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midlach

Cite this: eDIL s.v. midlach or dil.ie/32194

Forms: midlach, midlaige, midlaig, midlaech, midhlach, midlaig

n ā, f., and o, m. v s. midlach , FB 67 ( LU 8878 ). g s. midlaige; midlaig, LU 6157 = TBC-I¹ 1672. The form midlaech (due to association with láech) appears to be always treated as o, m. stem. The orig. sense may be one incapable of bearing arms, below the status of a warrior, perhaps a weak-witted person. In Laws iv 344.6 . the term midhlach is applied to a definite class of persons at the lower end of the social scale, placed after oínmit, and is defined: fer nara gaib sealb na horba na treba na trebthair do, 352.30 . Cf. also Ériu iv 124 § 1 : ni théiged rí cen rígain . . . ná midlach cen drúithsig. It seems sometimes to be equated with `2 drúth': Find . . . is dó ropad druth Lomna Midlag, Corm. Y 1018 (orc treith) = Lomna druth (.i. mídlach), Corm. p. 34. mol Midend midlaige, ZCP viii 308.1 , cf. Midend druth Eochath maic m.¤ , 307.32 . The general sense in lit. appears to be a coward, weakling: m.¤ .i. medón-lax .i. leth-lax, Corm. Y 946. nim m.¤-sa re teacht a comhruc, Aen. 2916. darat bruth ┐ bríg in cach midlaig díb, LL 243a18 ( TTr. 1956 ). ni gnim cubaid . . . serc do thabairt do midlaich (: imdaid), ZCP xiii 202.13 . nir bo thutim midlaige, LL 121b44 . ni hatach mbille .i. ni hatach bocht no midlaige, Thr. Ir. Gl. 133 ( Fél. July 3 ) = ni hatach boicht no mídlaig, Fél.² cxiii . ní ba haisdear midhlaighe, Duan. F. i 41.36 . Cf. mathmuine midlaige `soft-hearted coward', Metr. Dinds. iv 320.26 ( LL 181b57 ). midlaech cech díchoisc, Tec. Corm. § 15.35 . marb-sa gach midlaech 's gach mugh, ZCP vii 302.12 . coisc-siu gach midhlaech, gach mer, xii 390.30 . ní bás míodhlaoich a bhás, ML 142.17 . pl. scarais Murchad fri midlaig | mrogais trénu `M. parted from cowards', RC xxiv 54 § 14 (perhaps sing.). ro crithnaigit menmandæ muadhlaech ┐ midlac[h] ┐ daesccursloig, CCath. 3887. do marbad múadhlaech ┐ midhlaech, Fianaig. 90.14 . ar curaid . . . is mór do midlachaib a llóg, FB 56 (`great to timid folk is their value', Henderson ITS ii ; ? they are worth many cowards). de mnaíb . . . midlaigib ┐ meraigib ḟer ṅHerend, TBC-LL¹ 3826.

As adj. compar.: nir mesa ┐ nir midlachu meisnech . . . maicne D. more cowardly, MR 244.17 .