This forum has posts in multiple languages.

Translate everything to English

Close
Translate

Automated translation is being used to translate posts & replies into your language and we cannot guarantee its accuracy.



Irish Myths and Legends

Irish Myths and Legends

Author
Message
Profile Picture
Posted Thu 10 Sep 2020 10:36 AM
View Quick Profile
Community Expert
Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)
Gold Achievements 5 Silver Achievements 7 Bronze Achievements 28
Island of Ireland
Posts: 316
Group: Community Administrator Last Active: Thu 24 Sep 2020 12:34 PM Visits: 5.5K
Who like me, loves a good story? 

Ireland is the set of many great Myths, Legends, and stories, so we decided to share with you some of our favorites.

Every week, we will add a new story, and we invite you to jump in and share the one you love too.
They can be old ones, new ones, or even your creation until it's set in Ireland. ☘️

So see you back here tomorrow to read the first one! 😉
Profile Picture
Posted Fri 11 Sep 2020 8:01 AM
View Quick Profile
Community Expert
Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)
Gold Achievements 5 Silver Achievements 7 Bronze Achievements 28
Island of Ireland
Posts: 316
Group: Community Administrator Last Active: Thu 24 Sep 2020 12:34 PM Visits: 5.5K
The tale of the Children of Lir

Long ago in Ireland, there lived a magical race called the Tuatha Dé Danann. Their king’s name was Bodh Dearg, who was disliked immensely by one of his nobles, Lir. To keep the peace, Bodh Dearg gave Lir one of his daughters to be his wife.

Of the two daughters, Lir chose Aoibh, and though a marriage of convenience, the two fell in love and had four beautiful children: a daughter called Fionnghuala, and three sons named Aodh, Conn, and Fiachra.

Sadly, Aoibh fell ill and died. Bodh Dearg, saddened by the family's heartbreak, offered his second daughter, Aoife, to Lir. Lir hoped that Aoife would be as kind as Aoibh, but Aoife was not the same gentle soul as her sister. She was jealous of the love and attention Lir showered on his children – she wanted that love all for herself. So she decided that the children must go.

One day, she took the children to swim in Lough Derravaragh. When they were in the water, she cast a terrible spell on them. The children vanished, and in their place were four beautiful swans. One of the swans asked with Fionnghuala’s voice “What have you done to us?”

“I have put a spell on you. You will be swans for nine hundred years. You will spend three hundred years on this lake, three hundred on the Sea of Moyle, and three hundred on the waters of Inishglora. Only the sound of the Christian church bell can break the spell.”

When the children did not return home, Lir went looking for them beside the lake, but all he saw were four beautiful swans. Then one of the swans called out – it was Fionnghuala. She told him what Aoife had done to them. Lir pleaded with Aoife to reverse the spell, but she refused. Lir went to visit Bodh Dearg, to tell him of his daughter’s evil act. Bodh cursed her, saying her suffering would be greater than that of the children. He asked her what would be the worst form of being, and she replied “a demon of the air”. And so Bodh turned her into such a demon, banishing her from all mankind.

For 300 years, the four swans lived on the calm waters of Lough Derravaragh. Their father, whose love for them never waned, spent his time with them until it was his turn to leave this world, leaving the children heartbroken. The time then came for them to fly north to the stormy Sea of Moyle. Here they did not have their father to comfort them. When the time came to fly to Inishglora, the swans were old and tired. Life was easier there, with warmer weather and plenty of food.

Then one day, they heard the sound of a Christian church bell. They swam to shore, where a monk named Caomhóg met them. He was stunned to see the four swans turn into humans in front of him. Now 900 years old, the children were dying of old age, so Caomhóg baptised them before they died. Caomhóg dreamt that night that he saw them flying through the clouds, and knew they were now with their father and mother.

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/11-09-2020/eb6c8abf-d4e9-4ba4-8154-05f4.jpg
Children of Lir sculpture, Ballycastle

Profile Picture
Posted Thu 17 Sep 2020 3:31 PM
View Quick Profile
Community Expert
Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)
Gold Achievements 5 Silver Achievements 7 Bronze Achievements 28
Island of Ireland
Posts: 316
Group: Community Administrator Last Active: Thu 24 Sep 2020 12:34 PM Visits: 5.5K
The Salmon of Knowledge

Long ago in the river Boyne, there was a magical fish called the Salmon of Knowledge. Having gained its knowledge from eating nuts from the surrounding trees, it was said to hold all the knowledge in the world and it was said that whoever could catch the salmon and eat it would become the wisest person in Ireland.

Finegas, a poet who was considered one of the wisest men in Ireland, lived near the river Boyne in hopes of catching the Salmon of Knowledge. A young warrior name Fionn came to live with him, and he was curious about why Finegas spent his days fishing. Finegas would smile at the question but give no answer. Then one day, Fionn heard a shout and a huge splash and saw that Finegas had caught a salmon. Finegas immediately knew he had caught the Salmon of Knowledge.

Finegas was tired after the struggle to catch the fish so he gave it to Fionn to cook, with strict instructions to not eat the fish, not even a mouthful. Fionn cooked the salmon very carefully and once it was almost ready, he called Finegas to come for his meal. However, some burning fat from the fish splashed Fionn’s thumb, burning him. Fionn stuck it into his mouth quickly to ease the pain. Finegas came out and immediately noticed something different about Fionn. He asked him “Did you eat the salmon?” Fionn denied it, but then remembered the burn he received. On hearing this, Finegas knew at once that Fionn had received the wisdom of the Salmon of Knowledge. Finegas was very sad, but happy for Fionn. He told him to go out into the world, for there was nothing else he could teach him.

Fionn MacCumhaill went on to become leader of the Fianna and one of the greatest men of Ireland. 

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/17-09-2020/2e5a2942-28bc-4f5d-8a31-de60.jpg
Boyne River
Profile Picture
Posted Fri 18 Sep 2020 11:21 AM
View Quick Profile
Industry Member
Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)Industry Member (27.6K reputation)
Gold Achievements 3 Silver Achievements 3 Bronze Achievements 19
Northern Ireland
Posts: 189
Group: Approved Community Member Last Active: 1 hour ago Visits: 2.1K
The Dark Hedges Legend

One of Northern Ireland's most noteable attractions is the Dark Hedges in the Causeway Coast and Glens.  It is a beautiful avenue of beech trees planted by the Stuart family in the 1700s.  Legend has it that on dark, misty nights people have reported seeing a ghostly spectre walking along the road among the ancient trees.  She is referred to as The Grey Lady.  Some say she is the ghost of a maid who died mysteriously in one of the nearby houses, others say she is a lost soul from the nearby graveyard.  It is said that at Halloween the graves open and the souls of the dead walk with her through these Dark, albeit beautiful Hedges!

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/18-09-2020/2954bc8a-041e-4ea4-b05f-ca11.png

If you are a fan of the HBO series The Game of Thrones, you may have spotted the Dark Hedges featured as "The King's Road".  I wonder where The Grey Lady was that night?


Profile Picture
Posted Thu 24 Sep 2020 7:55 AM
View Quick Profile
Community Expert
Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)Community Expert (36.4K reputation)
Gold Achievements 5 Silver Achievements 7 Bronze Achievements 28
Island of Ireland
Posts: 316
Group: Community Administrator Last Active: Thu 24 Sep 2020 12:34 PM Visits: 5.5K
The tale of Oisín in Tír na nÓg

Long, long ago in Ireland, there lived the great warriors of the Fianna. The leader of the Fianna was Fionn MacCumhail (pronounced: Fee-on McCool), and his son’s name was Oisín (Uh-sheen). One day, while exploring the land, Oisín and Fionn saw a beautiful white horse in the distance, coming across the sea. On its back was the most beautiful young woman they had ever seen – hair the colour of sun, a pale blue dress studded with stars, and surrounded by a golden light. As she drew nearer, the men stopped in their tracks.

“My name is Niamh Chinn Óir (Neeve Kin Oar). My father is king of Tír na nÓg (tear nah nohg) – a land that knows no sorrow and where no one ever ages. I have heard great things of a young warrior named Oisín, and have come to take him with me back to the land of eternal youth.”

Although sad to be leaving his father and the Fianna, Oisín had instantly fallen in love with Niamh, and so agreed to go with her to Tír na nÓg, promising Fionn that he would return to Ireland to see them again soon. The horse took them across silver seas into the magical land of Tír na nÓg. As Niamh had promised, no one here knew sadness, nor did they age. Niamh and Oisín were happy here together – however, there was a small part of Oisín’s heart that remained lonely for Ireland.

Oisín begged Niamh to let him return to Ireland, but each time he asked, she managed to distract him with something else. Eventually, Niamh realised how much Oisín missed his family. However, she was scared to let him return to Ireland – though Oisín thought only three years had passed in his absence, it had, in fact, been 300 years on the island of Ireland. Niamh let him return, on the condition that he remain on her magical horse.“Do not get off this horse, do not let your feet touch the ground, or you will never be able to return to Tír na nÓg again”.

When Oisín returned to Ireland, he could see things had changed. He could not see the Fianna hunting in the fields, and the castle that once housed his family was now crumbling. As he looked for the Fianna, he came across some old men who were having difficulty moving a rock. He leaned down from his horse to help them, and in doing so lost his balance. He fell to the ground, and instantly aged the 300 years that he had missed in Ireland.

Now old and frail, he asked the men about his father Fionn MacCumhail. They told him that he had died many years before, along with the rest of the Fianna. Broken-hearted and now dying of old age, Oisín used his last moments to share with the men the legendary stories of the Fianna, his father Fionn and the land of Tír na nÓg. And to this day, the legends live on!

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/24-09-2020/9c2c31b7-a357-4467-9d55-9e9a.jpg
The Fiouanna family were said to be from the area near Loch Léin known also as Lough Leane, Kerry.
Picture of Ross Castle on the Lough Leane, Killarney by Chris Hill Photographic


Similar Topics