The Battle of Cúchulainn and Ferdiad

Ferdiad, was a warrior of Connacht in Irish Mythology. In the Táin Bó Cuailnge (The Brown Bull of Cooley) Ferdia finds himself on opposite sides to his best friend and foster-brother Cúchulainn, with whom he had trained in arms under the renowned warrior woman Scathach. He and Cúchulainn are equal in all martial feats, with […]

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Druid’s View | Bonane, Co Kerry

Bonane is a beautiful valley situated in the picturesque south west of Ireland. Set on the main roadway between the quaint towns of Kenmare to Glengarriff, the valley is surrounded by the Sheehy and Caha mountains. The area derives its name from Fionn Mac Cumhall, the legendary leader of the Fianna, who maintained a bothy […]

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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 […]

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Devenish-Damhinis | The Isle of Oxen

Under St Molaise, this isle once held one of the greatest monastic scholars, the peer of Columba. 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, […]

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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 […]

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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. […]

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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 […]

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‘The Invaders of Ireland’

‘The Invaders of Ireland’(Anonymous) Should any enquire about Eirinn,It is I who can tell him the truth,Concerning the deeds of each daringInvader, since Time was a youth. First Cassir, Bith’s venturesome daughter,Came here o’er the Eastern Sea;And fifty fair damsels she brought her—To solace her warriors three. Bith died at the foot of his mountain,And […]

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#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 […]

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