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Designed by Richard Morrison in 1810, Ballyheigue Castle was a grand mansion and home of the Crosbie family. Now mostly a shell, surrounded by a golf course which opened in 1996. It ha been burned down twice, once by accident in 1840 and again on 27th May 1921 as part of the troubles and the destruction of buildings linked to British Imperialism. Read More »
In ‘Irish Myths and Legends’ by Ronan Coghlan, we are told that Oilliphéist, is an Irish word meaning ‘dragon’ or ‘great worm’, and that ‘a creature of this sort, hearing that Saint Patrick was coming to drive out its kind, cuts its way through the land, thus forming the River Shannon.’ The Shannon is 224 miles long and the is Ireland's longe Read More »
From high mountain pass, exhaling ice breath, (2).
Comes Cailleach clothed in summers death.
Cold fingers search under starlight’s lantern
Staff cracks dew to frosted mantle, (3).
In the stags hoary frosted bark,
Riding with wolves on the cloak of the dark. (4).
From mountain, hillock, stone and spring (5). Read More »
Hills, mounds and burial sites. Places which have a timeless allure. Such places can be seen and regarded as mythically liminal, a place that it is not a place. A place outside of time. A place where the living freely walk with the dead. Barrows are just such places. Read More »
The Association for the Scientific Study of Anomalous Phenomena (ASSAP) has been investigating the weird seriously (and the seriously weird) since 1981. Our main aims are paranormal research and education. Anomalous phenomena include psychic phenomena, UFOs, Forteana and earth mysteries. Read More »
The Banshee is most commonly visualised as a female spirit who wails in the night to foretell disaster, either to an individual family or more generally. The tradition is the strongest in Ireland but many places with Celtic survivals have a variant of the Banshee. Read More »
The Triads of Ireland or the Trecheng Breth Féne describe the Beast of Lettir Dallan as one of the three wonders of Glenn Dallan in Tirowen. Read More »
Legendary home of the Irish third century warriors known as the Fianna, Ben Bulben (or Benbulben, Benbulbin, Binn Ghulbain) is a large glacial rock formation in the Darty Mountains. Read More »
Changelings are part of Western Folklore, a child of a fairy type (Elf, Troll etc) which has been secretly swapped for a human baby and left in its place. George Waldron gave the following description of one he saw in the Isle of Man and it was subsequently reprinted in ‘The Science of Fairy Tales’ (1891) by Edwin Sidney Hartland. Read More »
In 1211AD Gervase of Tilbury recorded a strange event in the borough of Clorea in Ireland. During a Sunday Mass at the church of St Kinarus in the borough of Cloera, an anchor was seen to descend from the sky and hook on to the church door. Read More »
The Dobhar-chu or water hound is a lake dwelling creature of Irish Folklore. It is covered in short white fur with a dark cross on it’s back and described as being like a dog or a large sea otter. Read More »
The Eo Rossa or Eó Ruis (Yew of Ross) was one of the five sacred trees of Ireland (the Bile* Trees or the Bileda) and said to grow by the River Barrow at Leighlinbridge. It grew from three natured berries from a branch born by the Irish God, Trefuilngid Tre-ochair (Triple Bearer of the Triple Key, Master of All Wisdom and consort of Macha, the triple goddess). Read More »
The Fachan (Fechan or Fachin or Peg Leg Jack) is a found in Scots-Irish Folklore. A Fachan's appearance is so terrible it was known to cause heart attacks. It has one eye, one leg, one withered arm coming out of it's chest and a mane of black feathers. Read More »
There lived a woman in Innish Shark -- one of the group of islands on the eastern coast -- named Biddy Mannion, as handsome and likely a fisherman's wife as you would meet in a day's walk. She was tall, and fair in the face, with skin like an egg, and hair that might vie with the gloss of the raven's wing. Read More »
Ireland has a history of early Christian settlement dating as far back as the 6th century when monastic settlements were developed as bastions of the faith in the remote Irish countryside. Gallarus Oratory is the oldest and best preserved example of an early church that served one of these small settlements, and is probably one of the oldest intact buildings in Ireland. Read More »
The Hill of Tara – ancient seat of the Kings of Ireland – is the focal point in a complex landscape of ancient monuments dating from the Neolithic to the Iron Age. It is a stirring setting where mythology and history fuse together, and has been revered as a holy site for thousands of years. Read More »
IRISH FOLKLORE COMMISSION 1935-1970 : History, Ideology, Methodology [Micheal Briody] Between 1935 and 1970 the Irish Folklore Commission (Coimisiún Béaloideasa Éireann), under-funded and at great personal cost to its staff, assembled one of the world's largest folklore collections. Read More »
Peter Underwood, a world renowned expert on the paranormal, has published a new book focussing on Irish Ghosts. I had great hopes for this book having owned a copy of his 1973 book Gazetteer of Scottish & Irish Ghosts for a number of years, and I'm pleased to say I've not being disappointed. Read More »
The following story from' Fairy and Folk Tales of the Irish Peasantry' by William Butler Yeats (1888) takes place in Fannet, which is now known as Fanad, a peninsular by Lough Swilly. Although the tale includes a trip across the length of Ireland, according to the story the hero states he is nearly home when approaching Tamney, so I have used this village for my map reference below. Read More »
Lough Dubh or Black’s Lake is a popular fishing venue by the river suck which was the scene of a possible monster sighting in the early 1960’s a creature was hooked by Mr Mullaney (a schoolmaster) and his son whilst out fishing. Described as having "short thick legs with small ears and a white pointed horn on the snout. Read More »