Story Archaeology

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

Category Archives: Stories by Chris Thompson

A Prophecy

The afternoon sunshine silvered the water, diamond-points lighting the waves with laughter. The girls all stood in happy chattering groups, finished with their bathing, wrapping themselves in their flower-coloured mantles as they dried their wind-washed hair. Then one of them, perhaps the most beautiful, so it was said, looked up, suddenly still, peering seaward, into …

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Fuamnach’s Story

I met them with mild words and open smiles; my husband and this new young wife he had bought with so much gold and even greater labour. I flattered her with gentle compliments, calling her “king’s daughter”, worthy to sit beside me in our home at Brí Leith. And she was beautiful – and young – it …

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The Further Adventures of Nera ~ The Cave Between the Worlds

As Nera climbed out of the steep misted cave, into the darkness, he was met by the autumn smoke smells of damp and decay, clustering around him like a guard of arms, wakeful and watching. The cold night air caught at his throat and he shivered. And yet there was another odour, strong, green, fresh, …

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The Giant in the Mead Hall

In the flickering firelight of the evening feasting, the shadow of the newcomer filled the whole hall, darkening its comforting warmth. The man himself was a giant; huge, twice the height of any other. But he was no noble hero-warrior; no, not this one. This one wore no garment striped with gold. This one had …

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The Coming of the Heroes to Crúachán ~ a description

From inside the dún, It sounded like an army approaching in full battle-stance. The whole household of Crúachán stopped still, startled in their strength. “Go see who is coming,” said Medb to her daughter. So Findabair went to the high place of the house and looked out. The sight before her dazzled her vision. Two matched …

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Bricriu’s feasting hall ~ a description

He would make them an invitation that they could not refuse. He would set the conceited heroes of Ireland, one against the other and then sit back and watch the fur fly. But firstly he needed a suitable setting, a theatre worthy of this fine jest. Bricriu began to plan the building of a magnificent …

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Who killed Medb? ~ a poem

And Medb? That famous queen of Connacht, That virtuous virago – woman of renown, Serpent wise and venomous, How did she die? Was it Ailill, on a night of pillow talk, On a night of boasting and bragging, Was there one too many pillows plumped, To stifle her competitive tongue. Was it Ailill who brought …

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The Proto-Story – A Speculation

And the Morrigan spoke at last. “The time will soon be upon us, and unrest will not pass us by.  The leader of our people will be fatally blemished. Núada will be wounded in heart and hand. No longer will he hold golden prosperity within his grasp.” The Dagda grinned. “Dían Cécht will make him …

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The Banishment of Balor

It is then that Lug said: I may look small next to you, but I am the one who will choose the day of your death. And Balor replied: Now I see that in the germ of the seed that I planted lies the form of my own destruction. Lug replied: It is so, for …

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The Morrigan’s View

Then the Morrigan said … So it came to battle at the last. It came, at last, to red and slaughterous battle as it always has, and it always will. It came, at the last, to the calling of kings To the feats of feasting The feasts of poetic words The talking and taking of …

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