The Midnight Court, by Carson, Ciaran
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- ISBN: 9781930630253 | 1930630255
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 3/15/2006
"Originally written in the Irish language by the 18th-century poet Brian Merriman (circa 1745-1805), The Midnight Court is here translated by Ciaran Carson. This extended satiric poem assesses the growing economic, political, and familial constraints of late 18th-century Catholic Ireland under British colonial rule, while subversively playing on the tradition of the aisling (or vision) poem in which a beautiful woman represents Ireland's threatened sovereignty." "At the beginning of The Midnight Court, a dreadful female envoy from the fairies appears in a dream to the unmarried poet. She summons him before the court of Queen Aoibheall in order to answer charges of wasting his manhood while women are dying for want of love. He listens to complaints that vary from the celibacy of the clergy to marriages performed between old and young for purely economic reasons. In all their bawdy tales, the female courtiers praise fertility, as well as sexual fulfillment, and condemn the conventions of the day. At last the Queen pronounces judgement on the poet, who awakens as he is being severely chastised by all the women of the court."--BOOK JACKET.