Greetings & Farewell

Mo chen do thíchtu!

Mo chen do thíchtu!

(welcome * your * coming)

Welcome is your coming!

In other words, "I'm glad to see you!" This expression is found at least twice in the LL Táin.

Bid inund techt nó anad dún céin no·mbeo-sa.

Bid inund techt nó anad dún céin no·mbeo-sa.

(will-be * equal * going * or * staying * for us * as long as * I may live)

You may come and go as you wish, as long as I live.

In the tale "Orgain Denna Ríg", Scoriath welcomes Labraid Móen and his retinue with the traditional words "Fo chen dúib!" He then expands his welcome by making it entirely open-ended: they should feel free to come and go whenever they wish. Compare "Is ferr for tormach oldás for ndígbál!"

Imb i céin fa in accus beo-sa...

Imb i céin fa in accus beo-sa, nicon·chloor acht far caínscél.

(be it * in * distance * or * in * nearness * that I be * may I not hear * but * your (pl.) * good tidings)

Whether I be far or near, may I hear only good news of you all.

This lovely formula, both courtly and affectionate, is found in the Würzburg Glosses (23b41). I can imagine using as a complimentary close in a letter. Addressed to a single person, it would end with "... acht do chaínscél."

Do maith ocus líth dúib!

Do maith ocus líth dúib!

(for * good * and * luck * to you all)

Prosperity and luck to you!

This formula of greeting is found in the tale "Inghen Ríg Ghréc" in LL, edited in "Silva Gadelica" (p. 414). Compare the structure of "Do shoínmigi sin!" in this collection.

Is mítharba lend cach maín 7 cach maith it ingnais.

Is mítharba lend cach maín 7 cach maith it ingnais.

(is * unprofitableness * with us * every * wealth * and * every * goodness * in your * absence)

Nothing seems as good when you're gone.

At the beginning of "Aided Guill", Cú Chulainn is about to ride off in his chariot on a circuit. Conchobor tells him not to be long ("nadba cian ind aurnaide [airnaide] duit"), because everyone will miss him.

Ad-rae búaid ocus bennachtain!

Ad-rae búaid ocus bennachtain!

("take" * profit / victory * and * blessing)

Benefits and blessings to you!

This phrase is used repeatedly by St. Patrick and others, in "Acallam na Senórach" and other texts, as a blessing given in thanks or in greeting. In Modern Irish it takes the form "Beir bua agus beannacht" and is commonly used as a complimentary close in letters.

Rod dúschi súan slán subach!

Rod dúschi súan slán subach!

(you should rouse yourself * slumber * healthy * happy)

Awake from slumber healthy and happy!

Spoken by Emer to Cú Chulainn in a poem as she attempts to rouse him from his "serglige" or "wasting sickness" in the tale "Serglige Con Culaind".

Rot·bia fáilte!

Rot·bia fáilte!

(to you will be * welcome)

A welcome awaits you!

Eochaid welcomes Étaín to his house with this traditional expression in "Togail Bruidne Da Derga", and she soon becomes his wife.

Dess imm·ríadam dúib!

Dess imm·ríadam dúib!
(rightward * we ride * to you-all)

Auspicious greetings to you!

Spoken by Emer to Cú Chulainn in the tale "Tochmarc Emire". Altough she is in fact seated quietly at the time, she uses a formula that invokes the image of a chariot rider and driver approaching another chariot courteously displaying their righthand side, moving sunwise or clockwise. The opposite direction of approach was ritually hostile and insulting. Cú Chulainn's reply is equally courteous and formulaic: "Slán imraisc dúib-se!" = May you be free of all harm.

Is ferr for tormach oldás for ndígbál!

Is ferr for tormach oldás for ndígbál!

(is * better * your (plural) * increasing * than * your (pl.) * lessening)

Better more of you than less!

This greeting to guests, telling them that the longer their visit the better, is spoken by Ailill in "Táin Bó Fraích".

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