BOTH DHÍAMHAIR ‘a secluded hut’ is sometimes mentioned in Early Modern Irish texts as a place in which poems were composed. Fear Flatha Ó Gnímh, who was active around 1600, actually railed against another poet for composing outdoors with a view of mountains, presumably implying that the other was breaching professional etiquette. And Martin Martin’s ‘Description of the Western Isles of Scotland’, which was published in 1695, gives a similar account of the process of poetic composition. He says: ‘they shut their doors and windows for a day’s time, and lie on their backs, with a stone on their belly … and indeed they furnish such a style from the dark cell as is understood by very few’.
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