Legend of Úna Bhán

McDermott was the Chieftain of Moylurg, a Celtic Kingdom in North Roscommon. He had a beautiful daughter, Úna Bhán, – so named because of her long blonde hair. His neighbour was Tomás Láidir Costello, a good and sincere man, handsome and strong. Úna Bhán and Tomás Láidir fell in love and wished to marry but […]

Read More
Advertisements

Devenish-Damhinis | The Isle of Oxen

Under St Molaise, this isle once held one of the greatest monastic scholars, the peer of Columbia. The monks of Devenish were of a reform order known as Culdees (Céilí Dé), Companions of God. Lough Erne bursts with legend, with its own banshee and ghosts. Most prominent of the tales is that of the prophet, […]

Read More

Brehon Laws | Children and the status Women in early Ireland

Prior to the Anglo-Norman invasions Ireland was home to between 80-140 independent petty kingdoms called túatha. A person’s idea of nationhood was local to their home túath and kin-group (fine). Each túath had its king elected from among its noble grades, each had their own customs and traditions, styles of dress, particular songs and legends […]

Read More

Faoladh | Werewolves of Ireland

The Irish werewolf is different from the Teutonic or European werewolf, as it is really not a “monster” at all. Unlike its continental cousins, this shapeshifter is the guardian and protector of children, wounded men and lost persons. According to some ancient sources, the Irish werewolves were even recruited by kings in time of war. […]

Read More

The Banshee

As we move into the darkest months of the year, it seems fitting to visit a spectre as ancient as life itself – the Banshee. A banshee is a female spirit in Irish mythology who heralds the death of a family member, usually by shrieking or keening. Her name is connected to the mythologically-important tumuli […]

Read More

#OTD in 1961 – 13-16: The Siege of Jadotville – An Irish contingent of United Nations peacekeepers deployed in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to stop the country descending into chaos.

“Irish troops found themselves besieged at Jadotville because Conor Cruise O’Brien ordered UN troops to seize Katangan positions in Elisabethville.” In September 1961 Noel Carey was a 24-year-old lieutenant, Gorman a wide-eyed 17-year-old private, part of an Irish contingent of United Nations peacekeepers deployed in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to stop the […]

Read More

The Oratory of the Sacred Heart

“Let those who come after to see it that their names never be forgotten.” In July 1847, a group of six Dominican nuns arrived in Kingstown (Dún Laoghaire) from Cabra Convent. Their job was to open schools in the town so that the young would be educated. They took possession of a house, known as […]

Read More

#OTD in 1636 – The Annals of the Four Masters is completed.

Annála Ríoghachta Éireann, The Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland, better known as the Annals of the Four Masters, is an anthology which covers the medieval period in Ireland, from AM 2242 to AD 1616. They contain records of the High Kings of Ireland as well as provincial kings, chiefs, distinguished families, men of science, […]

Read More

Key Events in Irish History

An island people the Irish may be, yet the history of Ireland has never been intolerant or inward-looking. Instead, it is a story of a people profoundly aware of the wider world – its threats, its possibilities and its advantages. In addition, while the English and British connection will always remain key to any reading […]

Read More