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Y Gododdin

Celtic Historic Literature by Aneirin, translation by Joseph Clancy


Men went to Gododdin, laughing warriors, assailants in a savage war-band.
They slaughtered with swords in short order, war-column of kind-hearted Rhaithfyw.


Men went to Catraeth, keen their war-band; pale mead their portion, it was poison.
Three hundred under orders to fight and after celebration, silence.
Though they went to churches for shriving, true is the tale, death confronted them.


Men went to Catraeth, mead-nourished band, great the disgrace should I not praise them.
With huge dark-socketed crimson spears, stern and steadfast the battle-hounds fought.
Of Brennych's band I'd hardly bear it should I leave a single man alive.
A comrade I lost, faithful I was, keen in combat, leaving him grieves me.
No desire had he for a dowry, Y Cian's young son, of Maen Gwyngwn.


Men went to Catraeth at dawn: all their fears had been put to flight.
Three hundred clashed with ten thousand.
They stained their spears ruddy with blood.
He held firm, bravest in battle, before Mynyddawg Mwynfawr's men.

verses 11, 12 & 13