The Tain. Illustrated by Louis Le Brocquy (1969)
Book ID: 63269
The Tain. Translated by Thomas Kinsella from the Irish. With Brush Drawings by Louis Le Brocquy. Dublin: Dolmen Press, 1969. Limited Edition of 1750 copies. Pp, 295. Large 8vo. Black buckram, title in white along spine with original pictorial dust jacket. Light sunning to jacket along spine, otherwise a fine bright copy. Housed in publisher’s cardboard slipcase.
Accompanying this copy is a programme of a reading by Thomas Kinsella from ‘The Tain’ performed in the Peacock Theatre, Dublin on 31 August, 1969. With music arranged by Paddy Maloney and played by The Chieftains. Signed by Thomas Kinsella & Paddy Maloney. The performance preceded the publication of the book (September 4th), a press clipping reporting on the book launch in Hodges & Figgis, Dawson St, is loosely inserted.
The Táin Bó Cúailnge, or ‘Cattle Raid of Cooley’, is the most famous tale in Irish mythology. It is at the centre of the Ulster Cycle of mythological sagas, known as the Rúraíocht in Irish. The tales in the Ulster Cycle are the most heroic of all the Irish myths that have been recorded in writing, and also the most renowned. The images that Le Brocquy created for Kinsella’s rich text have a powerful, primal effect on the reader, and from their making le Brocquy – Ireland’s most renowned artist after Jack Yeats – derived both the impulse and motifs of his later tapestries and paintings.