Meath Folk Tales notes

From Richard Stanihurst, De rebus in Hibernia gestis (Antwerp, 1584)

The occasion why Ireland was parted into these fiue principall regions grew of this. [In 1224 BC] There arriued in Ireland fiue brethren, that were valiant & martiall gentlemen; to wit, Gandius, Genandius, Sagandus, otherwise named Gangan|dus, Rutheragus or Rutheranus, & Slanius. These fiue perceiuing that the countrie was not sufficient|lie peopled, were agreed (as it were) to cast lots, and to share the whole realme betwéene themselues. The foure elder brethren seuering the countrie into foure parts, and being loth to vse their yoongest brother like an outcast or stepsonne, condescended that each of them foure should of their owne portion allot to Slanius a paring or parcell of their inheritance. Which being as heartilie receiued of Slanius, as it was bountifullie granted by them, he setled himselfe therein, and of that partition it tooke the appellation of Media, Méeth. The foure parts méet at a certeine  stone at Méeth, néere the castell of Kilaire, as an in|different meare to seuer the foure regions.

But although Slanius in the beginning had the least parcell, yet in short space he stood so well to his tacklings, and incroched so far vpon his neighbors, that he obteined the whole monarchie of Ireland. At Méeth ap|pointed for the king his ta […]. which time he did not suppresse in obliuion his inheri|tance of Meeth; but did inlarge it, and decreed it should be a countrie appendant to the monarch his diet or table. And albett the confines thereof were by Slanius stretched, yet it conteineth not so much land as anie of the other foure parts comprehendeth; but rather by indifferent surueie, the halfe deale, where of also it is not vnlikelie named Méeth. For whereas in the time of Slanius, each of the foure parts compriseth two and thirtie cantreds, Meeth conteineth but sixteene cantreds. A cantred is named so much land as conteineth an hundred towneships. This Slanius is intoomed at an hill in Méeth, which of him is named Slane.

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