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Mythology in Ireland: From the Tuatha de Danaan to Fin MacCumhaíl, the Children of Lir to Cú Chullain, and Ireland is steeped in a world of myths and legends dating back to pagan times before the arrival of Christianity.
Irish Mythology & Legends of Ireland
Ancient Irish history and legends have three main sources, known in modern times as the Mythological Cycle, the Ulster Cycle (also known as the Ultonian or Red Branch Cycle) and the Fenian or Fianna Cycle.
After St. Patrick brought Christianity to Ireland, it became the goal of monks and missionaries to convert the pagan Irish. Because the natives were so resistant to Christianity, the Church sought to assist conversion by substituting Christian ‘versions’ of sacred days and deities for ancient Celtic ones.
Seems a bit odd in October, as we gather together costumes, carve pumpkins, collect tinder for bonfires, and hang images of goblins, ghouls and witches about our surroundings, doesn’t it? Yet if you had lived in Ireland many centuries ago, this would have been your New Year celebration!
The Tuatha de Danaan
The Irish book of Invasions was compiled in the 12th century and relates several successful waves of mythical invasions of Ireland. During the Fifth wave , the Tuatha de Danaan came through the mists to invade Ireland.
The Story of Fin MacCumhaíl
Cumhal Macart was a great champion in the west of Ireland, and it was prophesied of him that if ever he married he would meet death in the next battle he fought.
The Pangs of Ulster
Crunniuc mac Agnomain was a wealthy landowner and hostel-keeper of Ulster. His wife was dead, and he lived with his sons in a solitary place in the mountains.
The Conception of CúChulainn
The mystical story of how CúChulainn was conceived.
Táin Bó Cúalnge - The Cattle-Raid of Cooley
The Cattle Raid of Cooley is one of many stories about the Red Branch Knights of Ulster and the hero, CuChulainn, Hound of Ulster.
Brian Boru - the last great High King of Ireland
The line between Irish Legend and Irish Myth has often been blurred, especially as the retelling of heroic deeds has been passed on through generations. Brian Boru was no legend although his life deeds were legendary.
The Children of Lir: An Irish legend
The story of King Lir and his children is one of enchantment, jealousy and tragedy. Lir's wife, Eva, had given him four beautiful children, but died when the children were in their infancy.
Cú Chullain – Mythological Hero
Cú Chullain is one of the best-known figures in Irish mythology. Originally named Setanta, Cú Chullain was the nephew and foster son of King Conor of Emania.
The Mythical Gods of the Gaels
Ireland came under Christian influence some time around the fifth century. But what kind of faith existed before that.
Celtic Crosses - Ireland's Hidden Treasures
All across Ireland, ancient Celtic crosses can be seen in old churchyards and cemeteries. IrishAbroad's Dermot O' Gara looks at the origins of these monuments
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