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Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh 1011

Tha Ruairidh MacIlleathain air ais le Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh na seachdain sa. Litir àireamh 1011.

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Litir 1011: Dùghall MacIlleMhìcheil (2)

Bha mi ag innse dhuibh mu Dhùghall MacIlleMhìcheil à Lios Mòr a bha ainmeil ann an saoghal nan lus-eòlaichean anns an naoidheamh linn deug. Ann an ochd ceud deug ʼs a deich (1810), bha MacIlleMhìcheil na shaighdear an sàs ann an iomairt armaichte aig Breatainn airson Mauritius a ghabhail thairis bho na Frangaich. Nuair a ràinig long MhicIlleMhìcheil Mauritius – no Eilean na Frainge mar a bh’ oirre aig an àm – bha cabhlach Breatannach ann mu-thràth. Bha iadsan air seòladh bho na h-Innseachan. 

Nuair a ràinig e am prìomh bhaile, Port Louis, chunnaic Dùghall brataich gheala an-àirde. Bha na Frangaich air gèilleadh. Ach rinn iad sin air cumha gun gleidheadh iad lagh na Frainge agus an cànan aca. Bha rèisimeid Dhùghaill – na 72nd Highlanders – air a suidheachadh ann fad mhìosan. Ghabh Dùghall brath air a’ chothrom airson sùil gheur a thoirt air dualchas nàdarrach an eilein.

Trì bliadhna an dèidh sin, ghabh MacIlleMhìcheil fòrladh airson a dhol gu Eilean Bourbon no mar a chanas iad ris an-diugh Réunion. Sgrìobh e tòrr mu dheidhinn nàdar an sin cuideachd. Tha aithris ann gun robh e anns a’ chabhlach Bhreatannach a sheòl gu ruige Tristan da Cunha airson na h-eileanan iomallach sin a ghabhail thairis às leth Bhreatainn. Bha na Breatannaich airson dèanamh cinnteach nach biodh Frangaich a’ cleachdadh Tristan da Cunha ann an oidhirp gus Napoleon Bonaparte a shaoradh bhon phrìosan ann an St Helena. Dh’fhoillsich Dùghall leabhar mu dheidhinn Tristan da Cunha: Some Account of the Island of Tristan da Cunha and of its Natural Productions.

Ann an ochd ceud deug is ochd-deug (1818), dh’fhàg e an t-arm agus thill e a dh’Alba. Chaidh e a dh’fhuireach anns an Apainn mu choinneimh eilean a bhreith. Bha e na thuathanach an sin. Lean e air le a chuid rannsachaidh air lusan, a’ dèanamh leabhar air a bheil Mosses of Lorn. An uair sin, thug e sùil air algae agus chuir e seachad mòran uairean a thìde a-muigh, a’ cruinneachadh stuth. Gu tric, bhiodh e a’ dèanamh air a mhaicreasgop cho luath ʼs a ruigeadh e an taigh, gun a bhith a’ cur aodach tioram air. Thathar a’ smaoineachadh gun tug sin droch bhuaidh air a shlàinte.

Ged nach robh e a’ cumail gu math, chaidh e air dàna-thuras eile gu ruige Hiort. Ach, aig aois caogad ʼs a còig, chaochail e. Chaidh a thiodhlacadh anns an t-seann chladh ri taobh Eaglais Chill Moluag ann an Lios Mòr. 

Bha e ainmeil gu leòr ri a linn. Mhol Teàrlach Darwin e mar shàr-eòlaiche air saidheans nàdarrach. Bha e na dheagh charaid aig Sir Uilleam Jackson Hooker a bha na chiad stiùiriche air Gàrraidhean Kew ann an Lunnainn. Dh’ainmich Hooker grunn lusan an dèidh MhicIlleMhìcheil, a’ gabhail a-steach Carmichaeliana no Bealaidh Sealain Nuaidh. 

Carson nach eil sinn eòlach air an-diugh? Uill, a rèir choltais bha e car diùid. Ach tha muinntir Lios Mòr eòlach air, agus tha iad moiteil às mar mhac aig an eilean a choisinn cliù dha fhèin anns an t-saoghal mhòr air an taobh a-muigh. Ge-tà, cha b’ e Dùghall an t-aon duine leis a’ chinneadh MacIlleMhìcheil a tha aithnichte anns an t-saoghal mhòr. Bheir sinn sùil an-ath-sheachdain air fear eile. Tha amharas agam gum bi cuid agaibh gu math eòlach air, co-dhiù ma tha sibh air sùil a thoirt air Carmina Gadelica.

Faclan na Litreach

Faclan na Litreach: Dùghall MacIlleMhìcheil: Dugald Carmichael; tuathanach: farmer; dàna-thuras: [adventurous]expedition; Lios Mòr: Lismore; Hiort: St Kilda; Eaglais Chill Moluag: St Moluag’s Church; Gàrraidhean Kew: Kew Gardens; Bealaidh Sealain Nuaidh: New Zealand Broom; diùid: shy.

Abairtean na Litreach

Abairtean na Litreach: an sàs ann an iomairt armaichte aig na Breatannaich airson Mauritius a ghabhail thairis bho na Frangaich: involved in an armed action by the British to take Mauritius from the French; bha cabhlach Breatannach ann mu-thràth: a British fleet was already there; bha iadsan air seòladh bho na h-Innseachan: they had sailed from India; chunnaic X brataich gheala an-àirde:  X saw white flags raised; bha na Frangaich air gèilleadh: the French had surrendered; rinn iad sin air cumha gun gleidheadh iad lagh na Frainge agus an cànan aca: they did that on condition that they would retain the law of France and their language; bha rèisimeid Dhùghaill air a suidheachadh ann fad mhìosan: Dugald’s regiment was established there for months; gun robh e anns a’ chabhlach Bhreatannach a sheòl gu ruige Tristan da Cunha airson na h-eileanan iomallach sin a ghabhail thairis às leth Bhreatainn: that he was in the British fleet that sailed to take over those remote islands on behalf of Britain; ann an oidhirp gus Napoleon Bonaparte a shaoradh bhon phrìosan: in an effort to free Napoleon Bonaparte from prison; chaidh e a dh’fhuireach anns an Apainn mu choinneimh eilean a bhreith: he went to live in Appin opposite the island of his birth; bhiodh e a’ dèanamh air a mhaicreasgop cho luath ʼs a ruigeadh e an taigh, gun a bhith a’ cur aodach tioram air: he would make [a beeline] for his microscope as soon as he reached the house, without putting dry clothes on; thathar a’ smaoineachadh gun tug sin droch bhuaidh air a shlàinte: it’s thought that had a bad effect on his health; mhol Teàrlach Darwin e mar shàr-eòlaiche air saidheans nàdarrach: Charles Darwin commended him as a great scholar of natural sciences; moiteil às mar mhac aig an eilean a choisinn cliù dha fhèin: proud of him as a son of the island who built himself a reputation.

Puing-chànain na Litreach

Puing-chànain na Litreach: When we consider important Gaelic-speaking scientists, we shouldn’t forget Dugald Carmichael of Lismore. He was a significant figure in his day, a friend of Sir William Hooker of Kew Gardens, and a correspondent with Charles Darwin. If you know anything more of his private life and his connections to Lismore, I’d love to hear from you on rmac@uags.scot.

Gnàthas-cainnt na Litreach

Gnàthas-cainnt na Litreach: ghabh MacIlleMhìcheil fòrladh: Carmichael took leave.

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