onchú

Cite this: eDIL s.v. onchú or dil.ie/33865
Last Revised: 2013

n n, f. apparently a native word, compd. of 1 cú; see TD ii 214.

(a) name of an animal, apparently of the dog tribe and fierce and dangerous; by editors variously transld. `otter', `leopard' or `wolf', but prob. often used without any definite idea beyond that of wild beast. onchú obeli, LL 267b12 ( MU 36.30 ). onchú nemi, LB 274b63 ( SG 58 ), of a monster inhabit- ing a lake, called `cú', 275a7 (cf. CCellaig 534 , 549 ). a chú .i. onchu gerr glas, Acall. 1899 n. = madra, 1900 (text). g s. co n-ainbthinche onchon, TTr. 1071. cráes onchon, Lism. L. 3799. pl. na .ix. [sic leg.] n-onchoin n-anbhle, Anecd. ii 60 y (called `cona', 62 x , y 0 ). do chuirsit na honcoin orra, Celt. Rev. iv 116.2 = na doburcoin, ib. 24 . a fulib drecon . . . is onchon is nathrach, Cog. 158.20 . le honchonaibh ifrinn, TSh. 3875. Used fig.: cuirfiter onchoin chucaibh o Athairni . . . .i. aer ┐ athais ┐ imdergad, RC xxiv 280 § 20 , cf. Anecd. ii 62 z . Esp. of warriors or heroes (common in later Mid.Ir. poetry, often in favourable sense): an onchú irghaili, CF 307. onchu gnimartach na nGaedhel, RC xviii 285.6 (Tig.). Mac M. . . . onchú ar engnamh, AFM iii 412.12 . onchu uilc . . . .i. Ceat mac Mághach, Keat. ii 3101. an dá onchoin da dtáinig aidhmhilleadh Éireann, 3199 . onchoin āthi atluma na Banba, Cog. 160.21 (of the Dál Cais). dorochratar a n-ársídhe urgaile ┐ a n-onchoin échtacha, TTr. 1079. onchoin Ḟánad, TD 4.42 . onchú éachtach (of death), TSh. 1160.

(b) a banner or standard , prob. orig. one on which an `onchú' was depicted (the accompanying adjectives are somet. more appropriate to the animal than to a standard): otconncatar Ulaid onchú Eogain ┐ na mergeda, LB 272b49 . amail línas gaoth onchú óbhél oslaicthi, TBC-LL¹ 3868 St. co facadar na hoincoin [honcona v.l.] obeli ┐ na mergeda, CCath. 3108. atconnairc . . . na honchona corpc[h]aela craesderga, 5434 . ri snám . . . na n-onchon n-idlaidi n-ingantach, LL 239a34 ( TTr. 1663 ). ag úaim oncon sleamhan sróil, ZCP ii 359.4 (Eochaidh Ó Heoghusa, 16th-17th cent.). onchu `a wolf-dog, a standard or ensign with the figure of a wolf . . . an able or strong man', P. O'C.

(c) as npr. m.: Onchú mac Sárán, BColm. 46.22 . asslondud án Onchon, Fél. July 9 . m. Onchon m. Faelchon, LL 317a55 . Doborchu m. Onchon, 313c16 .