Episode 15 The Wooing of Étaín (Part 3): The Wooing of Ulster by Aengus

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Aibreán  14, 2021

Episode 15

The Wooing of Étaín (Part 3): The Wooing of Ulster by Aengus

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about how Aengus and Midir are doing a year on from the events of the last part of this story. Midir sustains an injury while visiting Aengus and to make up for it, the latter goes to County Down to ask for the hand of Étaín in marriage for Midir. 

We ask:

  • Was Aengus a love god?
  • Was he a god of poetry?
  • What was Aengus’s primary role in Irish Mythology?
  • How did the Gaeilic Cultural Revival of the 19th century  influence how we see Aengus today?
  • Why did WB Yeats become obsessed with Aengus?
  • How were tribal groupings in ancient Ireland similar to networks of mutual aid?

Midir loses an eye while trying to break up a fight; Dian Cecht works some healing magic; Aengus goes up to Down to woo Étaín for Midir; The Dagda fights an Octopus; WB Yeats is CANCELLED!

A cautionary tale on why you should only agree to things you know you can do, unless yer Da is the Dagda.

Resources

 

Ptolemy’s map* 2nd Century  – I have added the rough locations of the three main locations in today’s story.  

Cú Chullain and Ferdia statue in Ardee

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org 

Featured Image Étaín and Midir, illustration by Stephen Reid in T. W. Rolleston’s The High Deeds of Finn (1910).

Episode 11 The Wooing of Étain (Part 1): The Nativity of the Young Son

Solstice Sun entering the passage at Newgrange – CC licence

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts.

Welcome | fáilte

In this episode we hear about the Dagda and Boann’s dalliance, and the subsequent birth of the god Aengus, that thanks to divine magic, all occurs on the same day. Despite the title, Étain doesn’t appear in today’s story as she isn’t introduced until later in the Saga.   We ask:

  • What was The Dagda’s role in myth and in the old pagan religion?
  • Why is this story associated with the Winter Solstice?
  • Does this story hint at the remnant of a pre-Celtic religious tradition?
  • What was the significance of Newgrange for ancient astronomers?
  • Could the Egyptian Book of the Dead help us interpret the importance of the Solstice at Newgrange for the dead?

The Dagda has got his groove back, but though his power is restored, he longs for Boann, goddess and wife of his steward, Elcmar. He makes use of his control of the Sun and time to not only make a tryst possible, but to hide the conception and birth of a son.

Despite the title, Étain doesn’t appear in today’s story as she isn’t introduced until later in the Saga

Resources

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh.

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org

Episode 14 St. Patrick’s Day Special: Patrick versus Cromm Cruach

St. Patrick and Crom Cruaich. Illustrated by L.D.Symington. (Wikimedia Commons)

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Marta 11, 2021

Episode 14

St. Patrick’s Day Special: Patrick versus Cromm Cruach

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about how St. Patrick confronts a pagan idol whose followers are resisting the forward march of Christianity.  This deity, Cromm Cruach isn’t for going meekly into the night and makes a spirited defence of his place on the landscape and those who follow him.

We ask:

  • Why was Patrick determined to destroy Cromm Cruach?
  • Who worshipped Cromm Cruach according to textual sources?
  • Was Cromm Cruach even a deity or did Christian writers make him up?
  • Why was Patrick at odds with King  Lóegaire Mac Neill?
  • How did early Irish Christianity interact with native polytheistic paganism?
  • How did people celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in the past. 
  • St. Patrick’s Day, Paddy’s Day or Patty’s Day?

Patrick has had a lot of success spreading the word of God in Ireland, but one native deity and his followers are not going without a fight. Who will win this epic confrontation? Patrick versus Crom Cruach; This time it’s biblical!

We talk Patrick, Cromm Cruach, hagiography, human sacrifice, Lóegaire mac Néill, and the different ways Christianity and native Irish Paganism interacted. We also make a bit of time to talk old St. Patrick’s Day customs.

Resources

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org 

E13: The Wooing of Étain (Part 2): How Aengus Took Newgrange

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Feabhra  18, 2021

Episode 13

The Wooing of Étain (Part 2): How Aengus Took Newgrange

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about how Aengus finds out about his parentage and the subsequent problem that creates for his foster father Midir and his biological father, The Dagda.  The three are compelled to come up with a way of tricking Elcmar out of his home so Aengus can take his birthright, without letting Elcmar find out that the Dagda is behind this. We ask:

  • Was the Dagda more like Mercury or Jupiter?
  • What historical events might have influenced the different ways this story was told?
  • What was Aengus’s role in the old religion?
  • What role does the ancient sport,  Hurling play in Irish Mythology?
  • Why was fosterage so common in Irish mythical tales?

Aengus believes he is the son of Midir, his foster father, but gets a rude awakening when a jealous Fir Bolg youth tells him otherwise. On finding out his father is actually The Dagda, the King in the Sidhe, he sets out to meet him and claim a Sidhe of his own. There’s one slight problem though; Someone already occupies the mound The Dagda had in mind for his son. That someone is the husband of Aengus’s mother, the one The Dagda had already duped when he had an affair with Boann. 

A cautionary tale on why you should read the fine print of any contract.

Resources

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org 

Episode 12 Brigid – Goddess, Druid, and Saint of Imbolc

Photo from Brigid’s Well Faughart, Co. Louth by Stephie.

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Feabhra  01, 2021

Episode 12

Brigid – Goddess, Druid, and Saint of Imbolc

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about two  Brigids;  One is a goddess, the other, a saint, but there is a lot of crossover in their stories. .   We ask:

  • What is the connection between the two Brigids?
  • What did the goddess Brigid represent?
  • What magical acts did St. Brigid carry out?
  • What folklore and tradition is associated with Imbolc and St. Brigid’s Day?
  • What does the word Imbolc mean?

Brigid returns from tending her flock to see women huddled around the hearth with only a bit of bread between them. A bit of divine magic might be just what the doctor ordered.

Resources

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh and Marcas Ó hUiscín.

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org

Except Music for a film by EvanJones4 Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence on freesound.org

Episode 10: The Dagda Strikes Back

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Samhain  24, 2020

Featured Image – The Gundestrup Cauldron – Attribution: Knud Winckelmann and Nationalmuseet- commons.wikimedia.org – CC-BY-SA-3.

Episode 10

The Dagda Strikes Back

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about the Dagda and how he strikes back against Cridenbel and Bres with the help of an otherworldly child. Meanwhile, Bres’s bad luck continues as the visit of a satirist doesn’t go the way he’d hoped.   We ask:

  • What was The Dagda’s role in myth and in the old pagan religion?
  • What rules around hospitality existed in  Brehon Law?
  • Did The Dagda represent a class of hospitalier called the Briugu?
  • Why were there laws governing satire in medieval Ireland?
  • Why should you offer  your guests a few biscuits with the cuppa?

The Dagda has had enough of Bres’s demands of his labour and Cridenbel’s demands of his hospitality. Now, with the help of a magical child and a satirist, The Dagda Strikes Back.

A cautionary tale outlining why you should always give your guests something decent with their cuppa.

Resources

  • The Second Battle of Moytura 
  • Ireland’s Immortals, A History of the Gods of Irish Myth – Mark Williams
  • Harp, Club and Cauldron, A Harvest of Knowledge (Lora O’Brien and Morpheus Ravenna ed)
  • A Cauldron of Abundance (from above book) by Chris Thompson and Isolde Ó’Brolcháin Carmody
  • A Guide to Early Irish Law – Fergus Kelly
  • Techno Viking 

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org (except Door – Stone – Large – by DWO Boyle attribution licence at freesound)

Episode 8: Dian Cecht and Nuada’s Silver Arm

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Deireadh Fómhair,  22, 2020

Episode 8

Dian Cecht and Nuada’s Silver Arm

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about Dian Cecht and how he recruits  the smiths, Gobniu and Credne to help him create a new arm for the deposed Chieftan Nuada..  We ask:

  • What was Dian Cecht’s role in myth and in the old pagan religion?
  • What is Dian Cecht’s relationship to Brehon Law?
  • What makes Dian Cecht a symbol of the medical profession?
  • Why were Blacksmiths considered to have supernatural powers?
  • How do we resolve contradictions in medieval mythological texts?

Dian Cecht receives Ogma’s message and sets out to find a way of fighting back against Bres’s tyranny. He recruits the blacksmith Gobniu and the silversmith Credne to help him create a new arm for the former High Chief of the Gods, Nuada.

Resources

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org

Episode 7: The Passion of the Ogma

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Meán Fómhair,  22, 2020

Episode 7

The Passion of the Ogma

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about Ogma and how he and the other gods  are forced to work under the reign of Bres. We also hear how Ogma invented a system of writing.  We ask:

  • What was Ogma’s role in myth and in the old pagan religion?
  • What is Ogma’s relationship to other deities?
  • What is the Ogham system of writing?
  • What attitudes to work in medieval Ireland are represented in this story?
  • Are metaphors about the origins of language encoded in tales from mythology?

Ogma suffers under the reign of Bres, but from this suffering comes a great revelation.  We talk about Ogma, ogham script, attitudes to work in myth, and the Irish language.

Resources

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc licence from freesound.org

Episode 6 Show Notes: The Druid that Killed John the Baptist

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Irish Mythology Podcast

Iúil 30, 2020

Episode 6

The Druid that Killed John the Baptist

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear about the druid Mog Ruith and his daughter Tlachtga travelling from County Kerry to the Middle East to study the magic of Simon Magus, and how on the way, Mog Ruith becomes the executioner of John the Baptist. We ask:

  • Who was Mog Ruith?
  • Why did he and his daughter, Tlachtga travel to the Middle East? 
  • Does this story have a hidden meaning that points to the early Irish Church’s struggles with both imported heresy and native paganism?
  • Why aren’t Mog Ruith and Tlachtga as well known as some other Irish Mythological figures?
  • Why did Mog Ruith behead John the Baptist?
  • Why were he and Tlachtga associated with Simon Magus?

We also talk about heresy, Roman influences in Iron Age Ireland, the oared wheel, and Kerry UFO sightings . 

Have you heard about the Druid, Mog Ruith and his most famous deed? I thought not. It’s not the sort of tale you would hear from a teacher or a priest.

Resources

  • Paice MacLeod, Sharon. Celtic Cosmology and the Otherworld. McFarland & Company, Inc. North Carolina, 2018.
  • The Holy Bible, ESV, Kindle Version.
  • The Siege of Knocklong
  • Smith, Andrew Phillip. John the Baptist and the Last Gnostics, The Secret History of the Mandaeans. Watkins, 2015.
  • The Nag Hammadi Scriptures. Ed. Marvin W. Meyer. Harper Collins E-Books.

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

Air traffic control audio courtesy of http://www.liveatc.net

All sounds cc or attribution licence.

Sounds on attribution licence from freesound.org – 

  • Dsound1977 – Night Cyprus Sea
  • Dymewiz – Footsteps (Snow, Sand)
  • Xserra – Abu Dhabi, arab drums + Tanger drums
  • csengeri – Storm 200408
  • Inspector J – Footsteps, stone.
  • hifijohn – abstract background music
  • pogmothoin – Bodhran
  • sonsbcnintercultural – Setar Alireza Farrokhzadi

Dawning of the Dé (part 3): Fate of the Firbolg Shownotes

PHOTO BY MICK REYNOLDS

show notes s01 e05
Irish Mythology Podcast

Iúil 09, 2020

Episode 5

Dawning of the Dé (part 3): Fate of the Firbolg

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we hear the culmination of the saga of the coming of the gods to Ireland and talk about Nuada, Sreng, war gods and Cong Co. Mayo and we ask:

  • How do we know Nuada was a war god?
  • What other gods does he share attributes with?
  • What is the role of the war god? 
  • Why are the Fir Bolg associated with Connaught?
  • How do we resolve contradictions in the old texts? 

We also talk a bit more about the Tuath Dé and the idea of a pantheon of Irish gods and the historical context to the texts this story comes from. . 

The Culmination of a saga. A bloody battle that will decide the future of Ireland. Can the mighty Fir Bolg repel the almighty power of the gods?

We talk about Nuada, Sreng, war gods and Cong, Co. Mayo. 

Resources

Where it all happens 

credits

Written, presented and produced  by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaiígh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc or attribution licence.

Sounds on attribution licence from freesound.org – 

  • Miguetelo SINISTER ATMOSPHERE 
  • Joedeshon ADULTS GATHERING FOR A MEETING 
  • Piano Farm – Cows Attacking Red Tail Hawk
  • Yap Audio Production – Medieval Army Marching 
  • Yap_Audio_Production – Medieval Combat
  • Metzik – Throatsinging
  • Mshashen – Wind
  • Inspector J – Smashing wooden fence

Dawning of the Dé (part 2): Maids of Mayhem

show notes s01 e04
Irish Mythology Podcast

Bealtaine 21, 2020

Episode 4

Dawning of the Dé (part 2): Maids of Mayhem

Thank you for listening to this episode!

Here you’ll find our notes, links to research and some personal highlights from your hosts. 

Welcome | fáilte 

In this episode we are introduced to the Morrigan, in her triple goddess form – The Badbh, Macha, and Nemhain and we ask:

  • Why do the names of the three vary, depending on the story?
  • Which one is most like The Morrigan as she appears in singular form.
  • What is her role in Irish Mythology? 
  • What powers and abilities does she posses?
  • What divinities in other mythologies does she most resemble? 

We also talk a bit more about the Tuath Dé and continue the story of how they came to Ireland and fought the Fir Bolg. 

When Chief Eochaid Mac Eirc of the Fir Bolg ignores Sreng’s advice to compromise with the Tuath Dé, Chief Nuada calls on three powerful goddesses with a passion for pandemonium to give them some supernatural encouragement. 

Resources

  • “The First Battle of Moytura.” Ériu 8 (1916): 1-63. Accessed May 13, 2020. www.jstor.org/stable/30005394.
  • Clark, Rosalind. “Aspects of the Morrígan in Early Irish Literature.” Irish University Review 17, no. 2 (1987): 223-36. Accessed May 13, 2020. www.jstor.org/stable/25477680.
  • Krappe, Alexander Haggerty. “The Valkyrie Episode in the Njals Saga.” Modern Language Notes 43, no. 7 (1928): 471-74. Accessed May 20, 2020. doi:10.2307/2914244. https://www.jstor.org/stable/2914244
  • The Story of Burnt Njal/The Njalls Saga,1861 translation into English by George W. DaSent from the original Icelandic ‘Brennu-Njáls saga’. https://sagadb.org/brennu-njals_saga.en
  • Williams, Mark. Ireland’s Immortals. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2018

credits

Presented by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaiígh. 

Written by Marcas Ó hUiscín. 

Produced by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiíarnaiígh. 

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence 

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds cc or attribution licence.

Sounds on attribution licence from freesound.org – 

  • Miguetelo SINISTER ATMOSPHERE
  • Joedeshon ADULTS GATHERING FOR A MEETING
  • Juan FG – Never without my denture
  • Melisapons – Wooshes
  • Liezen3 – Choir Women Men and Mixed
  • Setuniman – Cinematic Moments + cinematic intros
  • Luis_audp – Celtic Tin Whistle in D
  • Beast_Toil – Slow Mellow Suspense (They’re Going to Get You!)
  • Piano Farm – Cows Attacking Red Tail Hawk
  • Yap_Audio_Production – Medieval Combat
  • Innominatus – Booms of Innominatus
  • GregorQuendel – Cinematic Percussion Trailer + Cinematic Chanting / Throat Singing Percussion Trailer
  • Jobro – Cinematic stings
  • Vedas – frantic searching
  • Robinhood76 – CROWD & MASSIVE EVENTS sound shots (Licence https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/)

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EPSISODE 3: DAWNING OF THE DÉ (PART 1) – THE SONG OF SRENG

Welcome | fáilte

In this episode we talk about an often overlooked people of Irish Myth – The Fir Bolg; and we ask:

  • Who were the Fir Bolg?
  • Why are they overlooked?
  • What is their place in Irish Mythology?
  • Why is their story worth telling?

We also tell the story of Sreng, a mighty Fir Bolg warrior and envoy of his chief as he goes to investigate a mysterious new threat to his people.

When mysterious beings come from the sky and land on the mountains of connaught, the Fir Bolg of Ireland mobilise to oppose them.
Meet Sreng, greatest warrior of the Fir Bolg.
Then meet the one thing that strikes fear into very the fabric of his being.

Resources

Lebor Gabála Érenn

The Metrical Dindshenchas Poem 40 Carn Hui Neit 

Duchas, The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0102, Page 252 and 253

Lady Gregory’s Complete Irish Mythology, Octopus 1994. (Gods and Fighting Men, 1904)

Credits

Presented by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh.

Written and produced by Marcas Ó hUiscín.

Music by Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode

All sounds from freesound.org

Featured Image – Letterfrack, connemara national park.

Trailer: The Dawning of the Dé

When mysterious beings come from the sky and land on the mountains of Connemara, the Fir Bolg of Ireland mobilise to oppose them.

Ireland will never be the same.

Over the coming weeks we’ll be bringing you the story of the coming of the gods and the battles they fought against men, and other supernatural beings.

Don’t miss The Dawning of the Dé on the Irish Mythology Podcast.

Music – Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode )

Featured Image – The Two Ambassadors – part of a depiction of the meeting of Sreng of the Fir Bolg and Bres of the Tuath Dé from the book Myths and Legends of the Celtic Race (1910) by Rolleston, T.W. (Partially colourised by Marcas).

Epsisode 2: Rebellious Creation

Welcome | fáilte

In this episode we talk about the acts of defiance by divine femine figures that lead to the creation of rivers, hills, mountains and valleys.  Medieval and modern literature has created a pantheon of old Irish gods but we don’t really know how widespread worship of individual deities was.

Some seem intimately tied to place, and may not have been particularly well known beyond their locale. One such individual is the goddess Boann, who gives her name to the river Boyne which runs from near the village of Carberry in Co. Kildare, through Co. Meath to the sea at Baltray Co. Louth. 

Resources

BOAND I

BOAND II

PROSE TALES IN THE RENNES DINDSHENCHAS (#19)

VERSION IN THE NATIONAL FOLKLORE COLLECTION

THE EMERALD TABLET

If you’re lucky enough to be in the area where Boann lived, we’ve put together a map for you to visit and take in the route of the Boyne River. You can follow Boann’s course from Carbury to Baltray using this map. 

WARNING!!! If you happen upon any wells during your cycle, we strongly advise that you approach with caution, heed any warnings from individuals bearing cups at the well, and under no circumstances should you attempt to walk around the well in an anti-clockwise direction.

Credits

EPISODE ONE IS HERE!

PATRICK: The Saint and The Sorcerer

It was in the strength of God that I went – God who turned the direction of my life to good.

— Saint Patrick.
Given the week that’s in it, we’ll be looking at a character who bridges the gap between history and myth,
In whose name, this comingTuesday, many glasses will be raised and even more shamrocks will be drowned.
We’re talking of course about the Patron Saint of Ireland, the man credited with converting Ireland from native polytheism to Christianity, St. Patrick. Did Patrick really convert Pagan Ireland to Christianity?
Did Patrick do it by using a shamrock?
And what exactly was the story with the snakes?
Written, produced and presented by Marcas Ó hUiscín and Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh. Thomas Dineley voiced by Christopher Bowes. Music - Celtic Warrior by Damiano Baldoni (licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 public licence https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode ) The schools collection can be found at https://www.duchas.ie/en