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Manannán’s Prophecy of Mongán

A painting of Manannán Mac Lír in his sea-chariot. Loime Studios

Image Courtesy of Loime Studios

From the poem of Manannán Mac Lír in Immrám Bran:

 

Manannán speaks:

 

You see me here. I stand before you

As I approach the mortal world.

I will come to the woman who waits in Moy-linney;

I will come, at last, to her own home.

 

For I, Manannán of the line of Lír,

Will take to my chariot in mortal form

To where my son will be conceived,

Sculpted to mortal fair perfection.

 

For I, Manannán of the line of Lír,

Will lie with the queen in mutual tryst;

The child, called by us, to the beautiful world,

Acknowledged by Fiachna, his mortal father.

 

He will melt the heart of every Sídhe,

The darling boy of welcome lands;

He will know secrets, and make them known,

Fearless, in all the fearful world.

 

He will take the shape of every beast;

Beast of the blue sea, beast of the land.

He will stand as a dragon at the battle-line

And the wolf in the heart of the forest.

 

The antlered stag, all silver-tined,

On the chariot road-crossed plains of men;

The speckled salmon of the deepest pools,

The seal in the sea or the fair-white swan.

 

Known throughout the lengthening days,

A king who reigned one hundred years;

As a warrior, strong and fierce and fatal,

His battled fields left rutted red.

 

His birth shall be of the highest rank;

His death, the deed of a bastard son.

Yet I, Manannán of the line of Lír

Will guide, will teach, will foster him.

 

Translation by  Isolde Carmody

Re-telling by Chris Thompson

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    1. The Text of Immram Brain Part 2: Manannan’s Poem and the Prophecy of Mongan | Story Archaeology

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