ó Riain san aiste ‘Dán ar Shéafraidh Ó Donnchadha an Ghleanna’ in Éigse, Iml. XII, Cuid a II (1967). Is timpeall 1640–50 a a bhí an file sin ag cumadh dánta agus deir Ó Riain: ‘I bpáirt an fhile de, is deacair a rá le haon deimhnitheacht cérbh é féin.’