Story Archaeology

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

Category Archives: Specials

An Open Letter to QI

QI is a long-running BBC panel show hosted by Stephen Fry. It is produced by “Quite Interesting Ltd.”, and has become an unofficial source for Quite Interesting facts and exploding General Ignorance. But their research is not flawless…   Dear QI Elves, Please can you stop spouting nonsense about Ancient Ireland? I know it’s a …

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Extolling the Holly

Poetry specifically describing the properties of different woods is not all that common, although I know of a couple of poems that gives  Ash  prime place. This poem, in keeping with the season, places the holly as the best of winter woods, It also favours the fragrant  honeysuckle,  the woodbine. The poem is part of the story of  …

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A Crock of Old Cobblers ~ A Holiday Special

Fergus mac Léite gets to encounter the underwater world of the  Lupracán, a story which in the late middle / early modern Irish version, almost certainly, inspired Swift’s wonderful satire, ‘Gulliver’s Travels’. The Story Archaeologists, ear herbs at the ready, dive right into the tale, but wonder how these small, but proud and fiercely independent, beings …

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Samhain Special 2014 – A Tale to Remember

Happy new year to our Story Archaeology listeners! Because we love ye thiiiiiis much, we’re sending out a multimedia feast for our Samhain special. So, take a look at this video of a live Story Archaeology show, then have a listen to our episode, “A Tale to Remember”, and peruse the attached texts and your …

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Story Archaeology needs you!

Greetings all diggers and scrapers and fragment-collectors… If you read “The Trials and Tribulations of a pair of Story Archaeologists”, you’ll know that we at Story Archaeology have been on our own technological Immrám for some time now. It certainly can feel very much like “rowing around” when trying to select, construct and set up …

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A Christmas Card from the Story Archaeologists

In our Midwinter special we pulled out some of the less familiar treasures of Irish mythology from Manannan’s famous Craneskin bag, also known as the treasure bag of the Fianna. In a light hearted attempt to seek out some unusual seasonal gifting opportunities, we wondered which ones might still be appropriate in the early 21st …

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The Treasure Bag of the Fianna

The fair boy stared at the bag, turning it over in his hands. It felt smooth to the touch; fine leather, warm and welcoming to his fingers. He continued to stare at the pouch, its faded colours telling a story, but it was a tale he could not yet read. But he knew the object, …

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Midwinter Special: The Craneskin Bag – A Santa’s Sack of Gifts from Irish Mythology

Long before Santa’s sack was filled with seasonal gifts, Manannán Mac Lír had a wonderful craneskin bag full of magical treasures, which he frequently gave to those he favoured. But what will the Story Archaeologists pull out of the bag? Some unusual pets, a mythical Swiss Army knife and a Holy Grail. Don’t forget to subscribe to …

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Sat-Navs and Seanchaís – Finding your way through stories and landscapes

This article was published in the journal Keltria in issue 42, “Storytelling”. You can order this issue of Keltria here for digital download or print edition. Notes appear at the end of the article. Ireland has an international reputation as a nation of writers and storytellers, and it forms a large part of our national …

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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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