Sacred Texts  Legends and Sagas  Celtic  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book on Kindle

The Cattle Raid of Cualnge, by L. Winifred Faraday, [1904], at

The Death of Fraech

They are there till next morning; then Fraech is summoned to them. 'Help us, O Fraech,' said Medb. 'Remove from us the strait that is on us. Go before Cuchulainn for us, if perchance you shall fight with him.'

He set out early in the morning with nine men, till he reached Ath Fuait. He saw the warrior bathing in the river.

'Wait here,' said Fraech to his retinue, 'till I come to the man yonder; not good is the water,' said he.

He took off his clothes, and goes into the water to him.

'Do not come to me,' said Cuchulainn. 'You will die from it, and I should be sorry to kill you.'

'I shall come indeed,' said Fraech, 'that we may meet in the water; and let your play with me be fair.'

'Settle it as you like,' said Cuchulainn.

'The hand of each of us round the other,' said Fraech.

They set to wrestling for a long time on the water, and Fraech was submerged. Cuchulainn lifted him up again.

p. 36

'This time,' said Cuchulainn, 'will you yield and accept your life?' 1

'I will not suffer it,' said Fraech.

Cuchulainn put hiss under it again, until Fraech was killed. He comes to land; his retinue carry his body to the camp. Ath Fraich, that was the name of that ford for ever. All the host lamented Fraech. They saw a troop of women in green tunics 2 on the body of Fraech Mac Idaid; they drew him from them into the mound. Sid Fraich was the name of that mound afterwards.

Fergus springs over the oak in his chariot. They go till they reach Ath Taiten; Cuchulainn destroys six of them there: that is, the six Dungals of Irress.

Then they go on to Fornocht. Medb had a whelp named Baiscne. Cuchulainn throws a cast at him, and took his head off. Druim was the name of that place henceforth.

'Great is the mockery to you,' said Medb, 'not to hunt the deer of misfortune yonder that is killing you.'

Then they start hunting him, till they broke the shafts of their chariots thereat.


36:1 Lit. 'will you acknowledge your saving?'

36:2 Fraech was descended from the people of the Sid, his mother Bebind being a fairy woman. Her sister was Boinn (the river Boyne).

Next: The Death of Orlam