The Irish Mythology Seekers

We had a bunch of foreign visitors arrive at our home in Cork last night.Being hospitable, we fed them at the kitchen table.As soon as they’d consumed what we’d offered, they got up and started rummaging through the cupboards, combing through our personal correspondence, pulling our belongings out and throwing them one side as they… Read more »

Cath Fionntrá – The Battle of Fionntrá

For those of you who aren’t aware, an updated version of An Seabhach’s “Cath Fionntrá” came out last year. The story concerns the King of France’s ire (clearly, this was pre-revolutionary France) when his wife and daughter run off with his guest Fionn Mac Cumhaill. Joining up for vengeance with Dáire Donn (the King of… Read more »

Doon … and Other Works

An Roinn Tithíochta, Rialtais Áitúil agus Oidhreachta (Ireland’s Office of Public Works and National Monuments Service), get a lot of bad stick online, usually from opinionated keyboard warriors who don’t understand the realities of managing a nationwide conservation programme. It’s nice, therefore, when they release a new project that helps to increase accessibility (and understanding)… Read more »

An Táin

There’s a new version of ‘An Táin’ released this week. The cover image and fact that its title is ‘THE Táin’ suggests it’s designed for a non-Irish audience (although, to be fair, it’s primarily targeting children). I’ll be writing more about ‘An Táin’ in ‘Vóg‘ – the Irish Imbas newsletter – at the end of… Read more »

The Evolving Nature of St Paddy’s Parade

It’s nice to see people enjoying the St Paddy’s Day parades , taking place again after the Covid-19 years (this photo from the Cork parade in 2022 – from Cork County Council). It’s also interesting to see how the parades have changed so much over several decades. It’s probably worth noting that the parade was… Read more »

Blinkers!

Representation of mythology, in the modern context, is a bit like those small leather screens attached to a horse’s bridle. What we see -or, rather, what we’re shown by various commercial and other vested interests – only gives us a very limited view of what mythology actually is and what it does. Irish Imbas is… Read more »

Culture Integrity in Creative Irish Projects

When I first started writing the Fionn mac Cumhaill Series almost nine years ago, I was keen to create a realistic, culturally authentic version of the famous Fenian Cycle. In particular, I wanted to write stories that were genuinely Irish while also accessible to non-Irish readers. As part of my overall goal with Irish Imbas… Read more »

Breith [Birth]

Father Sun had neared his peak when the girl in the clearing stirred. Stretched across the ankle-high grass, her initial shiftings were indiscernible beneath the black cloak that swathed her. As vigorous ripples of activity shifted through the garment however, it loosened and slowly unravelled. A bare pair of legs slid into the open and… Read more »

Happy ….Whatever

At this time of year, you can offer someone best wishes or a peaceful Lá Fhéile Bríde (St Brigid’s day) or Imbolg, depending on which way your belief system drifts. The former ( Lá Fhéile Bríde) is now an official holiday in Ireland (on Monday 6 Feb). I’m pretty agnostic about both, to be honest (although I’m totally… Read more »

Some readers might find this image a little familiar. That’s because it’s remarkably similar to the layout of the ‘Crannóg‘ used in the book ‘LIATH LUACHRA: The Metal Men‘. In fact, this is an early image of the ráth at the Irish National Heritage Park. It has a very similar layout to the fictional crannóg… Read more »