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993: Fearchar a’ Ghunna (1)

Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh - Eadar-mheadhanach Adhartach (B2)
Letter to Learners - Upper Intermediate (B2)

Gaelic Gàidhlig

An t-seachdain sa chaidh thug mi dhuibh Ùrnaigh na Creubhaig. B’ e sin an ùrnaigh aig Fearchar a’ Ghunna, Fearchar MacIllInnein, a rugadh ann an Srath Chonain ann an Siorrachd Rois ann an seachd ceud deug, ochdad ʼs a ceithir (1784). Thogadh e air croit agus cha robh foghlam sgoile aige. Bha e eòlach air dìreach dà fhacal ann am Beurla – yes agus no. Ach bha sgoil aige ann an dà ghnothach – sealg agus cùiltearachd. Bha e math orra sin!

ʼS e fear beag a bh’ ann, le falt fada. Agus bha e car neònach na dhòighean eadhon aig aois òg. Tha stòiridh ann gur e tuathanach dha robh e ag obair a bu choireach ri sin. Oidhche a bha seo, bha Fearchar agus treabhaiche ri plòigh. Chàrnaich iad sgrathan taobh a-muigh uinneag seòmar-cadail an tuathanaich. Cha d’ fhuair solas an latha a-steach agus cha do dh’èirich an tuathanach gu meadhan-latha. Nuair a chaidh e a-mach, bha an caothach air agus b’ e Fearchar a’ chiad duine a chunnaic e. Ghabh an tuathanach grèim air spaid agus thug e sgleog do dh’Fhearchar air a cheann leatha. Bha laigse inntinn aig Fearchar bhon latha sin a-mach.

Bha Srath Chonain ainmeil airson obair na poite-duibhe agus airson cùiltearachd uisge-bheatha – no poitearachd mar a chanadh iad ann an taobh sear Rois. Bhiodh Fearchar ag ràdh le moit gum buineadh e do phoitearan Srath Chonain.

Chuir an riaghaltas sguad de dh’oifigearan cìs-bhathair chun an t-sratha ach, oidhche a bha seo, chaidh an taigh aca a losgadh gu làr. Thàinig Fearchar fo amharas agus chaidh a cheasnachadh, ach cha do dh’aidich e càil. Goirid an dèidh sin, chaidh bràthair aig Fearchar a mharbhadh ann an còmhstri le oifigearan riaghaltais. Bhon uair sin, bha taobh cruaidh aig Fearchar nach robh aige roimhe.

Aig aois còig air fhichead, chuir Fearchar a chùl ri srath àraich agus thòisich e beatha ùr mar fhalbhanach. Chuireadh e a’ chuid a bu mhotha de a bheatha seachad anns an Eilean Dubh agus timcheall Poll an Ròid – no am Beauly Firth. Bha muinntir an àite measail air agus rinn iad cinnteach nach biodh e gann de bhiadh no tombaca.

Bha e furasta Fearchar aithneachadh. Bha a chuid aodaich ioma-dhathach, bhiodh e a’ cur slabhraidhean, cnàmhan, itean is eile thairis air. Bha dà ghunna-làimhe aige ceangailte ri crios iarainn mu a thimcheall. Ach ʼs e an gunna mòr a bhiodh e a’ giùlan leis a bha iongantach annasach. Bha sia baraillean air. Bha e mòr agus trom, agus chan eil e cinnteach an robh e èifeachdach. Tha amharas ann nach do mharbh e beathach sam bith leis!

Aig amannan, bha càirdeas doirbh aig Fearchar le pearsaichean eaglais. Airson greis bha e a’ fuireach ann am bothan ceangailte ris a’ mhansa anns a’ Chaisteal Ruadh san Eilean Dubh. Bha am Ministear, Mgr MacRath, air tilleadh ann bho Ameireagaidh airson a bhith na mhinistear. Latha a bha seo, chuir Mgr MacRath a cheann a-steach air doras bothan Fhearchair. ‘’S ann agad a tha am fàileadh, Fhearchair,’ thuirt e.

‘Tha iad ag innse dhòmhsa,’ fhreagair Fearchar, ‘gu bheil cuinnleanan glan aig na fèidh, ach ʼs ann agads’ a bha na cuinnleanan glan nuair a fhuair thu fàileadh stìpean a’ Chaisteil Ruaidh ann an Ameireagaidh.’ ʼS ann aig Fearchar a’ Ghunna a bha teanga bhiorach!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Faclan na Litreach: MacIllInnein: MacLennan; cha do dh’èirich: didn’t rise; laigse inntinn: mental weakness; oifigearan cìs-bhathair:excise officers; Poll an Ròid:The Beauly Firth [lit. ‘the inlet of the holy cross’]; baraillean: barrels; pearsaichean eaglais: church figures; cuinnleanan: nostrils; stìpean: stipend.

Abairtean na Litreach: Thogadh e air croit agus cha robh foghlam sgoile aige: he was raised on a croft and he had no school education; bha e math orra sin: he was good at them; bha e car neònach na dhòighean eadhon aig aois òg: he was a bit strange in his ways even at a young age; tha stòiridh ann gur e tuathanach dha robh e ag obair a bu choireach ri sin: there is a story that it was a farmer for whom he worked that was responsible for that; bha Fearchar agus treabhaiche ri plòigh: Farquhar and a ploughman were up to a trick; chàrnaich iad sgrathan taobh a-muigh uinneag seòmar-cadail an tuathanaich: they piled turves outside the farmer’s bedroom window; bha an caothach air agus b’ e Fearchar a’ chiad duine a chunnaic e: he was furious and Farquhar was the first person he saw; thug e sgleog do X air a cheann leatha: he thumped X on his head with it; obair na poite-duibhe: illegal whisky distilling; gum buineadh e do phoitearan Srath Chonain: that he belonged to the illegal whisky distillers of Strathconon; chaidh a cheasnachadh, ach cha do dh’aidich e càil: he was questioned, but he didn’t admit anything; chuir X a chùl ri srath àraich: X left the strath of his upbringing; nach biodh e gann de bhiadh no tombaca: that he wouldn’t be short of food or tobacco; bha e furasta X aithneachadh: it was easy to recognise X; bha a chuid aodaich ioma-dhathach: his clothing was multicoloured; nach do mharbh e beathach sam bith leis: that he didn’t kill any animal with it; ann am bothan ceangailte ris a’ mhansa anns a’ Chaisteal Ruadh san Eilean Dubh: in a bothy connected to the manse in Redcastle on the Black Isle; ’s ann agad a tha am fàileadh: you’re really smelly.

Puing-chànain na Litreach: bha sgoil aige ann an dà ghnothach – sealg agus cùiltearachd: he was well educated in two matters – hunting and smuggling. Remember that sgoil doesn’t mean just ‘school’ but can refer to education and knowledge in more general terms. And a sgoilear is not only a school pupil but an adult who is learned in his or her field.

Gnathas-cainnt na Litreach: ʼS ann aig X a bha teanga bhiorach: X had a sharp tongue.

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Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh

This letter corresponds to Tha an Litir seo a’ buntainn ri An Litir Bheag 689

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