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Myths and Folk Tales of Ireland
by Jeremiah Curtin
- Language: english
- ISBN: 9780486224305 (0486224309)
- Publisher: Dover Publications
- Author: Jeremiah Curtin
- Genres: mythology, folklore, fantasy, ireland, fiction, classics, reference
- Release date: June 1, 1975
- Format: paperback, 272 pages
About The Book
Fearsome giants, magic spells, Druidic rods of enchantment; gallant princes and beautiful princesses, brave kings and wicked queens; cloaks of invisibility, swords of light and swords of darkness, horses that go faster than the wind, animals that speak and have strange powers…these are elements common to all fairy tales, and they appear prominently in this excellent collection of Irish examples gathered by the renowned folklorist and linguist Jeremiah Curtin (1840-1906) from the West of Ireland in 1887. Taken down from Gaelic story tellers, these 20 tales fall into two parts: 11 are miscellaneous stories offering Irish versions of the general European fairy tales, and 9 are stories from the Fenian cycle — tales of Fin MacCumhail and his warriors, the Fenians of Erin.
The same fairy-tale elements apply to all the stories, however, including battles with giants, dead men who come back to life, people imprisoned in the bodies of animals, a wonderful land of perpetual youth, and heroes with incredible strength. The heroes in the miscellaneous tales tend to be sons of the Kings of Erin, with heroines like Yellow Lily, daughter of the Giant of Loch Léin; Trembling, the Irish Cinderella; the queen of Tubber Tintye; and various princesses who are in danger. The Fenian stories relate some of the adventures of Fin MacCumhail, his sons — Fialan, Oisin, Pogán, and Ceolán; his men — Diarmuid Duivne, Conán Maol MacMorna, the famous Cucúlin, and others; and strangers who are out to help or hurt the Fenians of Erin in such tales as ”Fin MacCumhail and the Fenians of Erin in the Castle of Fear Dubh,” and ”Gilla na Grakin and Fin MacCumhail.”
Tales of legend and tales of magic, these stories transport us to a world where everything is alive and anything can happen, a world born in a time before literature, and captured in print just as the oral tradition in Ireland was dying out. Considered an essential work in the history of folk-lore, this book is also a collection of fairy tales that have fascinated young and old for hundreds of years. They will continue to fascinate you and your children.
Unabridged republication of the 1890 edition, formerly titled Myths and Folk-Lore of Ireland.
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