Tuesday, November 06, 2018


Not the Semblance of a Comely Person

Celtic Culture: A Historical Encyclopedia, ed. John T. Koch, Vol. I: A — Celti (Santa Barbara: ABC Clio, 2006), p. 46 (entry written by Koch for Amairgen mac Aithirni, quoting a story "Athairne and Amairgen" in the Book of Leinster):
His belly swelled until it was the size of a great house (?); and it was sinewy, grey and corpulent. Snot flowed from his nose into his mouth. His skin was black. His teeth were white. His face was livid. His calves and thighs were like the two spouts of a blacksmith’s bellows. His feet had crooked toes. His ankles were huge. His cheeks were very long and high. His eyes were sunken and dark red. He had long eyebrows. His hair was rough and prickly. His back was knobby, bony, rough with scabs. It was not the semblance of a comely person. He had for so long neglected to clean himself after defecating that his own excrement rose up to his buttocks. (Trans. J. Carey)
The source is Celtic Heroic Age: Literary Sources for Ancient Celtic Europe & Early Ireland & Wales, edd. John T. Koch and John Carey, 4th ed. (Aberystwyth: Celtic Studies, 2003), pp. 65–66 (unavailable to me).

Related post: A Disgusting Man.

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