Anglophone Segregationists In Wales, Hipster Denigrationists In Ireland

I suppose it was inevitable that an Anglophone supremacist somewhere in Ireland or Britain would pop up to denigrate that which most readily identifies the modern Celtic peoples – their language – during one of the more important holidays in the indigenous calenders of the Gaelic and Brittonic nations. On this occasion it is the Welsh-speaking men, women and children of… Read More Anglophone Segregationists In Wales, Hipster Denigrationists In Ireland

The Unmaking Of Ireland

Back in April the National Geographic magazine attempted to explain to its horrified readers the seemingly inexplicable rationale behind the Islamic State’s fanatical hatred of the priceless, ancient monuments and artefacts of the Middle East: “While using the destruction of cultural heritage to demonstrate their “piety” and stoke division within local populations, ISIS also sees the practice of archaeology… Read More The Unmaking Of Ireland

The Origins Of The Halloween Jack-O’-Lantern

There are many customs surrounding the annual October holiday of Halloween or All Hallows’ Eve, the quasi-Christian festival incorporating significant elements of the traditional Irish and Celtic celebration of Samhain or Feis Shamhna, the mythologically-important date marking the transition between the winter and summer halves of the year in the Gaelic calendar. One of the… Read More The Origins Of The Halloween Jack-O’-Lantern

Uaigh Éadaoine, Éadaoin’s Grave, Hill Of Howth

Ceann Bhinn Éadair or Howth Head is the suburbanised peninsula overlooking the northern half of Dublin Bay, a headland that is geographically dominated by three tall peaks, Binn Éadair or the “Summit of Éadar” (anglicised as the Ben of Howth), Sliabh Mhártain or the “Mountain of Mártan” (rendered into English as Shielmartin Hill or Shelmartin) and Dún Aill “Fortress of the Cliff” (variously called… Read More Uaigh Éadaoine, Éadaoin’s Grave, Hill Of Howth

Síle Na gCrann

Remarkable the things one can find in nature when one is out an’ about. However, can anyone else see it? An organic Síle na gCrann? Or should that be Síle an Chrainn? Quite possibly it is just my artistic eye tracing patterns that are not there. In any case, more on the familiar man-made Síle na gCíoch here, not to… Read More Síle Na gCrann

Celtic Cosmology, Perspectives from Ireland and Scotland

Over the last two decades relatively few studies have been published analysing the cosmological traditions of the Celtic-speaking peoples, at least by academic authors. There was a lot of interest in such matters in the 1980s and early ‘90s, coupled with tentative suggestions about the composition of native Irish or Welsh beliefs in the composition of the… Read More Celtic Cosmology, Perspectives from Ireland and Scotland

Samhain Shona Daoibh

The sun has set, the bonfires are being lit, and the Feis Shamhna is upon us: the nocturnal festival of Samhain marking the commencement of the new year in the Celtic calendars of Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. This ancient celebration was partly assimilated by the Christian religions in the Medieval period as All Saints’ Day or All Hallows’ Eve (Halloween) and has been revived in recent… Read More Samhain Shona Daoibh

Oíche Sheanchais, The First Irish Language Sound Film

From a report by the Galway Advertiser: “The first Irish language ‘talkie’ ever made has premiered at a renowned Italian festival of rediscovered and restored film… Oidhche Sheanchais, an 11-minute film featuring Aran islanders from the Man of Aran cast listening to a story told by seanchaí Seáinín Tom Ó Dioráin, was the first ‘talkie’… Read More Oíche Sheanchais, The First Irish Language Sound Film

186. Imbolc

Originally posted on ancroiait:
Imbolc shona daoibh Tá an geimreadh ag iompar an samhradh Lá Fhéile Bríde/Là Fhèill Brìghde/ Laa’l Breeshey Shona daoibh Bain taitneamh as an lá. Téigh go tobar naofa ag breacadh an lae is ól uisce ann, déan Brídeóg sa bhaile is téigh ó theach go teach léi ag bailiú bia is…

Oíche Shamhna Shona Daoibh

A pale yellow sun has sunk below the grey horizon here in Baile Átha Cliath and the Feis Shamhna is upon us, the sunset-to-sunrise festival of Samhain which marks the start of the winter in the ancient Celtic calendars of Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man (and probably the rest of the Celtic world too). The event gives us the Christianized All Saints’… Read More Oíche Shamhna Shona Daoibh