Cite this: eDIL s.v. es(s)air or

Forms: easair, easair

n f. (abstr. of as-ser-n-)


(a) strewing, litter ; applied to straw or rushes used for floor-covering, bedding , etc.: easair ` litter for cattle, also a strawpallet ' P. O'C. `the bed of corn-sheaves laid on the barn floor to be threshed is also called easair' J. Fleming (RIA slips). aín nua dia essair new straw for covering it (a wall) Laws iv 314.7 . dīrech n-airidi, noes nua dia esair the stripping of a dais, new straw (?) to cover it 314.3 (wrongly punctuated in edn.). ro ésraít a tigi do bethi barrglas ┐ essair urárd úrluachra litter of fresh rushes TFerbe 66 . conaca dairthach fo lán-essair glain, LL 286a42 . The ex.: in tan do síned in beist a bragit cosin n-esair, FB 57 may belong to (2), but the meaning bedding would not be out of place. Of lining for a grave (?): ro hadnacht cen esair, Metr. Dinds. iii 114. 71 (see note p. 499 ib.).

(b) of things strewn about in disorder, an untidy litter, a mess: ro athchuiredar a n-airm ...┐ a cathberti...gurba hesair uathmar urscailti...cach laemluirech ┐ láighnead ┐ lebar-sciath ro ḟá cert-lar na cath-laithrech sin, MR 314 y . re himad na n-easrach n-uathmar n-urscailti, 316.18 . Cf. o thictís a hesair áin, Metr. Dinds. ii 78.14 , where reading áig (with another copy) we might render (slaughter-)heaps of battle.

(2) food, meat (the origin of this sense is obscure; some exx. suggest dismembered carcase which is on the whole the most likely; the transl. dish would usually suit, but unless the word is here a distinct one this cannot be an early meaning, but may be a later development): esair bidh do roind do cách (one of the labours permitted on a Sunday), O'D. 1950 . aighe do tuit don easair itir da tech a joint which fell from the meat [the dismembered carcase? or the dish?] (when being conveyed) from house to house Laws ii 234.7 Comm. (Unterlage ZCP xiv 346 x ). ro fiafraig in ba herrlamh in esair, Lism. L. 1060 (referring to a carcase of beef; the sentence corresponds to: narb ullamh cuid na meithli, BCC § 212 ). Cf. Cu C. trén a gach mbeirn a bhuille | baoi ar n-easoir aicce go cian | nior chomhraic a lamh ria riamh, 24 P 5, 79 = bai in esair aici co dian, Acall. 1118 ( Cú C. doroinded biadh, 1115 ). Here also, perhaps: gleic fán easair fhalaimh, Dánfhocail 158 = O'Gr. Cat. 617 , where dish makes better sense than O'Gr.'s rendering `kennel;' eser, q.v., seems to be a distinct word.

COMPD. ¤chosairt trampling, stamping: ro craith in sliab...risin n-esarchosairt doroine in fer...dia chossaib ┐ dia lámaib, Mer. Uil. 77 .