Story Archaeology

Uncovering the layers of Irish Mythology through a regular podcast and related articles

Tag Archives: filid

Winter Special 2016: Aisling MacConglinne – A Satirical Tale of Extreme Gastronomy

The Midwinter festival has been a time of over indulgence and conspicuous consumption for millenia! This year, we dig in to the Middle Irish story, Aisling MacConglinne, “The Vision of MacConglinne”, a delicious debauch of extreme gastronomy.! Join the Story Archaeologists in a feast of fantastical food, with a generous side order of sumptuous satire. Read the full translated text here! …

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Circling the Tain 01: The Quarrel of the Two Swineherds (or “Where It All Began”)

Welcome to Series 6, “Circling the Tain”. In this series, we will delve into the fascinating web of stories making up the Tain tradition, with the Tain Bó Cúailnge, “The Cattle Raid of Cooley”, at its core. We begin this exploration with the story of two talented swineherds and their shape-shifting,poetic quarrel. Join the Story …

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The Mórrígan Speaks – Her Three Poems

From Cath Maige Tuired, “The Battle of Moytura” Introduction At the end of the Old Irish saga of Cath Maige Tuired, there are three poems attributed to the Mórrígan; one immediately before the main battle, and the other two afterwards, ending the saga as a whole.  These three poems were the main topic of my Masters …

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The Morrigan’s Prophecy

From “the Morrigan’s prophecy” spoken at the close of the battle of Moytura. (based on the translation by Isolde Carmody) Beneath the peaceful heavens lies the land. It rests beneath the bowl of the bright sky. The land lies, itself a dish, a cup of honeyed strength, there, for the taking, offering strength to each There …

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Many Shades of Darkness

Irish colour words and concepts In primary school,  I was very confused to learn two different Irish words for “green”: glas and uaithne.  I knew there was a difference, but I wasn’t clear what that difference was.  As my schooling continued, more confusion arose: black people were referred to as daoine gorma, “blue people” (according to the dictionary) and …

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Revisiting Sinann’s Other Poems

From the Metrical Dindshenchas, Volume 4, edited by Edward Gwynn translated by Isolde ÓBrolcháin Carmody pp 36 – 43: Poems 11 & 12 Note: It may seem hard to believe, but in our podcast episode, Revisiting Sinann, we didn’t jump up and down shouting about the link between Sinann and Mongán! We compared her poetic quest …

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Repost – Imbas: Poetry, Knowledge and Inspiration

The filid, “poets”, of early Irish society were not poorly paid struggling artists: they were held in the highest esteem and a crucial part of culture.  Indeed, the word fili, “poet”, more literally means “seer“, and the ollamh, “great poet, chief poet”, had comparable status with the king of the túath, “petty kingdom”, and the …

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Revisiting Sinann in the Metrical Dindshenchas

from the Metrical Dindshenchas, Volume 3 edited by Edward Gwynn; translated by Isolde ÓBrolcháin Carmody. pp. 286 – 297; poems 53 and 54

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Revisiting Mythical Women 1 – Revisiting Sinann

  Welcome to series 5 of Acallam na nÉces, “Revisiting Mythical Women”. In our first episode, we take a look back at the stories of Sinann, and the themes that came up when we discussed them in our very first episode. We’ve added some new discussion to the beginning of the episode, highlighting how Story …

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The Irish Abroad – an ongoing tradition

In our final Immrám episode, The Pursuit of the Gilla Decair – An Unofficial Fenian Immrám, we noticed that Goll, Oscar and Fergus FinnBhéoil ["Fair-Lips"] came up with a familiar strategy. Just like the Children of Tuirenn, Fergus suggests that they sneak into the court of Athens disguised as poets, right down to the hair-do! …

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