C, coll, obselete, the hazel. The totem bird for this letter is the corr or crane.

Its colour is cron, brown; its dates August 5 until September 5.

CABACH, CABAG, cab, gap, toothless, any individual, obs. a hostage. Sometimes, a strumpet.


CÀBHRUICH, sowens, flummery; cath+bruith, spent cookery. Oatmeal steeped in water to the point of souring. Sowans has a glutinous, starchy appearance not unlike that of human cum, i.e. human sperm in liquid. In Scotland it used to be a common threat of young men that “I’ll be at you with my sowans.” In Aberdeenshire and the north-east of Scotland the Yule was called Aul Eel E’en , the “Evening of Willfulness,” or the “Evening of Ale.” It was also entitled Sowans Nicht because it was customary for old friends to gather round a huge bowl of sowans. The Yule variety of Sowans was termed “knotting” or “drinking” sowans and was made to the consistency of cream. It was sweetened with honey and laced with whisky, and was eaten with oat cakes and cheese washed down with brown ale. Sometimes a silver coin, a button and a ring, symbolizing wealth, bachelorhood and matrimony were placed randomly in small wooden cups, and the future thus divined. Sowans were also a part of the Hogmanay rites and the first dark-haired male to dip into it constituted himself “a factor in the production of a good New Year, Dr. R.C. Maclagan has said that this individual “impersonates the New Year.” When men went first-footing on any Quarter Day

eve, they were expected to drench the windows and doors of places they visited with sowans “if they were to do well by the inmates.” Thus an old fertility rite was preserved into the early part of this century. CACHLIACH, a gate; cadha-chliath, a “hurdle-pass.” cac, dung, found at such places, cachd, fasting, a maidservant, confinement. See entry below. CAD, all obsolete: holy, high, sacred, good, friend, cadach, affinity, friendship, assistance, cadachas, atonement for an offense, expiation. CADADH, tartan cloth, hose tartan. Manx caddee, cotton; Eng. caddow (sixteenth cent.), a quilt or shawl woven by the Irish. Related to the English caddis, worsted or crewl work thought to be from the French cadis, woollen serge. Related to the Gaelic catas, the refuse left behind after the carding of wool, the Irish cadás, cotton or the scrapings from linen cloth; cata , a sheep pen; catadh, the act of taming animals. The ultimate form is perhaps the Carthaginian gadir, “hedge” or “stockade.” The Phoenician city of Tartessos, from which we have the word “tartan,” was actually built by earlier people in Neolithic times. Based on an island at the mouth of the Guadalete River in Spain, it acquired a Carthaginian rival in the settlement they named He-gadir. This was the city the Romans and Greeks knew as Gades, which the Spanish now call Cadiz. In classical mythology Gaderios was one of the numerous sons of the sea-god Poseidon. As noted elsewhere, the word confers with the French La cadie which is now represented in the name Acadia, “Gateway,”an antique name for eastern Canada. In his Geographica, Strabo noted that the “ancients” called “the Baetis River “Tartessos,” and called Gades and the adjoining islands “Erytheia... Since the river had two mouths, a city was planted on the intervening territory between in former times, or so it is said. That city was “Tartessos,” after the name of the river...Erasthonese says that the country adjoining the cape

is also called “Tartessis,” and adds that Eryheis is called the “Blest Isle.” Originally tartan was a silken material preferred by the “gods,” or Tartessians. Strabo notes that the Carthaginians campaigning against Iberia found the people of the region “using silver feeding-troughs and wine-jars.” They also noted that the Tartessians had the additional name Makraiones, “Long-livers,” from their extended life expectancy. It was guessed that the newcomers may have had a lower standard of living and the original cadiz may have been associated with them and their city. After the disappearance and/or conquest of Tartessos, the tertainne cloth became indistinguishable from that of cadiz. CADAL, sleep, slumber, delay, OIr. cotlud, the root tol, gentle. "Sleeping on the bench is always rebuked, and a certain man testifies that once, when he disobeyed this rule, he awoke to found himself being dragged by the feet by invisible beings. Moreover, another, alleges that over and over again he has been rebuked for not going to bed properly, but he persisted in having his own way, until one night he was also dragged across the floor by invisible hands." (Celtic Monthly, p. 163). It was also thought wise to sleep with one's feet to the door. Being dragged off by the feet was not an irretrievable situation, but those carried away by the hair of the head were not seen again in the land of men. Such men were considered victims of the Daoine sidh, or “Hollow-hill folk.” CADAL A' GHEOIDH, sleep of a goose, "to keep a goose watch." Geese were said to sleep "with one eye open", hence to be constantly aware of events and one's surroundings in both the invisible and the waking worlds. This magical ability was seen as a necessity in the ancient world where men thought they were surrounded by evil spirits. “Birds like the goose play a slightly sinister role in the tradition, being associated with the gods in their martial capacity...and with witchlike, metamorphosed women.

CADALEUN. Having an affinity for a swampy plain, mandrake plant. A famed portion of witch-remedies.


CADHAG, the piodhag, the jackdaw, magpie, a wedge, from MIr. caog, a crier, of onomatopoeic origin. Cf. English caw. An important totem-animal of Celtic magicians. The totem animal of the Bafinn, or goddess of fate as well as a general symbol for the Fomors and related sea-peoples, including the creator-god Don. The magic animal of the Nathair and that of Odin, who went about with these black birds on either shoulder. CADHLA, obs. A goat, gut, fat from the gut. CAER IBORMEITH, caer, yew; ibor, (full of) tricks, incantations; meith, fat, sappy, silken in texture. Sometimes entitled “Yew Berry.” The daughter of Ethal Anubhail, out of the side-hill called Usman in Connaught County, Ireland. Aonghas Og, the love-god dreamed of her and perused and won her. She is the summer/love goddess, the equivalent of the Samh, the Mhorrigan, Danu and other regenerate virgins. Also known as the Bridd, or Bride she is generally regarded as the alter-ego of the formidable Cailleach bheurr, or Winter Hag. It is said that the winterqueen retired on Bride’s Day (February 2) to Tir-nan-Og, the Land of Youth seeking its central fountain of renewed vigour. There, at the first glimmer of dawn, she drank the waters of that place, and was thus able to gradually throw off her ground hog, or bear-like form, becoming the young goddess, whose touch restored summer to the earth. Caer was of Fomorian blood on her mother’s side and thus fell into the summer-form of a white swan without provocation, and always took this shape at the time of Samhuinn. She was courted and wooed by Aonghas Ogwhen he appeared as a swan. Some folk said that her bird-personality caused her to migrate with her flock on the first day of November. Others guessed that this Bridd was annually captured and imprisoned within the Cailleach’s mountain of Ben Nevis, Scotland. It is more likely that she spends her winters transformed into the Winter Hag. As such she becomes a

mate to the winter/death-god called Bel or Bile. Their alternate palace was Dun Sgaith, the “Fortress of Shadows,” far across the western ocean in the Dead Lands. At the Samhuinn, Aonghas Og always dreamt of his lost love and pursued herinto the west on his white stallion. During the greine lugha, or time of “the little sun,” Lugh had no likelihood of recovering his Bride, but by Bride’s Day (February 2) she was always found, and rescue followed by the time of Latha na Cailleach, the Old Hag’s Day (March 25). On the first day of May the Cailleach became powerless and faced by the growing power of the greine sona or happy sun, had to throw her staff of power “under the mistletoe,” so that summer could be reborn. The ritual mating of the high-king of Ireland with a virgin from the side-hill at Brugh-na-Boyne, which was Lugh’s palace in days gone by, was very much a celebration of the return of summer to the land. CAESIN-UCHD, “buck-skin,” fore-skin, also an oval purse used to collect alms at the Quarter-Days. See biocionn. CAIBRE, The Firbolg's most noted warrior-king, Eochaid was one of those lost in this last bloody contest against the Tuatha daoine. Another victim was the reincarnate highking of the daoine, the one called King Nuada, the twin of Lugh of the Long Arm. Nuada was not killed but the warrior Sreng maimed him by cutting off his hand. It was a matter of policy that the Daoine could not be ruled by any individual with even a small physical imperfection such as acne, or a visible boil, so this condition obviously barred Nuada from the kingship. Gathering at a mod, the host of the Daoine now selected a famous warrior with a classic profile and build. This was Bres, the son of a Tuathan woman named Eri. Bres, although handsome and well spoken had no gift for dealing with people, and during his reign allowed the Fomorians to renew their taxation and oppresion of outlying districts. This might have been overlooked except that the new king gradually gained a reputation as "the meanest of all men"

during a day when patronage and hospitality was considered the mark of a true king. Travellers noted that "The knives of the people are not greased with his food. Those who come to his table do not depart smelling of ale. None are fed in any way, neither poets, nor satirists, harpers, nor pipers, trumpeters nor jugglers. None of these are seen amusing those assembled at his court." His final trouble came in the person of the poet named Caibre, who was regarded as the greatest entertainer in the land. This ancient Elvis Presley was not treated with respect, being housed in miserable dank quarters, without fire or furniture. After a very long delay he was served three old very dry cakes, and went away in anger. At his leaving he composed a curse which he directed at Bres: Withouit food quickly served, Without a cow's milk, whereon a calf may grow, Without a dwelling fit for a gloomy night Without the means to entertain bardic guests, May such soon be the condition of the nigardly Bres. According to some accounts this Gaelic "glam" had the effect of blighting Bres in a psychic manner since the poetry was taken up, and repeated, across the countryside. In the meantime, Nuada had been fitted out with an articulated artificial hand by the physician-silversmith Diancecht. At a later day his cause was taken up by an even more skilled biological techncian, Kian of Contje, the son of Diancecht. This individual was able to create a new hand for the king, thus allowing him to be reinstated as "ardrigh",or high king of the Tuathans. The parentage of King Nuada, now sometimes sometimes entitled Nuada of the Silver Hand, is not mentioned but it is probable that he was the "befind" or home-shadow of Lugh of the Long Arm. These sometimes disembodied spirits were provided to all creatures of human kind as help-mates, assisting at the birth of great

personalities and latter serving as protectors of these individuals. If Lugh is conceived as a sun god Nuada, his doppelganger, or double, is a god of the moon. Lugh's creative spear is not described, but it was probably of the usual Tuathan construction: "flesh seeking spears with ribs of gold and silver and red bronze in their sides (symbolizing the sun); and with collars (or rings) of silver upon their necks." This spear was considered more than equipment being regarded as an extension of Lugh's arm which could be used to direct a "gisreag" or blast of physical energy as the god directed. Nuada's silver hand attachs him psychically to the moon, and his loss and recovery of a hand reminds us of the phases of the moon. It is noteworthy that Nuada's recovery of his hand and kingship was arranged through the good offices of Kian, who is cited as the human parent of Lugh. Bres retreated to the hold of his mother Eri asking her what action he might take to regain power. For the first time this lady revealled that the former king's father had been Elathu, a noted king of the Fomorians, whose base was in the Hebrides of Scotland. Elathu provided his son with an army and a fleet of Fomorian sailors and sent ambassadors to enlist the help of Balor "of the Evil Eye", whose gaze blighted all objects which he looked on in anger. At first this considerable host made guerilla-like forays into Ireland and King Nuada could not counter the moves of oppression of his enemies. Fortunately his cause was supported by the sudden reincarnation of Lugh, son of Kian, the sun god to end all sun gods. CAGAR, whisper, secret, darling, buzzing of an insect, hum, Cagar-athair, “God’s hum,” wireless. CAIDHNI. obs. a virgin, caidh, chaste, immaculate, decent, caidhtiche, long-enduring, patient. Caidir, to fondle, embrace. CAIGEANN, a pair of animals, the sex act, a scrimmage, a winding pass through wild country, a road through rocks and

brushwood, a mountain pass. CAILIN, young girl, a nymph, company of young women as opopsed to cailleach. CAILLE, hood, veil, cowl. The Daoine sidh wore hoods of invisibility. CAILE, CAILLEAG, a girl, a wench, a hussy, strumpet, Lat. pellex. From cath, chaff, husks of corn. See cailleach. CAILEADAIR, a star-gazer from the English word calendar; a medicant dervish from the Persian galander. In the Hebrides the senachies who remembered the last druidic schools said that the elder-day magicians were keenly interested in astronomy as well as astrology: "...the old men used to say that the Sages understood clearly that the earth and the sun, the moon and the stars, were in ceaseless motions in the depths of space. This view did not at all accord with the beliefs of the Church...The Church at this time was teaching that the world was at rest and that the sun, moon and stars were similarly at rest, and that they were wee specks (compared with the earth). The Sages, therefore, could not teach their view publicly for they were obliged not to teach anything that would put the Church into disrepute. They themselves were sure that the moon was going about the earth once in the space of twenty-eight days and that there was nothing in the sky at rest. So long as the Sages of Beinn Bhan (the White Mountain) did nothing to undermine the regulations of the Church there was not much the Church could do to destroy the school on Beinn Bhan although that was definitely what she desired (The Hebridean Connection, p. 346)." CAILINDHEA, obs. The calends (of a month). First days, beginning, new experience, obs. A forewarning. Any formal record of the divisions of time. The Julian calendar was introduced by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C., and was slightly modified by Augustus, who created

the three hundred and sixty-five day year, each fourth year a leap-year. At his time, the months were named as they are now, each having the same order and number of days as at present. The Georgian calendar, which replaced the Julian calendar was introduced by Pope Gregory the thirteenth in 1582 and was adopted in Britain and North America in 1752. This general change was needed as the Julian method of keeping time was eleven minutes longer than the astronomical year, creating an error of ten full days between 325 and the time of Pope Gregory. To correct this, he suppressed the extra days, declaring October 15, 1582, to be October 5. To prevent further displacements, he declared that only the "centesimal" years divisible by four hundred should be counted as leap-years. In a few places the Old Style calendar is still used, so that March 5 (Old Style) became the equivalent of March eighteenth (New Style) as of the year nineteen hundred. In Middle-English, the language of Shakespeare, the word "kalendes", from the Anglo-Saxon "calena", at first meant month, although the name now applies to a collection of months. The Gaels, being a bardic race, kept few written reminders concerning time and had no exact equivalent, referring instead to the "bliadhna", or year. The English word derives from the classical languages and appears in first form as a Greek verb, meaning "to proclaim". At a later date, the Romans used a similar word to describe the first day in each of the ancient Roman months. The Greeks named the modern calender, but were not the first to register time. The Egyptians, the Alexandrians, the Esne, and various Muslim peoples, as well as the Norse and the Celts all kept track of passing time. The need to watch the months, hours and days varied between societies, but was usually related to either the business of farming or herding. The Egyptians were largely an agricultural people dependant on the growth of what the Europeans call "corn", which we refer to as grain or cereal crops. Their year was, for this reason, divided into four seasons, which related to the phases of the Nile River. The various events of their

agricultural year were celebrated with simple rites designed to gain the co-operation of the god-spirits in irrigating, sowing, planting, and draining the river. These acts had to be carried out at about the same time in each year. The priests pre-empted these rural rituals, declared the nature-spirits gods, who they said required propitiation and elaborate ceremonies. Being natural bureaucrats with a vested interest in time, they devised a written calendar to keep track of the solemn festivals of the year. From the first, people had time equating their recorded time with actual time. A festival supposed to take place in summer shifted backwards, year-by-year, so that the rites of Isis, supposed to take place at flood-time were celebrated in the midst of drought. Thus, the ancient Egyptian year is still known as a "moveable year", a situation which continued until they adopted the "fixed" Alexandrian year in 30 B.C. From that time, festivals conformed with the seasons, the length of the new "solar year" being based on astronomical observations. The Egyptian Esne calendar was based on the Alexandrian, assigning New Year's Day to August twenty-ninth, a time which usually coincided with the full rise of the Nile, and to a definite position of the sun in the sky, events in line with certain agricultural practices. The ancient festivals of the Muslim peoples depended on an uncorrected lunar rather than a suncalendar, and were also "moveable feasts". All of their rites, being pegged to the position of the moon in the sky, slide away from actual time and the period of the earth's rotation. Since the people of northern Africa, and parts of Europe, also have "fixed feasts", it may be suspected that those that move belonged to an extinct pagan religion. The Celts lacked mid-summer and mid-winter celebrations, which were common elsewhere in Europe. Their orally transmitted "calendar", which included two pre-eminent feast-dates, bore no relationship to the position of the sun or moon in the sky. The Celts were not a race but a language group, which included the Gaels, the Cymric or Welsh people and the Gauls of England and France.

They were pressed out of a region north of Greece, and travelling across Europe at the rate of about fifteen miles per year, eventually settled lands at the "edge of the world". Because they were on the move they were unable to establish farming economies and were essentially hunters and later herdsmen. The herding year has little in common with the agricultural year, whose festivals usually fall upon quarters, notably mid-summer, mid-winter and the spring and fall equinoxes. The Celts saw only two seasons, summer and winter, the eve and first day of each recognizing special events for a cattle-driver. The more important of these was, traditionally the "Samhainn" (pronounced tav-inn in Scot's Gaelic). This word translates as the "time of the one (elder) Samh", the Samh being a goddess of the moon and the northwind. In historic times she was called, variously, Nerthus (Scandinavia), Morrigan (Ireland and Scotland), the Winter Hag (Lowland Scotland), or the Cailleach Bheur (the Bear Woman of Highland Scotland). The word probably came to Britain from the Continent, where the Celtic-French ending "aine" or "aince" still indicates seniority. The Gaelic sense of the word ending is "our own", or "an adherent of", a cousin of the Middle-English "thane". In that same tongue "samh" is related to words meaning, "to collect, gather, or consort with". The Celtic Samhainn is, therefore, the fire-feast of the departing sun, meant to propitiate the moon-goddess Samh. The fire used to be set on the evening of October thirty-first and the feast eaten during the daylight hours of November first. The latter was thought of as New Year's Day, a day on which herds were brought down from the mountain pastures and into the stone huts of our ancestors. This day also marked the beginning of winter and the reign of the Old Bear Woman. The other year-marker was the Bealtaine (pro. baulhini). This word identifies the "time or tine of the Bealt". The Old Gaelic "beal" means mouth, thus this godspirit was the equivalent of the female Maw, "the hungry one" who consumed souls. This fire-feast was celebrated

by fires on the eve of May Day, with feasting that day. This holiday announced the return of the summer season, when it was said the Bear Woman weakened and finally "threw her hammer beneath the mistletoe". Contrary to the usual explanations, the Bealtaine, spelled Beltane in English, did not signify the return of vegetation, a much earlier event throughout the British Isles. It was instead, the time after which it was reasonable to return cattle to the high pastures. The word "beal" is retained in English to describe an inflammatory tumour or pustule, while the verb form, which may be the root-word, indicates "to swell or burst, after the fashion of a spring bud or an infected wound". While this seems a repulsive characterization of the sun-goddess, earlier people knew that she led a fertility cult in which swelling and bursting (pregnancy and birth) were necessary to the continued life of men, beasts and vegetation. The Celtic priestly class, known as the druids, made the most of simple rites converting them into one or two week festivals. The Dawn Religion of this people actual had laws against magically interred words so what we know of their practices comes from Roman sources. Pliny said that their solemn ceremonies were often conducted on the sixth day after the full moon, which has led to suggestions that they had a fixed calendar based on lunar observations. He also noted that the Celts dated their New Year from this starting-time, and that their months began six days after the full moon. Like the Aztecs of South America, the Celts considered their world-universe to be periodic, subject to destruction and renewal on a regular basis. Their cycles were thirty of our years in length. At the end of each, a massive Samhainn was held, which was said to mark the death of all life and the beginning of a new world on the following morning. We have already said that the Samhainn marked the beginning of winter, but it also honoured the end

of the reign of the Samh and her metamorphosis into the demanding Winter Hag. This explains why the season which the English call summer was the "Samhradh" (the rade, or riding out of Samh) in Gaelic nations The season of the Cailleach Bheur, or winter, was represented by the Gaelic word "Geamhradh", which in Old Irish was the "Geimhreadh" (the riding out of the hunter or huntress). These were the two traditional seasons of our Scottish forbearers, but the introduction of farming into Gaelic regions, coupled with collisions between them and the Norse, led to the adoption of other seasons. Today one hears of the "Tearrach" (the ride or season at the tail of winter)known elsewhere as spring, and "Foghar" (the time of dead grass), called autumn. CAILEREACHD, obs. the cremation of the dead. This custom appears to have pre-dated burial in the earth.

CAILLEACH, CAILLEACHAG, an unmarried woman, an old woman, an old wife, woman without progeny, a nun, carlin, supernatural of the woods, caverns or the waters, a malignant influence, a cowardly, spirtless, heartless man, the last handfull of corn standing at the harvest home, circular wisp at the top of a farm-rick or stack. The week in spring (April 12-18. The first week of April Old Style.

The week following Gearran. Confers with cailin, a girl, damsel, maid, nymph, a company of young, good-looking, women. Caille, hood, veil, cowl. But note the obsolete caill, testicle, emasculate. CAILLEACH-AN-DUDAIN,, The Carlin of the Mill-dust. Name given an antique dance involving a man and a woman. The man termed slachan druidheachd, the “druidic wand” or slachan geaseachd, “magic wand” invariably carried a stick in his right hand. The two gestured in introduction and then woven an intricate pattern dancing in the round, crossing paths and exchanging places. The man flourished his want over his own head and that of the woman. Touching the woman she fell at his feet as if dead. He bemoaned the loss of this “carlin” while dancing and gesturing about and toward her “body.” He lifted her left hand and breathed the “breath of life” upon it, touching it afterwards with the wand. At that the hand alone was re-inspired but she remained prone on the ground. The man then proceeded to revive the other limbs in this manner, leaving animation of the body to the last when he breathed into her mouth and touched her heart with the wand. At this the woman became vigorously alive, springing to her feet, and confronting the man. The two then danced joyfully as they had done at the beginning. The music was provided by a fiddler, a piper or a mouth-music maker. Sometimes the performers provided this last for themselves. The words of the air have been descibed as “quaint and irregular.” They include” “Cailleach and dudain; cailleach an dudain; cailleach an dudain; cailleach do dheireadh rium.” CAILLEACH BHEAL-TEINE, the Beltane witch; caileach, “the veiled one,” cf. caille, veil. Note also cailean, a husk. Confers with caile, a girl, wench, concubine. Similar to Lat. pallium from which the Eng. pall. The Winter Hag reborn as the Samh at Beltane (May 1). Also the name given to the last husk of grain taken at the harvest when it was cut down after Samhain (Nov. 1). A bad omen, the harvester was expected to overwinter this “old woman.”

CAILLEACH, CHAILLICH BEUR, CAILLEACH BHEURR, CAILLEACH BEARA, a sharp old wife; an ice-cold nun, a veiled woman of uncertain virtue and motives; the “WinterHag,” the “Bear-Woman.” From caille, a veil + beur, sharp, pointed, clear, icy, wintry, gibe, jeer. Perhaps the former is from the Latin pallium, a cloak, whence the English pall, a winding sheet. A flue; a place used to harden off grain in preparation for winter storage. She is alternately called the Beire, Bear; the Gyre-Carline, dialectic English for “Whirlpool-Witch,” or the Mag molluch, the “Hairy-handed One.” She was clearly an Odinesque woman, sharing his oneeyed condition with the "king of the gods". The fisherman of the north-east, who lack Gaelic call her the Storm-Wife, or speak of her ironically as Gentle Annie. A tripartite goddess-giantess, corresponding with the Bafinne, or Fates. Also known in mythology as the Macha, the eldest of the Bafinne. Her remaining forms are the Cailleach Bolus, the Cailleach Beinne Bric and the Cailleach Corca Duibhne. She is often spoken of as the mate of the Bodach, named Bel, the death-god and paladin of the western isle of Dun Sgiath, the “Fortress of Shadows.” The Cailleach was the huntress-goddess of the Gaels, the creature given charge of the three months of the “little sun,” from Samhuinn (November 1) until the Imbolg (February 2). It was said that she lived in the northern mountains (some say within Ben Nevis) or in the whirlpool of Coire Bhreacain and that she travelled south in her season trailing snow from her magic staff and firing bolts of lighting from it at those who displeased her. She was considered the death-goddess to those who died upon the land and in the Yule led the "Unsely Court", a host of the dead, on a circuitous route across Britain. It used to be said that the animals of the wild were her charge, and in the winter months, she was often seen wandering the shores gathering what food could be found for her creatures. In ancient tales, she is given responsibility for the

creation of Scotland. She became displeased with the men of Lochlann (Norway) and wishing to relocate her beasts, dragged soil from the mainland across the North Sea, depositing it where Scotland and the Western Isles are now found. She wished to be rid of the troublesome "fleas" called men, but unfortunately carried some of them along with the earth to her new home and thus inadvertently peopled the western islands. Some have said that the Winter-Hag was the giantess Skadi (pronounced sky) who first married Niord one of the sea-gods, but finding him bad company re-married Uller (Winter), the equivalent of the Gaelic Nathair. It is certain that Skadi gave her name to the Isle of Skye, and a witch-goddess of this name is said to have taught the Gaelic hero Cúchullain his martial arts. It is possible that Scotland is a dialectic form of Skadiland or Skatiland. The Cailleach or storm-wife was considered the spirit of winter, the enemy of life and growing things. Her annual coming to Scotland was announced by the sound made when she washed her plaid in the whirlpool, of Corryvreckan. A person of inconsistent temperament she occasionally helped men and women, but more often blasted them with a thunderbolt from her magic staff. Wherever she went, her symbol of authority created snow and sleet. Nominally her reign ended on the Imbolg (February 2) which some call Bridd's Day, Saint Brigit's Day, Dak's Day, the Bear's Day or Groundhog Day. If she emerged from her cavern and was not reminded of her fleeting power by encountering the sun, she returned there and the winter was short. On the other hand, "If Brigit's Day be bright and clear; there'll be twa' winters in the year!" In either case, there remained the week of A Chailleach which fell about Latha na Cailleach , the “Old Hag’s Day” (March 25), the usual limit of her attempts to blight the earth. The line storm, or Cailleach's broom (sometimes entitled Sheila's broom), which occurs about March 17, is thought to “break the back of winter” and by May 1 the Cailleach is forced "to throw her hammer beneath the mistletoe." Our pagan ancestors

understood that this summer-goddess.






In the Book of Lecan reference is made to the Cailleach’s regenerative powers, although specific note is made of only seven youthful periods. In those ancient times, she mated with seven men and in all tended fifty children who “founded many tribes and nations.” Her Irish domain was the Beara Peninsula on the border between Cork and Kerry. In the New World she is associated with the Old Sough, a whirlpool in Passamaquoddy Bay, New Brunswick, Canada. See Caer Ibormeith,

In travelling she often took the form of a giant grey mare which was able to leap from one mountaintop to the next. In harsh winters she was seen, until Christian times, raking the Scottish beaches to obtain fodder for her animals. Until a few hundred years ago, Scottish hunters considered all game the property of the Cailleach Bheur and contributed to a pool of money, the amount based on the number of animals killed. This was used for the purchase of victims necessary to the twice-yearly fires of Samhainn and Beltane; men, animals and plants killed, burned and reduced to "earth" as representatives of the spirit of the goddess. In February as her power waned, she sent her "winter-wolves" against men, to remind them that she still ruled. Later her air-borne "sharks" came before the "ploverwinged" days. Finally on May Eve she threw her hammer "beneath the mistletoe" and surrendered horney old age for reincarnation as the Samh or Morrigan.

CAILLEACH AN DURDAIN, the “Rattling Cailleach." The chatelaine, a dance last performed on the Isle of Uist. Iain Moncrieffe has noted the persistence of dances that mirrored pagan fertility rites, and this is clearly one of these. "...a solo dance performed by a female dressed in a grotesque fashion, having a bunch of keys hanging by her apron strings and a staff to support her. She effects to be

very stiff and lame of leg. When the tune strikes up she appears hardly able to hobble on the floor; by degrees she got on a bit, and as she begins to warm she feels a new animation, and capers away, afterwards affecting great importance as keeper of all good things of the store room. Doubtless this dance has given rise to the Gaelic proverb, quoted when one is inclined to show over importance - "Cha' na' eil iuchraichean an domhain uile air crios acona chaillich" - The keys of the whole world do not hang from one old wife's girdle.” (Celtic Magazine, 1901, p. 91) At least, this dance reflects the Cailleach’s passage from her cruel winter form to that of the more benign summergoddess. CAILLEACH BOLUS, the “Smelly Hag,”one of the tripartite forms of the Cailleach bheurr. The word bolus confers with boladh, a smell. Stokes says it compares with the Latin bulis, buttock but it is more certainly allied with the Sankrist buli, vulva and perhaps the English bowl. She compares with Mhorrigan, the tempestuous, worldly, but always regenerate virgin, who was the youngest of the bafinne. CAILLEACH CORCA DUIBHNE, the “Old Hag of the Sooty (i.e. spoiled) Corn.” Corn is used herein the sense of the dominant grain grown in a particular locale. The third form of the Cailleach bheurr. From her description she seems to correspond with the Babd or Maeve, the middle-aged warrior-goddess, often seen on battlefields as a huge black bird. CAILLEACH MORE, the “Great Hag.” “...who from a pannier filled with earth and stones, which she carried on her back, formed almost all the hills of Ross-shire.” At Ben-Vaichard the bottom is said to have fallen away from her wickerwork carrier the contents unloading as this mountain. At Edderston, there is an erratic siad to have been thrown there bby this, or some related giantess. There is another of these stones at Dingwall and her thumbprint and a finger mark can be seen impressed upon this stone.n See Cailleach

bheurr. CAILLEACH N’ ABHANN, the “Old Hag of the River,” “dreaded at the fords of the river Orrin, (Rosshire, Scotland).” CAILLEACH N’ CRUACHAN, the “Old Hag of Ben Cruachan, Scotland. “When the anything ruffles hertemper, she gathers a handful of whirlwinds and descends in a tempest, steps across Loch Etive at an astride, lashing into fury, and prevents all passage at Connel Ferry.” CAILLEACH NA' G CAT, the “Old hag of the Cat." One of several old hags who were the mythic cairn-builders, supposedly seen most often at the Beltane and Samhuinn. Like the Cailleach Bheurr or Hag of Beare, she is associated with the ancient earth-goddesses Aine and Clidona. It was said that this particular cailleach was "fed by her cats." She might, therefore, be seen as a counterpart of the Norse goddess Freya, whose totem animals were the cuckoo, the swallow and the cat. While her brother Frey travelled on the back of a golden boar, Freya usually moved about in a chariot harnessed to cats. It is thus that witches obtained the reputation of having cats as their familiars. CAILLEACH OIDHCHE, the “Night Hag,” perceived as an owl, which the Welsh call dyllvan or aderyn y corff, the “corpse bird,” all unpleasant connotations. In Celtic lore this creature was considered the oldest, and most knowledgeable, of all animals. In Gallo-Roman iconography it appears in the company of goddesses and this is its place in Scottish Gaelic tradition. The best known classical example of an owl-goddess is the Grecian Athene, who is though to derive from some earlier prototype. The beaked Celtic torques are thought to have owl, or hawk, connotations, and those shown springing from the head of an owl leave no doubt about their intention. CAILLEACH-TEINNIDH, obs., the combustible woman, to day an impetuous or fiery-tempered woman. Saee Latha cailleach-teinnidh.

CAILLEACH-UISG, a water-woman, merwoman, A diseased potato filled with water.


CAILLEANACH, loser, caillte, doomed, damned, ruined, lost, obs. gelded, cailleanach, a eunuch or non-performer. In Gaelic communities the first grain cut was sometimes made up into a similar female figure entitled the "cailleach". While the maiden was considered a desirable border, the hag was reserved for a farmer of delinquent work habits. When the first crop came in, the briskest farmer passed "the old wife" over his fence to a more niggardly neighbour, who then set it "on the rounds". The farmer who finally contracted to "board the old lady" for the winter was thought doomed to poverty or at latest likely to have a failing crop in the coming season. The samh, or daughter of the cailleach, was more welcome since she was expected to become a mother to the grains of summer. Her figurine was attached to the kitchen wall and remained there until samharadh when it was fed to the oxen that worked the fields. Passing through them it fell on the newly ploughed fields and had a functional as well as a symbolic part in rebirth and renewal. In areas of Scotland affected by Norse tradition the last sheaf was made up into a "Yule-boar"which was fed to the animals on "Mother Night" (December 23) the holiday reserved to Odin, Frey and Thor. In the Norse lands the last sheaf was sometimes left in the fields for Odin's horse, hoping to divert his Host from collecting souls among the living. "Corn" cut before Samhainn posed no problems for the "tuathanachs" of Scotland, but that cut after the first day of the New Year was known as the "carline". This contemptuous name is Old Norse rather than Gaelic, derived from the word "karl", a man. The term implied a man-like woman, an old hag, and was an equivalent of "cailleach". Only sheafs cut before this deadline qualified as maidens, those constructed after sunset being considered harbingers of very bad luck. J.G. Campbell said that when tillage on

common land existed farmers were loathe to claim grain from it as it invariably "came in" long after the normal time and they feared "gort a bhaile", a "famine of the village" if they harvested a carline or cailleach. Adopting the winterhag was considered a sure way of entertaining a very long and hard winter. The spirit of the Cailleach Bheur persisted even where men were careful and industrious: At each Beltainn fire a huge bonnach bealtine was baked and divided into a number of pieces, enough for each male adult. John Ramsay, who observed some of the last fire-festivals, said that there was always one portion smeared with charcoal, which was termed "cailleach bealtine", "i.e. the Beltane "carline", a term of great reproach." This was discovered in the hands of some unfortunate, who was seized by his fellow villagers who made a show of hurling him into the fire. He was only rescued at the last moment by an opposing force, but the company laid him on the ground and made a pretence of quartering his body, afterwards pelting him with raw eggs. He was afterwards termed the "cailleach bealtine" and was shunned by villagers until he was replaced by a new victim at a subsequent fire-festival. The boarding of the cailleach appears to be a more moderate example of rites which once ended in actual death by fire. In northern Wales Sir John Rhys noted that men stood by their Hallowe'en bonfires until the last spark went dead. At that they fled shouting, "The cropped black sow take the hindemost." In Celtic communities the "cutty black sow" has the same status as our boogey-man, and is named to frighten children into obedience. Rhys has supposed that there was originally justification in fearing the rites of Samhainn. In Buchan Shire, Hallowe'en fires were kindled in the last century and their boys of the village explicitly begged for peat: "Ge's peat t' burn the witches!"

CAILPEACH, a heifer, steer or colt, confers with colpa, a young cow or horse. This creature resembles the English colepexy, whose name is similarly derived. Also like the English creature known as the grant, the shopiltee, the galoshan and the tangy. Cailp, or kelp, was also applied to the oarweed in which these creatures lived. The kelp plant, of the species Laminaria, was formerly gathered by the Scots, and wholesaled as a component of glass, soap, iodine and fertilizer. T.K. Pratt says that Newfoundland kelp is locally termed "the poor man's weather glass," since the brown algae held on land becomes sticky at beginning of a rainy season. The kelpy, tangy, shoopiltie, bellcoat, or chaffinch is one of the water-horses. The first two designations were used in northern England and Scotland, the shoopiltie was native to the Shetland islands and the last two were common in England. Keightley said that "there is no being in the Irish rivers answering to the nis or kelpie". While they thanked their guardian spirits for lacking this "treacherous water demon", the Irish possessed the equally violent phooka, "wicked, black-looking, bad things, that came in the form of wild colts, with chains

hanging about them. They did great hurt to the benighted travellers. The shoopiltie was especially violent, a Shetland pony in shape equipped with a huge penis and testicles and accused of mugging, abduction, robbery and rape. The kelpy is the only species known in the lakes, river and salt waters of the Atlantic Provinces. The creature is named for the intertidal kelp, or oarweed, beds which were his preferred hiding place. The kelpy is known to have generated mysterious lights over water and to have groaned to keep men from their deaths by drowning. If these warnings were ignored, the kelpy concluded that suicide was intended and helped the victim to that end. Kelpy Cove in southeastern Cape Breton is named after this formidable sea creature. Shirley Lind of Joggins, Nova Scotia, told the tale of a Minudie Village man who used a kelpie as a familiar: The young man had a girlfriend in Sackville, New Brunswick, thirty-five miles distant. His friends disbelieved his frequent excuse that he could not travel with them as he went to see her each night. This seemed impossible as it was before the days of an automobile and he had no horse. A wild black stallion was seen travelling in both directions along the village road and these same young men decided to rope him. One night they managed this and took him to a blacksmith shop where he was shod. The next morning the young man failed to show up in time for work so his friends enquired about his health and found him at his mother's house sick in bed. Suspecting he was faking illness, the boys stripped away his bedclothes and found horseshoes nailed to his hands and feet. This is very like Helen Creighton's tale of the two travelling men who paid to stay at an inn on Nova Scotia's south shore. They had just managed sleep when they were awakened by the sounds of heavy footsteps passing around their bed. Lighting a lamp, they discovered a mare in the room with them, and soon roused the landlord for an explanation. He was unable to explain this strange event and could not identify the horse as belonging to anyone in the village. At this, the two salesmen decided to claim the animal and awakened the local blacksmith to see the animal fitted with shoes. In the morning they found in the blacksmith's stall, instead of the

mare, a young kelpy-woman with iron shoes nailed to her bare hands and feet. One authority reports: "In Hampshire they give the name of Colt-Pixy to a supposed spirit, which in the shape of a horse "wickers" (neighs) and misleads horses (and their owners) into bogs, etc." One of these was supposed to live near the western boundary of Killiechassie, Scotland at a spot known as an stair ghorach, the “path of apprehension.” Nearby is a ford of the river Tay where a water-kelpie cries out thainig a wair, ach cha d-thainig en duine, “The hour has come, but not the man.” Shortly after someone invariably drowns there. CAILTE, CAOILTE, obs. hardness or firmness (of purpose or physique), cail, possessing a hearty appetite and vigour. The son of Ronan, a cousin to Finn mac Cumhail, a warrior and poet to the Fiann. He killed the “god” Ler in the famous battle between rival forces of the Underworld. This private army allied itself with Midir (who eventually lost the contest) against Boabd Dearg, who was then High King of the newly organized Daoine sidh. In the end only three of the Fiann survived and these were transported to Tir nan Og. Cailte was one of these, and in a Christian embellishment he is represented as returning to Ireland to recount his adventures in the Otherworld for Saint Patrick. CAIM, stain, blot, fault, loop; from cam, a bent line, crooked. one-eyed, a circle. “The sacred circle.” When druids made their crooning magic, those desiring protection from the spirits this act engendered inscribed a circle or caim in the earth. Christian clerics made a cross within the circle and blessed it in the name of “Father, Son and Holy Spirit.” A person standing within knew that he was free of evil influences from that time until cock’s crow. “An imaginary circle described with the hand round himself, by a person in fear, danger or distress.” Note the connections with caimir, a fold; caimein, a mote, stain or blemish; caimeineach, saving, caimhleachach, restraining. CAIMBEUL, often translated as “wry-mouthed,” from cam+beul, but note that cam carries the alternate meaning

of crooked or one-eyed, viz. the Fomorian sea-giants and their host. OIr. camm, Cy. cam, Gaul. cambo, the root being their kemb, wind. Sometimes referred to the Greek word for crooked and said allied with the Gaelic god Cromm, who is often spoken of (redundantly) as Crom “the Crooked.” Hence also the Gaelic camag, club, camas, embayment, bay. Note that Bil or Beul was the Gaelic death-god, hence the alternate translation, “the one-eyed death god.” The “notorious” Clan Campbell, “gifted” with this name by their enemies. Not from the Lat. campo bello as is sometimes suggested. CAIRBRE, CARPRE,, a traveller. cairbna, a charioteer. The son of Ogma and his wife Étain. A bard of the Tuatha daoine he received poor hospitality from King Bres and satirized him forcing him from the high kingship. In the battles against the Fomors he cursed and satirized them. “I will make a satire on them at sunrise, and the wind will rise from the north. On the hill-top, my back to a thorn-tree, a stone and a thorn in hand, I will place on them the satire. I will put shame on them so that they will not be able to stand against our fighting men.” In this he was successful. CAIRBRE CAITCHEAN, CAITCHEEN, the “”cat-headed,” an usurper set up as ruler of the Aithech tuatha when they revolted against the Milesians. During his reign there was “but one stalk of grain, one acorn, and one stalk of corn on the plants of the land and the rivers were empty of fish.” This was understood as reflecting the disfavour of the gods and thus this period of republicanism ended with restoration of the high-kingship. This king is sometimes represented as “a divine ancestor of the Érainn.” In some quarters it was stated that Cairbre took his name from the cat-headed god he worshipped, but be also read that: “Thus was Cairbre the cruel who seized Ireland south and north: two cat’s ears on his fair head, a cat’s fur through his ears.” The cat-god, and Cairbre, may be represented in the Welsh and Irish tales of monster-cats which came out “from under the hill” to ravage the countryside.

CAIRBRE MAC CORMAC. The successor to Cormac ard-righ (ca. 184 A.D.) The Féinn were opposed by the Cairbre ardrigh. His daughter Sgeimh Solais, the “Light of Beauty,” was about to be wed to the son of the king of the Dési. The Fiann demanded their usual tribute of twenty ingots of gold for “travelling expenses,” so that they might attend the ceremony, but the king refused calling upon Clann Morna to help him break the power of this great private army. Cairbre had personal command of the Morna, while the Fiann , who were largely drawn from Clann Bascna , marched under Osgar. The two men met in single conflict to their mutual destruction. It was claimed that Fionn afterwards appeared upon the battlefield “in a ship” to lament the death of his grandson. This can only have been the craft of Manann mac Ler, which could sail the furrows of the earth as easily as it crested the waves of the ocean. When all was over it was said that there was hardly a man, or a boy, left alive in Ireland, but whatever the losses of Cairbre he had his posthumous wish for the Fiann na h-Eireann were gone forever. CAIRIOLL or Cairell. “Cheerful,” A fisherman who caught Tuan mac Cairell when he was in his salmon form. His wife ate the salmon and Tuan was reborn in human shape. CAIRIOLL CALLAIG, cairioll, cheerful note, carol, noise, the Cailleach’s Dance or Carroll. One of the rites of Hogmanay. A dance honouring, and thus intending to divert, the unwanted attentions of the Winter Hag. CAISIL-CHRO, a wicker bier suffused with blood. Circular paling, EIr. cosair, bed. An expression indicating the preferred mode of death for heroes. Opposite of the “strawdeath.” The word cosair has at its root ster, to strew. CAITEAS, scraped linen lint used in the stoppage of wounds, refuse from wool-carding, MEng. caddas, cotton, wool, floss silk for padding, from OFr. cadas. Cf. G. catas, sawdust, wood chips, often put to the same use. Note also caitein,, shaggy cloth, the Ir. caitin, the catkin of the osier, a “little

cat.” Cy. ceden, unruly hair. CAITRTEAL, AN, a Quarter; one of the four divisions of the Celtic year, the holidays being the Samhain, Imbolc, Beltane, and Lughnasad. Similar to the ON. keartill and the Lat. quartarus, the English quarter. Confers with cairt, to cleanse; EIr. cartaim, Cym. carthu, to purge. The root was ker, separate (car, to turn to the left), the root idea being that of “clearing out” to make way for new things. Allied to sgar, to sever. A day for eliminating the personal and public “evils” of a community. CÀL, kail, cabbage; Ir. caladh, MIr. calad, from Lat. caulis, a stalk, whence also the Eng. cole and Scand. kail. Kail-runt torches were the common source of lighting at the QuarterDays, the illumination coming from a candle stub pushed into the more open head. At Hogmanay it was common for maidens to walk blindfolded, eyes shut, into the cabbage patch and select the first kail-runt (head) that happened to touch their heels. The shape, tall, lean, stout or short, was thought to prognosticate the physique of some future spouse. A large quantity of earth adhering to the roots was taken as a foretelling of a large dowry. After examination the runts were placed above the door lintel, and the Christian name of the next person to enter was thought sure to confer with that of the spouse. Sometimes the runts were thrown upon the ground so that the pointed end might indicate the direction in which the married couple would come to reside. CALA, CALADH, a harbour, a resting place, MIr. calad. The It. cala and the Fr, cale, an embayment or cove. The Gaelic word springs from the Celtic qel or qal, to hide, as in the Eng. hollow, MEng. hoth, a cavern, Eng. hole, after the ON. goddess Hel who was banished by Odin to a hidey-hole. For many male highlanders and islanders of Scotland the cala was the Western Ocean. It was said that the haven of the young was Eilean Uaine, “The Green Island, the place where all the good that has not been shall be.” The metaphysical harbour for the aged was Tir nan Og, the “land of the Young, the place

where all that is good that has been shall be again.” Yet the Scot of days past noted: “So frail the boat, so vast the Ocean!” They guessed that those attempting the Ocean or Life should look to dual tillers “the Art of the Druid to enspirit the wind, the Faith of Iona for the good of stilling the waves.” CALADCHOLG, CALADABOLG, clachd, a stone; cho, the prize of; Lugh, the sun god. The sword later possessed by Fergus mac Roth, alternately named the “Hard Dinter.” Another name for Excalibur, “The Sword in the Stone,” which was held by King Arthur. The latter name is considered a Latin corruption of the Gaelic. See Caliburnus, Crúachan. Perhap’s comparable with Nuada’s unconquerable sword which had a role in the creation of the universe. CALATIN, a druid of Fomorian roots sent by Queen Mebd to magically incapacitate the northern hero Cúchullain during the Táin war. The Clann Calatin had twenty-eight warlocks who had studied sorcery in Alba for seventeen years. It was said that they all possessed poisoned darts and were unerringly accurate in their use. The members of this group were missing their left hand and their right foot, but by glamour they managed a fighting edge over Cúchullain and almost drowned him in a stream. The Connaught warrior, Fiarcha, seeing the unevenness of this battle went to the rescue of his enemy, cutting off the remaining hands of the Calatins. Cúchullain then arose and killed them. The three remaining daughters, sometimes identified with the bafinne cursed Cúchullain with an illness and tried to draw him out of his resting place to confront an army which he perceived to be invading Ulster. In the end these shape-changers succeeded in bringing down Cúchullain. CALBH, shoot, osier, twig, the continuous flow of water from a cleft, Ir. colbha, sceptre, hazel tree, EIr. colba, a magic wand; confers with colbh, pillar, column, plant stalk. The Lat. culmus. “The magic tree that wizards love. Hazel, holly and rowan were the branches that decked Gaelic homes during the Quarter-Days. Note the alternate calbh, the

gushing of water or blood. Related to the G. calltuinn, hazel, EIr. coll as in mac Coll. Norse hasl conferring exactly with the English word. CALIBURNUS, the word is obs., but we have caldach sharppointed, probably related to calg-bhior, a barbed weapon, also note call, calamity; the death-dealing magical sword of the god Lugh given him by Manan mac Ler, a god of the sea. Later used by the southern Irish hero Ferghas, an ally of Queen Mebd, killed by his northern friend Cúchullain. This sword became Excalibur in the hands of the mythological King Arthur. Corresponds with the Gaelic Caladcholg, see above entry. CALLANESG, Eng. Callanish, on the Isle of Lewis, callan, noise, clamour,shouting, babbling, hammering, a noisy group; Scotland. Calluin, New Years’ Day, “New Years’ Buck.” See following entries. Callanish may or may not be the “winged hyperborean temple,” to which there is more than one reference in the classics. These standing stones are unique in configuration having the appearance, from above, of a Celtic cross. In the centre of the circle is a chambered cairn. In 1695 a visitor named Martin inquired of a local concerning the meaning of the stones and was told that this was “a place appointed to worship in the time of heathenism...the chief Druid or priest stood near the big stone in the centre from which he addressed himself to the people who surrounded him.” The second largest such structure in the British Isles, thought to have had use in astronomical calculations. CALLTUINN, hazel, EIr. coll, coll + tann, “thin wood,” ON. hasl, Eng. hazel. OIr. col, hazel. The hazel tree was venerated for its own spirit but has a traditional association with sacred wells. Urns from within filled wells have been found filled with hazel leaves and nuts. The mythological character known as Mac Cuill is literally “The Son of the Hazel.” He and his brothers Mac Cecht, “The Son of the Plough,” and Mac Greine, “The Son of the Sun,” were mated with the three eponymous goddesses of Ireland. A traditiom

from the prose Dindshenchas connects a venerated whell with hazel trees, and Connla’s Well, situated under the ocean, is mentioned by this same source. The “Hazels of wisdom” grew near it and magic hazel nuts fell routinely into its water. The sacred salmon which lived their consummed the nuts and acquired supernatural wisdom. CALLUIN, New Year's Day, food prepared for the poor at this season, a “christmas box,” Ir. callain, calends, the first day of the month, particulary the beginning day of the year; now taken at January 1, but originally November 1, which was also the beginning of the winter season. Note the following related words: calbh, the gushing forth of blood; calc, drive forward, ram home; calg, corn husk, similar to Cy. caly, the penis. The Caledonian hero-god Calgagos, sometimes spelled Galgacos derives his name from this last. Hence, also, calg-dhireach, straight to the point, penetrating; calln, noise; calla, tame, an animal destined to die. Notice that calendar reform has created some uncertainty concerning the time when the Calluinn should be celebrated. In 1753, to allow for a time variance between the Gregorian calendar and actual solar events, eleven days were removed from the month of September. Not surprisingly, many Scots resented this change and continued with the old calendar. When it came to calculating the date of various festivals traditionalists added the "eleven lost days." As a result all of the quarter-days may be celebrated at times displaced from the current calendar by this amount. There were separate rites for Samhuinn (October 31) the last day of Gaelic summer, but calluin culminated with the "beating of the hide," a ceremony seemingly intended to bring all the evils of the community "to earth" at the commencement of a new year. In the original ceremonies, the leader of the community may have taken the part of the calluin-man, but this dangerous role was finally given over to a lesser mortal, who was given the part of king for a day. This man-beast was selected by lot and dressed in the hide

of a bull (later a sheep) and was at first allowed some liberties in the village. Finally, he was pursued through the fields, orchards and by-ways by a host comprised of unusually fierce male followers. It appears that the calluin-man was taken as a manifestation of the nathair, or spirit of evil, for he was beaten with switches as he fled. At each household, the whole retinue paused and sought entrance as they recited a traditional calluin-rann. Within the beast-man dipped his tail in a smudge of charcoal at the hearth, and marked the faces of residents, men and cattle alike, thus protecting them against the dangers of fire, flood, lightning-strikes and disease. In return, he and his cohorts were given food and whisky, the ritual drink of the Gaels. In other times, there were remnants of folklore that suggested that the calluin-man was ultimately torn apart by oxen moving in opposing directions, or that he was flayed or burned alive for the "good of the land." It was supposed that all evil tended to coalesce, at this season, in the person of the calluinn-man and that his life-force was "taken to earth" when his body was burned and the ashes distributed over the fields. The evil principle was understood to be the counter-face of the spirit of good, and while it could produce bad results, it was thought vital to the powers of plant and animal regeneration, and bound to reincarnate itself in the crops of the following year. The Gaels, more than others, thought that men were what they ate! According to Roderick MacLeod, the rites were common until the time of the Second World War. In his village, two groups of "young bucks" started out at dusk to cover opposite ends of the community. The leader, referred to as duan na calluinn, or the young buck man, was clearly a representative of a nature-god as he was "wrapped in a dried sheepskin pulled up around his head." His retinue included the young men of the district who were dressed in their usual clothes but sometimes had their faces blackened

or were modestly disguised. Since they celebrated in the winter season they often made their house-visits by sleigh or on snowshoes. "The occupants of each house would see their lanterns and hear them but they would not open the door. For they would hear strange sounds and see from the window a strange, strange sight. (The leader) would be running with others running behind him, beating on the skin and sending up a horrible rattling sound as they ciircled the house three times. Then they would come to the door, and the leader would yell out (the Calluinn Rhyme in Gaelic). When he came to the last line the door would be opened and people would give something, potatoes, motton, beef, and it would go in a bag brought to handle these goods. Finally they would all go to one house. It was usually a home less fortunate (than others). They would get pots boiling and take food from the bag and cook up a terrific feast. And there would be singing, perhaps a story, and tables would be pushed aside and a fiddler would set the whole room dancing...And it would be the wee hours (before) leaving behind what was left of the food, often a supply for a long, long time." The Calluinn Rhyme, as preserved in Cape Breton, reveals some of the forgotten ritual. In summary, it says: "I come to present the Calluinn (new beginnings). I come from time long past, and now go sunwise about this house. I'll descend to the door, calluinn-skin in hand, and hold this to the nose of all within. None that smell it will escape a healthy life. The man of the house must take it in his hands and put it's head in the fireplace . He must pass sunwise around the children; but must bless the woman by passing over and above her. She will get the skin in full measure and well deserve it... Those that come with the Calluinn expected no drink for this blessing because of the drought in the countryside, but we take the cheese, but no scabby potatoes, and no bread without butter. We'll not go emptyhanded, so do not detain us, but open the door." Almost the only concession to Christian ritual in the above rhyme was the adoption of a sun-wise path instead of the traditional counter-clockwise dance of pagan times. The reference to

"descent to the door" comes from the fact that the old Scottish buildings had a thatching ridge, which the Calluinn-man used to run , pursued by young villagers. This ritual has been described by Sir James George Fraser as "a disorderly procession" in which the party struck the walls with sticks or flails. After admission the "minister" of the party pronounced a blessing on the house: "May god bless this house and all that belongs to it. In plenty of meat, bed and body clothes, and health of men may it abound!" After that the "devil" passed his calluinn-skin, a strip of leather sometimes fastened to a staff, to the oldest male in the house who touched it to a newly-laid fire and applied a smudge of soot to the nose of every person and animal within the farm. "This was imagined to secure them from diseases and other misfortunes, particularly from witchcraft, throughout the ensuing year. The calluinn seems to have survived well into the nineteenth century." Their is no question that the calluinn-skin is a phallic symbol, the touching to flame renewing its spiritual energy for procreation. While this magic-device creates a protective circle for the children, the man of the house is advised to pass "over and above" is wife that she may take "full measure". Here is a direct statement of one of the magical functions of the Calluinn, the reinvigoration of the sexual powers of man and beast, the spirit being passed to them directly from a pagan nature-spirit. 1 Fraser has noted that the Isle of Man, "one of the fortresses of Celtic language and lore" was a late hold-out against Anglo-Saxon practises, celebrating New Year's Day on November 1 until recent times. "Thus Manx mummers used to go about on Hallowe'en singing a Hogmanay song which began, "Tonight is New Year's Eve, Hogunnaa!" In the northern part of Wales it used to be customary for each family to fuel a great bonfire on Hallowe'en... men still living remember how the people who assisted at the bonfires would wait until the last spark was out and then

Ronald, editor, Down North, Toronto (1980), pp. 64-66.

would take to heels, shouting..."The cropped black sow seize the hindmost!"2 In Scotland this fire was named the samhnagan, and there is little doubt that it formerly claimed a victim, who might have been chosen by exactly this means. The hog-man was a god-spirit, as mortal as the men he served, in spite of his devillish appearance. Men who used magic to raise themselves to god-hood, and the kingship of a tribe, were always in danger when crops or animal-husbandry failed. Plague, faminine and loss were never seen as signs of his humanity, but as omens of his failing power. It was universal belief that pagan god-kings had to be killed as soon as they began to show signs of mental or physical decay. This was not considered a sacrilege, but a practical necessity, involving the survival of the land, and the release of a the god-spirit to reinvigorate the earth and be reborn in a more virile form. Since the god had to be periodically put down, it was assumed that he could hardly object to taking some of the evil-spirits at large in the community to earth with him, and rituals were performed to this end. In some cases, the reign of a king was fixed to a certain number of years, after which he was reduced to ashes. Regicide was sometimes modified, the king abdicating for a brief period, annually or semi-annually, his part being played by a mockking, who went to death in his stead. This seems to have been the part played by the central figures in the Beltane and Samhain fires, who were selected as "kings-for-a-day" and were treated with deference until their death. In more humane times, sacrificial victims were simply ostracized until a new "carline" was selected. Even more recently a play was made of throwing the victim into the samhnagan, or lookers-on were satisfied to have the god-beast jump three times through the smoke. The

Sir James George, The Golden Bough, New York (1951), p.


calluinn was expected to exemplify procreation in an act of ritual sex with the Samh, just before his death. There is a suggestion that she also went to earth, for an alternate Calluinn Rhyme reads: "This is the New Year of the yellow bag. Strike the skin to the wall. And old wife in the graveyard, one in the corner, another beside the fire. Put forked stick to her eyes, to her belly..." Even where the full ritual was forgotten it was remembered that: "Good luck for the whole year was brought to the house by a man coming as first visitor on New Year's Day. A woman would bring only bad luck."3 Similar considerations attached to May Day. The visitor had to be fed if good luck was to be confirmed. Malcom MacQueen noted that, "the early settlers had few holidays...New Year's day was the great day of the year. On the Eve of that day "striking parties" co,posed of young folk of that district, armed with sticks, marched through the settlement. When they arrived at a house they surrounded it and to the accompaniement of music from the sticks beating the log walls vigorously sang a Gaelic refrain... "Get up and gie us our hogmanay." If as happened but rarely, there was no "Scotch" on hand, they were given cakes...When log houses were replaced by shingled ones, these parties were discouraged and finally abandoned. In the Hebrides, the calluin is no longer practised, but the eleventh of January (the "Old" New Year) has become a children's festival, much like our Hallowe'en. Notice that the date has been moved to the English New Year. This new pattern was followed in parts of Cape Breton. The people of North River took their "turns" on the last night of the year, while those at North Shore practised the Oichche na Calluinn on Christmas Eve. Like the omadons, the callithumpians were spiritual projections of an ancient mortal-god. They were secondcousins of the janeys, or mummers, of Newfoundland, and

Mary L., Follore of Nova Scotia, np, nd, p. 29.

corresponded with the belsnickers of Nova Scotia, the horribles of Prince Edward Island and the duan na calluinn (calf-man) of Cape Breton Island. The similarity that exists between the Gaelic calluinn and the New Brunswick callithump is worth noting. Both pagan "god-men" were maskers or disguisers, the original covering having been a a bull-skin complete with head horns and tail. The followers of the duan na calluinn were his unsely court, while the callithumpians trailed after their callithumpian-beast. Since medieval times, similar trains of disguised young men have emptied upon the countryside to trouble the Yule. They went "house-visiting" or "first-footing",and as they passed from one place to another, the lads beat at the hide of the leader, hence the designation "callithumpian parade" which for a while described any uproarious source of noise. If the chief callithump represented the old god of the underworld, he and his courtiers were seen as dangerous customers, and Helen Lochhead of Frederivton, New Brunswick remembers being totally cowed when they made a visit to her home about the year nineteen hundred. "When I was a little girl it was very frightening. On New Year's Day boys, dressed in old clothing, would come knocking on people's doors. I was frightened and we kept the doors locked." There was justification for this for two decades earlier a group of disgusisers had entered government house on the occasion of a Christmas party tendered by the Lieutenant Governor. This gang made off with stolen kisses from the ladies, bits and pieces of official silverware and even the roast turkey, which had been intended as the festive centrepiece. There is record of "kallathumpian" activity in York County, Pennsylvania, where a boyhood observer said that the practise included "going around to neighbour's houses on New Year's Eve and firing guns." In an earlier day this act was understood to send all stray evil-spirits scurrying to join the master kallithump, who carried them to earth with him when he was finally burned to ashes. CBC interviewer Thea Borlase (1980) heard the callithumpians described as

"a horde of masked hell-raisers who roamed the streets of Fredericton in search of festivities to interrupt with a lot of commotion." They were decidedly, " a noisy, unmannerly group, whose aggressive actions frightened children and frequently the adults..." The callithumpians were of the lower classes, the true heirs of the original outsider, whose "pride" led to his fall from grace. No matter how many rears, or bottles of liquor, they pinched in their travels, these mummers had to remain well disguised or be prepared to be contrite by Boxing Day. CALLUIN A BHUILG, calluinn, “The Hogamanay lads” - house visitors abroad at this time; callaig, active but tame; bhuilg. rough buck. See next entry. CALLUIN CABAG, a holed wheel of cheese. A “New Years’ Day cheese.” Foretelling was accomplished by looking through the opening before the dawn of the Quarter-Days. All such openings, in any material, were considered to be “windows” on the Otherworld. CALLUM CALUM CILLE, calum, hard-skinned ; ceall, a hermit's cell, the nicknamed which the rural Scots gave St. Columba. He was not universally admired by all Gaels, thus: "Calum warty, mouse-coloured, ill-tempered. The worthless of Ireland seven times over. The doorstep hobgoblin who wronged the right." Note that the word calum confers with Goth. hallus, a stone, and the ON. hallr, from Hel the death-goddess. The family-name Calum, earlier Gillecalum, Malcolm, MG. Mylcollum, Maelcolaim, OG. Malcoloum, Malcolum. Gillecolaim, Ir. Maelcoluim, the bald “dove,” referring to monks like St. Columba. Hence Maccallum. CALM, brave, EIr. calma, Cy. celf, having skill, art, Germ. held, a hero, Indo-European qel, as seen in Lat. celsus, high, the Eng. column and excel and Celt. CALGACUS, calgach, shaggy, sprightly, ardent, passionate, bristled. Often represented from the Latin as Galgacus, an

important Gaelic leader of the ancient past. He is reinvigorated in quater-day playlets as the hero of the moment. Calg, a beard of corn, bristles, earlier, a sword. In Cy. cola, a sting, caly, a penis. The root is, again, qel, (also found in Celt) to break. Watson identifies this hero by this spelling and so does McBain. Hence also the expression caig-dhireach, to get straight “to the point,” “sword-straight.” His stand was supposed to have been at Mons Craupius, near Duncrun, Perthshire. This name comes out as “The Hill of the Hump.” CALP, CALPA, baring of the calf of the leg, a mark of servitude, interest to be paid against principal, pillar, nails. When a clan failed in power it took calp to some powerful neighbour. In effect, the men offered their best beast, or steed, or woman, or children, or other prized possession, to their protector at the time of their death. In exchange they were given succour, provided they continued to follow that chief or chieftain. See the related word calluinn, directly above. Death-duty payable to the guardian of the DeadLands. From ON kaup, pay, a stipend. In the case of the Gaels, that guardian was Manan mac Ler, who ferried souls of the dead to the islands of the western Atlantic. He compares with the Norse goddess Rann, the wife of Hler, supreme god of the sea, who had a great love for gold and was referred to as "the flame of the sea" for the collection of valuables she horded in underwater caverns. Like the Norse, Gaelic seaman were careful to have gold on their person when they travelled on the ocean. They reasoned that if they were lost at sea, their detached souls might have to bargain for an easier passage to Tir-nan-Og , Breasil or An Domhain. See next entry. CALPACH, COLEACH, COLPACH, COILEAPACH, CALPEACH, a calf-horse, the Welsh ceffyl dwr. the English colpech or coltpexy, the equivalent of the Scot. kelpye or tangye. Colpach, more generally a heifer or steer, particularly an animal at the brink of sexual maturity. Calbh, a twig, an oisier, a shoot, a sceptre, the hazel tree, EIr. colba, awand, G. coille, a wood, col, sin. Cf. AS. caelf, ON. kalfr, Skr,

garbha, a fetus, young of an animal. The latter seems to match the G. garbh, rough, hard, cruel, tearing, stiff, scratchy. Eng. pixy. G. collaidh, sensual, full of carnal lust. Confers with calluinn and calpa. The biorach uisg, the “water-colt,” or “water-heifer (Mhorrigan),” also known as the eac uisg, or “water-horse.” “In Dorset-shire, the Pexy-lore still lingers. The being is called Pexy and Colepexy; the fossil belemnites are named Colepexies’-fingers; and the fossil echini, Colepexies’-heads. The children, who are naughty, are threatened with the Pexy, who is supposed to haunt woods and coppices.” (Brand, Popluar Antiquities, ii, p. 513). The “Literary Gazette” for 1825 adds this: “In Hampshire they give the name of Colt-Pixy to a supposed spirit or fairy, which is in the shape of a horse wickers, i.e. neighs, and misleads horses into bogs, etc.” This creature is the English goodfellow, who has the power of changing himself “to horse, to hog, to dog, to ape, at will.” The calpach is referred to by Nansen in his book In Northern Mists (p. 341): “Now there is a Scottish mythical creature called a “water calf...” The Norwegian veirkalv, “weather-calf,” or “wind-calf.” which may well be thought a corruption of this. It is true the creature inhabits lakes, but it also goes upon dry land and has fabulous speed and power of scenting things far off. It can also transform itself into different shapes (as a calf or a horse or a man), but always preserves something of its animal form.” These shape-changers had the aspect of a brùinidh or “brownie,” for two of these “wind-runners,” “bloodhounds,” “weather-calves,” or “wind-calves,” were closely observed when they accompanied the Earl of Orkney as he marched through Norway in 1612. Some of his party referred to them as “Wild Turks,” but probably meant “wild stirks:” “They were ugly folk...Sinklar used them to run before and search out news; in the evening they came back with their reports. They were swifter in running than a stag; it is said that the

flesh was cut out of their thighs and the thick of their calves (in other words they had extremely thin legs after the fashion of all the Daoine sidh). It is also said that they could follow men’s tracks.” Elsewhere we learn that the ver-kalvannn, or “windcalves,” were “more active than farmdogs, swift as lightning, and did not look like ordinary folk. The extra flesh seemed cut out of their calves, their thighs and their buttocks; their nostrils were also slit up. People thought this might have been deliberately done to make them much lighter to run around, and every one was more frightened of them than of the Scots themselves. They could take the scent of people a long way off and could kill a man before he could blow his nose; they dashed back and forth breaking the necks of men.” Here we are reminded of Cromm na’ Cam who used two such “dogs” as his spies, and Odin, who was similarly equipped with totem-wolves. H,P.S Krag interpreted the phrase “they did not look like folk,” as indicating that they were actual bloodhounds, and notes that when one of the wind-runners was killed at Odegaard, it ran about the field where it had been shot issuing a barking sound. On the other hand, when Karlesefni journeyed in the western Atlantic he encounted two of this kind who were humanoid: “they were more like apes than men; he called them Haki and Hekja ; they ran as fast as greyhounds and had few clothes.” Again it is mentioned in the Flateyjarbók that Leif took with him a suthmathr, or “Southman” a former resident of Scotland, who was called Tyrker. In Eric’s Saga the wind-runners are given as two creatures, a man and a woman, also of Scottish extraction. These Scots are characterized by the strange garment they wore, which is described as a kiafal or biafal. Nansen thinks this word is a Norse replacement for a Celtic designation and might correspond with the modern Gaelic cabhail (pronounced caval or cafal): “a shirt.” It may, just as easily confer with cadah, “tartan cloth, a quilt or cloak.” but in either

instance seems to identify the all-purpose brecan, or “plaid,” favoured by the Gaels. Nansen suggests that the Celtic word was gradually replaced by the Old Norse hakull or hokull a word which describes similar wearing apparel, “a sleeveless cloak open at the sides.” The feminine form of this is hjekla , suggesting a similar cloak but possibly hooded. He has guessed that the names of the wind-runners were long forgotten when they were described on paper as Haki and Hekja , names which seem to relate to their costumes. It is noteworthy that Tryker is described as brattletir , or “squashed- or flat-faced.” He is also given as having a “precipitous forehead, and was said that he had “fugitive eyes, and a complexion that was smáskitligr. This is a perfect description of a brownie. Nansen also said that Haki is a preferred name in legend and epicpooetry for sea-kings, berserkers and troll-children. From this, he concluded that the tale of the runners was a fiction introduced into Norse literature from Celtic mythology, but it seems more in favour of identifying the myth as following on reality.

CAM, crooked, cf. the god Cromm ‘an Cam. Also, one-eyed, blind in one eye, ill-directed, dishonest, tricky, deceitful, following the Fomorian predisposition. Root the ancient kemb, wind, hence “made crooked by wind.” Refers to the Latin camera, “one-eyed,” and from this the Eng. camera and the word chamber. Also the Gaelic camag, a club and camas, an embayment. Note camart, the high cam, a wry-necked person. See also Caimbeul. This word has reference to the physical deformities of the Fomorian sea-giants. CAMAN, CAMHAN, a hollow plain, a hallowed plain, a crooked stick, a shinty or hockey stick used for play on the field. Also a staff carried by the calluinn-man at the hogmanay. In the latter case the caesin-uchd, or magical “breaststrip,” made of sheepskin, was attached to this wand. CAMAR, fool, idiot, camart, wry-necked, cambar, place of burial,

CAM-BHEUL, having a twisted mouth, Clan Campbell after their patriarch. CAMSHRON or Camaran, Cameron, MG. Cêmsroin, gen. Also seen as Camronaich from which Gillacamsroin, Charter Eng. Cameroun from cam+ sròn, twisted+nose. Not considered linguistically related to Cameron parish in Fife. CAN, obs., white, now, say, sing, Lat., cano, the Eng. canticle. See bard. Canain, language; canntaireachd, articulate music, chanting particularly that used in the setting of magical spells. CANBLAS, CANLABAS, grinding speech, can + labhar, to say or sing + loudly, a magical incantation, a "reasoned" argument between men of opposing views. argument between diametrically opposed views, which were nevertheless, "set down with great elegance and refinement." One such quarrel involved the Christian view that there was a beginning and end to creation, as opposed to the pagan belief that all events were self-contained, reincarnate and cyclic. CANO MAC GATNAN, a son of a king of Alba. Exiled to Ireland he was hosted by the high-king Aedh Slane (56 A..D.) He visited Guaire, king of connaught and while there met Marcan, an elderly chieftain who had a young wife named Cred. She fell in love with the outlander and drugged everyone attending a feast so that she could be alone with him. Cano refused her advances as long as he remained bound by the laws of hospitality. Later he returned, pledged his love for her, and gave her a stone which he said contained his second soul. After he returned to Scotland and became king he made an assignation with Cred. Her stepson Colcu tried to prevent this union. Cred waiting in anguish at Loch Crede came to believe her lover would not appear and dashed her head against a stone. As she fell dying, the soul-stone dropped from her hand and fragmented. Cano therefore died within three days.

CANTRAS, can + trud, say + distress, a burden; the taking of vows of marriage to the widow of a family relative killed in battle. A ex-tempore wedding pre-dating Christian tradition. CAOCHAIL, change, die, caoch, empty, blind, hollow, blasted, OIr. coimchláim, to mutate or invert. To take on a reincarnate form. CAOD CHALUIM-CHILLE, obs. pre-Christian form caod, St. John’s Wort. A healing “herb.” CAOIBHREACHAN, the marsh ragwort, a proof against the torradh, the charming away of milk from cattle. CAOINEAG, caoin, a sward, a death sheet; caoidh + eagal, a water-woman who fortells death and mourns passings, lamentations for the dead + fear; caoine, to wail + eug, death. the forerunners of death, otherwise known as the banshees. These were the befinde, or "white women" of the Daoine sidh, appointed as cowalkers of men while they lived. At the approach of death, the befind was compelled to confront her first soul, thus allowing him to prepare for the end. At length, she warned the remaining family of the loss by wailings near the household. See beansith. In North America, the caney-caller. Corresponds with the English wailster as well as the beansith, or banshee. Other Gaelic forms are the briddeag, aoibhill and the morrigan (which, see). This spirit is usually invisible but may take the form of an animal, in particular a black bird. This creature is also known as the cro, a word which, in context, may mean either death or blood. Alexander Macbain explains that this spirit is "the weregild of the various individuals in the Scoto-Celtic kingdom from the king on down." The interrelations of the fay-spirits are seen in this

creature which the Welsh called the korrid-gwen (seawoman). They assigned her nine virgin attendants exactly like the Gallacinae of Mela, who were identified as progenitors of the Gaelic boabhe. According to the poet Taliesin, the first korrid-woman was given a magic vase, the edges adorned with pearls. Like Ler's cauldron of the deep this was the source of the "waters" (read "ale") that made men knowledgeable and full of "bardic genius". The caoineag was said to be about two feet in height, with long flowing hair. Their only dress was a long white cutty-sark, or shift. Seen at night or dusk they appeared beautiful. but in daylight their bodies were seen to be wrinkled with age and their eyes centred with red pupils. It was said that their breath was poisonous but they usually kept their distance appearing as omens of death before humans related to them by blood. Their keening was itself an announcement of bad fortune. One of their kind was the English grant, "a yearling foal, erect on its hind legs with sparkling eyes. This kind of demon appears in the streets about sunset (and) warns inhabitants to beware of fire, and thus puts the ignorant on their guard." CAOILTE. “The Lean One,” After Oisin’s departure for the Otherworld, his post of chief bard was filled by Caoilte, the “Thin man,” a cousin of Fionn. In some of the tales he is given as the warrior who struck down Ler when the Feinn assisted Midir in his war against the northerners and Boabd Dearg. After the destruction of the Fionn he was forced to take refuge in a souterrain of the Daoine sidh. In a late Christian embellishment Caoilte , like Oisin, was forced to return to the world of men so that he could meet and be influenced by Saint Patrick. CAOIR SIDHE, Phosphorecence on a stormy sea, fire accompanied by noise, a rapid torrent, gleams, flames, flashes, thunderbolt, red-hot iron, gleams of lightning in the distance. Connotates warefare.

In folklore, the final despoilment of an domhain was supposedly the work of the Dagda and two of his sons, but in literature an allusion is made to the robbery in The Book of Taliesin. In this obscure Welsh poem the first recorded note is made of the British king named Arthur. “Here Arthur sets out upon various expeditions over perilous seas in his ship Pridwen; one of them having as its object the rape of a mysterious cauldron belonging to the king of Hades. Six times (in sixty lines) the tragic line recurs, “Thrice enough to fill Pridwen were we who went into it; but seven alone were they who returned from Caer Sidi.” The endings vary at each repitition - Caer Vedwyd, Caer Rigor, etc. - and whether these are different places or different names for one place cannot be said. The whole poem evidently deals with expeditions conducted by Arthur to the realms of twilight and darkness.” Ancient British poetry has nothing further to tell of this mysterious being. That Arthur was already (12th century) a figure of legend is the only clear fact in the general obscurity.” Not all of this reference is lost in western mists: Caer is the Cymric equivalent of the obsolete Gaelic cair, “boggy ground, which relates to cathair, a city, the Latin castrum, a fortification. Caer Sidi is a clear reference to the Daoine sidh, or “Side-hill folk,” the people of Danu, who later found themselves banished to the western islands of the Atlantic. The other Cymric place names can also be translated, Caer Vedwyd, for example has the sense of the “Ball-shaped City Out Yonder.” As Sampson has said this does not tell us whether the names are descriptive of a single land or may individual places. The western Otherworld. CAOMH, tender, kind, a restful place, Cy. cu, Goth. haims, a village, AS. ham, Eng. home. CAORRUNN-CUTHAICH, the rowan-bush, caor, the berry pof the rowan, any cluster of red berries; cutach, bobtailed or shortened tree bush. Red berries were counted as the fruit of the gods, and one species was thought the root of their

longevity. In Scottish mythology these berries were protected by a monster on an island in Lake Awe until they were stolen by a Gaelic hero. Unfortunately they proved poisonous to the woman who plotted with him to purloin them. CAORANACH, CAORNANACH. The sea serpent that lived in Lough Dearg, Ireland, from caora, sheep, having reference to the triangular heads of such animals. CAOCHAIL, to change, alter, expire, die. In the last sense, this word is only used with respect to humans. Caoch, empty, Cy coeg, foolish, Goth. haihs, one-eyed. CAOR, the berry of the rowan, Cy. ceirion, a berry. The same word as caoir, a blaze because of its red colour. EIr., caer. This colour was associated with blood, bleeding and death, and by extension symbolized the Otherworld. In earlier times two rowan sprigs tied with red thread were placed above entryways at the Quarter Days to turn away evil spirits and bring good luck. Caorrunn, the rowan tree. “Red, being the colour of blood - the essence of life - is the supreme magical colour. In Scotland, necklaces of red coral or red rowan berries, strung on red thread , were wore as amulets.” (The Silver Bough, Vol. 1, p. 74). CAORANI, “People of the Sheep,” OIr. caera, seen in the Gaull. Ep-enos, knight, based on epos, a horse, thus horserider. The people of North West Sutherlandshire, suggesting worship of a horned deity. See Cernu. Red-eared, three-horned sheep, had associations with the Otherworld. CAPA. “The Top,” one of three fishermen accidently blown to Ireland from Spain in antediluvial time. All of these men perished in the World Flood. CAR, twist, bend, turn, a job, work, a trick, fraud; carach, dishonest, carabhail, horrid, savage, wild, cearr, wrong, left-handed, crooked. See cearrach. Gille-nan-car, trickster, artful dodger. This word is associated with Clan

Kerr (anglicized and pronounced cae-rr), a family with Scandinavian roots, remembered in folklore as "...the deadliest foes That e'er the Englishmen had ever known, For they were all bred left-handed men And left to fence against them there were none." It may not be precise to say that all were "lefties" but certainly more than fifty percent were of this persuasion. This genetic preference appears in their castle keeps where stair cases are built "against the sun" trending upward from ground level in counterclockwise fashion. This spiral placed right-handed men at a disadvantage since their sword arms were in frequent collision with the walls of the castle. Two such residences are those of Jedburgh and Ferniehurst, both owned by the marquis of Lothian, who is a Kerr. All of this clan have been southpaws until recent generations when others genes have come into their pool. The northern portion of Scotland was infiltrated by Scandinavians at an early date, as a result the Campbells, Macleans, Macdonalds and Mackays all have heavy populations of left-handed individuals. Researchers in Britain have discovered that these people are prone to the disease called dyslexia, a severe reading disability in which the letters of the alphabet are mentally exchanged, inverted, or otherwise made unreadable. Even among the Kerrs, scientists have experienced difficulty researching the problem since many lefties have deliberately been trained, or trained themselves, to be ambidextrous (efficient with either hand) to avoid the jeers and jokes that dog that condition. On the plus side, it has been noticed that the best soccer players are equally capable with either foot, and a notable number have Kerr blood lines. In southern California, a similar study has just concluded showing that left-handed people have a mean life expectancy of 66.3 years as compared with 75 for the general population. Left-handed males are even worse off than females since they live to a mean age of 63. Since machinery is designed with right-handed people in mind, left-handers were found five times more likely to have died in accident-related injuries. As a group they were noted to suffer greater health problems, in particular

a greater number of immune deficiency diseases and risk of diabetes. University of British Columbia research also found that left handers were four times as likely to die in traffic accidents as the general population; in effect, they seem accident-prone, a misfortune considering that there are, at present, three million left-handed Canadians. There are interesting associated footnotes, such as the fact that Nuada the god-hero of the Tuatha daoine was left-handed by battle accident, a misfortune that also plagued the Norse god Tyrr, who is often associated with the Gaelic Aod (a sun-god bearing a distinctly northern name). Notice also the fact that the hosts, raging out of the north to collect the souls of the dead, whirled south on winds that moved in a counter-clockwise direction. Odin's valkyra followed a similar course, and the witches who were their antecedents danced the left-handed circle. In the eyes of the largely right-handed Christian missionaries these were the worst of a bad lot, sinister (literally, left-handed) folk. CARANN MOLLACHD, caran. obs. dim. of friend, relative, meant as disrespect, from the root carr, with all the implications of left-handedness. Confers with the Norwegian kerren, hard, stiff, unbending; the English. harsh and hard. Gaelic, carraig, a rock. Molach, rough, hairy, like the Winter Hag. A cairn of stones erected by guisers in front of a doorway when they were turned away from a residence at the Hogamanay. CARBH, AM, also PARBH, carbh, a ship, from ON. karfi, a galley meant for the navigation of the fiords. Able to car, turn or twist about quickly, The “place for turning (south). Note the place-name Am Parbh, Scotland. Here, Sandwood Cottage is the site of hauntings by a tall male revenant dressed as a sailor. A mermaid was spotted at nearby Sandwood Bay by a native in 1900. His dog spotted her first, lying on a sea-ledge. She was described as “human-sized, beautiful, and apparently waiting for the tide to take her out.”

CARMÁN, car, a twister and turner, a dancer, left-handed, see above entry; mam, a handful, large-breasted. In particular, a foreign goddess who arrived in Ireland from the Mediterranean accompanied by three fearsome sons Calma, Valiant; Dubh, Black; and Olc, Evil. They laid waste the land until overcome by the Tuatha daoine. With her sons dead, Carmán succumbed to death “in an ungentle shape.” Nevertheless, she was remembered and propitiated in Leinster at the Festival of Carmán, which was part of the old Lugnasad. Tales about this goddess point out the subtle magic of women, as opposed to the physical magic preferred by men: The sons were addicted to rapine, plunder, dishonesty and violence, but their mother gained her ends through charms, spells and incantations. After they all succeeded in blighting the corn, the Tuatha daoine brought out their heavy guns and assaulted the visitors until their own magic forced the three men into the sea. The witch was held as a hostage against their future behaviour and died as a hostage. Because she was feared in death, as in life, she was given an annual oenach, or “fair,” which was held at her burial place. The Munster equivalent of the Mhorrigan.

CARN, a cairn. corn, horn. A monument formed of individual stones brought together by individuals. The root is the Br. kar, hard. Carragh. an individual stone, a standing or pillar stone. Carraig, rock, similar to the Eng. hard, harsh. At the death of an individual, friends and relatives created a cairn, by adding stones to his memorial each time they passed. In some instances cairns were erected by the funeral party at each spot where it rested on the way to internment. At the adding of a stone a blessing was directed toward the dead. From the Gaullish root. carno, a “trumpet,” a “heap of stones” in the Gaelic. Wester Ross used to be entitled, in Latin, Carnonacae. This may be interpreted either as “The Folk of Trumpets,” or “The Folk of the Cairns,” i.e. rocky hills, the latter being most appropriate to the region. Similarly, the Gaullish tribal name Carnutes is considered to mean “Trumpet-bearing Folk.” CARN A’ GHILLE, “Cairn of the Lad,” erected on the road between Dunvegan and Stein, Skye, Scotland. Here the son of a household overheard three witches plotting evil deeds. Discovered, he was intimidated into promising he would not reveal their plans. When the boy thought that the witches had decided against their plan he told his mother, who inadvertently revealled her knowledge to one of the witches. Engraged the three killed the lad. Soon afterwards the villagers raised a memorial cairn but it soon sunk from sight in the peaty soil, whether by design or from natural cause is uncertain. In any event the place is claimed to be haunted and the place is avoided at night. CARN A’ GLAS, “The Gray Cairn,” six miles east of the town of Cromarty, Scotland. In the eighteen-twenties a similar cairn, in this region, was disassembled for building stones. On their removal a human skeleton of “gigantic size” was recovered. According to a labourer at this site the skull was sufficient to contain “two lippes of bear.” The Gray Cairn has been the place of several supernatural events: A Cromarty fisherman entered this moor to the sounds of lowing cattle and the distant barks of shepherd’s dogs. As

he approached this cairn he commenced to hear the sound of waves breaking on a cliff-face. This, in spite of the fact that the coast and the sea were three miles distant. On coming closer he was terrified to observe that the stone was part of an actual cliff-face rising above substantial waters. The pile of rocks appeared enshrouded in sea-fog and on the ocean he noticed two large vessels, their sails spread to the wind. CARNAS, algebra, carn, a heap of stones, counting-stones, stones used in arithmetic, a cairn. Stones were regarded as "the backbone of the earth". Counting skills, like language skills, were considered magiical in intent and result. CARNONI, an ancient tribe of Wester Ross, from carno, a “trumpet.” also carn, a high rocky hill, possibly “folk of the cairns.” CARRAGH, a pillar stone or cromleag, a standing stone. Ir. cartha. Cf. cuir, to position or put in place, suggesting manmade structures rather than geologic “erractics.” A form of carraig, a rock, OIr. carric, Cy. careg, Bry. karrek, Nor. kerren, hard, stiff, harren, hard, Eng. harsh. The Celtic root is perhaps kars, hard or rough, which persists in the Gaelic càrr, rough at the surface, the itch, mange. Carradale is a combined form of carragh + dail, the latter, a valley or dale. Here in the graveyard of Barcal are three large stones collectively known as the carragh/ According to tradition an arch druid is buried here. His power is remembered: It is said that law-breakers could apply to him for pardon. Even after his death his pillars continued as a sanctuary for criminals. Such places are termed cromaich,, an asylum or refuge. CARRAGHDAIL, Carradale, Scotland, in Kintyre. Dail, a field, a meadow from Norse dalr. A field of standing-stones 15 miles north of Campbellton, facing on the Sound of Kilbrannon. One of the great arch-druids of Scotalnd is supposedly buried here at the triad carragh. Any man who approached this druid could be exonerated of his crimes.

After his death, the grave-memorial to this druid became a place of refuge for criminals and law-breakers. Those who reached this sacred ground before being apprehended were forgiven their trespasses. Sanctuaries of this sort were termed comraich. This sanctuary was sited between slighe aoraidh and dail sleauchdaidh, “the way to worship,” and “the field of prostation.” CARRMOCAL, cairngorm, a precious stone, a jewel, curragh + cuir, a pillar or supporting stone + put aside from the common kind. CASÁIR, phosphorescence at sea, formerly given as the treasures of the deep seen through water. This word also means sea-drift and is akin to Ir. casair, a shower, hail;, from the root cad, to fall. CAS AN LUBAIN, cas, sudden quick rapid (on one’s feet), irritable little Lugh. The name given the bodach of Allt Mor, Scotland. This creature disturbed women returning from the ceilidhs by voicing gurgling sounds. He frequently entered crofts at night and tidied up for the residents. When he grew old he retired to Balnasium in Derculich where he sometimes exchanged a bowl of milk for house-choires. Here he received this nick name from his splashings in Alklt Mor. When the haunt heard of this name he vanished from that vicinity. See next. CAS-ARD RIGH, cas, foot, leg, "the royal foot." More literally, the “king’s high-foot.” At Dunadd there is a rock engraved with a footprint, supposedly that of the first Dalriadic dynast. It is said to have been blasted into place by a geisreag, or magic spell. While the Scots kings reigned they were expected to come to this inauguration stone, and each new king had to place his foot upon the imprint of all his royal ancestors. It was supposed that the spirit of the original god-king was thus transferred, legitimizing the continued authority of the monarch. CASEIN UCHD, obs. cas, hair of the head, curled; Norse,

haddr, the English hair; uchd, breast. The hairy-breast. A narrow strip of sheep skin, about three inches wide, cut from mouth to tail on the underside of the belly of the animal, and separated from the flesh without additional cutting. The Hogmanay “breast-strip,” attached to the pole carried by the calluinn-man. Occasionally the skin of a cow, goat or deer was substituted for that of the sheep. At each home visited, this strip was singed in the hearth fire and used to blacken the foreheads of men and animals as a prophylactic against witchcraft, fire and drowning through the following year. The staff from which it was carried was the caman, the shinty or hockey stick. See caitrtreal. CASSIR, casair, sea-drfit, the light seen enamating from dank, decaying wood, obs. “a thorn,” shower, hail, a prickly woman; the daughter of Bith, Eng. Lady Cesair, a granddaughter of the Biblical Noah. Bith was denied a place in the Ark and so with the help of Ladra and Finntann erected an idol, that foretold the deluge. Acting on the advise of this idol, the three men constructed their own ship and took refuge on it, fleeing before the World-Flood. After seven years they landed in Ireland. Cassir became the wife of Finntann but he abandoned her when the flood waters came upon them, riding out the deluge in a flood barrel. CAT, a cat, SIr. catt, Cy. cath, Cor., kat, Br. kaz, Gaul, Cattos, a god of battle; Latin catta, English cat, German katze. Possibly of Celtic origin, applied at first to wild species and later to the Egyptian cats introduced at the time of Christianity. Similar to the W. cath, Cor. kat, and the Germ. katze. The word may thus confer with cath, a wild thing, a battle. The Dictionary of Prince Edward Island English draws attention to the phrase cat of gin, formerly identifying a quart container for this liquid. There is also catawumpus, a humorous aside indicating something slightly askew or out of order; and cat ice. a thin layer of ice, under which the water has retreated, and thus incapable of supporting weight. The South Shore Phrase Book adds cat spruce, a short scrub evergreen (properly called the white

spruce), which makes an attractive, but skunky-smelling Christmas tree. These are related to our local dialectic words kippy and kittardy. See Old Tibb for a lengthy explanation. The original sea-cat was probably Ran, the wife the Norse immortal Hler, the god-giant of the open ocean. Her Celtic equivalent was Mhorrigan, the daughter of Dagda, who was given care of the mythic Cauldron of the Deep. These ladies were the death-goddesses for men who died at sea, and were avaricious demanding tribute (in rare metals) from all who came into their realm. This is why mariners in Atlantic Canada still, occasionally, place a coin beneath the main mast of a vessel just before it is set. Like the native North American Indians, certain Fundy fishermen return the bones of fish to the sea without being quite certain what they are about. I've heard my relatives say, "Here's a bit for the old cat". English folklorist Ruth L. Tongue has managed to find an old tale that may be apropos: "There was a gentleman had a beautiful daughter who was bad at heart, and knew more than a Christian should. The villages wanted to swim her (put her to trial for witchcraft), but no one dared because of her father. She drew down a spell on a poor fisherman, and he followed her for love wherever she went. He deserted his own troth-plighted maid, though he was to be married in a week, and he ran away with this other, who he took to sea unbeknownst to the rest (of the fishing fleet). A storm blew up from her presence and all was lost for having a woman on board, though none knew it. It was she that had whistled up the storm that drowned even her own lover, for she had no good for anyone. (A magician tracked her and) turned her into a four-eyed cat, and ever after she haunted the fishing fleet. That is why still men will not cast their nets until half-past three (cock-crow time) - my uncles won't -and why they always throw a bit back into the sea for the cat." Ran and Mhorrigan were the prototypes for this

creature being beautiful woman who were shape-shifters. The trouble with all of the mermaids was the fact that they changed their minds as often as the shape of their bodies. Thus they experienced little domestic bliss and spent most of their time pursuing unfulfilling relationships with human sailors. Hler, the god of the sea, could control all of his element excepting his wife, and he and his Celtic counterpart Ler, were constantly involved with trying to cope with the difficulties that naturally arose from the cat-like conduct of their wives. The mermaids of Somersetshire, England, were termed sea-morgans after the matriarch. Their songs were irresistible to men, and their only failure, on that coast involved a deaf youngster, who had psychic abilities. One of their kind sought to divert this youngster into quicksand; but he, while admiring her face and figure, was repulsed by her seaweed-green hair and could not hear her voice, and so was able to drive her off. Our skippers are loathe to transport lawyers, tailors, dressmakers and clergymen, just like their European cousins. Most interesting of all is the universal fear of letting a representative of Rann on board before a ship sails. In some of our own coast villages, men would actually return home if they met a woman on the way to a proposed sailing. Helen Creighton found that this superstition was still widespread at the middle of this century, and one master-mariner went further: "A woman is considered bad luck, even to christen a boat. Once a boat was being launched (and) a woman wished to christen it. She came to the launching but the owner wouldn't allow it. Nevertheless, the vessel turned over when it was launched and it always had bad luck." A Scotsburn, Nova Scotia, man even warned men against wearing woman's hats at sea, apparently concluding that some of the female spirit of wantoness (and storm) would thus attach to the men and through them infect the ship. Cats are clearly equated with women for another fisherman said, "If a cat passed a fisherman's path, he would go home." There was a particular passion against

black cats, and another respondent explained that "other cats are taken on board as mascots, but never a black one." Notice the hair of mermaids was said to be golden near the surface, but when they passed in the deep, it was always seen to be coal-black like the hide of some cats. It is a law of sympathetic magic that "like attracts like", thus female witches were thought to prefer the these cats as familiars. Black cats, in turn, were seen as magnets for black clouds, a black sea and stormy weather. And remember, "It's bad luck to throw a cat overboard; the one who does will not live to make home." There are eight synonyms for cat in the Gaelic language including pus and the much more poetic luchtigern. The latter identifies Lugh in his guise as “lord of the mice.” Three huge Fomorian cats guarded the entrance to the Otherworld at Cruachan, Ireland. Note that the son of Cruithne founder of the Tuatha cruithne or Picts was a man named Cat. He gave his name to the province of Caithness, Scotland. Note also Innis Cat, the Isle of Cats, which used to be applied to the Shetlands. In Middle English we have Tom Cat, a contraction of Thomas, i.e. a common man as contrasted with a gentleman + cat. He was sometimes entitled Old Tom, and understood to represent the Devil. One cannot say that the mythic Twm Shone Catti of Wales is the prototype but he represents the species: He was born at Tregaron in the Shire of Cardigan in the sixteenth century and took up thievery before becoming a rich man, justice of the peace and mayor of Brecon. Early in his career as a thief Twm visited an iron-monger, pretended interest in a pot, but insisted there was a hole in. Indignant, the smith lifted the vessel above his head and peered at it, but could see no defect. At this, Tom pushed the container firmly over the man's head and while he struggled to free himself removed the rest of his stock-intrade. According to some authorities Tom was the illegitimate son of Sir John Wynn of Gwedir, by the woman named Catharine Jones. He was christened Tom Jones but was better known as the Twm Catti. Between the ages of

eighteen and nineteen he took up stealing to escape from poverty and the demands of his mother. It was said that his disguises were beyond numbering; sometimes he appeared as a cripple; sometimes as a crone; sometimes as an outoof-luck soldier. By no means a specialist at his art, he was particularly interested in taking animals, and was adroit at disguising them, so that he was sometimes able to sell the animals back to their owners. Attempts to apprehend him were futile, he was never at home when people came looking for him. If he was at home he was always incognito. A farmer who had lost a bullock to Tom once came to his door to be greeted by a miserable hag sitting on a stone bench near the doorway. "Does Tom Catti live here?' asked the farmer. "Indeed, yes!" replied the indigent. "Is he at home?" "Oh yes, He is at home." "Then will you hold my horse by the bridle while I seek him?" The crone did so. The man dismounted made a thorough search of the house and came back to the stone bench to find it littered with a woman's clothing. His horse was, of course, missing! Riding to the farmer's house in a new disguise Tom told the farmer's wife that he had been sent for £50 cash to extricate the poor man from legal difficulties. The wife seeing that the stranger had her husband's horse and whip gave up the money and Tom left Wales for several months. Tom was widely known as a thief but he was free with his money in helping the poor and he often ingratiated himself with potential victims with his abilities at song, dance and humour. A little later, Tom came upon a lady at the hands of a highwayman. A handy man with a sword, Tom killed the robber and conducted the good-wife back to the home of her husband. The couple invited him to stay over, and the man of the house being in his cups, Tom treated the lady to a "pentillion about her face, ankles and the tips of her ears." In the process he managed to extract a promise from her that she would re-marry him in case her current husband died. Afterwards this happened as promised and Tom became the lord of Strath Feen, a pleasant valley by the

River Towey. At first Tom was refused by this independent woman who was not keen on taking up with a thief. At her entreaty he left her home and took up residence in a cnoc or "sugar-loaf" mountain just within Shire Car. One who had visited this place (in 1850) described it as "in a very queer situation; steep rocks just above it, Towey river roaring below." There Tom set himself up in his usual business but after a time decided to make one last foray against the widow. Arriving outside her window, which was barred with an iron grill, he left out a pitiful wail that caught her attention. Coming to the window she demanded that he make his case quickly and move on. Given this leeway, Tom cried out, "I am come to bid you one eternal farewell and have but one request to make, which is that you extend your hand so that I may impress upon it one last burning kiss." the woman hesitated a bit, but flattered, at last extended her arm through the bars. Tom caught the limb and his expression changed, "I have you now, "he said flatly, "and you'll not move from here without a solemn oath that you'll be my wife." "Never!" said the lady, "Never will I become the wife of a common thief." Drawing his sword, Tom stared the woman in the eye and responded, "Very well, will it be your hand or your arm?" The lady being cowed and having some fondness for Tom then swore to marry and thus became a man of means. As justice of Camarthenshire he was an extremely able man, noting that if he could not take "car" (booty) then no other should have it. One of the MacLeods of Rassay used the Skye witches in a heavy-handed way so that they finally assembled on the shore of the Narrows at Rassay, where they watched for his galley to sail between the island and Portree. When they saw him at a satisfactory distance from shore some of them shape-changed into cats and swam to the boat, By huddling together on the poop deck they managed enough weight to capsize the craft so that MacLeod was drowned. Afterwards they returned to the shore and changed back into humans.

Modern possession of men by the cat-spirit is not unknown: “Patient X was a 24-year-old depressed man who for thirteen years has believed he is a cat trapped in the body of a human. He has known this ever since the secret was imparted to him by the family cat, that same animal that later taught him “cat language.” Though employed, he spent most of his life in feline activities. He lived with cats, had sexual intercourse with them, hunted with them, and frequented cat night spots... Against all evidence he clung firm to his beliefs, even after medication with haloperidol antidepressants and carbamaxepine, and six years of insight-oriented-psychotherapy.” McLeann Hospital, Boston, 1988. CATANACH, Chattanach, Chattan. MG. pl. Cattanich. They claimed descent from Gillacatan , “the lad of the Cat, a servant of Saint Catan, whose name denotes “little cat.” CAT-DUBH, SIr. catt, a cat; dubh, black. The black cat is the totem animal of many highland clans and is shown as a device in heraldry. In some places it is considered an animal of ill-omen since it serves as a banshee of death and destruction. This is particularly so for the Macleods of Gesto on the Isle of Skye. "They dreaded the appearance of a black cat when a death was about to occur in the family, and such is the force of inheritance it is feared by some of the descendants of that family down to the present day. Some of the Mackinnons of Strath, in Skye, had such a horror of cats that they could tell when one was in the room, without seeing it." (Dr. Keith Macdonald, Celtic Monthly, 1902, p. 87). Not so the Cattanich, or Clann Chattan, who some claim were the descendants of St. Catan, whose name denotes "Little Cat." This animal is the traditional familiar or taibhse of the Gaelic boabh or “witch.” Particularly identified with the goddess Mhorrigan. Fishermen, at sea, often threw a portion of their catch into the sea to propitiate this "old cat." In Gaelic parts it is thought that wishes can be fulfilled by stroking the back of a black cat using three

fingers. It is similarly auspicious to have a black cat walk directly towrd you but unlucky to have it cross your path. Some folk regard the black cat as allied with the ailpe saying that its breath causes cancer in humans and that it has killed babies “by sucking their breath away.” CAT MAC CRUITHNE. Founding father of the Tuatha cruithne, or Picts. He gave his name to the Scottish province of Cait, still known as Caithness. CATH. Fight, battle. Winnow the chaff; a popular class of tale among the Gaels. Cathag, the jackdaw or battle-bird. In the early "wars" men managed to get exercise but relatively few people were killed. As Gywnn Dyer says this was a time when there were "no leaders, no strategy, and no tactics", when only kinship groups were usually involved "most often to revenge a killing or a ritual offense committed by another group..." Warfare was, at its "best", "an important ritual, an exciting and dangerous game, and perhaps an opportunity for self expression, but it (was) not about power...and it most certainly (was) not about wholesale slaughter." 1 Gwynne Dyer says that "the gulf between primitive and civilized societies is as vast in warfare as it is in other respects. The essence of the Neolithic revolution was not the discovery...that food could be obtained more reliably and in greater abundance by planting and harvesting crops and taming or breeding animals...It was the insight that human will and organization could exercise control over the natural world - and over large numbers of human beings."2 In other words, the development of agriculture allowed the creation of a class-society whose most elevated members began to see the possibilty of great personal gain in exercising power. Lewis Mumford has suggested that it was "the essence of civilization" to exert power in all its forms. The roots of the first civilizations, he claimed, are to be found in states that were so absolutist and awesomely cruel they make

Nazi Germany seem a moral commonplace. Dyer thinks that the first experiments at weilding power went to the heads of the earliest leaders of state causing them to build practical irrigation canals on one hand, and to pursue vast personal memorials, such as the pyramids, on the other. Between ends, powerful men waged wars of extermination which were often little more than personal vendettas waged with the complicity of newly "civilized" men. CATHAIR, a city, a place where corn is fanned, OIr. cathir, Cy. caer, Bry. kaer. Lat. castrum. The root is cat+ air, the latter, high. CATHAIR AOINE, City of Aoine. A standing stone said enspirited by this goddess, who was sometimes said to confer with Mhorrigan. Those who sat upon it were in danger of losing their sanity. Any person who presumed to sit there three times became witless for life. Those already insane, animals and people, flocked here to Aoine’s place where she once rendered curesalong with “tea and sympathy.” “She had power over the whole body and sometimes gave gifts of poetry or music. She not infrequently gave her love to men, and they called her the Leanan Sith, the “Sweetheart of the Folk.” See Aine. CATHAL. Kathal, OCy. Catgual, i.e. Katu-valos, “Donald of the wars,” val, being a contraction of Domhnall (which see). From these M’All and Mackail. Most notably the Irish born missionary-priest of the seventeenth century whose relics created an Italian cult at Taranto in 1071. He was said adept at healing ruptures and was influential in governing weather. CATHBAD, A druid of Trataige Mag Inis, the personal advvisor of Conchobhar mac Nessa. He married Maga the widow of Ross the Red, and had by her Dechtire, the mother of the famous Cúchullain. His other children were: Elbha, the mother of Naoise and Findchaem, the mother of Conall of the Victories. He prophesied that Deirdre’s great beauty would bring destruction upon Ulster and that Cúchullain would

have a short but glorious life. He was persuaded to lure Naoise and his brothers out of the Red Branch Hostel, but when Conchobhar killed them in contravention of the laws of hospitality of Ireland, the druid cursed him and his Capital-city of Emain Macha. CATH NA COILLEACH, cath, battle, contention, wrath, fight; coilleag, smart blows. The power of the warrior was said magically inspired, and sometimes assisted by, supernatural spirits. CATHUBODUA, cath, battle; bodha, a submerged rock. A name for the raven or crow of battle, an entitlement of the goddess of war, who was sometimes called Mebd or Baobd. CATRIONA, the Gaelic form of Catherine or Catherine. It also occurs as the Ir. Caitriona, and in the phonetic forms Catrina, Katrina, Katrine, Katarina, Katrriona and Katrena. Appears to be a combination of cat+rionnach, a “streaked or spotted cat.”In Scotland the preferred Scot. spelling is Catherine or Kathryn at the present time. The name is diminished as Kathleen and a pet forms include Kay, Kerry, Kit, Kitty, Kate and Cathy. Cf. Karen. CATTAIB, “Among the Cats.” At the period before the Norse invasion The Cats occupied the northeastern mainland of Scotland. The Cats originally held more lands than Caithness. The old name for Sutherlandshire was Caittaibh. The land between the present Ord of Caithness and Dunrobin was termed Braigh Chat, “The Upland of the Cats.” This tribe appartently originated in the north-east and entered Sutherlandshire occupying the eastern and south-eastern parts of that place. At the present day a Sutherland may be called a catach. The Earl of Sutherland has long held an upright cat on his bearings and is entitled the Morair Chat, or “Great Cat.” The Duke of those lands is Diuc Chat, while the Kyle of Sutherland is referred to as an caol Catach. The Norsemen said that these were a Pictish people and called their lands Pettaaland-fjorthr, Opentland Firth, but they were at least allied with certain Teutonic tribesmen from

Hesse. CÉ, spouse of the earth, the “Earth.” “Night.” The sun-god Lugh, reincarnate as the son of Cruithne, the founder of the Tuatha cruithne, or Picts. They gave his name to the ancient province of Alba now within the regions entitled Marr and Buchan. This word is only used, at present, in the expression, an cruinne cé, “the round earth.” In EIr it was seen in bith cé, “on this earth.” The root is taken as the Celtic kei, he, which is related to the verb kei, to go, to move. Also note the Lat. ce or cis, the Eng. he. The old daygod He is represented in the Cymric tongue as Hu and in Gaelic as Lugh or Aoidh. The latter is the Eng. Kay. The word may confer with the Celtic skei, shaded, or covered by, suggesting the cohabitation of the Earth with the Sun. CÉ, a druid to Nuada who was mortally wounded at the second battle of Magh Tuireadh. The Lough Cé burst from the ground where he was buried. CEANN, head, head of yarn, heads of corn and thus, “The Harvest Home.” Also a headland, genius, ingenuity, , leadere, commander, chief. CEAL, stupor, forgetfulness from the root gel, to conceal, EIr. cel, death, ceal, the end, the Eng. seal and sealed, based on the name of the ON goddess Hel who was sealed in the Underworld. Note cealaich, to conceal, to eat, to put away; cealg, guile, treachery, hypocrisy; cealtar, a broad-cloth covering, and ceall, a hermit’s cell and by extension a church. From this last cealloir, the superior of a Christian church and the name Mackellar. CEALG, guile, treachery, EIr. celg, root the Indo-European qel, to destroy. This word is at the root of Celt. CEANAIDEACH, Ceanadaidh, Kennedy, Kenedy, family name of the old earls of Carrick, a famed Irish name born by the father of Boru ard-righ. Ir. Ceinneidigh, EIr. Cennétich, literally the “one with the ugly head.” Called also

M’Ualraig. Ualgharg may be the Eng. Warwick. CEANN, head, point, hilt, top, chief, a genius, harvest-home, OIr. cend, cenn, the “first,” or “most important,” the seat of god-spirit. Thus it was that Gaelic heroes hunted heads. Conal of the Victories once told his enemy Cet that he would not allow a night to pass when he did not sleep with the head of a dead Connacht-man beneath the bend of his knee. Cet admitted being unequal to Conal but noted, “if Auluan were here he would give you conterst for contest.” At this the Ulsterman drew Aulan’s head from hiding and threw it against his chest with such force that “a rush of blood broke from his lips.” The Roman Posidonius, travelling through Gaul noticed this interest in heads: “When they depart for battle they hang the heads of their enemies from their horses, and when they brought them home, nailed them to the entrance of their houses.” Another Roman observed that when the Celts killed an official they severed his head, “and bore their prize in triumph to their most sacred temple. There, according to their habit, they cleaned it, decorated the skull with gold, and employed it as a sacred vbessel for the pouring of libations...” Again, Cúchulainn, warring against Connacht, cut off the heads of four charioteers “and tossed them to the four points of the tree fork.” On another day he was opposed by twelve men and he took their heads, afterwards planting twelve stones on the ground, “setting a head on each stone.” Didorus and Strabbo both speak of the heads being embalmed in cedar oil, so that they might be displayed without decay or odour. Anne Ross has said that “The human head was regarded by the Celts as being symbolic of divinty and otherworld powers. The motif of the severed head figures throughout the entire field of Celtic cult practice...” CEANN ANNS TREASE, a “face in thirds,” the tricephalos, three faces arising from a single head. Seen particularly in stone-carvings all across Celtic Europe. One of these from Corleck, County Cavan, Ireland is clean-shaven suggesting

the Celtic prototype for the Iron Age. The eyes are closely set but wide, the mouth narrow, the nose long and narrow. A hole at the base suggests it was Originally erected upon a stone pillar for exhibition and veneration. Another, recovered from a later stone wall at Woodlands, County Donegal shows three quite different faces although they are all stylistically similar. These groupings are not surprising considering the Celtic grouping of deities in threes. Triplets and twins were considered under divine protection and there are also many janiform heads in Britain and Gaul. The Irish stones are said more closely allied with pagan than Christian times. CEAPAG, an impromptu verse, music which is sung “off the cuff.” EIr. a chorus in song, from ceap, to catch (on the fly). The refrain sung by girls at Gaelic gatherings. CEÂRD, a craftsman especially any kind of smith, a tinker, mechanic, EIr. cerd, Cy. cerdd, manual ability, Lat. cerdo. Ceârdach, a smithy, combining ceârd + cae, the latter word being allied with the Eng. home. CEARR, wrong, awkward, unlucky, cutting, wounding, aatray, to the left, left-handed, cearrag, the left-hand, Lat. cerritus, crazed, mad, see car. See next. CEARRACH, CEARRAICHE, any master of one’s art or profession, a gamester, a shark, a dextrous or left-handed gambler. a dicer. Conferring with cearrbhag, left-handed, the use of which was considered almost immoral. The word is related to car, to twist or turn, to dance in the lefthanded fashion. All abilities beyond the common ken were considered supernaturally inspired. A good proportion of the northern Gaels are left-handed this was once considered a "gift" from questionable "gods." Particularly implicated were the Kerrs and the Mackays and the Keiths, who seem to have picked up this genetic peculiarity from Norse invaders. Left-handedness has many disadvantages, but it assisted

sleight-of-hand at the gaming table and could be useful where men approached one another with uncertain intentions. It was usual to extend the right hand in a handclasp of friendship since this immobilized the fighting arm. Lefties, however, could always carry a extra knife up their left sleeve and could act with it while seemingly in a friendly mode. In addition, the Kerrs regularly built keeps with spiral stairways which wound their way upwards "against the sun. This meant that right handed-warriors found themselves at a distinct disadvantage when they found themselves within, for their sword constantly crashed into side-walls, while their left-handed opponents fought in the clear air without encumbrance. All this was considered the effect of conspiring with unnatural spirits in the unseen world. CEART, right, just, honest, proper, certain, fair. See next. CEARTLEADH, CHEARTLEADH, a clew used in magic making. Ceart, right, Latin, certus, Eng. certain, sure. Leaden, a lock or tassel, flowing unbound hair, threads. In the process the magic maker might cast he hair or thread from a spool before him or her. The baobhs preferred the ceartleadh uaine, the “blue-clew of witchcraft” as their instrument while the giants employed ceartleadh dubh “the black clew.” see correspondence with the next. CEASG, floss, an animal with long thin hair or wool, the “hairy-ones.” Ir. ceaslach, long-haired, the Gaelic merwoman. In Brittany these women were known as the Morgans or as the Groac'h Vor; on the Isle of Man they were termed the Ben-Varrey and in Ireland, as the Murivgach or Merrows. They were more matronly than the river women, but these spirits from "The Land under the Waves," were beautiful in spite of their advanced age, promiscuity, and repeatedchild-bearing. They had the peculiarity that their hair colour changed from a dark green or black in deep waters to a blinding yellow in sunlight. Scotsman say that

a man who captured a mermaid might demand one gift, or bit of useful information, from her before letting her go. Traditions of merfolk are chiefly a tradition of the sea-coast of north-eastern Scotland. High Miller (1857) said that mermaids were commonly seen there “less than fifty years ago.” Sir Hugh Reid (1870) said that: “In a village (at Buchan) there lived a man who had seen and conversed with a mermaid under the a great cliff of the Butlers of Buchan.” Another writer remembered a mermaid pitching along in the waves before the bowsprit of a vessel sailing out of Peterhead. Not long after this ship was seen driven on the rocks near Glamis Castle with all hands lost at sea. A mermid was captured by Roderick Mackenzie of Rosshire, but granted her freedom after she promised that no one should ever drown on any boat boat he happened to build. The promise was kept and it was guessed that “some of his boats are still defying the stormy winds and waves of the west coast.” Cromarty had a titular mermaid as did Galloway. The latter frequented the shore of Solway Firth near the mouths of the Nith and the Orr. The ballad of the Mermaid mentioned in The Minstelsy of the Scottish Border was founded on a tale of a relationship between a mermaid from the whirlpool of Corryvreckan (the cailleach bheurr) with a MacPhee of Colonsay. CEATHRAMH, quarter, fourth, lodgings. Same as cairteal. lodgings, chartulary, a challenge, an edict. The “flitting” or rent-paying days of Samhain, Imbolc, Beltane and Lunastain. The “fay” moving days. CEIL, conceal, Ir. ceilim, OIr. celim, Cy. celu, Indo-European qel;, the Lat. celo, Eng. con-ceal, AS. helan, to hide, the Eng. Hell, the ON. goddess Hel. Skr. kala, darkness. The Norse referred to the Scots as helr, perhaps because they lived in souterrains. Note céile, a spouse or fellow and Cé another name for the god Lugh. These names suggest a wayfarer since the root word kei means “to go.” From this we also have célidh, a meeting “by the way.” Note also ceall, a cell or church, and the diminished cillein, a stored heap, often

forgotten; a purse, hoarded treasure. See next. CEILIDH, a gossiping visit or meeting, sojurn, pilgrimage. “Within doors the folk told the tales and sand the ballads of the Fayne, or the less ancient heroes, the Lord of the Isles, Macleod of Dunvegan, and our own treasure, Clanranald, with for Sundays and holy days beautiful legends of Iona and Oronsay. But ever as midnight drew nearer, the tales and the songs and the distant roar of the Western Sea grew weirder, until at last song and tale ceased, and the fire smouldered and the cruise-light flickered, and the folk whispered, while over the ceildih crept the shadow of night and the mysteries hiding therein. “Sweet is the song of the lark at dawn, said the Eigg folk, “but sweeter the crow of the cock at midnight.” “Of short giving is gold, of long giving is song!” CEIRTLE, CEIRALE, a clew, a ball of yarn. a coil, OIr. certle, from EIr. qert bent (by the wind), wind. Skr. kart, spin Eng. cartilage and hurdle. The blue clew was the standard tool of druidic magical practise. The blue clew was wound about the body be women who thought themselves liable to “ephemeral fevers” while nursing their children. The threads used were handed down through generations of women and were counted most useful where they were ancient. The baobhe used the clews to raise the dead and in Scotland, “Winning the Blue Clew,” is a well-known Hallowe’en rite. In the Shetlands the “wresting thread” was formed of black wool, on which the practitioner cast nine knots. This was wound about a break or a sprain while intoning: The Lord rade, And the foal slade; He lighted And he righted. Let joint be to joint, Bone to bone, And sinew to sinew Hea, in the name of the Ghost!

This is one of numerous incantations surviving in a pagan-Christian mix. In some cases the clews were of animal hair: “Helen Gray of Slains was found guilty of taking “the haill substance of the mylk of my lordis ky and youis (ewes),” and as late as 1826 a woman at Dingwall was accused to charming away the substance (nnutrient value) of the milk. The witch usually operated by the method known as “drawing the tether.” While tugging at a hair-rope made by taking a hair from the tail of every cow within reach and twisting them together, she muttered an incantation. The Witch of the Carse of Gowrie, it is said, was seen pulling at a hair rope along which streams of milk were flowing...” (The Silver Bough, Vol. 1, p. 145). CÉIS CHURAINN, CÉIS CURAINN. céis, a case, a hamper, a container, Ir. ceis, basket; allied with Lat. cista, Eng, covering, case. A mysterious cave where three sorceresses imprisoned some of the Fiann. They were rescued by Goll mac Morna.. See this last. CÉITEIN, the month of May. Beginning of Summer, spring, fair weather, any favourable time, OIr. cetam, from the earlier cetsoman or cet-shaman, the first of summer, the time of beginnings for the goddess Samh (which see). The ending may be derived from tainneamh, the beginning time or some combination of words indicating the half-year. In the ancient world there were only two seasons: samhradh, which is the exact equivalent of summer and geamradh, which we call winter. The summer season started with the coming to power of a virgin goddess, sometimes alternately called the Mhorrigan. Her power terminated at the firefestival of the Samhainn, which took place on the last day of October. At that time, she became reincarnate as the Cailleach bheurr who had charge of the winter months. At the Beltane, or summer fire-festival, the Samh became reincarnate from her winter counterpart as the virginprincess of the Gaels. This woman was ritually represented at pagan fire-festivals and at Tara she was deflowered on an annual basis by the ard-righ, or “high king.” This act

was supposed to bring fertility to the fields, the beasts and the people of the region. CÉLI, DÉ, of the cell of God, the monastic sect of Christians known as the Culdees or Servants of God. An historic order they have notice here for their part in preserving the myths of the past. Their order was founded by St, Mael Ruain of Tallacht about the year 793 A.D. They appeared In Ireland and Scotland as a loosely-knit group of missionaries and continued in the latter country until the fourteenth century, succumbing at last to the Roman Church. CÉLIDAIR, “Cell of the Oak,” now Kildare, Scotland. the first community founded by St. Brigit in that country. CEILLIDH, wise or sober actions, from ciall, having sense or understanding, EIr. gei, to observe, see, shine. A housevisit; first-footing. The act of visting one’e neighbours at the beginning of a new year. The leader of the calluinnvisit had to be a dark-haired male if the host was to have good luck in the coming year. CEILE, Eng. Celt, a spouse, a fellow, a “cell-mate;” OIr. cele, a way-farer, traveller, sociable, based on the Celtic verb kei, “to go.”; allied with the Brythonic kei, shaded, covered, the earth. Similar to the Irish Gaelic sétig, from sét or cet, the “way.” Hence a fay-folk, those banished from the haunts of “true men.” From this celidh, a gossiping visit, a social hour, a meeting for fun, music and gossip. Note also Céitein, May-month. This is the Old Irish cétam, the month of rites of the Tuatha daoine which were termed the Samhainn. Mcbain breaks cetam into cét + sam and translates it as “the first weather of the sam or summer.” He fails to note that Samh is the goddess of Summer incarnate, perpetually renewable, and like Hel, full of “hellish” fire, a “parti-coloured goddess.” The male equivalent of this lady is the day god Aod. Perhaps also related to ceil, conceal, hide and the Eng. hell. Note also ceilt, the act of concealment, and ceileach, military arts, war. The Norse hildr, the Anglo-Saxon hild, war. The root

may be gel, to slay, to “freeze” the blood. from these sources.


may derive

The Greek form Keltaoi is the Latin Celtae, which they seem to have reserved by them for tribes located in southern Gaul, now called France. It confers with their verb celo, to hide or conceal from view. It has loose connections with cella, a store-room, a dwelling for servants, a rustic villa, a sanctuary or shrine enclosed by woods, a sanctuary for the image of a deity. The word is also associated with celsus, an adjective applied to those of a “high and mighty,” or proud nature. The word has special refernce to activities of the mind, and Cicero explained it as indicating “elevated, high, lofty,” or “great.” Lexiconographer Alexander Macbain says that related words are found in the English “excel” and the Lithuanian kéltas, raised on high, the root in this case being qel, the verb “to slay,” hence “slayers of men.” This appears to be the Anglo-Saxon hild or held, war, the Old Norse hildr, to strike down; thus the Celtae were characterized as a nasty tribe. No wordsmith has linked the Latin cella with the Gaelic coille, but we think the parallel is apparent, since the latter word means “wood-landers.” Related to this is cald , having a sharp point (as trees are wont) and calad, a sheltered place or harbour. Note also cailleach, the hidden one, the veiled one, an old hag or witch, a wood’s-woman. The Celtic root here probably confers with the English words hollow, heel, hole and hell. Note that the AngloSaxons called the northern Scots helrs,, after the disbarred goddess who ruled their underworld. The old Gaelic word chaillinn, attaches to all this, having the sense of “in the bowels of the woods.” In very antique times the Romans referred to the great forest of highland Albion (Scotland) as Silva Caledonii, the Forest of the Caledonians. Their retreats in Sutherlandshire and Ross-shire were known to the Britons as Car Coit Celidon. the “forest where the ships turn,” a reference to the northernmost part of Scot;and. Among the Anglo-Saxons it was Dun-Callden, Dun-Kallen or Dun-Keld, the Gaelic counterpart being Dun-Chaillinn. One

might think that Caledonia was the source of the Celtic people, but they did not originate here and were never a single homogenous race. Celt was, rather, the name given the first transalpine people to emerge in recorded history. They confer with the mythic Hyperboreans and the historic Gauls, and their numbers included the Welsh, the Scots and the Irish. In an expansive mood by 900 B.C., they already possessed great skills in working metals, particularly iron, a metal only then beginning to be used by the “classical” world. Their first settlements in Britain may have dated as early as 2000 B.C. but their major influx to the islands was made in the second century A.D. when their European empire began to decline. During the sixth century they had colonies in northern Italy and were in constant war with the expanding Roman Empire. In 390 B.C. they had defeated the Roman armies and sacked Rome but eventually the Romans reasserted their independence. The Italian Celts were swept into the Empire in 196 B.C. Although Julius Caesar led two expeditions to Britain in 55 B.C. and 54 B.C. it remained independent of Rome until 43 A.D. The Empire had to be content with walling off the Picts of northern Scotland and never conquered Ireland. Celtic civilization was finally smashed by the expanding French and English empires. The Hyperboreans were first referred to as Keltaoi by the Greek geographer Hecatætus a century before Herodotus composed his histories. Kelt-os has the meaning of a elevated or “lofty”place, and is thought derived from the verb qel, to raise up or to go (to the heights). Herodotus, taking up the name, said that the Celts lived “beyond the pillars of Hercules.” This could be any location within Oceanus , the “Great River” thought to encircle the earth. Aristotle clarified matters by saying that these people lived “beyond Spain.” Another Greek, Hellanicus of Lesbos, a historian of the fifth century, thought that the Celts were “just and righteous men.” Ephorus, who lived about 350

B.C., noted that they had “the same customs as the Greeks,” and implied that they had friendly relationships with the Greek states. His contemporary, the philosopher named Plato was differently disposed toward them saying that they were among the races who were “drunken and combative” and likely to act in a barbarous manner. Certainly this was how the Romans saw them when they sacked Rome in the third century B.C. In the year 273 B.C. they supported this reputation by sacking the city of Delphi, formerly the seat of a much revered god. Dr. T. Rice Holmes like to think of them as “tall, fair, warlike, and masterful,” their origins being somewhere in the neighbourhood of the River Danube (thus their matriarch Danu). A large numbers of them clustered about the headwaters of this river but there is no certainty that they had their beginnings in this place. Wherever they came from, they seemed to spill out of this reservoir infiltrating all of the middle of E urope, becoming especially dominant in France, Spain and the British islands. There were palaeolithic and neolithic peoples in all these places when the Celts arrived. These earlier folk were not without resources having built the huge stone monuments of Europe and created weapons and tools of bronze. Celtic technology was only marginally better because they possessed an ability to work iron, but this was enough to make them a ruling caste. They imposed their language, traditions, arts and crafts on those they subjugated, but inadvertently took much in return, especially where religion was concerned. In the forefront of the armed invasions which eventually came to their parts, the Celts were neither strong enough nor united enough to win out against better organized peoples. Attempts were once made to characterize the Celts as a racial type: The Romans, after seeing the Gauls, described them as “tall, blonde and large bodied” thus underwriting Dr. Holme’s model. Some Victorian ethnologists insisted they were “of a short round-headed race with brown or

black hair and brown or grey eyes.” On reflection Dr. T. Rice Holmes noticed that the ancient Germans were also tall and fair and guessed that the Celts were actually more ruddy in complexion and “red in their fairness.” A scientist named Ripley even published a map of “comparative nigrescence” (lightness of darkness) for the Races of Europe and much was made of ancient sightings, all leading to the conclusion that “the true Celts were certainly fair.” Rolleston noted that the Irish Celts described by Giraldus Cambrensis in the twelfth century were “a fair race.” No modern scientist would read much in this unless that it could be shown that this visitor saw a good sample of the population. Almost all that can be certainly said is that the Celts had an unusual weight in red-headed people, and if this was a marker, their gene-pool reached into Turkey and Egypt and even the Americas and perhaps to the borders of China. We cannot say that the mummies of Xinjiang, China spoke a Celtic tongue, but they are clothed in woollen garments of a European weave and many of them retain startling red heads of hair. So far 113 of their graves have been unearthed at the borders of western China and the corpses have been variously dated at from 1200 to 2000 B.C. In addition to the well preserved physical evidence Chinese texts from that period make it clear that the locals had been unhappy in their relations with these aggressive “barbarians.” The artifacts found with these heat-dried corpses are very “Celtic:” One gentleman has his right wrist tied with a red and blue entwined thread and the body of an infant is seen with a similar protective device. These colours are those of the “fay-people” and, in rural areas which were once Celtic, thread is still wrapped about people and animals to ward off evil. Almost all the corpses are seen to wear felt hoods, and one 2,200 year-old female corpse was recovered complete with a tall, wide-brimmed “witch-hat,” said to have been “a symbol of prestige.” Even more interesting is the 4000 year-old “Loulan mummy,” who sports a very Celtic feather, another common marker of high social standing.

Since the Celts made no maps their distribution across the land is pure conjecture but their place-names are helpful. The fifth and sixth centuries before the birth of Christ were their epiphany of power, although their “golden age” was hardly noticed in early Greece or Rome and had little influence on the history of southern Europe. About the year 600 B.C. they did take northern Italy from its Etruscan overseers. They liked that property and settled in nearby Cisapline Gaul, where many place names reveal their one-time presence. There is Mediolanum (Milan), Addua (Adda), Viro-dunum (Verdun) and Cremon, all names from the Celtic vocabulary. The last is, for example, a variant of creamh, their name for garlic. In that region, the Celts left a living testament in the Latin Vergil. His family took its name from a very common Celtic suffix, ver, meaning very bright, glowing or illustrious. CEIT, CHEIT, a poetical construct of the following word. CEITEAN (kaych-en), the Ir. Bhealtaine, the month of May on the Scottish Gaelic calendar. Fair weather, the beginning of spring, the beginning of summer. Any favourable season. Ceit + Samh, beginning + summer. The Bry. Month Cantlos, twenty nine days in length, also corresponding with May. See Samhuinn, Samh. The night following the thirteentn day of this month “old-style” is said to be “a particularly busy season for both fairies and witches. This is because it correponds with the eve of May Day as it was once counted before the Georgian calendar became vogue. “Then every herd and dairy maid and cannie housewife uses various arts to ward off the many evils the enemy has the power of inflicting. “ One ruse particular mentioned for this time was the placing of a little tar behind the right ear of every cow and under the arms of all careful householders. “Tar has a disinfecting quality as is well known” and was always used in this fashion by visitors to any sick-room. Ceitach, possessed by Samh, belonging to the summer season. CELTCHAIR. A son of Uthecar Hornskin. A Red Branch

warrior, his wife had an affair with Blath Bruige, who was summarily slain at Emain Macha. At the time King Conchobhar mac Nessa and Cúchullain were playing the game fidchell in a room directly below the place of the murder. Blood dripped on the gaming table and Celtchair was brought before the law for violating the hospitality of the palace. As eric he was required to rid Ireland of three scourges: one was Conganchas mac Daire, the brother of Cu Roi, who was laying waste the country since no weapon could kill him. Celtchair instructed his daughter to sleep with the giant and learn if he had a weakness. From her he learned that the big fellow could be killed by a spear thrust through the calves of his legs, and he soon arranged this. The second scourge was an infernal dog, which he also dispatched. The last was a similar monster, and he also killed it. In the process the venomous blood of the animal fell on his bare flesh and he soon followed the animal into the Dead Lands. CÉ MAC CRUITHNE. The founder of the race known as the Cruithne (the Picts). He gave his name to ancient Alba in the vicinity of Marr and Buchan.

CEÒ (keow), fog, mist, Norse, sky, a cloud, amazement. Less often, milk, English sky. The idea is that of "covering" or "hiding from view." Fog was considered enspirited, an embodiment of the Daoine sidh. Ceob, a dark nook, drizzle,ceoban, rain and mist, ceobhach, drunkeness. CEÒ SIDE, mist of the Daoine sidh; led astray. Weathermagic was a preoccupation of the Tuatha daoine. Confronted by omens that suggested that the invading Milesian forces would be successful against them, the Tuathans avoided direct battle by raising a mist and storms, which caused their fleet to be dispersed upon the ocean. To determine the nature of this enshroudment, the Milesians sent a man up the rigging. When he shouted from the masthead "There is no storm aloft," they realized it was a powerful illusion. Afterwards, when they were banished to the "hollow hills" and were renamed the "side-hill people" the Tuathans were

forced to use the "ceo side" as a means of travelling by day. The druids supposedly learned this art of weather-magic from the Daoine sidh and when Saint Patrick came into their jurisdiction, they produced a similar cloud that reputedly covered three-quarters of Ireland for several days. Advancing into the pall, Patrick directed his own charms against it and it dispersed in sunlight. Patrick calmly noted that while the gods of the druids could bring down darkness, only the one God, "and he is my druid," could create light from darkness. CEÒL (kewll) music, Gaelicized Latin piplio, to chirp like a bird. Perhaps, alternately from the Cy. pib, a pipe. The practise of music was considered a magical craft. Men were criticized for feeding women "false music", from the ancient word-craft. Awe of the sorcery of words was equalled by the Celtic belief in the magic of music. The "puirt-a-beul" (mouth-music) is obviously a survival of the art of the filid. "Beul" also appears in "beultainne", or Beltane, the ancient name for their month of May and the second great fire-festival of the year, which was held on the evening of the last day of April. Beultainne translates as "mouth of fire", a night of ritual sex, sacrifice, dancing, drinking and music, probably including the puirt-a-beul. It may be suspected as the invention of Ogma since it consists of repetitive sounds which have no more meaning in Gaelic than English. The other instruments of music were the single pipe, or whistle, the bag-pipe and the harp. The chief of these was the harp, which was first played by Dagda (Father of Day), the Celtic king of the gods. When the Dagda's wife Boann, or Boyne, was pregnant the Dagda solaced her with the "harp of the north". When she was in labour he imitated her cries of pain and then the joy of her delivery, afterwards making "the sounds odf sleep" to bring her rest. When she awoke she named her first-born Goltraighe (crying music), her second Geantraighe (joyful music) and Suantraighe (sleep music). In later days this harp was stolen by Fomorian giants, but regained from them

by Dagda's sons, Midir and Lugh. The big Lugh, or Lugg, fell heir to it, and was later known as the god of poetry, music and free-love. Facsimilies of this quadrangular, six-stringed instrument fell into the hands of the associates of the gods and it was put to use by Labrai Loingsiuch when he courted Moriath, daughter of Scoriath. The parents did not approve of this musician and they called upon her father's harper to help them. He played at the next feast moving through geantraighe to suantrighe, so that the entire assembly nodded at the table. The young couples absented themselves from the hall and became lovers. The adults arose to find Moriath "respiring the breath of a plighted wife." Something similar occured in the case of Deirdre, the daughter of Dall, a rhymer to King Conor. She had been illomened, "a child of disaster" according to Cathbad the Druid. As a result she was kept in seclusion and bethrothed to Conor, but before the wedding, fell in love with Naisi of Clan Usnach. Naisi was a superb harpist who, literally, enchanted the men of Ulster so that he could flee to Scotland with Deirdre. Unfortunately, this act opened a war which exterminated all of the Usnach family. The harper was a freeman in each place, not as high in rank as the poet, but placed just below him at the king's banquets. The chief harper, the "ollam" or "ard ollam" (high professor) of his craft was, however a man among the gentry, entitled to four cows where his honour was totally offended, as for example in the loss of a finger. Even the loss of a nail demanded recompense for the old Gaelic harp was played by plucking. Besides the harp there were wind and brass instruments in the Celtic lands: horns to call men together for meetings or warfare and the pipes, which were the magic of the peasantry. Performers on the latter instrument were classed with jugglers and sleight-of-hand magicians, a professional class who sat at the bottom of

the king's table, in the corners near the door, next to hired mercenaries, and those who were not freemen. The first Christian missionaries utilized the word and song-smithery as often as the druids and the boadbs, but their successors feared the roots of folklore. In 1567 Bishop Carswell complained of "the vain, seductive, lying and worldly tales concerning the Tuatha daoine" as well as "much else, which I will not enumerate".4 The magicalpoetry was very hard to way-lay, since it had no external parts. There is a Scottish dite that says: An end will come to the world, But music and love will endure. Men at sea were not observed by priests, elders or ministers and they continued to sing the "iorram" or boat songs, whose magic was supposed to lift the burden of rowing. The milkmaid insisted on her traditional occupational songs, without which cows refused their milk. The housewife had her churning tunes and rest-music for the infants. When people gathered to mill cloth they sang the "oran luaidh", or milling song in spite of the fact that it had been declared sinful. Later in the process "pairing songs", intended to bring together potential maidens and young men were presented, and the cloth was completed with a neo-pagan consecration song. 5 The poetry of the Gael is also seen to have played a part in medicine, herbs and mare's milk, bark being no more important than the human voice in managing cures for illness. Neil Macdonald of Albert Bridge Cape Breton recommended the following "Eolas an t-Sniomh", or "Charm Thomson ed., Foirm na n-Urrnuidheadh, London, 1970, p. 11 for the Gaelic version which served asan introduction to Carswell's Gaelic prayer book. Charles W. Dunn, Highland Settler, pp.37-41 for a complete description of a Milling Frolic.
5See 4R.L.

for A Sprain" where a horse had been injured: Christ came out; He found the bones of a horse broken. He placed blood to blood and flesh to flesh; As he cured that, so cure this. 6 As the Gaelic was intoned Charles Dunn said that the "physician" wrapped a string "in a special manner" around the horses damaged leg. Hugh Mackinnon has said that the knot was not special, but had to be tied using the thumbs and forefingers alone.7 This charm worked as well with humans as horses and cattle, and the same could be said for the "Eolas an Deideidh" or "Charm for Toothache" and the "Eolas na Sul", "Charm for the Eyes". For best results charms were recited by "gifted" or "lucky" individuals. Within the "Gaidhealtachd", or Gaeldom, there have always been traditional restraints placed on poets. The longer more elaborate histories and wonder-tales were regarded as the preserve of male reciters. Although women occasionally recited the shorter "senachas" they were considered the custodians of songs, musical traditions and charms. In Cape Breton, Neil MacNeill said that he could not recall an instance where a woman had recited the Fenian tales, although connstraints were relaxed in Canada as compared with Scotland and Ireland, and there were "a large number of good woman story-tellers." If word-magic was hard to supress, instrumental music was not, for the harp, lyre, and bellow-pipes were easily confiscated by the elders of the Church. In Scotland the men of God brought down everything but the bagpipe, which belonged to the teanant farmers, who were the last to part with their paganism. Fortunately, the clerics were

W. Dunn, Highland Settler, p. 42. Recounted to the author in


Down North, p.30.

slow in following their flocks to the New World and in America the bagpipes, and the newly created fiddle, flourished "although some settlers' descendants were perplexed by their own conflicting allegiances to religion and to music, (and may) still feel a little dubious about them."8 This ambiguity was clearly locked into the pagan idea that music and poetry were god-like. In its day, eloquence was valued as highly as bravery in battle and could supposedly stay the arm of the most inspired fighter. Diodorus Siculus a Greek historian of the first century B.C., observed that when "two armies are in the presence of one another, and swords drawn and spears couched, the Celtic poets throw themselves into the midst of the combatants and appease them as if charming wild beasts. Thus even amongst the most savage barbarians anger submits to the rule of wisdom..." 9 It is clear that the Celts also used word-magic in less studied form, for their irrational drumming and chanting unnerved the Romans who guarded the boundaries of their domain. In addition to this, they came to battle shaking their short spears, the blunt ends of which carried brass rattles. This had magical intent, but also helped their cause by making the enemy overestimate their strength. Current day folklorists and historians have difficulty believing that such magic existed. Gillian Tindall is representative in describing magical chants as "a comitant of illiteracy...I cannot myself get very interested in the study of "power words". To regard verbal formulas or a garbled string of names as having some intrinsic magic quality seems to me to negate the whole point of language, which lies in its communicable meaning." 10

W. Dunn, Highland Settler, p. 55. Scherman, The Flowering of Ireland, p. 23.

9Katherine 10Gillian

Tindall, A Handbook On Witchcraft, p. 120.

What she misses is the fact that mouth-music and the Ogham were considered pure magic, whose meaning (if any) was deliberately obscured. A good proportion of such magic was out-and-out trickery, and the word-makers would have been subject to disbelief if the common folk had understood their methods. The boabhs often invoked spirits, and voices were heard to answer from a hole in a rock wall, from animals, or from empty space. This would have been considered potent magic in the days before the principles of ventriloquism were understood. Additionally, magicworkers were seen to capture the spirits of others by reciting words which were repetitious, but of little apparent meaning. Today, the craft of hypnotism is widely recognized although its operating principles are no better understood than they were several thousand years in the past. In the case of King Caier some seeming deception might have been practiced, his facial blemishes perhaps being produced by poisonous or bacterial agents placed on him while he slept. In a fair number of cases, magic words or music were intoned over potions which were then used as an adjunct to get the desired physical results. A boabh might intone his, or her, words above a vial of poison, afterwards adding the substance to the victim's drink. In the days before chemistry, the practitioner of magic may have been uncertain whether it was the words or the substance which produced the effect. Tindall herself noted that human beings do not like to believe that important processes can take place independent of human decision, and that there seems to be a need to sanctify physical actions with verbal rituals. This she says is, "readily transmuted into the idea that words themselves do the trick." 11 The emotional and practical impact of sheer words, or music, divorced from overt communication, remains an important part of religious prayer, stage hypnotism and

Tindall, A Handbook On Witchcraft, p. 119.

politics. Considering the use which Adolph Hitler was able to make of words we should not doubt their potential for harm. Nede's music may not have involved any deception, considering the fact that half of all diseases are now known to be psychosomatic, the symptoms resulting from the victim's own fear. In Celtic lore it is emphasized that disbelievers were protected from the force of the boabh by their disbelief. Conversely, those who believed they could be stricken by words or music were open to damage. Today, if a doctor were to inform an individual that he had accidentally swallowed a poisonous tablet this might not result in a fatality, on the other hand it would certainly produce anxiety in the most iron-willed person. Those who were a little less secure might suffer from dizziness, faintness, violent stomach cramps, vomiting or death. It is, therefore, incorrect to suppopse that the boabh was an impotent "poseur". If the wordsmith though he was powerful and his victim concurred that he might be harmed by indirect means, he was likely to succumb to the mere news that actions had been taken against him. CEÒL SIDE, sidh-music, said capable of luring people from the world of men into the "hollow hills". "About John son of Lachlan son of Ewen, he heard the singing coming out of the rock of Creag Asduinn (North Uist) which he thought was spectral. The horse was affected by it and began to frisk with fright...The old man saw nothing but he faced the spot where the spectral choir was singing and he said to them: "God bless me friends, but evil is the work you are doing may my worst enemies never hear worse singing." That was the last singing he heard at Creag Asduinn. Perhaps the ardour of the singers was cooled when they heard the poor opinion of their singing..." (The Highland Connection, p. 26). CERMAIT, “A lingering friendly individual.” Ogma. Also known as Cermait of the Honeyed of Dagda, killed by Lugh when found having his wife. Lugh was, in turn, killed by Cumhail. Confers with Mouth. A son an affair with Cermait’s son

CERN, CEARN, corner, quarter, region, countryman. The kern were country-folk conscripted to the king’s bodyguard. They were rough and ready and billeted in the winter-months on the general population. Thus the word also means victory and expensive. Notice following entries. Related to cear, obs. blood, offspring, progeny. See next. See ceathearn, below. CEARNANACH, belonging to a narrow, small or remote corner, corn, horn, drinking cup, robe, bale of cloth, prickle (straw) used to induce vomit, a cruise, a convex surface, the Latin, Cernavii, Cornavii, “People of the Horn,” or “horned ones.” Suggesting devotion to the god Cernu. The name was once applied to the residents of Caithness, Scotland, as recorded by Ptolemy in the first half of the second century A.D. Horned deities are said to have had a particular “density” in northern Britain, perhaps because of the persistance of herding and hunting in these regions. This god-type is said to have been closely attached to the pastoral way of life. In the agricultural RomanoCeltic south more moderate gods reigned, but in the north he was a better symbol for the turbulence of that place. The most impressive horned-heads and figurines have come from north of Hadrian’s Wall. The most interesting of these is a ram-horned head, carved of sandstone, from Netherby, north of Carlisle. The dface is rectangular and the features deeply inmdented giving prominence to jutting brows, a clean-shaven chin, a long narrow nose, and slightly parted lips, which give the portrait a grim look. The most striking feature of the bust is well-defined rams-horns which curve downward toward the ears. Another head of this sort appears as part of a block, which may once have been part of Hadrian’s Wall. It is known that the stag and the the bull also had importance as cult animals, and the Gaels additionally worshipped some un-naturalistic horned beasts, for example horned snakes and three-horned snakes. In Celtic art, the latter are usually shown at the side

of a stag-god. Birds also appear as horned-spirits. The appearance of horned-animal cults of demonstrably Celtic context is said to date from the mid fourth-century B.C. The tradition is known to have been entrenched in Britain by the time of the Roman invasions. Rice says that the hornedgods of Britain are similar, if not identical to the Gaullish Cernunnos: “this god may have been a direct importation from Gaul, for traces of his cult in Britain are largely confined to areas of Belgic settlement.” Local horned gods may have been assimilated by this new deity, and the local bull and ram-headed gods definitely became confused with the Roman god Mars, who had similar attributes. Horned gods were also associated with the people of the goddess Bridd, the Brigantes, the “Overlords,” or “high Ones,” who were situated in southern England. As late as the eighth century, cult-practitioners erected a relief in stone at Meigle, in Perthshire, Scotland: “Here, and also in relief, the “deity” is seated in “Buddhic” posture; strong bull-horns grow from his head, round which serpents twine. The legs of the figure are likewise composed of serpents...”This Cernu is flanked on either side by his cult-totems, a bear and a wolf. Ptolemy has said that the “People of the Horn” occupied Caithness, Scotland. Note their correspondence with the Caereni, or “People of the Sheep,” who lived in north-western Sutherlandshire. In Ireland there seem to have been similar pockets of worship “stretching between Armagh and Lough Erne. “One figure (of a horned-god) the pre-Christian dating of which can hardly be questioned, comes from Tanderagee. Allegedly recovered from a bog near Newry, it was taken to Armagh where it now stands in the chapter-house of the Protestant Cathedral.” A second stone of this type comes from Fermanagh. In this case, a deep cuping of the head suggests it was once used as an altar. There is another of these from Cortynam. See Feradach Furbaide, who was horned. See Cernu. CERN O’DOMHNALL, O’Donnell’s Kern (Bodyguard). The”guard”

to the old creator-god Don. A nickname given Manann mac Ler after his attendance at the feast of Dubh O’Donnell at Bel-atha Senaig. Here, people were boasting about the wealth of that house and the skill of its musicians when Manann arrived dressed as a clown, “puddle water splashing from his overly large shoes, his sword dragging along naked behind him, his ears poking through an old cloak thrown over his head.” In his hand he carried three spears of hollywood all blackened from fire. He was barred at the gate but somehow managed to pass the gate-keeper without being observed. Hearing the musicians Manann compared them to “hammers beating fitfully on worn iron. Amazed at this the host handed the visitor a harp and found he could play better than any of the household musicians. When O’Donnell offered him better clothing as recompense for the harp-work, Manann replied: “I have no mind to give high-born people the boast of giving them to me.” Afraid that his music might be taken from the court, the king posted armed guards about the newcomer but he slipped away as easily as he had arrived. When the guards made to waylay him they only succeeded in killing one another until many warriors lay bathed in blood. To return them to life Manann approached one of the remaining gate-keepers and gave him a healing herb, suggesting he demand twenty cows and “ane hundred of free land” before restoring his fellows. Afterwards he made the rounds of the courts in Ireland, performing tricks and taking no food but a vessel of sour milk and a few crab apples. “And there was never sweeter music than that he played.”

CEARNNACH, cearn, corner, quarter, region. midden, man, victory, expense, the hold of a ship, rectangle, caith, spent, used up, cast out, severed from the rest, allied with cath, war and caithris, night-watching, the Latin Cornovii, and Cornu, English corn or horn. The horned harvest-hunter god whose name appears in Cornwall. Confers with the English Herne the Hunter, who guarded the woods of Windsor Castle. A Quarter-Day “god” killed after a brief rule. His ashes rejuvenated the land and the herds in each new year. The horned “god” “chastised” by mummers in the latter day morality plays. Relates to

caithern, a lightly armoured foot-soldier, the English kern. Known to the Romans as the Gaullish-god Cernunnos. The horned gods have been represented as stags, bulls and rams, or one of these species combined with a human. The druidic priests and the semi-sacred Gaelic heroes often took one of these forms as did those who were magically punished by them. The most archaic gods are often seen accompanied by a ram-headed serpent, who seems to represent this god. Cernu was the “master of wild things,” the “green giant” of northern folklore, often referred to as the “lord of the woods.” This latter title links him to the Anglo-Saxon Wodin, a “woodsman” who led the “coiled-serpent people.” In Christian times he was banned and became symbolic of the anti-Christ, although he had no real attachments with Satan. The tribe known as the Cornovii lived in Staffordshire at at Abbotts Bromley within Needwood Forest the stag-god is still recalled in the Horn Dance which is presented on Wakes Monday, the first Monday following the Sunday just after September 4. It is traditional to wear and display the antlers of that place at any time of need, but they are also shown at the death of a local female virgin. McNeill thinks that these rites are a spin-off from the Lugnasad (August 4) and says there are six sets of antlers fitted to headpieces of wood, all meant to be worn by men. At one time the rites of the horned-one took place in the village churchyard, but later only the musicians were allowed there, the beast-men being pushed off to unhallowed ground. Now these “deer” have become entirely secular and are “hunted” in the streets. The keeper of the antlers was once the priest incumbent at the chuech of St. Nicholas, and as such was the guardian of the antlers and a hobby horse which is also used in the ceremony. The rites are patently related to the interests of deer in the rutting season and the horn-bearing males (while so attired) are venerated as the beast-god

fertility figures they represent. The playlet, revolving about the hunt for these animals, involves twelve characters, six horned men, A “Maid Marion” (who is invariably a man), the hobby horse, a fool, two boys and a musician. The whole set is very antique as the horns have been dated to the year 1000 A.D. Anglo-Saxon, corn or horn; confering with the Gaelic kern or cern, an animal equpped with head projections used in offense or defense. All thia has reference to the kern-god, or horned-god Kernow, or Cernu, who gave his name to Cornwall in southwestern England. He corresponds with Herne the Hunter, who haunted the Windsor Wood. Horn was a word applied to cow, or other animal horns, which were blown to produce sounds for assembly. "Horn" was first applied exclusively to "corn", the dominant grain-crop in a given region, the corn-king being the last sheath cut at the harvest. This spirit of the corn was overwintered by auld hornie, the last harvester, who was expected to return it to the field in the next planting season. Thus the spirit of the corn, or of the horn, now termed the devil. Alcoholic drinks were fermented and distilled from grains, hence the local noun horn, a drink of liquor, especially one offered as a bribe in the course of a political campaign. The word horn was applied both to the container for drink and the bribe, while horn up meant tippling, agian in the course of a political campaign. By the old horned spoon! is a Liverpool, Nova Scotia, exclamation of anger or surprise. This recalls the fact that the hexxen, or witches, would not eat off ironware, and used spoons made of horn at their ritual feasts. An interesting representation of this god has been found at Meigle, Perthshire, Scotland. Here a relief figure of the deity is seen seated in Buddhic posture. It shows bull horns sprouting from the head and serpents are seen twisting about it. The legs of the figure are themselves serpents. Two similar figures in Midlothian suggest the god was active there. See Cernavii. CEATH, CATHAG, a jackdaw, less often, sheep, a quay, a

shower, ceathach, animal. See next.






CEATHERN, a troop, lightly armed foot-soldiers, guard, fighting band, those male members of a community fit to bear arms, a party of men, stout men and bold. Freebooters, peasantry, robbers, a boor. A body of four soldiers. The English cateran and kern, see Cernu, above. The soldiers of the king, a royal guard. Càth, chaff, husks of corn; caith, spent, used up; cathachadh, provoking, accusing, fighting, from cath, battle, to fight. CEIDEMHAIN, see Ceitein. The first day of summer. CEIGEAN, a aquat person, an ugly person, corpulent, fat and short, a trurd, fidgety. Ceig, useless, matted wool. CENN CROICH, “sprung from rage,” more prosaically “from sea foam (sperm),” the “froth on beer.” Croich, the “end of things.”From the Celtic root krei, “strewn about.” A secondary name for the evil Cromm cruach, ruler of the “heap.” CET MAC MAGA. A Connaught warrior opposed to Ulster and the king Conchobhar mac Nessa. He procured a magic “brainball” and struck Conchobhar in the head with it but failed to kill him. After seven years with the missile in place Conchobhar died of a brain-hemhorrage brought on by high blood pressure. In a later fray this man was slain by Conall. CETHE. CEATHE, CEIDHE, a pier or quay. Name corresponds with Aod. A son of Diancecht, the god of medicine. He was killed by his father because of his superior skills at his craft. CETHLINN, the “melancholy warrior.” See above entry for derivations. Leonn, ale, full of drink, maudlin. Often referred to as Cethlinn “of the Crooked Teeth.” The wife of Balor of the Evil Eye, who fought by his side at the second battle of Magh Tuireadh. In this engagement she wounded

the Dagda, and this injury ultimately led to his retiremnt and death. CETHSHAMHAIN, cet, ceud, first; Samh, Summer; ain, heat; the first of summer. May Day or Beltane, the beginning of the riding out time of the shaman known as Samh or Summer. CEUD GÀG, First Gap, “An Domhain,” the Beginning Gap, the primal centre of being, said located within the western Atlantic. Ceud, OIr. cét, Cy. cynt, Bry. kent, allied with Lat. contra, against. From the Indo-European qen, begin, Skr. kand, begin, Lay. re-cens, Eng. recent. Perhaps cf. with Eng. hind. Gág, a cleft or chink (in space and time), Indo-European ghâg, Eng. gap, gape, chaos, Lat. fauces, throat, the Cy. gag, hence the Eng. jag and jagged. The ON. Ginnungugap, represented in AS. as Ann-gin Gap. This cleft was traditionally located somewhere bewteen Newfoundland and Greenland. Supposedly the first land erected by the creatorgod. CEUM GATHAIS, ceum, a step; gath + ais, backwards spear; "the wisdom steps." In pre-Christian times the druidic priests often faced the sea-gods while standing on these steps (in some places seven in number, at others twelve). They were always carved in cliff-sides from solid rock. On the Island of Illeray at theAiltein or "Fire-Rock" vestiges of the wisdom steps were still to be seen in the last century. CHAISG, CAISG, A, (a chaashg), caisg, to check, to stop, OIr. cos,, a time for speech-making. OIr. cásc, resembling the Cy. pasc, which is the Scot. Pasch or Pesse possibly from the Lat. pascha, the Eng. paschal, i.e. passover. Easter, named after the old Teutonic goddess Eastre or Ostara , the Germ. Ostern said to confer with the Scandinavian goddess Frigga, the mate of Odin. In pagan times, offerings were made to the goddess of summer who the Gaels called Samh. The date of her festivities was the first Sunday after the full moon following the spring equinox. Variations in latitude and the inaccuracies in early calendars led to much disagreement

about the actual date. The Christian Easter Day is always celebrated on the first Sunday after the full moon that falls on, or next, after March twenty-first. If the full moon happens on Sunday, then Easter occurs a week later. The Saxon goddess Ostra, or Easter, is identical with the Old Norse Freya, and all are deities representing natures resurrection following the long "death" of winter. This goddess was fondly remembered after the coming of Christianity to Britain. Her former adherents refused to have her down-graded to witch, fairy or demon status, so instead her name was attached to the greatest Christian festival of the year. It had long been the custom to exchange coloured eggs, symbolizing the coming of spring, so the early missionaries continued in this observance, explaining that the egg symbolized the resurrection of Christ. In various parts of Germany, alters may still be seen, which are called Easter Stones. They were once crowned with flowers by young people, who also built bonfires nearby and danced at the left hand about them. The Victorian folklorist, H.A. Guerber says that these rites went on until, "the middle of the present century, in spite of the priest's denunciations and of the repeatedly published edicts against them." In the Celtic countries, this agricultural fire-festival was an introduced ritual. The Continental fire used to be set on Easter Eve, usually on the Saturday before Easter Sunday. On that day, in Catholic lands, it was traditional to extinguish all the lights in the churches, kindle a new fire with flint or steel, or a burning glass. At this fire was lit the Great Easter candle, which was used to relite the votive candles. The people then brought oak sticks to the flame which they lit and took home to lay "new fire" for the coming year. At this time the candles were placed in the fields to protect the crops and charred sticks were fastened to the ploughs as fertility rites. In Christian times, a straw figure named Judas was

sometimes burned in consecrated bonfires. The pagan character of this fire festival is apparent on comparing it with the Celtic Beltane or Samhainn. The pagan nature of Easter is made certain in the Chronicles of Lancrost where John, the parish priest of Inverkeilling, Fife, Scotland, was brought before his bishop in 1282 for having celebrated Easter following “the rites of Prapus.” He allowed the “collection” of maidens from his town and instucted them to dance about the figure of “the Phallic deity,” singing “all the while.” He pleaded “the common use of the country,” and was found not guilty. CHAILLINN, place-name, from coille, wood; wood-land dwellers. Northern Scotland, the one-time preserve of the Forest of Caledonia. The Lat. Caledonius, OG. Callden or Callen, Oir. Caledu, Cy. Celidon, Calwyddon, Eng. Caledonian, from cald, "wood-landers." Dwellers in the great forest of Caledon which once extended from Glen Coe to Braemar, and from Glen Lyon to Glen Affric, Scotland. It harboured brown bear, wild boar, wolves, human and animal, and mosquitoes. Its destruction was managed first by felling and firing during the viking invasions, when the Danes and Norse destroyed this cover to get ship-timbers and destroy potential enemies. It was damaged again between the fifteenth and the eighteenth centuries when Scots and Englishmen felled the timber for iron-smelting. Again, the Highlanders themselves burned and felled it to kill brigands and wolves, and army commanders levelled it to destroy rebels. The needs of two world wars finished it, the remnants being seen at Loch Tulla and in the Black Wood of Rannoch. Wordsmiths do not seem to have linked the Latin cella with the Gaelic coille, but we think the parallel is apparent, since the latter word means “wood-landers.” Related to this is cald , having a sharp point (as trees are wont) and calad, a sheltered place or harbour. Note also cailleach, the hidden one, the veiled one, an old hag or witch, a wood’swoman. The Celtic root here is probably qel orqal, to hide, which confers with the English words hollow, heel, hole and

hell. Note that the Anglo-Saxons called the northern Scots Helr, after the disbarred goddess who ruled their underworld. The old word Chaillinn, attaches to all this, having the sense of “in the bowels of the woods.” In very antique times the Romans referred to the great forest of highland Albion (Scotland) as Silva Caledonii, the Forest of the Caledonians. Their retreats in Sutherlandshire and Ross-shire were known to the Anglo-Saxons as Dun-Callden, Dun-Kallen or Dun-Keld, the Gaelic counterpart being DunChaillinn. The Caledonians were situated east of Drum Alban, and occupied western Perthshire. It was because of their position astride the Grampian mountains that they were sometimes called di-calydones. The term Dve-caledonios was also applied to the northern part of the western sea since their territory extended down to it. Note Dun Chailleann Dunkeld, the “Fort of the Caledonians;” Rohallion, near Dunkeld, Scotland, and Sidh Chailleann, Schiehallion, this last being a famed “Fairy-hill.” In all of these the vowel of the second syllable is silent. In 197 A.D. Virius Lupus, a Roman governor of Britain, wrote that the Caledonians and the Maeatae were the most powerful forces in Scotland, unfortunately he had trouble with both. He explained that the latter dwelt “close to the wall which divides this island into two parts, the Caledonians being next to them.” “each of the two inhabit rugged hills with swamps between, possessing neitherr walled places nor towns nor cultivated lands, but lkiving by pastoral pursuits and by hunting and co certain kinds of hard-shelled fruits. They eat no fish, though their waters team with them. They live in tents, naked and shoeless; they have their women in common, and rear all their offspring...They fight from charits and have swift horses. Their weapons are a shield and a short spear with a knob on the blunt end...” This same writer says that the names of all the lesser tribes had, by his time, “been practically absorbed into these.” See Cailleach bheurr.

CHLOICH, CLACHD CHOIMHEACH GHREUGAICH, "the alien Greek stone", coimhearsnach, a neighbour, an alien, coimhead, looking, watching; the “Greek watching-stone,” the socalled "Celtic crosses" of Ireland and Scotland as represented in folklore. Usually mentioned as opposed to the traditional pagan cromlech. See Creag Asduinn. CHRIOCHAN, NA GARBH. “The Rough Bounds” of the Land. The Creones. those who anciently lived in the patrimony of Clan Ranald. CIABHAN, (Kee-a-van),“of the Curling Locks.” The mortal lover of the goddess Cliodhna who abducted her from the western Land of Promise. Manann mac Ler disapproved of the match and when they reached Cork he sent a tidal wave to retrieve her to the Otherworld. CIADAIN, DI-, (je kayt-inn). Wednesday. from ceud, first + aoine, fast; the first fast-day of the week, Friday being the major fast-day. Possibly related to the word cead, or “first,” and the old fire god Ce, Kai, or Hu, who is supposed to have brought the art of metal-working to Britain. Note cia, obs. Man, husband, cream, ciagach, sly-humoured, ciallach, lover, judicious, rational, discreet, sedate, significant other. Ciallan, favourite. " When All Saints is on Wednesday the men of the earth are under great affliction." (Celtic Monthly, p. 162). CIADAOINAN-T-SAMHUINN, an expression of time when the Samhain holiday falls of A Wednesday. A particularly holy day devolving upon the goddess Samh. CIAN CONTJE (kee-an), cian, remote, tedious, distant. ceann, a head. Alexander Mcbain says the root is the generalized Celtic word gen or gan, beginning, hence, the first one or even beginning place. Cé+ann, indicates within the earth, so there is little question that Clan Cian considered itself descended from the ultimate creator-god whose name appears embodied in Céitean the month of May.

This god is also entitled Aod or Hu in the Celtic realms, both words being linguistically similar. He is sometimes given as a son of Diancecht, the god of medicine, the father of the god-hero Lugh. Balor, the Fomorian king of Tor Mor (now Torry Island) was informed by the druids that he would be killed by a grandson. In an attempt to side-step his fate, the one-eyed giant secluded his only daughter Ethlinn in a high tower guarded by twelve matrons. Balor called to the island the Goban-Saor, to work on his castle and in payment gave him a magical cow that was a source of an unending stream of milk. Characteristically, the giant forgot to mention that this animal always returned to Torry Island unless tethered with a magic byre-strap. The animal quickly escaped from Ireland, but was pursued by Cian Contje. Cian was only able to cross to the island with the help of Manann mac Ler, giving the god of the ocean a promissory note for the passage. On the island, Cian went "in drag" and passed himself off as a female cook. On his off hours, the young man went scouting for the lost cow and chanced instead on the hiding place of Ethlinn. By "accident" the pair found themselves with triplets, and Cian was forced to flee Balor's wrath. Two of the children were drowned on instructions from their grandsire, but the father, the magical cow and a surviving child, named Lugh, were rafted out of danger by Manann mac Ler. On the far shore Manann demanded payment for his services and was given Lugh as a foster-child. Lugh's great skills as a warrior and craftsman were said learned under Duath "the Dark". a king of "the Great Plain of the Sea", where he dwelt until manhood. At that time he came to Ireland to aid the Tuatha daoine when it seemed they would be defeated by the giants of the Hebrides and Tory Island. CIAR, CERA, another name for the Dagda; ciar, dusky, shadowy, shady. McNeil says that although he is not directly mentioned in Welsh mythology his name appears embedded in the goddess Ceriddwyn, who is literally “the woman who

is Ceridd, the “Dark One.” CIARMAT, ciar, dusky; math, good; AS. scimo, a shadow, Skr. chûyá, a shadow. Eng. Kermit. A descriptive synonym for Ogma one of the sons of Dagda. According to myth this “honey-tongued “god” was killed by his brother Lugh when he found out that his wife was involved in an affair with him. Lugh was, in turn, killed by mac Ciarmat’s son. CICHO GRINCHENGHOS, nicknamed “The Footless.” A Fomorian sea-giant who came to Ireland before Parthalon, and lived there by fishing and hunting. He was slain at the battle of Magh Ibha. His mother was Lot, a woman with bloated lips in her breasts and four eyes in her back. His father was Gall, the “Stranger.” CIDHIS, a mask, vizard; also luchd cidhis, masqueraders, perhaps from low Sc. gyis, a mask and gysard, masked men. The word is similar to the M. English gysen, to dress up and the English, disguise. All are thought to derive from Fr. desguiser, to cloak one's identity. The word came into Gaelic during the time of the Stuart kings. luchd cidhis, masked people. David Fergus ("Scots Magazine 1982) says: "Unfortunately, we can't claim the plays performed by the Scottish guisers were native to this country... But the mummer's plays are older than either Scotland or England...their origin goes back to an age when people throughout Europe believed in magic. For these plays, despite their clowning and doggerel verse, are essentially magical ritual. To the primitive mind it seemed possible to make things happen by acting out the deed. If you wish to destroy your enemy you melt a wax image of him; if you want rain, you splash water about; if you want your crops to grow tall, you leap high in the air. When the dark barren days of winter came and you want to bring back the sun and fruitful fields, you re-enact the birth of the new year by killing and restoring to life an actor who represents life itself. Ever guiser's play consists of three parts that symbolize the death of the old year and the birth

of a new one. There is always a fight, the death of a hero and his restoration to life." Fergus has noted that the plays were sometimes performed on All Soul's Eve (which we call Hallowe'en, and which was the beginning of the old Gaelic New Year) but that this had shifted in favour of the Christmas season. "In Galloway the guisers are known as the Yule Boys because they performed at Christmas, but in most districts the favoured time used to be the Hogmanay (October 31) when the actors would make their rounds." In earlier times they had an eerie other-worldly look. Thomas Wilkes who saw them abroad wrote: "The Gysarts always dress themselves in white. They appear like so many dead persons robed in their shrouds, who seemingly have risen from their narrow homes; the simile is improved from their faces being all painted black or dark blue. Their mutches (mustaches) are sometimes adorned with ribbands of diverse colours. but these seldom enter into their dress." Even at a later date, their faces were entirely covered with a mask, since recognition was said to "break their luck." On their heads were dunces caps "casques of brown paper, shaped like a bishop's mitre." Although there were always hordes of followers, the number of active players varied from five to seven, and invariably included a hero, a villain and a druid, or doctor, whose job was to restore life to the dead. All the main characters were differentiated by small items of dress and the remaining characters seem to have been carried for comic relief. All this action was repeated throughout the countryside at important manor-houses where the rabble begged admission and then put on their gysard-play. The playlet was always accompanied by doggerel verse and in one Scottish version of the play, the villain is a knight identified as King Alexander. After a sword fight, with wooden swords, he "kills" Golashans, who is perhaps named after Galgacus, the Gael who lead his people in the successful action against the Romans at Mons Graupius. Sir Alexander, named for an unpopular Scottish monarch, tries to place the blame for the death on a

character called the Admiral, and the Admiral places the blame on the Farmer's Son, but in the end the unfortunate is revived by the Doctor who applies a powder to Golashan's nose and says: "Inky Pinky, a little to his nose, a little to his toes." This done the gysers conclude by chanting: We will join hands, and never fight no more, But we will all gree as brethren as we have done before. We thank the master of this house, likewise the mistress too. Also the little bairns that round the table grew. In some districts food and drink is then provided in impromptu fashion, but elsewhere the sinister nathair, now called Beelzebub (or Judas) puts in an unexpected appearance, thrusting out a change box and demanding: Over my shoulder I carry a club, And in my hand a dripping pan, And I fancy myself a right jolly old man. I've got a little box that can speak without tongue. It fancies "food", so drop in one. The common reward for the night's entertainment was a halfpenny, but churlish (or drunken) individuals often fell upon the gysards and a melee broke out. The plays were performed in the border country between England and Scotland into the 1920's but those that continue are revivals without popular roots. In ancient times it is likely that a king-figure was actually put down in the interests of regenerating the land and its people in the new year. Marsks of bronze and wood have been found which are known to date from pre-Roman Britain. Most are in ther form of human heads, some horned, some showing elaborate helmets. On La Tene metalwork the heads sometimes appear duck-like. Rice associates this latter form with the goddess Mhorrigan, who is sometimes represented as a goose. CILLE CHAORRUILL, Caorruill's Church; cille, a cell, a

monastic enclosure, a church; caor, the red berry, the rowanberry. An ancient burial ground within the Braes of Lochebar. The church in question was supposedly built by Alastair Carrach in an attempt to atone for a dissolute life. The spirits that had empowered men in his lifetime were unquiet after death and people in the neighbourhood heard "something like the rattling of bones, as if desperate battles were going on underground among the skeletons (1745). Father Angus Mor mac Dhughaill arrived on the scene without holy water and was forced to take water in his shoe from a nearby stream. "He blessed it and proceeded to the church where he read the special office (of exorcism) with the result that there was a complete cessation of these nightly noises ever after (Dr. Keith N. Macdonald, Celtic Monthly, p. 172). CILLEIN, concealed treasure, a repository, Ir. cillin, a purse or storage place for cash which has been hoarded. A diminished form of cell, a cell, the Church. See entry immediatly above. The Norse went viking after the treasures kept in Christian cells. CINGRIS, a pharaoh of Egypt whose daughter Scota married an outlander named Niul. She was the mother of Goidheal, the patriarch of the Gaels and the Scots. CINEAD MAC ALPEIN. Looking for a more secure home-land the Scots of Dalriada marched into Pictland and conducted campaigns against these people until 850 A.D., when Cinead (Kenneth) mac Alpein completely overthrew the Picts by very devious means, and became high-king of all Scotia, Some claim that he even subdued the Britons on his southern borders and the Anglo-Danish population of the southeast. At this time, with the Scotic people in a position of power, Ireland was called Scotia Major and Scotland Scotia Minor, but the title fell awaty from Ireland as their power waned in that land. CINN, develop from, arise from, descend from, the root being gen, to grow or increase from, as in the goddess Mhorri-gen,

“born of the sea.” From this cineal, offspring and cinne, a tribe or clan. The implication is “foreign-born,” hence cinnich, gentiles. Similar to the Eng. kin. Note and see Mhorri-gen. CIONLAS, “confound you,” a magical string for binding the fingers of the dead to prevent them from wandering. This rite was also performed with the big toes to keep the dead from “stirring.” Sutherlandshire. CIOTACH, left-handed, of sinister aspect, awkward, cunning, an unlooked-For trick, a small plaid or scarf; the Cy. Chwith, an extension of the root word sqi, left, the Lat. scaevas, left. See cli. Cia, who is the god Aod. CIR MHIN OIR, comb of chased gold. A sun symbol its equivalent night-symbol being the cir gharbh airgiod, the comb of rough silver. It was said that the god Lugh was often seen among men carrying these combs in his hands. Maol a’Cliobain gained powers of kingship when he pilfered two such combs from the castle of a “giant.” When hethe silver comb was misplaced the king’s carriage fell to the ground as “a withered faggot,” and his kingship, and virility, was lost. Another Gaelic hero took similar combs and when he combed the hair on the left side of his head it flaked off silver instead of dandruff. Run through the hair of the other side it produced flakes of gold. Other magic combs stolen from the Fomorian sea-giants yielded clothing, arms, meat and drink. Gaels pursued by the dark forces could throw a comb or brush in their way to delay pursuit. Combs were often found in the arsenal of witchcraft and sometimes the baobh would comb the hair of an unsupecting victim causing that person to fall into a deep and troubled sleep. J.F. Campbell thinks that the magical attributes of combs may relate to the fact that the bone combs of primitive men produced spectacles of static

electricity during the long winter nights. There are sexual connotations in the use of combs. In medieval times it was still understood what was meant when the knight laid his head upon the knees of a “lady” and she “dressed his hair.” There are numerous slate slabs in Scotland which represent two-handed mirrors, combs and shears. These are generally regarded as Pictish memorials and indicate that these objects had significance beyond the obvious CIÙIN, Mild, Ir. Ciúin, Lat. AS. heóre, safe, friendly. Atlantic, visited by Bran Imchiuin; the imis an mild land.” civis, Eng. civil. Norse, hyrr, mild, A “safe haven” in the western and his mariners. Also known as intensive prefix, thus, “the very

CIUTHACH, CIOTACH, left-handed, sinister,possessed by Cia or Aod, cunning, crafty, designing, defective, the Lat. scaevas, left, anglicized as Kewach. An alternate name for the urusig, the Eng. urisk. Hairy creatures that inhabited costal caverns. One of these lived on the Isle of Eigg. Sir Walter Scott noted a variant known as the “shellycoat,” “a water-sprite covered with shells and other marine products, whose clattering announced his approach.” D.A. Mackenzie said that a ciuthach used to haunt the shores of Leith. Teased by children chanting: “Shellycoat, shellycoat, gang awa hame, I cryna your mercy, I ferna your name,” he occasionally seized them and threw them into the ocean. This word has “gone native” in North America where the closest approximation is killoch, an isolated stone, a standing-stone, an anchor employing a stone enclosed within a wooden framework. From this kellog. gillock, jillock, jullic and gommick. A standing-stone was considered sinister from its lack of association with its kind.

CLACH, a stone, EIr. cloch, Cy. clwg, Goth. hallus, a large stone, ON. hella, a large flat stone, Skr. cila, a stone, perhaps thus Celt and Hellr, outland names for the Gaels who occupied stone-dwellings. Trees, cairns, standing-stones and mountains were all seen to draw thunder and lighting to their summits and were thus taken to be the resting places for a sun-spirit. Fire was definitely thought to be a product of the sun, and it was noticed that stones could generate and convey heat energy from the earth or the air. In the rites of the Quarter Days the holy bannochs were baked by the reflected heat of stone, and the stones were often made to “talk” by throwing water or milk upon them. When Patrick came to Ireland he cursed the great Division Stone of the four provinces of Ireland so that it would no longer hold heat or converse with men as had been the case in ancient times. Notice that Bil, the death-god, was nicknamed “the Shining One,” and that his day translates as “Mouth of Fire..” He was obviously as much a part of the sun-cult, and the panoply of day-gods, as his alter-ego Lugh. In point of fact the sun-god Lugh is nicknamed Lugh Chromain, “Lugh of the Crooked Hand.” In the guise of Crom the Crooked, Bil is often spoken of as “The Day God,” and it is clear that many of the Beltane altars were erected as sun-altars. On Mount Callan, near Ellis, Ireland, the Beltane was celebrated on midsummer’s day down to the year 1895. Near Macroom there is a standing stone very clearly designated as “the stone of the sun.” The antiquarian Sethrun Ceitinn (c. 157--1650) said that almost all the cromlechs could be associated with the goddess Grainne, whose name may be taken as grain, and translated as the “sun.” Elsewhere, it is said that Éire (Ireland) was first married to mac Greine (the son of the sun) and one of her daughters was Giolla Greine, “whose mother was a

sunbeam.” The relationship of daylight and darkness, life and death, summer and winter, may not always be easy to see, but remember that many of the Irish observed the sungod sink each evening into his domain within the western sea, and noted that he invariably rose by morning from the eastern sea. To subjugate Lugh, the Church circulated the rumour that his fiery sword had been passed for “safekeeping” to Saint Michael. All over Europe in improbably remote corners, various phallic symbols of power, the “belly-buttons” of the world, were incorporated into innumerable Christian structures: In Spain at Cangas de Onis a small church was built directly over standing-stones on a pagan mound in the eleventh century, the complex becoming a burial crypt. Another instance is found at Arrichinaga at the Hermitage of Saint Michael, where a huge standing-stone is seen immediately left of the main altar. Some of the churches built to honour this saint are on uncomfortably high ground. At St Michelen-Grêve, in Brittany, the church is a half hour walk from civilization, standing next to a lichen-encrusted menhir. Mont St. Michel, a huge monolith in the Atlantic is almost matched by the precipitous St,. Michael’s Mount, at Land’s End in the west of England. The Priory of St. Michael is built on a pagan circle of stones. These are only a few of the places where Lugh was assimilated into the new God. In order to explain the siting of churches in places that were ultimately strange and inconvenient, medieval parsons suggested that the stones had been placed by angels, or some other approved power. In earlier Christian mythology, Saint Michael was second to God in power, a warrior-prince who carried a flaming sunsword. Lugh’s clash with the Fomors is nicely paralleled in Biblical lore. In the book of Revelations, Michael is pictured as the head of a host of angels warring with the forces of darkness: “And the great dragon was cast down, the deceiver of the whole world, he that is called the great serpent, Devil and Satan.” Notice that Saint George, patron of England, is also pictured as the dragon-killer.

CLACHAN. a kirk or kirk-town, from clach, a stone; perhaps from the fact that the early churches were built from stone. The word also translates as “stepping-stones.” A village or hamlet having a formal burial ground an inn and a smithy, a church, the burial place; a druidical circle consisting of standing stones, Christian churches often incorporated pagan stone relics in their walls. “In the north of Scotland, people used to speak of the local kirk as “The Stones.” and the name Auld Kirk attached to the Circles (of Stone). (The Silver Bough, Vol. 3, p. 158).

CLACH AN COMAS, power stones, cursing stones. Note the similar buineagan, the “witch balls” used in the Scottish highlands. Objects which were used as the focus of magical powers. The most noted of these lie on a pagan stone altar in the early medieval monastic village of Inishmurray in County Sligo, Ireland. They were used during the Second World War to bring perdition on Adolph Hilter. Today these stones have accumulated a Christian veneer, actually they are spoken of as “backwards Christian relics” since the islanders perform the cursing rites while moving about the altar in a counter-clockwise motion. Nothing is known of the nature of these stones before the monastery was founded in the sixth centuury, but they were there and in use when the first Christian missionaries arrived, and the powers they controlled were said to be other-worldly. CLACH AN BRODGAR, the circular ring of stones between Loch Steness and Loch Harray on Mainland Island in the Orkneys. brod+gar, excess of heat, thus “fire-stones.” The ring has 27 stones standing near the four Stones of Steness. There were originally more, and the two groups may have been linked by an avenue of stones, but only the 18-foot Watch-stone remains to indicate this. At the New Year’s eve, couples wishing to marry went to the “Temple of the Moon.” (the Steness Stones) and then marched from there to the “Temple of the Sun,” (the Brodgar Stones). At each they performed a set of rituals finally pausing before the Stone

of Odin (which is no longer in place) to clasp hands through a hole in it. Sick people were led three times about the Stones of Steness seeking a cure for their illness. CLACH AN COMHDHAIL, a “trysting stone,” from comdal, a tryst. CLACH AN DUBH, the black stones of Iona, from the black doom that fell on those who violated oaths made within sight of them. The last of these stones disappeared in the nineteenth century after having long settled disputes between clans. CLACH AN EIREACHTA, an stone used as the focal point for assembly. CLACH AN GHRIGAIR, the healing Stone of the Macgregors. CLACH AN UAINE N’ IONA, the green stones of Iona. Pebbles of a green colour said influenced by the spirit of St, Columa and able to preserve people from drowning. See uaine, and note that green objects were thought to possess unusual supernatural powers. CLACH AN MÔD, “meeting stones,” môd, a court, trial, meeting from the similar Norse word. AS. môt, Eng. moot, meet. Possibly similar to môid, to take a vow of honesty, related to Lat. manus, “hand-vow.” To swear upon a stone? Many of the important meetings of the Celts and their Norse neighbours were held in the open, and for this purpose rings of chair-high stones were placed in the locality of the meeting. Many sites in Scandinavia and Great Britain bear witness to these gatherings. In Yorkshire we have the Morthing, the name of which may be connected with Morathing south east of Upsala (Sweden). The Norse thing refers to the king’s surround of enfranchised citizens. Mor, great or large. Fingay in Yorkshire was another such meeting place. In most cases the stones were place where they could be easily accessed by land or sea. They were also placed on a plain or elevation where their location was obvious

amidst the surrounding forest.Maidstone in Kent was originally the more obvious Old Saxon Motstein and its name resembles Staines on the Thames. In King John’s time the nearby Runymede Island was a similar place. In the midlands the place-names Dingwall and Thingwall (a place where the thing-wold had meetings) are met. The Ring of Brogar and the Ring of Steiness, in the Orkneys, may have had a similar function. In some cases the stones were too monumental to serve as simple seats and here the stones must be regarded as a circle or “resting” gods. Many of the stones were assembled before the druids were organized although these folk may have continued to use them as assembly places. CLACH-BHUADHACH, “tribute” or “conqueror precious stone, gem, amulet or charm. stone,” a

CLACH-BRATH, judgement or rocking stone. An immense erratic, a spherical mass of rock so situated that a slight touch causes it to rock in one direction. No amount of human force will cause it to take any other direction. Such stones are still seen in Iona and were once common throughout Britain. The stones of Iona are said to last until world’s end. CLACH-GLUIN-A’-CHOILICH, an amulet against distempoer and other ills. Literally the “cock’s knee-bone stone,” from the supposition that these are the lithified bones on a long dead cock. Actually they are not fossil remains. CLACHD NA' AITHNE, clachd, stone; aithne, knowledge, sometimes referred to as the divining-stone, routinely used to "set" a firth (a charm used to indicate the continued existence of persons living at a distance). Kings of the realms of Scotland and neighbouring Scandinavia routinely obtained these stones and used them to evaluate the conflicting advise they often got from their counsellors. Carmichael has indicated that they were principally used to obtain omens of the future, although this was never their sole employment. He says they survived into "quite modern times." See entries immediately below. At Christian synods in Scotland attempts were made to discredit all such

stones, but the outcome of research was not always what was expected. In October of 1638 a complaint was levelled against Gavin Hamilton for making use of “ane stone set in silver for the curing of diseased cattle.” The Synod, which met, tested the stone and noted that it was activated “without using onie words such as charmers use in their unlawful practise.” Seeing that no money changed hands in obtaining cures and that stone appeared to possess “a special virtue for the healing of monie infirmities in man and beast,” they dismissed the charge and returned the stone to the Lord of Lee admonishing him to use it in the future with discretion so that it might attract “the least possible scandall that can possibly be.” CLACH NA H-’EIRCE, the “stone of atonment,” a powersource approached for favours, a godhead. Ericstone near Moffat is an example. CLACHD BRIONGLAID, a dreaming stone. Three small stones taken from a boundary stream after dark at the Quarter Day. The stones have to be taken between thumb and middle finger and carried home after repeating the charm: “I lift the stones, as the sun lifted his son. This I do for substance, virtue, strength. May these stones rest in my hand to journey’s end.” Placed beneath a pillow they were thought to impart foresight. CLACHD COINNEACH ODHAR, Stone of Kenneth Mackenzie. A small, white, smooth stone, with a hole in the centre, supposedly found by Kenneth after waking from an unintended sleep on a sidh, or “side hill.” Upon looking through it this lad found himself possessed of prophetic powers, and became known as the Brahan Seer. Kenneth became famous in his birthplace, the Isle of Lewis, and became attached to his chieftain, Kenneth Mackenzie, the third Earl of Seaforth. Lady Seaforth, on the occasion of his visit to Paris suspected her husband of adultery and tried to persuade the Seer to use his powers to confirm or deny her suspicions. When his second-sight caught the chief in dalliance, the unhappy wife turned on the bearer of the bad

news and had him executed. In his last hours the Brahan Seer threw the foreseeing stone into a loch and pronounced the coming doom of the Mackenzies. The seer was born in the seventeenth century and Mackenzie rule failed exactly as pronounced in 1794. CLACHD DÚN ADD, Stone of the Fortress of Power, near Kilmartin, Scotland. It is approached through along rocklined gully, once roofed. There is a rude stairway leading beyond a lower amphitheatre to an upper ridge once walled as a triple keep. At the centre are three features of some interest: Carved on stone slabs are the imprint of a human foot, 11 by 4.5 inches. A drawing of a wild boar faces this print, and there also is a carved basin ten by four inches deep. Tradition claims that the footprint is that of Fergus, the first king of the Riata, or Dalriada (Argyll). At Celtic inaugurations, this footprint was used to legitimize each succeeding king, who was expected to stand briefly within the outline. “Clothed in white, the monarch would set his foot within the print, thus symbolizing an oath to walk in the steps of his forefathers. Similar rites were held in the Western Isles for the Macdonalds, the Lords of the Isles. The image of a boar remembers Lugh, the sun-god, and symbolizes the king’s position as the source of fertility. The basin was used in pagan foot-washing ceremonies which were easily adapted to Christian custom. CLACHD 'IC CHAOILTE, clachd, stone; chaoid, forever; "the alien stone from the east.” The Celtic Christian cross. Some claim that the "X" of the Christian element overlaid on the pagan "O" (symbolizing reincarnate nature) negated the power of the older symbol. In several instances, cromlechs may be seen with an "X" deliberately applied over an"O". These stones have a great a reputation for magic as their pagan counterparts. A ghostly summons to death is said to have issued from the Mercat Cross in Edinburgh on the night before the battle at Flodden. The voice pronounced the names of all those destined to die in the morning. CLACHD DEARG, AN, clachd, stone; dearg, red; specifically

the Red Stone of Ardvorlich. In ancient times the chieftainship of the Stewarts of Balquhidder fell upon the man that possessed this charm-stone. There are conflicting claims about its origin. One has it that the stone was originally mounted on the wand of office of an Arch-Druid; the other that it came from the Near East at the time of the Crusades. "From forty miles around the worried owners of sick cattle used to bring kegs of spring water to Ardvorlich. There, the Lady of Ardvorlich took the Charm, dangled it by its chain in the water and swirled it around three times, reciting a Gaelic incantation the while. After the Charm was taken out of the water it was necessary for the owner of the beasts to take the keg back to his animal todrink; and shortly afterwards it would recover. One other obligation had to be observed; the man carrying the keg was not allowed to enter any building with the keg on his way home..." (Highland Clans, p, 21). It is said that the charm is "a ball of rock crystal mounted in (four) bands of silver chased in a Celtic pattern." The stone is inventoried in 1900 as "an stane of the quantitye of half a hen's egg set in silver, flatt at the ane end and round at the uther and like to a peir, whilk Sir Coline first laird of Glenurchy woir when he fought the battel at Rhodes." CLACHD BHEAG NAN TUARSANAN, clachd, stone; bheag, little; tuar, to presage, to give omens. This divining-stone, often referred to as the “Little Stone of the Quests" belonged originally to the Macleans of Coll, "by whom it was much prized. It came down to them from remote antiquity. It was used in the "frith" for discovering the dead body of Donald MacLean of Coll when he was drowned in the Sound of Ulva. A member of the Coll family gave it to Mary MacInnes, cotter, Taigh a' Gearraidh, North Uist, for services rendered." She passed it on to the sennachie, D.A. Ferguson. (Highland Clans, p. 420). CLACHD BHUAI, the Resting Stone held by the Campbells of Glenlyon. CLACHD CEUD, the Prime Stone, First Stone. In older tales

the Holy Grail is not represented as a chalice but as a stone relic, and in the Welsh poem “Peredur,” there is note of a similar “Stone of Abundance,” guarded by the black serpent, slain by that hero. More remotely the it was said that the fire of the sun poured forth each morning from the “cauldron” of the ocean, and thus the “cauldron” was sometimes spoken of as the “cauldron of the sun.” This stone was the Creag Asduinn mentioned elsewhere. It was the resting place of the spirit of the creator-god or Oolathair , purloined from the Beginning Place by men and the gods. This lost of spirit cost the Fomorian sea-giants their ability to contend with the land-folk. The Holy Grail of Christian mythology is sometimes represented as a stone guarded by the Grail knights who lived for two hundred years by taking sustenance from it. As such it was entitled lapis exillis, the “blue flatstone,” a stone that reputedly “fell from heaven.” Notice that the road to Hel’s kingdom of Nifhelheim was paved with gigantic flatstones, and there are connections. CLACHD CIL-FHINN, Finn’s Grave-stone, the stone at the burial place of Fiann. Killan in Scotland derives its name from this marker which was much visited in Victorian times. It is now ignored in a small field close to Breadlbane Park, almost lost in the rushes of the boggy ground. Fionn, who the Scots sometimes call Fingal, ruled in the Highlands and in Ireland by virtue of the power of his quasi-military Fiann. It is 14 miles through a hill pass from Killan to the place reputed to be his Alban home. He is thought to have died in 283 A.D. and local historian Duncan Fraser has noted that a “head” was added to this small standing stone in the last century. CLACHD CLOICHE, Shelter-Stone. In the pass of Ochils stands a freestone reputed to be the pedestal of the celebrated Celtic cross of MacDuff. Men related to the MacDuff could flee here and be absolved of any crime on payment of nine cows and a year-old calf to the local authority. Nearby stood a holy well at which men guilty of murder washed their hands thus ridding themselves of guilt

and further responsibility. Another such stone was at Torphichen, in East Lothian and this was also a Christian sanctuary. All ground within a mile of this stone and St. John’s well was considered free ground for all debtors and criminals. CLACHD GLAS, The Grey Stone of Iona “by which the Chiefs swore. No longer extant.” CLACHD E LAIGHE, clachd, stone; OIr. lige, a bed, to lie abed. a Dreaming-Stone, a Knowing-Stone; a stone used to foretell the future. These were the stones which Englishmen called “celts.” By extension they became “any chisel or axe-shaped stones employed by a neolithic or prehistoric people.” In 1979, Jerald Walker examined a number of these “rattleback” stones, observing their unique properties for “The Scientific American:” “If you spin this type of stone in the “wrong” (counterclockwise) direction, it will quickly stop, rattle up and down for a few seconds and then spin in the opposite direction. Going in the “right” (clockwise) direction, it will usually spin stably. The stone is apparently biased toward one direction of spin. It will even develop a spin in that direction if you just rap one end downward. The rocking of the stone caused by the tap is quickly converted into a spin.” (Scientific American, p.172, Oct. 1979). There is record of these stones having been spun prior to battle, possibly to suggest the fate of individual warriors. CLACHD FHIOSACHD, A', clachd, stone; a' fios, of knowledge, similar to the Latin video, see. Any “Stone of Knowledge,” a divining-stone, typically formed from quartzite, often mounted in a silver. Similar to the clachd e laighe, above. Quite often quartzite was at least one of the triad stones placed beneath “table stones.” This material has pizeoelectrical effects when placed under pressure. CLACHD LEUG, Precious Stone. The charm of the Macleans. The latter word may have reference to the god Lugh.

CLACHD NA BRATACH, Stone of Brath or “Judgement,” said possessed by chief of Clan Donald on the eve of Bannockburn (1314). Just before battle, the clan standard bearer drove his staff into soft ground and it came away carrying a clod of earth. In the earth, clansmen found a transparent quartz-like crystal, about the size of a small apple. The group took this find as an omen of victory and henceforth when the clan travelled it was kept on the person of the chieftain. Water which had made contact with the stone was observed to have healing powers. CLACHD NA FAIRE, The Ridge, Sky-line, Morning Stone. Located near Tordarroch, Scotland, and central to Clan Chattan couintry, this was the traditional mystic gathering-place for Clan Shaw. “The Stone of the Watch.” CLACHD MALAKA, “Forbidding Stone.” The last vestige of an ancient Cromarty village lost to the Great Ocean. Elspat Hood, a resident of the region, who died in 1701 at the age of 120 years, recalled that this stone was once within a cornfield a quarter mile from water. The stone by 1701 had a base that never came near drying except at ebb of the Spring and the Lammas tides. In the 1760’s the current beach was bone-strewn after a violent gale that churned up some long lost burial place. CLACHD MA’NUS, Stone of Magnus, on the Orkneys at Burwick, South Ronaldsay. Scotland. Two footprints seen on this stone are said to be those of Saint Magnus who crossed the Pentland Firth, using this stone as his boat where nothing better was available. In fact, thought to pre-date Christianity and represent a swearing-stone for the kings of the Outer Isles. CLACHD NATHRACH, the “Serpent’s Stone.” See entry under Nathair. This adder’s stone was alternately known as the “Druidic Bead.” A Lewisman noted: “A number of serpents congregating at certain times form themselves into a knot and move round and round on the stone until a hole is worn. They pass and re-pass after each other through the hole,

which by-the-by becomes hard. It is the slime which gives the stone the healing properties it is supposed to possess.” (The Silver Bough, Vol. 1, p. 91). These holed stones were said found among the heather and were described as about five inches in diameter. The serpent stones were used to ease the pain of childbirth and as an amulet against any evil or enchantment. In Galloway, in 1869, a practitioner said the stone was dipped in water which was then sprinkled on ailing animals. These are the devices known as “snake balls” in North America. In 1793 Sylvester Woodbridge, a Southampton Merchant advertised for sale: “Satin, West India rum, snake balls, etc.” A snake ball was then described as “a small piece of stone or bone...which is placed on the bite of a poisonous snake to absorb or charm away the poison.” CLACHD SIGH, Stone of the Little Men, Ben Loyal, Scotland. The mountain itself is said to be heavily magnetic and distorts compass readings. According to tradition the smelting furnace of a sigh or sith lies within the mountain. Those wishing to have an object in metal forged by the side-hill folk are advised to leave a small wooden model and silver as advance payment near this stone, and by morning the object will have been fabricated. CLACHAN TARTIR, tartar, noise, after Torr, Thor, the god of thunder. The root word is reduplicated for emphasis. This is located at Strathtay on the Findynate Hill, “where there was once a good quarry of limestone...” Nearby is a tarn known as Loch Sguir na Geile, In this location there was supposed to have been a “fury” with iron teeth who had snakes and eels instead of hair. CLACHD NA' AITHNE, clachd, stone; aithne, knowledge, sometimes referred to as the divining-stone, routinely used to "set" a firth (a charm used to indicate the continued existence of persons living at a distance). Kings of the realms of Scotland and neighbouring Scandinavia routinely obtained these stones and used them to evaluate the conflicting advise they often got from their counsellors.

Carmichael has indicated that they were principally used to obtain omens of the future, although this was never their sole employment. He says they survived into "quite modern times." See entries immediately below. At Christian synods in Scotland attempts were made to discredit all such stones, but the outcome of research was not always what was expected. In October of 1638 a complaint was levelled against Gavin Hamilton for making use of “ane stone set in silver for the curing of diseased cattle.” The Synod, which met, tested the stone and noted that it was activated “without using onie words such as charmers use in their unlawful practise.” Seeing that no money changed hands in obtaining cures and that stone appeared to possess “a special virtue for the healing of monie infirmities in man and beast,” they dismissed the charge and returned the stone to the Lord of Lee admonishing him to use it in the future with discretion so that it might attract “the least possible scandall that can possibly be.” CLACHD NA BUIDSEACHD, the “Witches Stone,” used by practitioners of Zstrathtay and Grndtrully, Scotland. CLACHD BRIONGLAID, a dreaming stone. Three small stones taken from a boundary stream after dark at the Quarter Day. The stones have to be taken between thumb and middle finger and carried home after repeating the charm: “I lift the stones, as the sun lifted his son. This I do for substance, virtue, strength. May these stones rest in my hand to journey’s end.” Placed beneath a pillow they were thought to impart foresight. CLACHD COINNEACH ODHAR, Stone of Kenneth Mackenzie. A small, white, smooth stone, with a hole in the centre, supposedly found by Kenneth after waking from an unintended sleep on a sidh, or “side hill.” Upon looking through it this lad found himself possessed of prophetic powers, and became known as the Brahan Seer. Kenneth became famous in his birthplace, the Isle of Lewis, and became attached to his chieftain, Kenneth Mackenzie, the third Earl of Seaforth. Lady Seaforth, on the occasion of his

visit to Paris suspected her husband of adultery and tried to persuade the Seer to use his powers to confirm or deny her suspicions. When his second-sight caught the chief in dalliance, the unhappy wife turned on the bearer of the bad news and had him executed. In his last hours the Brahan Seer threw the foreseeing stone into a loch and pronounced the coming doom of the Mackenzies. The seer was born in the seventeenth century and Mackenzie rule failed exactly as pronounced in 1794. CLACHD DÚN ADD, Stone of the Fortress of Power, near Kilmartin, Scotland. It is approached through along rocklined gully, once roofed. There is a rude stairway leading beyond a lower amphitheatre to an upper ridge once walled as a triple keep. At the centre are three features of some interest: Carved on stone slabs are the imprint of a human foot, 11 by 4.5 inches. A drawing of a wild boar faces this print, and there also is a carved basin ten by four inches deep. Tradition claims that the footprint is that of Fergus, the first king of the Riata, or Dalriada (Argyll). At Celtic inaugurations, this footprint was used to legitimize each succeeding king, who was expected to stand briefly within the outline. “Clothed in white, the monarch would set his foot within the print, thus symbolizing an oath to walk in the steps of his forefathers. Similar rites were held in the Western Isles for the Macdonalds, the Lords of the Isles. The image of a boar remembers Lugh, the sun-god, and symbolizes the king’s position as the source of fertility. The basin was used in pagan foot-washing ceremonies which were easily adapted to Christian custom. CLACHD 'IC CHAOILTE, clachd, stone; chaoid, forever; "the alien stone from the east.” The Celtic Christian cross. Some claim that the "X" of the Christian element overlaid on the pagan "O" (symbolizing reincarnate nature) negated the power of the older symbol. In several instances, cromlechs may be seen with an "X" deliberately applied over an"O". These stones have a great a reputation for magic as their pagan counterparts. A ghostly summons to death is said to have issued from the Mercat Cross in Edinburgh on the night

before the battle at Flodden. The voice pronounced the names of all those destined to die in the morning. CLACHD DEARG, AN, clachd, stone; dearg, red; specifically the Red Stone of Ardvorlich. In ancient times the chieftainship of the Stewarts of Balquhidder fell upon the man that possessed this charm-stone. There are conflicting claims about its origin. One has it that the stone was originally mounted on the wand of office of an Arch-Druid; the other that it came from the Near East at the time of the Crusades. "From forty miles around the worried owners of sick cattle used to bring kegs of spring water to Ardvorlich. There, the Lady of Ardvorlich took the Charm, dangled it by its chain in the water and swirled it around three times, reciting a Gaelic incantation the while. After the Charm was taken out of the water it was necessary for the owner of the beasts to take the keg back to his animal to drink; and shortly afterwards it would recover. One other obligation had to be observed; the man carrying the keg was not allowed to enter any building with the keg on his way home..." (Highland Clans, p, 21). It is said that the charm is "a ball of rock crystal mounted in (four) bands of silver chased in a Celtic pattern." The stone is inventoried in 1900 as "an stane of the quantitye of half a hen's egg set in silver, flatt at the ane end and round at the uther and like to a peir, whilk Sir Coline first laird of Glenurchy woir when he fought the battel at Rhodes." CLACHD BHEAG NAN TUARSANAN, clachd, stone; bheag, little; tuar, to presage, to give omens. This divining-stone, often referred to as the “Little Stone of the Quests" belonged originally to the Macleans of Coll, "by whom it was much prized. It came down to them from remote antiquity. It was used in the "frith" for discovering the dead body of Donald MacLean of Coll when he was drowned in the Sound of Ulva. A member of the Coll family gave it to Mary MacInnes, cotter, Taigh a' Gearraidh, North Uist, for services rendered." She passed it on to the sennachie, D.A. Ferguson. (Highland Clans, p. 420).

CLACHD BHUAI, the Resting Stone held by the Campbells of Glenlyon. CLACHD CEUD, Prime Stone, First Stone. In older tales the Holy Grail is not represented as a chalice but as a stone relic, and in the Welsh poem “Peredur,” there is note of a similar “Stone of Abundance,” guarded by the black serpent, slain by that hero. More remotely the it was said that the fire of the sun poured forth each morning from the cauldron of the ocean, and thus the cauldron was sometimes spoken of as the “cauldron of the sun.” Note that the Grail Knights who “lived 200 years “ were said “nourished by a stone of most noble nature...called lapis excelis, the stone from heaven.” CLACHD CIL-FHINN, the stone at the burial place of Fiann. Killan in Scotland derives its name from this marker which was much visited in Victorian times. It is now ignored in a small field close to Breadlbane Park, almost lost in the rushes of the boggy ground. Fionn, who the Scots sometimes call Fingal, ruled in the Highlands and in Ireland by virtue of the power of his quasi-military Fiann. It is 14 miles through a hill pass from Killan to the place reputed to be his Alban home. He is thought to have died in 283 A.D. and local historian Duncan Fraser has noted that a “head” was added to this small standing stone in the last century. CLACHD CLOICHE, Shelter-Stone. In the pass of Ochils stands a freestone reputed to be the pedestal of the celebrated Celtic cross of MacDuff. Men related to the MacDuff could flee here and be absolved of any crime on payment of nine cows and a year-old calf to the local authority. Nearby stood a holy well at which men guilty of murder washed their hands thus ridding themselves of guilt and further responsibility. Another such stone was at Torphichen, in East Lothian and this was also a Christian sanctuary. All ground within a mile of this stone and St. John’s well was considered free ground for all debtors and criminals.

CLACHD GLAS, The Grey Stone of Iona “by which the Chiefs swore. No longer extant.” CLACHD E LAIGHE, clachd, stone; OIr. lige, a bed, to lie abed. a Dreaming-Stone, a Knowing-Stone; a stone used to foretell the future. These were the stones which Englishmen called “celts.” By extension they became “any chisel or axe-shaped stones employed by a neolithic or prehistoric people.” In 1979, Jerald Walker examined a number of these “rattleback” stones, observing their unique properties for “The Scientific American:” “If you spin this type of stone in the “wrong” (counterclockwise) direction, it will quickly stop, rattle up and down for a few seconds and then spin in the opposite direction. Going in the “right” (clockwise) direction, it will usually spin stably. The stone is apparently biased toward one direction of spin. It will even develop a spin in that direction if you just rap one end downward. The rocking of the stone caused by the tap is quickly converted into a spin.” (Scientific American, p.172, Oct. 1979). There is record of these stones having been spun prior to battle, possibly to suggest the fate of individual warriors. CLACHD FHIOSACHD, A', clachd, stone; a' fios, of knowledge, similar to the Latin video, see. A divining-stone, typically formed from quartzite, often mounted in a silver. Similar to the clachd e laighe, above. CLACHD LEUG, Precious Stone. The charm of the Macleans. The latter word may have reference to the god Lugh. CLACHD MA’NUS, Stone of Magnus, on the Orkneys at Burwick, South Ronaldsay. Two footprints seen on this stone are said to be those of Saint Magnus who crossed the Pentland Firth, using this stone as his boat where nothing better was available. In fact, thought to pre-date Christianity and represent a swearing-stone for the kings of the Outer Isles. CLACHD NA BRATACH, Stone of Brath or “Judgement,” said

possessed by chief of Clan Donald on the eve of Bannockburn (1314). Just before battle, the clan standard bearer drove his staff into soft ground and it came away carrying a clod of earth. In the earth, clansmen found a transparent quartz-like crystal, about the size of a small apple. The group took this find as an omen of victory and henceforth when the clan travelled it was kept on the person of the chieftain. Water which had made contact with the stone was observed to have healing powers. CLACHD NATHRAICH, the “Serpent’s Stone.” See entry under Nathair. This adder’s stone was alternately known as the “Druidic Bead.” A Lewisman noted: “A number of serpents congregating at certain times form themselves into a knot and move round and round on the stone until a hole is worn. They pass and re-pass after each other through the hole, which by-the-by becomes hard. It is the slime which gives the stone the healing properties it is supposed to possess.” (The Silver Bough, Vol. 1, p. 91). These holed stones were said found among the heather and were described as about five inches in diameter. The serpent stones were used to ease the pain of childbirth and as an amulet against any evil or enchantment. In Galloway, in 1869, a practitioner said the stone was dipped in water which was then sprinkled on ailing animals. CLACHD NA NATHRAICHEAN, “The Stone of the Serpents,” on the island of Skye. Allegedly the spot where nineteen seaserpents, one albino in colouration, were slain in a great battle with shepherds.

CLACHD NA REITE, Stone of Concord, a large centre-holed stone within the church of Kilchusalan, near Campbellton, Kintyre, Scotland. Through it eloped lovers were reconciled to offended parents and friends. If the pair were able to grasp hands through the stone before being overtaken there offense was pardoned and they were considered to have a legal right to wed. CLACHD SIGH, Stone of the Little Men, Ben Loyal, Scotland. The mountain itself is said to be heavily magnetic and distorts compass readings. According to tradition the smelting furnace of the sigh lies within the mountain. Those wishing to have an object in metal forged by the side-hill folk are advised to leave a small wooden model and silver near this stone, and by morning the object will have been fabricated. CLACHD TEINE, the “Fire-Rock,” a quartzite of very smooth texture. There is one of these located not far off the coast from the North Uist village of Baile Sear "one of dozens of the same name all over the British Isles, and no doubt (places) where the worship of Bel (Bil) was adorned." (Highland Clans, p. 119).

CLACHD UAINE, the Green Stone. The root may be veg, that which is wet. Cf. Eng. wet. This stone is first recorded in the hands of Macdonald of the Isles who always had the victory by throwing it among enemies. The stone, “about the bigness of a goose egg,” came to be held by “a little family called Clan-Chattans, alias Macintosh although its current whereabouts are unknown. Said to have curative powers and used by its owners “to swear oaths upon.” See uaine. CLAG DUCHAS, clag, OIr. clacc. Lat. clango, Eng. clang; dúthaich, a country, a district, OIr. duthoig, hereditary, dùthchas, by hereditary right; a bell held by hereditary right. These magical devices were attached to saints of the Christian church, and most were said created by supernatural means. An example is the small iron bell attributed to Saint Moluag of Lismore in Scotland, which he fashioned using nothing more than a bundle of rushes for fuel after the local smith refused to smelt it for him saying he had no coal. The simple iron bell was held in high regard by the Church of Lismore and a shrine (i.e. a metal box) was erected to protect it. “The shrine has a round hole pierced in the bottom, sufficient to allow the insertion of a finger to touch the bell...an indication that it has been used...to swear oaths upon...” CLAG TUIREADH, tuireadh from tuirse, sadness, a bell of lamentation; dirge-bell. "Once many centuries ago the sea in Nigg Bay, Ross and Cromarty, Scotland, was a low-lying and fertile valley. But a great storm arose and swept the sea between the fine pair of cliff headlands known as the Cromarty Suitors. All the fields and scrublands were thus submerged and buried in the sand, while a small village and church were covered by the sea. Thereafter sailors would listen to the sea before setting sail, for danger was clearly forecast if they could hear the submerged church bells of Nigg. Some of the old sailors still say the remnants of the buildings of the village could be clearly seen in the sea up to the late 1890's, but the last recorded phantom tolling was heard in the early 1920's.

CLAIDHEAG, the last sheaf of “corn” cut at the harvest. Considered a “maiden” if taken before the New Year (Nov. 1) but labelled an “old hag” if brought in at a later date. A good omen in the first instance. This is the Scot. claaik-sheaf, a product of the Scot. claaick, which the English call the “harvest home.” Claidheamh, a sword, a sharp implement for taking “corn.” The Celtic root is kela, to split. Also the last person to cut the sheaf and the state of having the crops in the barns. Confers with maiden, cailleach, cailleach bheurr, corn-baby, rye-mother etc. For good communal luck, it was considered necessary to have all crops down by the night of Samhainn, the last day of summer. The person who took the claidheag was considered to "possess the virgin" (i.e Samh, or the spirit of Summer) if this was the case. The grain was then reformed into a feminine figure termed the "shorn-maiden" and this was hung on the keep wall through the winter. At the planting it was either fed to the animals, or scattered on the fields, ensuring that the spirit of Summer would return to the fields to rejuvenate crops in the new season. In the event that the season of growing was prolonged and croptaking retarded beyond November 1, the figure was understood to represent the Winter-Hag and want and privation were expected in the months ahead. The unfortunate who cut this claidheag was thought ill-favoured of the gods and was said destined to "board the old cailleach" without hope of repayment. In any event, she was also returned to the fields, it being recognized that this spirit was simply the other face of Samh, the Summergoddess. In times long past, the taker of the cailleachbheurr may have automatically selected himself as the individual who would represent the "king" at one of the firefestivals. CLAIDHEAMH GEAL SOLUIS, claymore; geal. white; solus, light. The “sword of the Sun.” Lugh’s weapon. Often mentioned as possessed by a “giant” or other supernatural being. The Gaelic word claidheamh was anciently

pronounced “glaymore.” showing its relationship to the Eng. glave. The primal sword was a phallic symbol representing godhood throughout northwestern Europe. King Arthur possessed a magic sword as did Fionn. The sword in the tales of these god-men is a person. It shines in the presence of heroism, cries out when its double is endangered, and invaraiably turns upon those that carry it without cause or justification. The sword of creation was said to reflect all spells back upon any wicked miume. CLAM, leprosy. One of the most dreaded diseases of ancient times, considered caused by evil spirits invading the body of an unwilling host. CLAMHAN (clavan), kite, buzzard. Note correspondence with the word clam.

CLANN, children, clan, SIr, OIr, celjadi, a family, Lit. kiltis. Skr. Celtic root: qel, to hide, raise, go. coille, woods dwellers, Chaillinn, well as the words Celt and kilt.

cland, Cy. plant, OSlav. kula, race, Eng. plant. This is also the root for the Eng. Caledonian as

CLANN RIGH LOCHLAINN FO GEASAIBH, “The Children of the King of Lochlann under spells.” The seals of the Great Ocean. It is claimed that this race may have originated when the step-mother of the children of the King of Lochlann, studied the druidheachd in order to remove them from their father’s affections. This carlin put them under gease that they should become half-fish, half-human as long as the waters persist. Three times in the year, it is said that the Seals

must become totally human, when the moon is brightest. They must revert to their first shapes whether they will or not. To see the sea-borne in human shape, one might ask their love, and detain them (in human form) on the shore for at least that evening but is likely to wake at dawn with a seal in his bed. Becaue the seals are of the race of the Gaels they all croon the old language. Like the Swan, who is “the daughter of the twelve moons” and the Mallard, who is under Morgan’s protection, the seals are scared to the Gaels and it is thought the worst luck to meddle with them.

CLAOCHLU (kloe kloo), shape-shifting. The ability to assume the aspect of a plant or animal. Claochoid, obs., to exchangeThis guise was first perfected by the Fomorian sea-giants but was re-instituted by The Sweeny among men. A resident of Dal Riada he was killed in battle but refused to take residence in the Otherworld. In the world of men his immortality set him aside, and he was forced to wander in the wild lands. Here he learned to converse with animals and plants and learned the art of altering his shape to duplicate their forms. His art shielded him from men and was passed to his descendants the so-called “Travelling Folk” of Britain. CLÀRSACH, a harp, literally “intelligent wood.” The chief

musical instrument of the gods. The “Harp of the North,” possessed by the Dagda sometimes defeated his enemies by lulling them to sleep. CLEAS, play, trick, craft, feat, to gamnol, to be skilled at legerdemain or sleight-of-hand, startegem, any wqarlike exercise. Related to the obsolete cle, the left hand, lefthanded, prejudiced, partial. Cleasai, a trickster. Although it has never been possible to distinguish exactly between religious and magical gods, since they tended to gain or lose power over time, it is clear that either could use the craft they possessed for the benefit of individuals or the entire community. These forms have been distinguished by Sir James Fraser as private and public magic. As public craftspeople, our witches had the function of assuring the prosperity and health of men, crops and animals. This meant that the witch had to have a knowledge of plant and animal diseases and herbal remedies, along with saleable hints on the appropriate methods and times for planting. Weather was of paramount interest to farmers and fishermen, and it was the witch rather than the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation which looked after forecasts. For a consideration, the people of any Maritime village could have predictions based on dreams and omens, as well as the diagnosis of disease. As we've seen, when quarrels developed between neighbours, the witch gained a profit by taking sides. Fraser says that the most essential business of a rural community was "the supply of food". He also notes that the private practice of rites of magic diverted hunters, fishermen and farmers from their true proferssion, so that it was "a great step in advance" when the business was given to specialists. Of course, the expectations of ordinary men that these priest-philosophers would be "able to regulate the great processes of nature for the good of me" fell short. Today the tenants of sympathetic magic appear absurd, but in their day they were legitimate beginnings for observations of cause and effect, which eventually ended with science. Ridicule and blame were

heaped on priests who failed to deliver when expected, so they had strong incentives for improving their methods of prediction. As Fraser says: "To maintain at least a show of knowledge was absolutely necessary; a single mistake might cost them their life." There was always a tendancy to substitute stage trickery or sleight-of-hand for actual knowledge but this tended to be found out and the best way to appear to be knowledgeable was obviously to have it. However one may condemn stage magic and the deceptions of witchcraft as a cover for ineptitude, this specialization did allow people freedom from manual toil to examine "the properties of drugs and minerals, the causes of rain and drought, of thunder and lightning, the changes of the season, the motions of the stars, the mystery of life and of death." These public magicians were "the direct predecessors, not merely of our physicians and surgeons, but of our investigators and discoverers in every branch of natural science." CLEASAI (kla-see),trickster from cleas, a play, trick, feat; root klek, to play. The ability to out-manoeuvre others was considered a supernatural gift. Plural, cleaithe (pronounced cla-see), a trickster, As in cleas, a play, trick or feat, a wile. Similar to cluich, to play from the Early Irish cluche, a game Correponds with the German word lachen and the English laugh. A person who deceived through artifice or cunning, using word-magic alone or in combination with jugglery and slight-of-hand. Also called the gille-nan-car, the servant of one who twists, an artful dodger, a fraud. The penultimate European trickster was the Norse god Loki, who acted so badly he was hunted down by his fellow gods and chained within a remote part of Nifhelheim, the preserve of his daughter Hel. Loki corresponds with the Teutonic god Laugar and the less-spirited English lubberfiend. Another relation is the giant known as Lob Lie-ByFire, not to mention the hobgoblins known variously as the lob, lobby, lobbard or lubber, the smallest being the lubberkin. It is no great jump from the lubberkin to the the Gaelic lobaircin better known as the Leprachaun. The Ulster

Luchraman is probably intermediate with Lugh (Lookh) the old Gaelic god of wild fire. While he was never the equal of Loki, the great Lugh was either very skilled or very tricky. When he was spent to spy upon the Firbolgs he looked for work in the court of King Eochaid. He was turned down because they already had a harper, a smith, a champion, a magician, a druid, a cupbearer, a physician and a goldsmith. But Lugh modestly admitted that he was the expert in all these crafts: "Go to your king and ask him if he has any my equal. If he has, then I shall no longer trouble the gates of Tara." He afterwards became a presence at the court where he served as an undercover agent for the Tuatha daoine, who eventually defeated the Firbolgs. Maritime Canadian tricksters are legion and as Joe Neil MacNeil says, "The fox has no tricks unknown to the hunter." Crazy Archie was one of these hunters, "a notorious character who was not wholly to be trusted..." After one long bout of wandering, Archie arrived at a Cape Breton homestead to find the woman of the house preparing soup for her husband, who was ill in bed. Pretending that was a medical doctor, Archie examined the patient and advised against giving him chicken soup. So that there would be no waste he drank the bowl to the bottom. Afterwards he recommended that the man be wrapped in the skin of a newborn calf as a cure for his illness, and the woman became aware that she had been duped. Again, Archie approached the local minister when he was in need of shoes. The Reverand Sutar scribbled him a credit note to present to the local cobbler, but the trickster suggested (somewhat unsubtly) that promissory notes were of little value. When the cleric went to feltch a few shilllings for the shoes, Archie pocketed the note. When Mr. Sutar returned he also took the money, noting that "the letter will get me the shoes and the money whisky a drink." Later, Crazy Archie returned looking for a place to stay the night. Being unimpressed with the man's impositions, Sutar decided to house him in a barn loft, telling his "guest" the

accomodations were of a high order. As bedtime drew near Archie insisted that his host show him to his room. The minister entered the barn and climbed up ladder to lead Archie to his bed. At that the trickster snatched away the latter and cried out, "Since the bed is as good as you say it is, shouldn't you be the one to sleep in it? I will sleep in your bed."12 CLEACHD, a practise, custom, from the root qel, to destroy, to hide, as seen in Lat. colo and the Eng. cultivate, to dig up (in order to plant). Cf. ON goddess Hel and G. ceil, conceal. Also matches cleas, play, trick, a feat and cleath, concealment, hiding. The Eng. Celt and kilt. CLEASA CLEITEAM CLEASACH, cleasa, cunning; cleiteam, occult; cleasach, tricks. A tale from Eigg notes the variety: “Dazzling tricks, artful tricks. Psychic tricks, magic tricks. Weird mystical tricks. The cunning occult tricks of the “ogam.”” CLEITH SHEANACHAIR, cleith, a stake, a warm place, cover, a shelter; seanchaid, a reciter of ancient lore, historian, a senachie. CLEITECH, from cleit, ridged, a rocky eminence, from ON. klettr, rock, cliff. Common in combination as northern place-names, a boar. Cúchullain noted that it was “also the name for a king, the leader of great hosts and Fessi is the name for the Great Sow.” the chief totem-animal of Lugh. as well as his consort. Note that “the pig-skin of Tuis (a dialectic form of Lugh), which the sons of Turieann were asked to bring to Ireland, cured all sick and wounded and if dipped into a stream would turn the water into wine for three days.” The seven pigs of Easal of the Golden Pillars” were obviously the pigs of Manann for it is noted that they “provided an inexhaustible feast for, if eaten on one night, they would appear next day ready to be slaughtered for Joe Neil, Tales Until Dawn, Kingston (1987), pp. 170-172. See also the traditional tale starting on page 173.

another feast.” See muc, saigh, sod and fessi. CLETINÉ. cli, left-handed, left, awkward, slow, clever, strong, wrong. teine, fire, left-handed fire, the spear of Cúchullain coveted by Queen Mebd of Connacht for its success as a battle-tool. Also called the uman-sruth, or “bronze-stream,” from its appearance in flight. Mebd sent a bard to ask that Cúchullain surrender the weapon to him. According to the rules of common courtesy, the hero could not refuse the request of a poet. In a nice sample of exact compliance, Cúchullain flung the spear at the poet with such force it ripped off his head, breaking the spear point in the process. The stream in which the spear fell still bears the name Umal. CLICHD, CLIC, an iron hook, also a cunning trick, Sc. cleeky, ready to hang another on a hook, ready to take unfair advantage, having an inclination to cheat. See next. CLI, CLE, left, as in ciotach, left-handed, wrong, wrongheaded, Cy. cledd, Bry. kleiz, the root klei, iencline, oblique, similar to claon, incline, oblique, squint, the Eng. lean. Not attachments with cleachd, and the goddess Hel. See also cliar and clibeag. The Eng. Celt and kilt. CLIAMH SOLUIS, the “King of the Sun,” the Sword of Light. Possessed by Nuada, brandished against Lugh’s spear to create the shower of sparks that gave rise to the stars and the worlds of men. An irresistible force once unsheathed. Confers with the sword of Tyrr, the Norse god of war. See also Caladcholg. CLIAR, a poet, a hero, EIr. clergy, from the Latin clerus. From this cliaranach, a bard, EIr. cliar, society, a train of people, the clergy, from Lat. clerus, a clerk. Hence the druidic bard or cliaranach, sometimes identified as “a swordsman.” The Cliar Sheanachain, or “Senachan’s Lore” was the mythic bardic company that went the rounds to the consternation of the kings and princes of the realms. Hence cliarchd, singing or feats. Note that poetry was considered

one of the magic arts. See cli and note connection with the ON goddess Hel. CLIAR SHEANCHAIN, Poet’s Company. Itinerate travelling companies of bards, story-tellers, jugglers, muscians and tricksters who quarter themselves, without inviation, on well-to-do and hospitable land-owners, often remaining until they became a grevious burden on the host. Asking thme to leave invited magical satire. “The words of satire had starnge power. They caused a man’s face to redden to blistering, and the man satirized did little good thereafter.” As a result these latter-day “druids” stayed at their will. But there was an out: If a member of the household managed to defeat them in a contest of wit (bearradairachd) they had to depart immediately. Walter Campbell of Muckarin, Argyll, went a little beyond the rules of hospitality when his bardic company overstayed their time with him. Campbell cut down an oaktree and partially split it with oak-wedges. He then called upon the grumbling “druids” to lay hold on either side of the gap while he drove the main wedge further into the tree. The unsuspecting cliar did as suggested and Campbell immediately struck away the wedge. The guests were now left with their hands embedded in oak. While they were held fast Campbell abused them so thoroughly that at least one man died. Having offended the laws of hospitality this landowner was forced to move to the Mearns. By 1579 these travellers were thoroughly detested and in Scotland a law was passed stating that “common menstralis” were likely to be confined, scourged and burned on the cheek. Memebers of the cliar were actually hanged at Edinburgh in the sixteenth century. Ever since that time the Gaels have cited calamity by saying Is miosa so na an la a chrochadh na cliar! CLIBEAG, a trick, a wile. Tricksters were considered to be men favoured by the gods, practitioners of magic. Confers with clichd, a cunning act from the low Sc. cleiky, one who

is ready to take advantage, a tricky individual; cleek, having an inclination to cheat, the G. cleasai, a trickster. CLICHD, an iron hook, also a cunning trick, Sc. cleeky, ready to hang another on a hook, ready to take unfair advantage, having an inclination to cheat. CLIOONA, or CLIODHNA (Cleena, Ir. Cleevna)), a daughter of Gibann, the druid to the sea-god Manann mac Ler, all residents of Tir nan Og. She encountered the human visitor named Craban of the Love Spot, was seduced by him, and purloined the grey horse of the sea to escape with him to southern Ireland. She was lulled into sleep by the music of Manann's bard while at the seashore and was then inundated and drowned by a "tidal" wave sent ashore by the god. Afterwards all such waves were entitled Tonn Cliodna, or Clioona's wave. She was later reincarnate as one of the triad queens of Munster, a seducer of young men and a banshee, after the fashion of the Mhorrigan. CLOCHAN, CLACHAN NA BH’ FOMHARAIGH, The Fomorian Stones, now entitled the Giant’s Causeway. Supposedly put in place by the sea-giants to connect Ireland and Scotland beneath the ocean. At first credited to the sea-god Manann mac Ler the “causeway” was sometimessaid built by the “gigantic” human hero Fionn mac Cumhail. This geological formation is now said to have arisen from the very slow cooling of rock over millions of years. The crystalline formations which are now seen were once deeply buried but slow weathering and erosion have brought them to light as pillars of black basalt. The column’s sometimes also called the Giant’s Loom have five to nine faces each. CLON, CLOMH, rest, repose, to counteract, subdue, a narcotic, repose, medicine to induce sleep. Related to caochail, to change, to die. Many of the baobhs started their "residency" as herbalists, but soon found that what cured in small quantity often killed if given in over-dose. When the price was right, some of them were tempted to offer poisons to customers who wanted to eliminate a relative or

enemy. It is noteworthy that the continental description for a witch was "venefice", or poisoner.


CLOTHRA, from claoidh, to vex or oppress. A daughter of Eochaidh Feidhleach who drowned her sister and had affairs with each of her three brothers.They impregnated her with a son who became high-king. He was entitled Lughaid Riab n’ Derg, “Lughead of the Red Stripes,” because his body was divided into three sections, each having the physical characteristics of one of the brothers. When Lughaid was a man he begot a son on Clothra, a boy named Crimthann Nia Nair. Thus we have the verse: Lughaid Riab n’Derg to fair Crimthann Was father and also brother. And Clothra of the comely form Was grandmother to her own son. See next. CLOUTA. OIr nom. Cluad, gen. Cluaide, earlier Cloithe. OCy. Clut, later Clud, from which the Eng. Clyde. The Gaelic Arecluta or OIr. Erchluad is Strathclyde. The root is the Celt. clou, to wash. Confers with Latin cluo, to purify and cloaca, a sewer. “ Like many other river names Clota is really the name of a river-goddess. (William Watson, p. 44).” CLUIGEIN, a little bell, anything dangling, from clag. Bell, crash. Loud talk. These devices were used by Christian clerics to disperse the Daoine sidh, who were eventually driven from Scotland. CLURICAN, lur. little darling, a male child. Confers with Ler, the pagan god of the sea; can, singer. An invisible bodach said to inhabit root-cellars, given his supper in exchange for preventing leakage in casks of liquor and beer. Originally seen as a resident of County Cork, and excepting his occupation, the equivalent of the Leprachaun (see also locairman).

CNAP STARRADH, a stumbling-block or obstruction. Literally, a spear with a ball (eye) on one end and a point at the other. E Ir. cnapp, from Norse knappr, a knob, from which the Gaelic cnap, a blow. The second word is starradh, to push or shove against a body. Technically this is the more inoffensive end of a weapon known as the da sleag, or dart. The Roman writer Dion Cassius alluded to this device as the cnapstarra and guessed that it was used to “disturb the enemy and particularly the cavalry because of the rattling noise that it made.” The bronze ball was cast in hollow form and filled with small stones to produce a noise when it was moved. It may be guessed that the device was used to keep allies in touch in the darkness. It probably unintentionally upset the Romans, the chief purpose being to create a din which would drive antagonistic battle spirits from the field. This was the weapon used by the mortalgod Lugh to blind Balor of the Evil-Eye, and is that seen on the sepulchral monuments of the Celtic peoples. CNARRA, obs., a ship, from ON. knorr, AS. cnear. CNÒ, a nut, OIr. cnú, AS. hnutu, Eng. nut. Hazel-nuts were once gathered for divination rites usually held at the Samhain.”Young people still resort to the hazel groves in order to get a supply of nuts for use in the divination rites on Hallowe’en. The hazel nut was associated with the milkyielding goddess (Boann) because of the mil contained in the green nut. (The Silver Bough, Vol. 1, p. 80). CNOC, (knock) a hillock, council, court, wisdom, wisdom, eminence, Preferred sites for meetings of a religious or jjudicial nature, OBr. cnoch, a tumulus or weem, an underground home or tomb; similar to ON. knakki, AS. knecca and the English word neck, especially the nape of the neck. Similar to the English word knoll. The lightly contoured round-topped hills said to house the side-hill people known as the Daoine sidh. The "fougous-refuge" or cnocs of Britain are not a figment of the popular imagination. The archaeologist Sean P. O'Riordain says that "only a

small proportion of known souterrains have been found by formal excavation. The total number must, however, be very large...Accumulations of charcoal, the presence of chimneys and other evidence of occupation demonstrate that certain souterrains were used as dwelling-places, however uncomfortable, and not merely as refuges...They are found all over Ireland. They also occur in Scotland where they are referred to as "earth-houses" or "weems" (from umah, a cavern) or "wags" (from uaigh, a grave). We find them again in Cornwall where they are known as "fougous" In Iceland they are merely rock-cut tunnels. At least one example is found in Jutland. Their absence in Wales is puzzling and they are not found on the Continent." Most are of stone-age provenance although others were built at the beginning of the Christian era. CNOC AILEAG, Hill of Sighs; the Lat. halo, breath; Eng. inhale; EIr. ael, air, scent. Also called the Hill of A Stone, a “hard place.” When the god known as the Dagda was pushed out of Brugh na Boinn by his son Aonghas, he resettled this hill at Tara. Here he was visited by Corrgenn a man of Connacht. This guest got it in his head that his wife was having an affair with Aedh, one of the sons of Dagda. This was not the case but the visitor killed the young man while his father looked on. Every one thought that the Dagda would take immediate revenge but he did not thinking his son might be guilty of impropriety. In retribution he did demand that Corrgenn carry the body of Aedh on his back until he found a burial stone exactly equal to the lad in width and breadth. Corrgenn found the task less easy than he supposed and it was many an ochone before he was able to erect the cromlech. When this was done Dagda instructed two builders to build a rath in this location: Garbhan cut and placed the stones required for the residence and Imheall took charge of the finishing work. The two finally sealed the new “hollow-hill” with a cap-stone slab. This new place was called the Hill of Aileac for the “tears of blood” which Dagda shed on account of the death of his son. Corrgenn did not survive the effort of carrying the corpse and erecting the huge memorial stone. See Dagda.

CNOC AINGEIL, aingeal, light or fire, as opposed to ainneal, a common hearth-fire. Similar to the Scandinavian ingle and the Latin ignis. the fire knoll, which appears as the symbol of Clan Macleay. or Livingston, whose ancient home was the sacred Isle of Lismore. The Christians may have deliberately confounded this word with angel, thus the "hill of the angel." As they consider themselves descended from Aedh Alain. one may suspect that they once had some regard for the old pagan fire god Aedh or Aod. Livingston is the englished form of Leibh's ton (town) which is still located in West Lothian, Scotland. They had their house there, and their chiefs ruled the highland Trossachs from the fourteenth to the eighteenth century. It is certainly to the point that these people "kept up the old Beltane fires, despite local (Christian) ministers." through all these centuries. Iain Moncriefffe says that the "fire-knoll" "appears to be an ancient artificial mound, perhaps connected with (pagan) fire works since Christian holy places were usually sited on pagan places." Interestingly the Gaelic form of Macleay is mac An-leigh or mac Anleibh, a variant on of the word under discussion. Further, "the Barons of Bachuil were known as muinntir a cnoc, the “people of the hill.” Stokes defines muinntir as the “monastic hill-dwellers”. The knoll itself is alternately termed cnoc a bhreith, the “judgement knoll,” reflecting the powers of life and death once held by the barons of this clan. The Macleays were already in residence on Lismore when Saint Lughaid, nicknamed Moluag arrived from Bangor, Ireland to set up a monastery off the coast of what is now Appin. He died in Pictland in 592. Considering the fact that he was named after the old sun-god Lugh (whose name is not far removed from leigh) it not surprising that his passing was marked by an eclipse of the sun. St. Moluag's pastoral staff, borrowed from a dead pagan druid, was bestowed upon the dewars, or “keepers,” of the Isle of Lismore, who became its hereditary guardians. CNOC A BHREITH, BREATH, brath, judgement; the judgement hill. Every community of any size had such a rise,

sometimes on an interval islandusually the nearest convenient flat-topped hill. These hills were also termed "laws", thus the word in English. The hills were frequently multipurpose being the site of religious as well as secular functions. It was these hills that the Christians attempted "to make low" when their missionaries invaded Britain. See next. CNOC AN EIRIC, EIRIG, “stone of atonement,” “stone of ransom.” a “hill of pleas.” In 1772 Pennant reported tghat “such eminences are frequently near the house of all the great men, for on these, with the assistance of their friends, they determined all differences between the people.” Thus eireacht, an assembly for this purpose. Thus we find Ericstone near Moffatt, in Gaelic clach na h-eirce, the “stone of atonement.” CNOC BENN, Islay. Another “fairy-hill.” CNOC MOD, a meeting knoll; especially applied to a hillock within the grounds of Scone Palace at Edinburgh. In the trees near the residence is the old "moot-hill" constructed of earth from all regions of the old Scottish kingdom. Here, the old Scots Kings stood to be inaugurated on the Stone of Scone. Lesser hills were found throughot the countryside. The “judgement seat,” of the Lord of the Isles was, for example, a mod at Kilmachumaig, near Crinan. The Dukes of Lennox had their meeting hill at Cathair in Dumbartonshire. The MacNeills met at a similar mound in Barra. CNOC SEANAN, hill of jewels. The sidh hills when opened often displayed rich treasures affixed to the inner walls. CNOD, from the English knot. The rite of “knitting the knot”was intended to harm an enemy. In this case the magic maker tied a number of knots along a thread or string, “blowing a curse” at each as it was formed. Placed with the personal property of the cursed individual this amulet was thought to have a malevolent effect. This rite was also taken up by the common folk at the Quarter Days, and

especially at Samhain, to tell the future. The rite was mostly restricted to young unmarried women who were advised to pass alone through a barn or secluded woods at midnight. In a left-handed garter, constructed of thread or string, she was advised to tie three knots while singing the Gaelic version of: I knit this knot, this knot I knit, To see the sight I ne’er saw yet My true love in his best array. Or clad as he be every day... The garter was then laid under the maiden’s pillow where it served the same function as “dreaming stones.” See clachd brionglaid. COARY, COIRE VRECHEN, BHRECAIN, coire, a cauldron, coirb, vicious; ON vrece, vengeance; the whirlpool between the Scottish islands of Jura and Scorva, said to be the home or a physical manifestation of the Cailleach Bheur. COBHTHACH, (Cowhach) nicknamed “The Slender.” A son of Ugaine More, High King. He became ruler of Bregia (in the south of Ireland) but was jealous of his brother Loaghaire, who controlled Leinster. He became so obsessed with hate he lost weight thus earning him his name coel. He planned the death of Loaghaire, by pretending his own death. As the Leinsterman bent to pay his last respects Cobhthach stabbed him in the stomach. Later Cobhtach poisoned Laoghaire’s son and heir and made his grandson eat his own father’s heart. The trauma rendered the young man speechless and thus he became known as Moen, “the dumbone.” Cobhthach now assumed kingship of Leinster, but in exile Moen recovered his speech, and as a man gathered an army of Gauls to gain his vengeance. He attacked his great uncle at Dinn Righ and burned him and thirty warriors to death in the great iron hall of that redoubt. COBHTHACH COEL, (cowhach) nicknamed “The Slender.” A son of Ugaine More ard righ. He became ruler of Bregia (in

the south of Ireland) but was jealous of his brother Loaghaire, who controlled Leinster. He became so obsessed with hate he lost weight thus earning him his name coel. He planned the death of Loaghaire, by pretending his own death. As the Leinsterman bent to pay his last respects Cobhthach stabbed him in the stomach. Later Cobhtach poisoned Laoghaire’s son and heir and made his grandson eat his own father’s heart. The trauma rendered the young man speechless and thus he became known as Moen, the “Dumb.” Cobhthach now assumed kingship of Leinster, but in exile Moen recovered his speech, and as a man gathered an army of Gauls to gain his vengeance. He attacked his great uncle at Dinn Righ and burned him and thirty warriors to death in the great iron hall of that redoubt. COCHAN, COICHAN, COCHULLAN, cow-led, disillusion, disappointment, having special reference to the Daoine sidh who were illusionists and magicians. Later the attire favoured by robbers, hence Robin Hood and his merry men. Note next entry. COCHULL, COICH, a husk, a hood, Ir. cochal, OIr. cochull, Cy. cwcwll. a cowl, perhaps from Lat. cucullus, see below. In some parts hooded deities had associations of fertility and healing. Rice has noticed that almost all the cult-figures which are hooded are seen wearing the alba, or “belted kilt.” Some of these deities are pictured along with ravens. Since these birds are symbols of war it has been suggested that the hooded-folk represent the healing aspects of wargods. Elsewhere the hooded ones are seen holding serpents in their two hands and this figure is said associatyyed with classical medicinal gods such as Aesculapius. The cochull or hood may be the birth-caul of folklore and/or the “travelling hood” of the mer-people. In any event it is frequently mentioned in Irish mythology where it is always imbued with supernatural significance. The most enigmatic find of hooded “idols” is that of the genii culcullati recovered from Housesteads in northern Britain. This a rock engraved trio (like the bafinne or the tri de daoine). All stand frontally revealled, except for the fact that they are

wearing heavy hooded cloaks. Their features are so primitive it is uncertain whether they are male or female, but the could be medicants of some cult such as that devoted to Bridd. See next. COCHULLANN, COICHANN DRUIDHEACHD, Ir. cochuleen, coathulin or cothulin druith. cochull, a husk or hood, Ir. cochal, OIr. cochull, Cy. cwcwll, a cowl, Lat. cucullus, ann, within (the body), druidheachd, magic. The caul of the unborn. The magical “cap” worn by the sea-people when they travelled between the sea bottom and the dry land. The equivalent of the modern face mask and respirator used in “skin-diving.” Note also, cochan + leannan. hooded concubine; driug, a meteor, a flash of light, a source of portent. The Gaelic mer-women "instead of an entire dress" (fish form) wore the cohuleen driuth, a kind of cap, without which she cannot return to her subaqueous abode. (Gnomes Fairies Elves and Other Little People, p. 370).” This headdress corresponds with the "caul-cap", or "birth-cap".the "cap of luck", under which the "lucky-people" were born. "They used to say, There is one born well, with the cap of luck, sure to be fortunate in every way." These individuals were understood to be land-dwelling descendants of the Fomorian sea giants and those of the Tuatha daoine who had gone to reside in Tir nan Og. If they carried their cauls always about them they were considered free of any danger from drowning or death by fire. The caul was considered the resting place of their befind, or second soul. It was considered a valuable property in the practise of witchcraft, and if stolen the person became "a rent-payer to hell", an individual whose ventures always failed regardless of effort or merit. "Some people were lucky to be met in spite of having red hair or other personal peculiarity. A fisherman said that he had twice met such a woman when on his way to fish saithes, and on both occasions had so much as he could carry home. Others are just as unlucky to meet and you would be sure to have disappointment in your errand (if you

met one). Women do not seem (in general) a sign of good. If you are to make a "frith" and you see a woman cross yourself. If a woman tells you the new moon is visible do not look at it." (Celtic Monthly. p. 164). Note that “He who is born with the ON. glükshaube, or glükshelum, the sigurkull, or “holyhow” “which often seems to have the same effect as the fairy hat, is predestined to fortune and prosperity, like a Sunday child.” In Sweden the name for these fortunate few is Lykke-Per, the “Lucky” or “Lokki person,” one who “has luck” without percepitable effort. In Norway luck is considered visited upon some men by the Lyckonisse, while in Sweden this creature is “the luck-bringing brown-man, or brownie.” CODRUM, from the Norse Gutt-ormr, the God-worm. Having reference to the world encircling Iomungandr, The progeny of Lokki and the giantess Angur-boda he attained such proportions he was occasionally baited by his own tail. When he bit it, the earth was subjected to earthquakes and tidal waves. From this the family name Maccodrum. “The numerous early Irish stories of supernatural water serpents inhabiting lakes and rivers, including the catalogue of these given in the Dunnaire Finn, and engaging in combat with heroes, and the war waged on thes by the early Church suggests that these traditions have remnants, reduced to mere folk episodes, of an earlier tradition of composite water-frequenting serpents, comparable with the imagery of ram-headed, fish-tailed serpents of Celtic iconographic tradition.” See cruim-domhainn, Nathair. COIBCHE, “the right of purchase,” a dowry. An amount owing the father of the fiancee. The amount decreased in subsequent marriages. When the father died, the eldest brother had the right to half the ordinary “purchase price.” The coibche gave the husband title to the woman’s body and children but she remained part of her birth-family and retained her own goods and chattels from that source. COILEACH, (culuch), the cock, cockerel; OIr. cailech; Br. kiliok, "the caller", root gal, to call. Similar to Latin

calere, to summon. Latin, calere, the caller; English calends. An animal used in the sport of cock-fighting, an inevitable rite of the Quarter-Days. "The cock is considered sacred. No one would willingly walk abroad in the night, as night and darkness are pervaded by evil, but as soon as the cock crows the most timid will venture out alone, no matter how dark it may be. If the cock crows at an unusual hour it is a sign of some untoward event. The cock that is hatched in March has more effect against evil spirits than one hatched in autumn, especially if it is black in colour." " In a certain house in Uist a guinea disappeared from the stocking. A suspicion, well-founded, it is said, fell upon a noted character...Nothing was said at the time but when the suspected person next asked for hospitality, the inmates were about to eject him, when the cock flew down from the couples, and flew about him with flapping wings, so they permitted him to come in out of the darkness and allowed him the shelter of the house." "A skipper of a vessel lying in Loch Skipport on three successive nights saw from his deck a curious phenomenon, a ball of fire, which came from the north toward a dwelling-house on the shore, and which always turned back at the crowing of the cock, doing no injury to any one. The skipper went ashore, bought the cock, and asked the people of the house to pass the night on his vessel. As they watched on deck, they saw the ball of fire approach the house as before and the house was consumed by flames before their eyes. The owner was of the opinion that it was a punishment from heaven for some wrangling with his wife." Animals were formerly housed with humans and any sudden movements of the cock, or fowl in general, was thought a bad omen. This same writer tells of a joiner who was playing the parlour pipes within the sheiling as a snowstorm swirled outside. "The cock suddenly came down from his roots and began to crow and leap up flapping his wings at the piper. The wife told him to stop (playing) as the cock's behaviour foreboded ill." Those gathered about the peat-fire had just began to surmise on the nature of the

disaster when the voice of a priest was heard at the door. It was soon revealed that the victim had been the brother of the man of the house,had become lost ina stormand had had fallen beneath the ice of a nearby loch. In another case all of the birds in the loft became agitated and flew about the room. When they had settled it was seen that a patient in the house, not thought to be near death, had expired of her illness. "The crofters very much dislike the modern (1901) innovation of not being allowed to keep their beasts in the house, and especially resent the exclusion of the cock, who serves to keep out the Powers of Darkness." (all above from Celtic Magazine, 1901, p. 144). The Highland “art” of cockfighting was imported to the lowlands, where it became particularly associated with Fastern E’en (the first day of the fast of Lent). In the north and west it was known to belong to the Imbolg (February 1). F. Marian McNeill says that the boys of this region brought their fighting cocks to school on this day in historic times. The animals became involved in community approved fights the owner of the coileach budha, being appointed the Candlemas King, the ultimate loser, the coileach fuidse. All maimed and killed birds were given to the schoolmaster. In 1800, at Dornach it is recorded that the annual cockfight took place in the court-room of the High Sheriff, the “coronation” of the king being held afterward at the school. “The seats behind the master’s desk were occupied by “the beauty and fashion of the town,” some whom were responsible for the devising and making of crowns. The King and Queen of Cocks were called out and after a Latin speech by the schoolmaster were led by a drummer and piper on a “Trojan march” through the town.” This king obviously represents the old sacrificial victim of pagan times; the schoolmaster taking the part of the high druid. The two forms of the cock appear to represent the alteregos of the Oolathair. See also Oichche choinnle, the “Night of the Candles.”

COILEACH BUAIDHA, BUDHA, buaidh, victory, virtue. A commonly seen Celtic name, sometimes used as a prefix (eg Boudicea), The Old Norse, byti, to exchange; the German, beute, booty; the English, booty. The victorious cock. See entry immediately above. COILEACH FUIDSE, fuidheall, the remainder, left-over. Relates to the English words deal and dole. Fuidir, a fool. The loser at cock-fighting. See two entries immediately above. COILEAS, psychology. The abilty to manipulate others, a knack considered a gift from the gods. COILLE, “woods-landers,” compares with Eng. Caledonia. Northern Scotalnd, Mentioned in classical Latin as Caledonii. Sometimes used to identify the clans living in the vicinity of the Grampians. They were also called deu caledonii, the “double Caledons,” possibly because they inhabited the eastern and western slopes of these hills. In Gaelic the form is dun chaillinn, the fort of the Caledonians. Earlier this would have been dun-callden or duni-callen. The name has become attached to a geological massif in southeastern New Brunswick, The Caledonian Uplands and to a single Caledonian Mountain. Interestingly, these formations resemble those of central Scotland. COIMDHDHE, COIMHDHE, OIr. comdiu, lord. God, the Trinity. G. meas, esteem,Similar to the Latin modus, meditor, meditate, a mediator, a solver of problems. The Christian God, the Trinity, OIr. comdiu, the Lord (of the Wind) from the root kemb, wind. Note also coimheach, strange, foreign, cruel. See trionaid. COINCHEND. COINCHEANN, (kun-kann), A Fomorian warriorwoman slain by Art when he rescued Delbchaem, her daughter, from a prison tower in the Land of Wonder located somewhere in the western Atlantic. COINN IONGAR, dog with the blood of the gods. Also COINN

IOTHAIR, the fitful hound. The ever-present companions of Cromm Dubh. His totem-animals. See cu. COINCHEND. The wife of the male Morgan. A monstrous warrior woman slain by Art when he rescued Delbchaem, her daughter from a tower where she was held captive in the Land of Wonder. COINGEAL, a devouring opening in the sea, a whirlpool. Regarded as an embodiment of an evil spirit. Chief of these was the Scottish Coary Vrechen, considered a winter embodiment of the Cailleach Bheurr. COINNCEANN, the “high-headed one” with the “nostril.” Pronbably a whale. One of two sea monsters killed on a strand of Ireland. The bones were salvaged by Bolg mac Buan and used to make the potent weapon known as the gae bolg. COINNSEAS, conscience, reason. Thought to be a minute living entity housed in the head; perpetually at war with the sensual being resident in the heart. COINT, an irresistible attraction, the negation of coinnseas. All such snares were considered supernatural in origin and beyond the abilities of most men to oppose. COIRE AINSEC, cauldron, SIr. corre, ON, hverr, kettle + ainsec, always full. "As with the Arab, so with the Irish, any one who had partaken of food, was thereby sacred against harm or hurt from any member of the family. A person of rank had to entertain any stranger without enquiring who he was or what he was or the wherefore of his coming. Against the coming of guests the door must be open and his fire must always have on it the "coire ainsec". the undry cauldron. In the event that any household failed in this duty the inhabitants were required by law to pay the offended person his "enech-ruice" or blush-fine. See next entry. COIRE, AN, The Cauldron, SIr. corre, Cy. pair, Cor. & Br.

carez, ON, hverr, kettle, AS. hwer, Skr. caru, a sacrificial vessel. See Corcadail, the keepers of Thor's kettle. In Gaelic myth, the Cauldron of the Deep was the possession of Ler, god of the sea, and was kept at the geographic centre of An Domhain, the proto-world of the Fomorian sea-giants. It contained an alcoholic fluid believed to be the source of all poetry and inspiration. At the conclusion of the wars between the giants and the gods, the Dagda, the patriarch of the Tuatha daoine, led a force into the undersea kingdom and stole the Cauldron, so that ale and whisky became the ritual drinks of men and the gods. In some of the myths, the Dagda is identified with King Arthur. The kettle was given for safe-keeping to Mhorrigan, the daughter of Dagda, a Fomorian on her mother's side. This is the same Morgan le Fay encountered as the step-sister of King Arthur in the medieval romances. It will be recalled that An Domhain was described as a circular floating island in the Middle of the Atlantic. The kettle, sometimes refererred to as the Dagda’s Kettle, after he purloined it, was said to have originally been located at the geographic centre of this place. After it was stolen the depression that was left was observed to have become a snake-infested mud-slough. In early mythology the cauldron was used by the Tuatha daoine to restore dead warriors, but it was destroyed by a Welsh hero, who levelled the playing field by hiding himself in the vessel , finally using his immense physique to burst it. There is a similar cauldron in Old Norse mythology: When Odin's land gods invited the seagods to the harvest festival they found themselves without an adequate brew-kettle. Thus Thor and Tyrr were dispatched to purloin a cauldron from the frost-giants, which Thor carried off wearing it upon his head like a helmet. While it existed among men, this source of godspirit was seen to impart “poetry and inspiration” and long healthy lives to all who ate or drank from it. It was a locked vessel inasmuch as it was not accessible to murderers or boundary-stone movers.

While it stood within Tir nan Og, or the “Land of Youth” it was seen to give almost immortal life, the only danger being death by misadventure. It was not until the mainland of North America was encountered in1513, that the Legend of the Fountain of Youth became a subject of conversation and astonishment at the Spanish court. The peninsula of Florida is clearly marked on the de Cosa map of 1502, but it was the experiences of Ponce de León that eventually led to the idea that there was very possibly a continent in the western ocean. Earlier visitors to that region had heard the Indians say that there was a fountain that could restore the dead and reverse the aging process on an island named Bimini. Juan Dias de Solis, among others, was said to have stumbled upon it “at a distance of 325 leagues from Hispanola (Spain).” Writing of similar discoveries Italian historian Peter Martyr d-Anghiera said, “those who have explored ann island which is called Boyuca or Ananeo, have found there a fountain which has the virtue that by drinking its water, old men are rejuvenated.” Somewhat later this coast was identified with that explored by de León. Running into the land at the place where he thought this island might be located, the latter explorer named the northern part of the peninsula Florida, allegedly because he arrived at Pascua florida, or Easter Sunday. The southern part, which he interpreted as an island, he called Bimini, a name now applied to a different place in the Bahamas. Ponce de León did not discourage the rumour that there was a fountain of regeneration as he needed all the backing he could get to get royal permission to found a colony in Florida. His story was upheld when Peter Martyr met a Lucayo Indian, who attested to the fact that his elderly father had gone to Florida and come away a new man. This Indian, the captured by Spanish slave-raiders was taken to Spain, learned Spanish and was baptized Andres Barbudo, a name derived from the unusual fact that he was bearded, unlike most southern Indians. This story was backed by other reputable men including Vázquez de Ayllón, a high official

in the Spanish court. Most of these witnesses attested that they had been prevented from actually seeing the spring by the ferocity of the Indians, who had effectively beaten off several packs of Spanish “tourists.” De Ayllón managed to contact an Indian captured in a raid in southern Georgia. “This man, named Chicorano is by no means stupid,” wrote Peter Martyr,”and was able to learn Spanish with relative ease.” Clever or not, Chicorano told a number of “talltales” to anyone who would listen. His repertoire of mythic places and peoples included a place he called Duhare where the residents were all white-skinned and had red hair. Their king was a giant named Datha, and their queen of almost equal stature, had five sons, all nearly their equal in height. Near this kingdom was Xapida, where pearls were taken in great quantity and where more giants tended herds of domesticated deer, which they milked, using the product in cheese-making. He identified a third mainland kingdom called Inzingnanin. Long ago, he said, a people had come there by sea. This race had inflexible tails, like crocodiles. In order to sit in comfort they constructed chairs with a hole in the middle. A sea-people, like the Fomors, they ate raw-fish, but because this product was lacking in their new locale they quickly died of a deficiency disease. It was in Duhare, however, that Chicorano said that the Spaniards would find the fountain they sought. Here all men were of the same age, and were continually renewed from drinking the water. COIRE CAILLEACH BHEURR, the Winter Hag’s Kettle. Same as Coire-Mhorrigan. COIRE CRUINN, the Round Cauldron. The circle is endemic to pagan theology, representing the concept of renewability and reincarnation. It is no accident that the Celtic holy wells were built with circular stone walls in imitation of the shape of the original “Cauldron of Life and Rebirth.” It was generally supposed that this life-source was purloined by the Tuathan “gods” from the sea-kingdom when they followed the giants there after their defeat in Ireland.

This “Kettle of the Deep,” was eventually buried at the geographic centre of Gaeldom where it became the astral-genius of Ireland. Cup-and-ring markings are frequently seen on megalithic monuments such as the cromlechs of Ireland and Scotland. These are essentially cup-shaped hollows gouged out of the stone, frequently seen surrounded by engraved concentric circles. From the internal cup, a single radial line is often seen drawn to a point outside the circumference of the outermost circle. Occasionally a system of cup are seen joined by a number of these lines, but most often they simply end beyond the outside ring. These enigmatic designs, “upon which no light has been thrown,” are found on vertical and horizontal surfaces in Great Britain, Brittany, and as far east as India, where they are termed mahadeos, “great gods.” The fact that they are engraved upon stones which the Irish call Cromm-leace corroborates this, Cromm, being the dark-god, corresponding with the creator-god Don. A leac is a flagstone, the word being similar to our English “plank.” T. W. Rolleston has noted European examples which are “richly decorated and accurately drawn,” and he thinks they may represent “diagrams or plans of megalithic structures.” He thinks that the central hollows may represent burial chambers and the circles, surrounding standing stones, fosses or ramparts of earth. The penetrating avenues would then represent doorways by which priests moved to and from some interior holy spot or shrine. More symbolically, we think place of rebirth as well as that of these rings have the look of the reproductive organs in action, and which they are engraved are more symbols. the interior represents a death. In cross-section, human male and female the standing-stones upon generally taken as phallic

Something of pagan Celtic theology is embedded in the sixteenth century Cymric work known as the Barddas. While it is contaminated by Christian beliefs Rollestan says that it does “speak of an independent philosophic system.” Not

surprisingly this “druidic” system supposes antagonistic forces, that of Hu, or God, which is constructive in intent and result, and that of Cythrawl (corresponding with Cromm) the principle of destruction and chaos. Organized life was thought to have arise at the will of the creatorgod, who created the primal substance of the universe as minute indivisible particles each a microcosm of the primal god-force. The innermost circle from which all else sprang was called Annwn in the Welsh language, and this confers linguistically with An Domhain, “The Deep.” It was thought that this innermost place was one of primal life forms all struggling to evolve out of chaos. Those entities that succeeded were considered to move to an outer ring of being where life was more “purified” having attained triumph over darkness and evil. The third ring of being is termed Infinity, a place inhabited by god alone. It is predicted that “all shall attain to the circle of Gwnfyd (White light) at the last.” In Celtic societies, the mortal god-king, and his queen, were seen as the “fountain” and the “well” of regenerative spirit, thus their place at the centre of the community, within a holy circle which conferred with “The Cauldron of the Dagda.” Stone fortifications were largely “ring-forts,” the largest representing the belly of Danu or Domnu, smaller ones being microcosms of the larger, all relating back to the one source of life within the deepocean. COIRE DAG, The Kettle of Day. Lugh and Nuada were often credited with the creation of the universe out of the void. For a long while the brothers were content with observing their new playthings, but eventually they were joined by their sister Dag, who the English called “Day.” Note that the Dagda is named for his part in her creation, hence Dagda, literally the “Daddy of Day.” Realizing that they intended to people the planet that now embodied the spirit of the Allfather, she noted that the earth was immobile in space and that any residents of it would either live on the sunlight side of the sphere in endless light, or on the dark side, in perpetual night. The brothers corrected this by shaking their universe until its parts fell into periodic

movements, the earth wheeling about the sun, the moon about the earth, and all rotating on their axes. It was Dag who decorated the world: “She was in charge, making the things to grow. On the grass she put green saying, “It is the best background colour!” She placed miscellaneous colours on the flowers, on the fruits and on the growth of the fields. She classified the things that the boys created as kind, generation, gender, social order, assimilation, all according to their contained spirit, to their reasoning power, and to the laws of nature. Male and female she placed on land and sea and air as well as within these elements. She made a large pot (the ocean), the coire mor, “the great cauldron, which was always filled with every kind of food and provision, so that no living thing would go without provisions.” See entries above and below. COIRE DAGDA, The Dagda’s Kettle. Same as these others. Latter day sennachies, or historians, have tactfully stated that "Dagda's Cauldron" "came out" of Murias, literally the Sea-Island of Fish. Like the Norse Vat of Ymir, the Cauldron of the Deep was taken by force from the seagiants or Fomors, and this was at least part of the contention that led to war between the land-gods and the sea-giants. Cauldrons exist as actual cult objects of the Celtic people, a notable example being the Gundestrup "cauldron" found in a Danish bog. This is actually a golden facing for a less spectacular container and thought to represent loot from a viking raid on Britain. This brings to mind the golden cauldron discovered by Pryden in the epic Welsh story entitled "Manwydan" and the cauldron of Diwrnach sought by the companions of Olwen so that he may fulfill a marriage vow. The Dagda's Cauldron is certainly the Cauldron of Tyrnoc mentioned in "The Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain" and again pointed out in Taliessin's poem, "The Spoils of Annwn" (An Domhain). In both cases the kettle was stolen from the Irish Kings by the Cymric-speakers, dangerous expeditions to take it being justified by its marvelous and useful characteristics. While this kettle

boiled the meat of heroes with great rapidity it refused to sustain cowards. It was was also known to have the capacity to restore life to the dead, ferrying them back through the cauldron from the undersea kingdom. Mircea Eliade guesses that the magic power of the cauldron lies in its contents: "...cauldrons, kettles, chalices, are all receptacles of this magic force which is often symolized by some divine liquor such as ambrosia or "living water"... (Water has the capacity) to confer immortality or eternal youth, or they change whoever owns them into a hero, god, etc."3 It is tempting to suppose that "usquebaugh", or whisky, literally the "water of life" might have been the alcoholic beverage which "stirred itself" within the cauldron. Certainly, "The origin of Whisky is wrapped in mystery...Usquebaugh was reserved for festive occasions, and even then was used sparingly, for unlike the Saxons, the Celt was temperate in both eating and drinking."4 Certainly Irish or Scots whisky still contains sufficient "spirit" of the Oolaithir, or brew-master, to revive severly wounded men if not place the dead upon their feet. The Cauldron of the Deep appears to have remained in Greater Britain for a number of decades becoming at last the inheritance of Bran, sometimes named King Bendigeid Vran, "the son of Llyr." According to Welsh legend King Matholch of Ireland came to the larger island seeking the hand of Bran's sister, Branwen. Following the marriage one of the Welsh nobles who had not been consulted in the prenuptial period insulted the Irish king by defacing his horses with a knife. In recompense Bran was forced to compensate him with a staff of silver, a plate of gold and horses equal in number to those that had been damaged. When this was seen to be unequal to the insult, Bran offered"a caldron, the property of which is, that if one of thy men be slain to-day, and be cast therin, to-morrow he will be as well as ever he was at the best, excpt that he will not regain his speech." Afterwards, the Cauldron went back to Ireland, but Matholch abused Branwen creating a war

of attrition that spared few Irish or Welshmen. In that conflict it is recorded that, "the Irish kindled a fire under the caldron of renovation and they cast the dead bodies into the caldron until it was full; and the next day they came forth fighting men...Then when Evnissyen saw the dead bodies of the men of the Island of the Mighty (Wales) nowhere recucitated...he cast himself among the dead bodies of the Irish; and two unshod Irishmen came to him, and taking him to be one of the Irish, flung him into the caldron. And he stretched himself out in the caldron, so that he rent the caldron in four pieces and burst his own heart also. In consequence of this the Men of the Island of the Mighty obtained what success as they had; but they were not victorious, for only seven men of them all escaped and Bendigeld Vran himself was wounded in the foot with a poisoned dart...the men who escaped were Pryderi. Manawyddan, Tailesin and four others." 5 Seeing that death from blood-poisoning was immenent Bran commanded that his head be cut from his body. At the same time he arranged to have his soul transferred to a wooden cabinet. Remarkably, the head remained uncorrupted and talkative for eighty-seven years until an underling opened the door to the cabinet and allowed his soul to escape to the underworld. After this the skull was installed at London in the White Mount (where the Tower of London now stands). Facing Europe it provided powerful psychic protection against invasion. Unfortunately the Celtic King Arthur disinterred the head insisting that Britain needed no more defense than his own strong arm. After that, Greater Britain fell to the Anglo-Saxons and became known as Angland or England. The gods who stole the Cauldron of the Deep may have carried it to the British Isles out of the western ocean, but the first men to live within the islands walked there from the east. By 11,000 B.C. the retreating ice sheet revealled lands which could support little more than tundra. By the year 10,000 wild horsea and giant deer had crossed land

bridges between Scotland and Ireland and around 8,000 B.C., the first post-glacial men investigated what is now England. By 7.000 B.C. grasslands and forests were well developed as the climate moderated and the first men found there way as far west as Ireland. The rising waters of the Atlantic had now covered the land bridge between Ireland and Scotland, but the water level was still seventy-five feet lower than at present, so that the water flowing between the two land masses was only a few miles wide. Across this narrow channel ancient men paddled their dugout canoes and hide boats without much personal danger. At this same time there was still unbroken land connecting Britain with Scandinavia and some of the mesolithic people may have come from this point of the compass. COIRE MAR RI, Kettle of the Sea Queen, on Isle Maree, in Loch Maree, close by Letterewe, Scotland. “Pagan rites including the sacrifice of a bull occurred here as late as the seventeenth century. They are recorded in the church records at Dingwall, when a Hector Mackenzie and his two sons and a grandson were summoned before the Presbytery.” Earlier the island had been occupied by druids, who planted oaks there for ritual use. When Saint Maelrubba arrived in the seventh century he planted holly which symbolically overran the trees. At the centre of the island are the remains of his chapel, an ancient graveyard and a very deep well. This latter is the “kettle” in question, “a place of pilgrimage for centuries. Its water was believed to have a powerful curative effect on people suffering mental disorders. Until the end of the eighteenth century people in Wester Ross were brought to the well to drink. During his tour of Scotland in 1772 Thomas Pennant visited the island and recorded that the patient first knelt before an altar while attendants made an offering of money; he then went to the well and sipped the holy water, when a second offering was made. The performance might be repeated daily for some weeks.” Pennant said, “It often happens that the patient feels relief.” The well was also a wishing well and beside it grew a wishing tree, where one could pay tribute to the water spirits with coinage or a scrap of clothing. If

the former, the money had to be hammered edgewise into the bark. The tree was still alive in 1877 when Queen Victoria made her wish and drove home a coin, but it has since died, presumably from metal poisoning and shock. COIRE-MHORRIGAN. The famous whirlpool of Coryveckan, off the Hebrides of Scotland, was frequently referred to as Coire-mhorrigan , Mhorrigan’s kettle, in the old tales. Since it is also named Coire-cailleach bheurr, the Winter Hag’s Kettle, we know that Mhorrigan is synonymous with this winter huntress of souls. COIRE MOR. The land of An Domhain once had, at its geographic centre, the Coire Mor, the “Great Kettle,” also known as the Cauldron of Regeneration. A symbol of the fruitful ocean, the kettle was said to be always full of food and drink for men of a just nature. In addition, it was “the source of all poetry and inspiration” for the giants, men and the gods. The object which stood at the centre of the ancient sea-world was a shape-changing spirit, for in some of the tales we find the kettle supplanted by a head, a slab of rock, or a fountain, or we find it referred to as the navel of the worlds. It would seem that the “cauldron of the deep” was sometimes an embodiment of the immortal Oolathair, or Allfather, also known as the creator-god Dom. Where it is represented as a standing stone or a fountain it is a male element of regeneration, where it appears as a cauldron or chalice, it is obviously female. The Coire Mor correponds with the Old Norse Hvergelmir, both are, translated as, the “Seething Kettle,” or “Great Brewing Vat.” In Anglo-Saxon mythology the waters of the sea were seen to rage and hiss, and the ocean itself was often referred to as Aegir's, or Eagor's brewing vat. In the English tales it was said that Aegir frequently visited the gods of the land and that he sometimes hosted them at great banquets held in his undersea kingdom. On one occasion Aegir invited the gods to the harvest feast but said that he lacked a vat in which to create mead.

The gods Thor and Tyr volunteered to steal one from the giant named Hymir. Fortunately, they arrived at his keep when the giant was not at home and were met instead by his ugly grandmother and an beautiful giantess who said she was his mother. The lady explained that Hymir had a baleful, or killing eye, that often slew quests with an unintentional side-glance. She concealed the visitors before her son came home. At that, mention that there were strangers on the premises caused a wrathful look that split the rafter carrying the pots which fell to the floor where all but the largest was split. Fortunately the large vat was exactly what was required being a mile deep and proportionately wide. Thor underwent tests of strength against Hymir which finally caused the giant to make a gift of the kettle. Tyr tried in vain to lift the kettle from the floor and Thor could only manage the task after he had drawn his belt of strength to the very last notch. In parting, the gods did great damage to the giant's house in wrestling the cauldron out of the kitchen. See this after the fact Hymir summoned a group of frost giants who pursued the southerners forcing Thor to kill them. Thor and Tyr then resumed their journey, the former wearing the kettle like a cap over his head. Finally they presented the kettle to Aegir who was then able to brew ale for the harvest feast. In the earliest days men did not possess the knowledge to brew the alcoholic honey mead which was an important part of such festival days. When Odin's Aesir came into the northern lands they found them partly occupied by sea-giants who were termed the Vana. They fought inconclusively with them for several decades, finally sealing a peace treaty by ritually spitting into a common spitton. From the saliva, the gods magically raised Kvasir, a being noted for his wisdom and goodness. For a time Kvasir travelled the world answering questions, thus benefiting mankind. The Svrtr alfalr or black drawfs coveting this beings vast wisdom slew him and drained all of his blood into three vessels. Mixing his blood with honey

they transformed it into mead, a fluid so inspiring that anyone who tasted it immediately became a poet and singer. Before the dwarfs could taste their concotion they were pursued and cornered by Suttung, a giant out for vengeance because of the killing of members of his family. To buy him off, the dwarfs gave Suttung their precious compound which he placed in the hands of his daughter Gunlod. To keep it from the taste buds of men and the gods, Gunlod carried the ingredients into a hollow mountain. Unknown to this giantess Odin's ravens, Hugin and Munin had spied out the location of this fabulous drink. Odin having mastered runic lore and tasted the waters of Mimir's fountain was already the wisest of gods, but coveted the formula of this new liquid. After many adventures he penetrated the hollow hill in the form of a snake. Within he seduced Gunlod and persuaded her to let him try a small drink of the mead. Given permission he completely drained the available supply, fled from the cave in snake form and took on his eagle shape to fly home to Asgard. Suttung followed as a second eagle and was only stopped when the gods saw the pursuit and built fires on their ramparts, Odin barely made ground before he disgorged the mead in such breathless haste that drops fell into the world of men. Suttung, following close behind, had his wings scorched by the flame and fell to earth where he burned to death. The first mead was used to generate additional drink and where drops fell in the world of men, they were also used as the portions of rhymesters and poetasters. Gunlod's role appears to correspond with that of the Gaelic goddess Dag, the daughter of Lugh. It will be recalled that she created the Coire nan Dagda Mor and its contents. Her name is similar to the Anglo-Saxon "daeg" which is akin to the Old Saxon and Scandinavian "dag", their words for day. There is a similarly named deity in Norse mythology, except that he is described as male rather than female: "The giantess of night had thrice married...and by her third

(husband) the god Dellinger was born another (son) of radiant beauty, and he was given the name Dag (day). (The gods) provided for him a chariot drawn by the resplendent white steed Skin-fax (Shining-mane), from whose mane bright beams of light shone forth in every direction, illuminating the world..." 6 The first half of the day was termed "morgen" among the Anglo-Saxons; the Gaels called it "madainn". Both words can be shown to relate to the English word maiden, and in the Medieval Romances (which revolve about Celtic characters) Morgan le Fay is identified as the person entrusted with the care of the Cauldron of the Deep. The Cauldron was one of the treasures of the Tuatha daoine who originally lived "in the northern isles of the world learning lore and magic and druidism and wizardry and cunning, until they surpassed the sages of the arts of heathendom. There were four cities in which they learned lore and science and diabolical arts, to wit, Falias and Gorias, Murias and Findias. Out of Findias was brought the stone of Fal, which was in Tara. It used to roar under every (legitimate) king that would take the realm in Tara. Out of Gorias was brought the spear that Lug had. No battle was ever won against it or him who held it in his hand. Out of Findias was brought the sword of Nuada. When it was drawn from its deadly sheath, no one ever escaped it, and it was irresistable. Out of Murias was brought Dagda's Cauldron. No comapany ever went from it unthankful (i.e. lacking food and drink).7 It has been claimed that the "northern isles" referred to in the above excerpt were the northern islands of Greece, but there is no certainty in this, the idea being based on latter day tales that the Tuatha daoine invaded Ireland out of the Mediterranean. An early Christian historian named Nennius stated uneqivocally that all of the races of men invaded Ireland from "Spain" but de Jubainville (Irish Mythological Cycle, p. 75) has noted that that this early writer was not referring to the Basque countryside but to

Tir Nan Bas, the Land of Death, and this corresponds with An Domhain. COIRE NA’ DAGDA. The Celtic Cauldron of Abundance was sometimes referred to as the “Dagda’s Kettle,” a valuable trophy taken at the despoilment of An Domhain. In a strange and mystic poem by Welsh poet Taliesin, the Cauldron is represented as one of the spoils of Annwyn or Uffern, “brought thence by Arthur and lodged at Caer Perdryvan , four times revolving, within the four-square Castle of Pwyll; the fire to heat it warmed by the breath of nine virgins, its edge rimmed with pearls, and it would not cook the food for a coward or a man forsworn.” The poem concludes: Before the doors of Uffern burned, When we went there with Arthur - a splendid labour Except seven, none returned from Caer Vedwyd (the Land of Youth). (Hades)the lamp

In other Celtic tales, the Cauldron is represented as a cornucopia, as a well, or a fountain, each a symbol of abundance. This is also the nature of the Holy Grail as it is represented in medieval romances. This cup, which Christ used at the Last Supper, is said to have had curative powers; the sick or injured who looked upon it and went away would survive for at least a week. The guardians of the cup who looked on it throughout their lives did not age; “though they lived two hundred years not a hair on their head turned grey.” The Grail knights, having no source of food or water, apparently lived by it, shape-changing it into all manner of food and drink. Each man, it was said, had what he required à son gré, according “to his liking.” From the word gré came the word Gral in French versions of the tales, and from this we have “Grail.” “It was the satisfaction of all desires,” said one poet of the elder days. See An Coire.

COIRE NA GRIAN, Kettle of the Sun. Remotely the it was said that the fire of the sun poured forth each morning from the cauldron of the ocean, and thus the Coire na an Domhain was sometimes spoken of as the “Cauldron of the Sun.” See above entries. COIREAN ABHAILL, the apple tub used in divination at the Samhuinn. Bobbing for apples was once taken seriously, the tub or cauldron used in the procedure being seen as a symbol for “the lake of power, the white water of creation;” the kettle of regeneration purloined by the “gods” from the Water World. See above entries. COIREAN AOG, Kettle of Death; the ancient name for the ocean between Faroe and the Western Isles of Scotland. Coirean is also applied to the Atlantic Ocean as it was the site of An Domhain the keeping-place of the Fomorian Cauldron of the Deep. The Anglo-Saxons used the same simile, terming this ocean Aegor's kettle. Manann’s ship of death starts its winter run into the western ocean from this place. COIRBIDH, a raven, coir, just, honest, good; but coirb, accursed, perverse, vicious, evil, cross-grained, lewd, carnal, impious, corrupt, hostile, wicked. Coirdheachd, obs. to fight with a spear, coire, fault, crime, guilt, blame, damage, defect etc. Also coire, the “destroyer,” a whirlpool, and from the resemblance, any circular hollow, a mountain dell, a cauldron or kettle. COIRE BHREACAIN, the whirlpool of Coryvrechan in northern Scotland. Brec, spotted, speckled, tartaned; brecan, plaid. A residence of the Cailleach bheur, so called because she ushered in winter at this place by washing her great plaid in the whirlpool. Before the washing, close residents on the land insist they can hear the coming tempest for three days until “the cauldron boils over.” When the washing is at an end all Scotland is said to have taken on the plumage of the winter swan (see Bridd) and to be like the snow-queen,

“virgin cold and white.” This is embodiment of the Cailleach is also termed Mag Molluch or the Beire. The English speak of her ironically as the storm-wife or Gentle Annie, while their ancestors knew her as the gyre-carline, the “whirling old carl.” In earlier times this name was applied to the whirlpool between Rathlin and Antrim in northern Ireland. In that instance it is said that the pool was named for Breccan, who drowned there with his company of men and the loss of fifty ships. According to some authorities this mariner was the son of Partholon, but others make him the son of Maine, the soin of Niall of the Nine Hostages. It is said that when Columba went siling by on his way to Iona the “rib of Breccan arose from the whirlpool “to greet his kinsman.” COIREAN SAINNTE, the Saint's Pot, the kettle of avarice, originally carried by greedy poets. A relatively small pot made of silver, hung upon nine chains of findruine, or white bronze. These were attached by nine golden hooks to the points of nine spears carried by members of the poet's travelling company. The coir sainnte always preceded the poet as he entered the residence of a nobleman, chanting a poem of praise which was chorused by his followers. The chieftain, prince, or king was expected to make the potbearers feel the weight of their office, the symbolism of the spear-points never being lost on the gift-givers. Unwise poets made outrageous impositions on their hosts because few ordinary men dared the risk of being satirized. At least, the man who refused a poet might become the laughing stock of the countryside, but the most gifted in this malicious art were known to have blighted the crops of the region, or to have blemished kings, so that they were unable to continue as rulers. The most greedy man of the poetic tribe was the Ulster satirist named Athairne. On a circuit through Leinster, a king hearing of his reputation met him at the border of his territory and persuaded him to "travel on over" with a presentation of money and cattle. A one-eyed king in a lest fortunate countryside entertained the poet and was forced to surrender his remaining eye as payment for a poem of praise. Athairn'e malevolence was

only cut short when he became a victim of the UlsterLeinster wars, which were provoked by his over-riding greed. COISEUNUICH, a blessing, a consecration, con + seun, with a charm. Word-smiths were considered practical magicians able to assist or hamper men through the use of their voice. Blessings were sometimes purchased from the aoir-ceairde, or satire-singers, and these were always sung, thus the reference to a charm, anciently the song of a bird. COL, sin, W. cwl, OBr, col, Lat culpa, faulted, but possibly the German schuld, crime. COLUINN GUN CHEANN, the “Trunk Without A Head,” a former haunt of the Macdonalds of Morasr, frequently seen on the heighs above Morary House. A potector of the family he particularly haunted the Smooth Mile which leads from the house to the River Morar. After sunset people thought it wise to avoid this property many bodies having been found along its length. The ghost took care never to appear before any other than a solitary wanderer. In the majority of instances the bodies were found mutilated. He did no harm to woman and children and was never seen by them. Finally he was wrestled to a draw by Ian Garbh and promised to withdraw from the district if he was not forced to face the sunlight. As he retreated he voiced a lament which is still known in that district. COLPACH, COILEAPACH, CALPECH, a calf to the age of sexual maturity. Obs. The duty payable by tenants to landlords at the quarter days. Said founded on the ON kalfr, a calf. In former times four calves were considered equal in value to one cow. Also the mythic eac uisge, literally the “water horse,” a creature known in Wales as the ceffyl dwr. COLUMAN, COLMAN, CALMAN, a dove, Ir. and OIr. colum, Cy. colomen, Cor. colom, Br. coulm, possibly from Lat. columbus, columba.. In Celtic countries, the raven was typically symbolic of war while the dove symbolized domesticity and

maternity. The dove may be thought of as the peaceful half of the personality of the goddess Mhorrigan. There are many instances of the external souls of people being represented as resident in these birds and they sometimes have the aspect of a banshee. On the morning of my wife’s death I awoke to find a domestic pigeon in my bedroom. Our eastern species, of the Columbidae is identified by bird-watchers as a Mourning Dove. How this animal entered is totally beyond understanding as the window was screened, but a second pigeon was observed on the other side of the screen and both were in obvious distress. Surprisingly, the trapped bird showed no panic when I removed the screen and released it. We have had one other situation of exactly this kind, but in the other case the pigeon was seen to have entered by way of fireplace chimney. This was not the case the second time as that chimney was by then physically blocked. Later in that same day a crow passed my path a dusk, completing the approved pattern for an animal-totem forerunner. COLUM-CILLE, Eng. Columba. From columan, a dove; cill, a church, a monastic cell; "the imprisoned dove." His original name, changed at baptism was Creinthaing, or Crimthann. One of Ireland’s premiere saints, buried side-by-side with Patrick and Brigit. A sixth century warrior-exile born in Donegal he was given the full name Columcille, the “Dove of the Church,” when he became a priest. A son of the royal house of O’Neill, he copied a holy text without permission, and for this was tried by the High King and exiled. The Battle of the Book followed at Sligo and in it 3,000 warriors were slain. After this Columa became a missionary to the pagans of Scotland, establishing his monastery at Iona. He supposedly exorcised the Loch Ness monster, and converted 3,000 pagans. When the High King decided to outlaw the overly pompous guild of poets, the Saint returned to his homeland to successfully plead their case. As he had sworn never to look upon Ireland again, he arrived and left blindfolded. For years the Clan O’Neill carried Columba’s book as a talesman of battle, but it is now displayed at the Royal Irish Academy. In 498 a party of

Scots from northern Ireland had founded colonies near Oban, at Loch Linnhe and on the Isle of Mull. In 560, three years before Columbus sailed with twelve companions from Ireland to Dalriada, the Picts rallied and almost succeeded in driving these Scots into the ocean. "The Picts were pagans, worshipping the sun, keeping high festival on Hallowe'en and Beltane, the last being the festival-feast on which our May Day is founded. Their religion was not of the debased variety in Gaul, and they did not practise human sacrifice. Nevertheless, their wizards regarded the Christian missionaries with hostility as rival Druids. Columba in his contact with these Druids, did not deny their power nor the reality of their gods; he asserted only that his God was the stronger: "My Druid - may He ever be on my side - is the Son of God."" It is claimed that Columba vowed that he would move beyond sight of Ireland, lest yearning should take him away from his project to civilize the Picts. He, therefore, sailed to Iona (the Isle of Bears) and drove off two druid priests who attempted to pass themselves off as Christians. The attitudes of Columba were not greatly different from that of the druids. Almost his first act was to surrender a portion of a finger as a "foundationsacrifice" for his monastery; he also seems to have condoned the suicide of a monk named Oran with a similar object in view. It was assumed that the spirit of the individual was transferred, in part, to any structure erected over it, and held that this secured the structural strength of a new building. After Oran's death it was said that the saint yearned for his company and instructed that his grave be opened for one last peek. Columba was greatly surprised when the buried monk sat up in place and informed the brethren that the tortures of Hell had been exaggerated. This "gossip" shocked Columba who immediately ordered a re-burial. Until quite recently the Scots used to chastise gossips as those willing to throw "earth in Oran's eye." Columba's finger was apparently a useful charm against fire and his name is still invoked on the continent as follows: Sancte Columquille, remova dampna favilla Arque Columquille, salvet ab igne domus.

To establish his dominance over the old religion, Columba set his prayer-station directly upon an inland knoll known as the Sidhean or "the Hill of Visions." The monks soon took up the usual business of copying and illuminating manuscripts, but they also bred animals, including seals. The biographers of this saint say he was the first outlander to cross Loch Ness into the kingdom of Brudd (a male throne-name, the equivalent of Bridd). There he failed to convince the monarch, but converted Broichan, a hostile druid attached to the court, by demonstrating his "magical" ability to tack a sailing ship against the wind. Columba once said, "...the Church is my mother, and my country is where I can gather the largest harvest for Christ." Nevertheless, it can be argued that his beliefs were coloured with superstitions and strange prejudices: He once remonstrated a young monk who had upset a pail of milk, because he had not blessed the pail and thus exorcised the resident demon. When an ex-slave applied for asylum Columba made him pay his purchase-value to his former owner before entering the community. Again, when a youngster peeped at him while he was praying, he instructed a crane to peck out the boy's eyes. He died before his altar in 597 having just completed a reading of a portion of the Psalms. A storm raged at the time and this was taken as a bad omen. Indeed, by 795 Norse raids had become so persistent, his bones were unearthed and moved first of Dalriada and then to Ireland, where some say they were interred at Downpatrick along with the remains of Saint Patrick and Brigid. In 1204 Culdee Christianity was failing and the papacy seized control of the Iona community and a Benedictine monastery was erected. By the sixteenth century all had fallen into disrepair and the Calvinists permitted looting and pillaging. In the seventeenth century the place had returned to the dominion of the nature spirits, but a little later the ruins were partially restored under the Church of Scotland. COL, sin, especially incest, crime, stain, prohibition, impediment, obstacle to be overcome, Cy. cwl, OBr, col, Lat culpa, faulted, but possibly the German schuld, crime.

COMAS, COMUS, power, Ir, cumas, EIr, commus. power,in full com + mestu one who stands in judgement of others. The acquisition of power was considered the legitimate function of all living beings in the pagan world. In the days when there were no permanent leaders of men power was recognized as a temporary attribute. Among the primitives any man who could raise a following became the chief of a war party. In some tribes he might maintain absolute control of those who followed for the duration of the expedition. This elevated state lasted as long as the band's interest in war-like play. Before physics became a science, primitive men understood that physical force was any push or pull resulting in motion, and formulated the idea that work was force acting through a height or distance. Power was understood as the work done in a unit of time. This idea was extended to psychic concepts and the most powerful men and animals were seen to act, mentally or physically, with greater force or speed than others of their kind. At that, the greatest power was seen to reside in the natural world, where it periodically acted against men in violent movements of fire, earth, wind and water. Considering this, the early hunter-gatherers probably supposed that ultimate control must lay with a creator-god whose will was channelled through lightning, vulcanism, earthquakes, hurricanes and whirlpools. The creator god was often left unnamed, it being thought presumptuous and dangerous to draw his attention by referring to him directly. Early on, it was noticed that the god behind nature was quixotic, a dangerous easily aroused enemy and an unreliable ally. Some men may have privately thanked this creator for their existence and the world within which they found themselves, but the father of all things was rarely credited

with much continuing interest in his universe. He was thought to stand outside of time when he started the celestial mechanics of the sun, moon and stars. It was further suggested that he provided the life force inherent in plants and animals, but the mortal gods were often credited with actually creating life. Some pagan philosophers suggested that the supreme god suffered from boredom and, on a celestial whim, divided his "cumhacd", or power, among three elemental gods of fire, wind and water. In doing so, the one god appears to have shielded his creations from the fact that they were divisions of a single force destined to reunion at the end of time. The vital spark given these gods was known to the Gaels as "rong"; the Anglo-Saxons called it ghost; the Anglo-Normans, spirit. Thus the elemental gods used to be referred to as god-spirits or god-ghosts. Like the creatorgod, these three god-spirits, or elemental gods, were generated out of primal chaos. The Norse scalds, or poets, declared that before the world existed there was nothing where our earth now stands but the Ginnungagap (Beginning Gap) , "whose depths no eye could fathom, as it was enveloped in perpetual twilight. Yet in the beginning, when there was no earth, nor sea, nor air, when darkness ruled over all, there existed in this place, a powerful being called Allfather, dimly conceived, uncreated, unseen. (Moreover) whatever he willed came to pass." 8 COMHAIRE, obs., a forewarning, certainty, a sure sign, EIr, comaircim, I ask (advice), an outcry, clamour, an appeal, OIr. com + arc, I ask (the spirits). Forerunners were warnings of painful happenings in the future. People with "the two sights" were thought able to send their spirit-runner into the future for information of personal importance. Forewarnings usually came to them as visions (a seeing through the eyes of the runner) but sometimes future events were overheard, or felt or even smelled (again through the sensory apparatus of the spirit). A forerunner might be the ghost of a living individual and herald nothing more than an imminent visit: "A forerunner can be when you see a living

(image of a) person... (It meant) A stranger was going to come. You'd see a forerunner of a stranger...". On the other hand, observing one's own image might be a bad omen particularly if the forerunner approach for a face-to-face confrontation. "There used to be a theory that if you saw this forerunner early in the morning it was going to take a long time (before death) but if you saw it late in the evening it was going to happen very soon.". Quite frequently the forewarning was hear as a banshee wail, as three knocks on a door; or observed in the approach of a totem animal or a ball of pure light. The latter form of forerunner, "a big ball of light with a tail" was known in Gaelic as the "fear dreag" (which, see). COMRAICH NAN BARD, “sanctuary of the bard.” Under the Gaelic system the dwellings of these poets were sacronsact against the invasion of armed warriors. There is still a place so named at Staoligearry, the official residence of the MacMurray family, whose members were traditional bards to Clan Ranald. The right of sanctuary was passed from the Celts to Christian clerics. The physical limits of sanctuary used to be termed tearmann. See Carroghdail. CONAIRE MOR ARD RIGH, the son of Feidlimid mac Tuathaland a third century high-king of Ireland, Conaire Mór, was also entitled Conn of the Hundred Battles. This genealogy is far from certain for there may have been a “crow” in the woodpile. Aonghas married a swan and Cúchullain’s mother had been “carried off” by birds, so the seduction of Mess Buachalla “by a mysterious bird-god from the Land of Youth,” seems almost commonplace. In this instance Mess Buachalla was pregnant before her marriage to the high king, but Conaire appeared to be in the succession, and was eligible for selection at the “bull-rights” on the death of his “father.” In ancient Ireland the eldest son did not proceed to the high throne as a matter of divine right but had to be selected by the will of his clan, and sometimes his right of accession was determined by the “bull-feast,” In this rite the animal was put down and a druidic diviner ate and drank the flesh and blood, retiring to sleep and

dream of the legitimate king. In this particular case, the “bull-rite” had revealed a naked boy walking the road to Tara. In the countryside Conaire was playing an outdoor game with his three foster brothers when he saw birds circling toward him. He quickly got out his rock and sling and was about to try his luck, when the birds settled and shape-changed into warriors. One of them stepped forward and identified himself as the Neglam, the “king of thy father’s birds.” From this it would appear that the “bird-god” was the shape-changed Aonghas Ög, or someone of similar importance in the western world. This royal messenger strongly advised Conaire against killing his totem animal, outlined the nature of the taboos he needed to observe, and suggested it would be profitable to shed his clothing and take a walk toward Tara. Following this advice, Conaire soon found himself declared high-king of Ireland. Conaire must never had the hand of the earth-goddess though it was said that, “No man slew another in Erin during his reign, and the voices of men seemed sweet as the strings of lutes. From mid-spring to mid-autumn no wind disturbed a cow’s tail.” Disturbance came at last from Conaire’s three foster brothers, who were born thieves, evil, proud and not very adept at their trade. They were frequently taken red-handed, but Conaire could not put his former playmates to death. He did, however, banish them, suggesting that they find some foreign land to ravage. On the seas around Britain they found Ingcel, the “One-eyed,” a son of the King of Britain (England). Joining forces, they helped this fellow attack the fortress of his family, reducing Ingcel’s father, mother, siblings and their holdings to black ruin in a single night. Looking for other diversions, these pirates gathered likeminded souls, including the seven Mainn brothers, the sons of Ailill and Queen Mebd of Connaught. These creatures made their descent upon Ireland, taking land on the Dublin coast near Howth. Hearing of this Conaire headed in their direction and found himself, one

night, not far from a Leinster hostel. Unfortunately the noise of the royal cavalcade was easily detected by piratespies who informed the others and they marched against this safe-house. Conaire could not marry the sovereign bride of Ireland as he was a direct descendant of king Eochaid who had caused the Daoine sidh nine years of warfare. And now she came seeking postponed vengeance, a solitary hag at the gate of the hostel. It was said that she had shins “as long as weaver’s beams,” and that her limbs were “as dark as those of a stag-beetle.” Her mouth was twisted and the hair of her head reached to her knees over a grey wool mantle. Not knowing who this might be, but seeing that she looked like a witch, Conaire asked what foretelling she might have for them, and she replied: “Neither fell nor flesh of the king and his house shall come from this place except that which the birds scavenge in their claws.” A little frightened at this, the king was about to shut the doors on her when the woman asked for admission to the hostel. Conaire remembered that it was one of his taboos that no person should ever enter a place where he resided after sunset, but he also knew that the laws of the hostel made it mandatory that she be allowed entrance. The creature who was admitted was the ill-omened Baobd or Mebd, the warrior-spirit of the Mhorrigan. Almost immediately an attack commenced: one of Desa’s sons rushed the hostel, but his head was cut off and flung back at the enemy. The pirates now fired the hostel, but this was put out from within with wine and the various liquids that happened to be stored within. At last Conaire and his supporters came out into the night, and the reavers and mooncussers were met and routed. But Conaire, suffering a terrible thirst from fighting, lay exhausted and sent a cupbearer after water. By the time of his return the pirates had counter-attacked and all were dead excepting Conal of the Victories, who alone bore the news to people at large. Thus it was that the Daoine sidh regained some ground for the losses that Midir had sustained many years earlier.

Conaire’s son-in-law, who was his namesake succeeded him because his son Art was still a child and ineligible for election. Conaire II was chiefly remembered as the father to the Cabri brothers, who were the first of the Scots to settle Alba. CONAL ARD RIGH, conal, the Yellow plague that hit Ireland in the Middle Ages (see entry further down). High King Conal, “the fruitful one.” 560-574 A.D. The fifth king of the Dalriadic kingdom in Argyllshire, which was then called Tir-Chonaill. He was resident at An Torr, a “mountain” 613 feet in height, and was a progenitor of Clan Neil and a kinsman of Saint Columba. When Columba was forced to leave Ireland in 563 he lived for a time at Caisteal Tor, and was then granted Iona at the leave of this monarch. According to tradition Columbus made a home in a cave on the west shore of Loch Caolisport. CONALL, CONAL CERNACH, conall, the befind of childhood, the Gaelic god of love, corresponding with Lugh. The word implies love, friendship, fruitfulness, an ear of corn. He was subtitled Conall “of the Victories.” A son of Amerigin and Findchaem, a warrior of the Red Branch, foster brother to Cúchullain. He avenged himself on Cúchullain’s killers. He eliminated Mesgora mac Da Tho, king of Leinster, and took his grey matter, mixing it with lime, to create a magical “brain ball.” With this he attempted to put out the lights for King Conchobhar mac Nessa, but merely stunned him. The brain ball did, however, remain lodged in his brain and A rise in blood pressure dislodged it causing his death seven years later. Anne Ross has suggested that the descriptive for Conall may be cernach, “having angles or corners,” the more usual form for victorious being buadach. She thinks there is a similarity between Cernach and Cernu, attaching this character to the horned-god species. In an early adventure this man is represented as a hero-ancestor and guardian of his province. A wandering champion he once travelled to Europe with Fraeoch (another supernatural) hoping to rescue that man’s wife, children and cattle, all stolen by a Continental enemy. At the foot of the Alps the

two heroes were warned by a baobh that their chore would be difficult since Fraeoch’s wife was within a prison guarded by a terrible serpent. Surprisingly the hero was not displeased to hear this, and when he approached the snake it simply glided into a complacent girdle for his belt, and remained quietly in place while the two Gaels ravaged the fort and gained their end. One important aspect of all horned-gods was their close relationship with totem serpents, the latter representing fecundity and wealth as well as success in rapine and plunder. See nathair and note that one aspect of the creator god was a serpent. CONAL BUIDHE, Yellow Conal; any sweeping pestilence or disease. From conal, love, fruitage, thus a contagious disease spread by close contact. The root is curaidh, a champion, conqueror; Ir. curadh, EIr. cur, , a hero, an obstacle (for others) + buidhe, yellow. The key word here is Bui a short form of the word yellow which identifies the withered and yellowed Cailleach bheurr, alternately known as the Winter Hag, Sheila, or Sterile Nun. As Bui, this triad goddess, a one-eyed, hairy creature of huge proportions had complete control over the three harshest months of winter, those from November 1 to February 2. In the Dictionary of Irish Mythology it is said that “she was the wife of the god of arts and crafts, Lugh.” This is not the whole story, as she is more commonly seen allied with Bel, the god of death. It appears that she was actually reincarnate as Caer Ibermeith or the Samh (i.e. Summer) when she coupled with Lugh. In point of fact, the god of the sun and his mate, the goddess of summer, are best perceived as alter-egos of the death-god and the goddess of winter, rather than as separate personalities. It is noteworthy that the harsh months are entitled greine lugha, literally the months of the “ineffectual sun.” The winter sun is washed out and yellowed at this time, thus the supposition that Lugh was dominated through these months by this powerful female figure. She is also, patently, the goddess of death for souls lost on land, and it was her host of dead spirits that rode the northwestern, mid-winter wind down from the reaches of Dun Sciath, the Fortress of Shadows. Hence she is the

plague personified, her colour being that associated with puss and decay. CONAND, CONAING or CONCINN. “Peevish.” The son of Ferbar he was the leader of the Fomors who built a tower on Tory Island. This may be the same crystal tower later occupied by Balor of the Evil Eye. He levied tribute from the Nemedians who revolted and attacked his stronghold. He was killed but his brother Mordc avenged his death. CONARAN, conar, a path, a way. The sidh-ruler of Corann, in northern Connacht, Ireland. Angered at the presumption of the Feinn when they took to hunting his lands, he sent his three sorceress-daughters to the Hill of Ceòscorran (Keshcorran) to take vengeance. There the ladies, who are the befind, or Fates, were found spinning “left-twisted yarn,” on sticks of holly. To observe them more carefully, the warriors penetrated the opening to their cavern and became entangled in a spider-like web. Seizing swords, the women were about to kill Finn and his companions when Goll mac Morna arrived and cut two of them down. He bound the third whose name was Irnan and forced her to release the men in return for her life. She later returned to the hill as a warrior-hag and demanded and got one-to-one combat ending with her death. The Fiann then sacked Dûn Conaran and left it “a heap of glowing embers.” CONCHOBHAR MAC NESSA, (Conachoor). King of Ulster during the Red Branch Cycle. His mother Nessa was queen to Fachtna Fathach, but remarried Fergus mac Roth, the next in line, on condition that her son Conchobhar be allowed to experience the high-kingship for a year. At the end of that time Ferghas was not allowed to return to his post. He was once married to Queen Mebd of Connacht, but later married her “sister, “ Ethne. He fell in love with Deirdre but rather than wed him she eloped with Naoise and fled to Alba. Using Fergus mac Roth, who was persuaded to serve under him, Conchobhar persuaded Naoise and Deidre that they were permitted to re-enter Ireland. While they were staying at the Red Branch hostel Conchobhar arranged the death of

Naoise and his allies and Deirdre killed herself. Ferghas, appalled by this treachery offered himself as a warrior to Ailill and Mebd during their war against Ulster. Even Conchobhar’s druid, who some said was his father, cursed him and Emain Macha for his double-dealing. In a later war the High-King was ambushed by the Connacht warrior name Cet, who used his sling to implant a “brain-ball” in the monarch’s forehead. Conchobhar survived this attack but in a rage, seven years later, the cyst carrying it burst with fatal effect, It was during this reign that Cúchulainn had has adventures and this was the height of power for the Red Branch knights. CONDRACHD, CONTRACHD, mischance, a curse, EIr. contracht, from the Latin contractus, shrinking, contraction. It was frequently reported that curses ended with the shrinking of a body part (such as the head) until death ensued. Contraigh, the neap tide, an effect caused by nature spirits. CONGANCHAS MAC DAIRE. The brother of Cu Roi, he ravaged Ireland with impunity because he had a very thick hide. He married Niamh the daughter of Red Branch champion Cetchair. She told him that the giant could only be killed by a spear penetrating the calf of his legs, and this is how he was overcome. CONNACHT, CONNACHTA. conn and nathair , roughly, those not related to the Allfather. The Fomors were banished from Ireland after wars with the Tuathans and the Milesians, but it is revealed that some of their kind returned to this western province in historic times. This principality was also known as Tir Cruachainn , the Land of the Hip, Heap or Hump. The word cruachainn is comparable to the Norse hraukr. the almost obsolete English rick. Rath Cruachainn was, of course, the hill upon, or under which, Queen Mebd sat (and still sits) in state. As we have observed she was the reincarnate Mhorrigan, a daughter of the House of Donn. This noteworthy entry to the underworld was said to be guarded by huge black dogs. As it originally stood, Connacht stretched from the Shannon to Donegal

incorporating County Cavan. The Fomors made their last stand within its bounds and off the north west coast stood Tory Island, the famous redoubt of Balor of the Evil Eye. CONN, “Prudent,” having sense. One of the brothers of Ler, the ocean god. He and his siblings were turned into swans by an evil step-mother. Also Conn of the Hundred Battles. Before his kingship he and his followers were enveloped in a magic mist and invited to a hollow hill where Conn met the queen of Sovranty, a girl seated on a crystal throne wearing a golden crown (the Bridd). Lugh also appeared and prophesied concerning Conn’s descendants who he said would rule Ireland (which they did: 177-212 AD). CONNAIRE, trickster, a wolf in sheep's clothing, "a Cornishman's hug." See conal buidhe, above. The first word is combined with aire, native watchmen subverted to a foreign cause. CONNLA, connlach, straw or stubble, a rustic. A QuarterDay victim. The unfortunate son of Cúchullain, born to him and Aoife in the Land of Shadows. Under a geis not to give his name he was attacked and killed by his father. CONNLA MAC CONN. It is said that Conla ruaideach, of the “fiery hair,” first saw intimations of his fate when he stood with his father Conn on the heights overlooking the Western Sea. There the two men were approached by a woman dressed entirely in white. Only Conla could see her and when he asked where she had come from, she replied, “from“the Plains of the Ever Living, where there is no sin or death. There we holiday the whole year, in fact we have no need of holiday for each day is a joy. In all our pleasure we find no strife or immorality. And because some of us have our homes beneath the green mounds, men call us the sigh.” The king and his company were greatly surprised to see Conla carrying on a conversation with “empty air.” The king said, at last, “With whom art thou talking?” At this the maiden became apparent to him, saying, “Conla speaks

with me, whom neither age nor death can touch. I love your son, and I have come to call him away to Magh Mell, where Boadag (the old karl, a mate of the Badb) is king. That is the kingdom where there has been no complaint or sorrow since the elder days Turning to Conla, the young maiden said, “Now Conla, come away with me. In the west a fairy crown awaits thy red head. Come, and I promise never will your present comeliness fade, and your youth will last even until the last day of judgement.” The king fearful of this apparition, called his druid quietly to his side and asked for a spell than would drive this unwanted sigh back to her homeland. But the druid said, “This is no mortal, and the task you set may be too great for my magic.” Nevertheless, he made the attempt, addressing his words to the place where the woman’s voice could be heard, although she remained invisible to most of the company. At these words the woman began to fade, but before she vanished threw a golden apple in Conla’s direction. Impulsively he caught it, and would not release it from that time. It was said that the boy would not afterwards take food and drink, but would only chew at the apple, which regenerated itself as he ate. As he consumed the fairy-food there grew within him a lust for the fairymaiden, and at the end of a month, she again materialized before him and his father on the Plain of Arcomin, and again entreated him to travel with her to “the Plain of All Pleasures.” Conn quickly called for his druid, but the maiden faced him saying: “Oh, mighty Conn, of the Hundred Battles, the druid’s power is not to be loved, and has no honour whatever in the west amidst people who are upright. The Law will presently come, and when it does, the druid’s spells mu st fail, for they come from the lips of the black demon, whose power is nothing!” Seeing some truth in this, Conn turned to his son, asking what he wished, and the lad admitted that a longing for this maiden made her irresistible. When the visitor heard this she responded, “The ocean is then not as strong as the waves of your

longing? Come with me then in my curragh . Soon I promise we will sail within Boadag’s realm. I see the bright sun fall into the ocean; yet far as it is, we will be with it before dark. There I promise is a place worthy of your desires, a land always joyous to all who seek it. Only wives who are maidens dwell there, and there we will live together in joy.” When this speech was done nothing could hold Conla who rushed to the beach and sprang into “a gleaming, straight-gliding crystal canoe.” As all the courtiers watched the :”canoe” glided effortlessly away over the bright sea until it was lost at the setting of the sun. CONMAICNE REIN. This was the mountain in Connacht where the Tuatha daoine made their first appearance in Ireland. COPLAIT, one of two druids (the other named Mal) working at Cruachan palace (the one-time redoubt of Queen Mebd) when Saint Patrick came to Ireland. This pair had charge of the education of King Laoghaire's two daughters. To prevent his finding the palace, these two used their druidic arts to bring down a "pall of darkness" for many miles in all directions around their keep. This "fog" held for three days and three nights, but Patrick blessed the shadows and light was restored. The druids were, thus, converted along with their beautiful students. CORMAC MAC ART, High King of Ireland 254 to 177 A.D. A Celtic equal of the Romanic Romulus and Remus, “his wolves Cormac had always with him, and this was because they fostered him.” Seumas MacManus writes that: "O'Halloran says that there was at Tara in Cormac's time a house of virgins who kept constantly alive the fires of Bel or the sun and of Samain, the moon." He adds that the existence of such ladies is made legitimate history by the recorded fact that Dunlaing MacEnda, King of Leinster, broke into this retreat and put the virgins to the sword. Cormac decreed death to this scoundrel and compelled the chiefs of Leinster to send to Tara, each year, thirty cows with calves of the same colour, thirty brass collars for the cows, and thirty chains to hold them while milking."He became

friendly with Manann mac Ler, who invited him to the Otherworld, giving him the magic silver apple branch that produced music when shaken. When it sounded women in childbirth and wounded warriors forgot their pain. At the point of death Cormac returned this treasure to the west. His daughter Grainne was betrothed to Fionn mac Cumahail but ran off with one of Fionn’s warriors, a man named Diarmuid. A son named Cellach was slain by a Dési chieftain Aonghas of the Terrible Spear because he had raped his niece. In attempting to shield his son, Cormac got the spear butt in his face and lost an eye and the kingship. This disfigurement led to an obsession for vengeance which extended to the entire Dési clan. His end was predicted when he sighted Badb as a washerwoman at a ford. His son Caibre succeeded him and destroyed the Feinn. CORN, a drinking horn, W. corn, Br korn, Latin cornu, English horn. Perhaps after Cernunnos, the horned god of the hunt whose name appears in the name Cernu, Cornwall. This spirit is the English Herne the Hunter, the one-time guardian of Windsor Forest. Gods of the hunt pre-date agricultural deities and are sometimes considered immortal elementals rather than mortal-god such as Aod and the Dagda. See also Cernu. Horns were considered in the same light as cauldrons, and were thus at once symbols of fertility and abundance. Notice that the folk the Romans called the Cornavii occupied Caithness, the district of Scotland found east of Sutherlandshire, the former home of the Caereni. The Latin Caereni-avios, referred to “the Folk of the Horn,” those living on the eastern promontory. There was another ttribe, with this same name, based in Worcestershire. The Irish called the Britons of the Dumnonian peninsula Breatainn Cornn which is the AngloSaxon Cornwealas, “Strangers of the Horn,” the Welsh in modern parlance. Quite possible all horn-like bends in the land were given this designation and the people in some places may have been named for the formation. All the northerners drank from horns, usually those of the urus or common European buffalo. These were carefully dressed with stones and often had a silver rim and fittings. An

immense example rests in Dunvegan Castle. The drinker twisted his arm rough the spines and was expected to drain this utensil at once. Alcoholic drinks were a required part of quarter-day festivities. CORP CREAGH, CRUIP CREAGH, “a body made of stone,” a clay figure. As recently as 1883 one of these magical images of a human was brought as evidence by the Sheriff’s Court in Inverness in a criminal case between two women. The figurine was described as being four inches long and completely entwined with “green worsted thread.” The body of the representation was also pierced by pins in an attempt at sympathetic magic. It was believed that the “blue clew” wound about the figurine would produce the effect of strangulation in the intended victim, while the pins were considered to damage internal organs. Sometimes these effigies were burned or “drowned” in a stream in the belief that anything that happened to the corp creagh directly influence the physical state of the human counterpart. CORPAN SIDH, corp, a body from the Latin corpus, body; sith, one of the wee folk. A changeling. An aging sidh, shapechanged to resemble a human kidnap-victim. While the sidhe spirited the human away, the corpan sidh remained, quickly aging and dying. CORR, having too much, in surplus, in excess, a crane, referring to its beak, Cy. crychydd, AS. hragra. See the G. car, a turn, a twist. Aquatic water birds were considered to have been associates of solar deities in their role as gods of healing. The refusal of the Irish to eat crane’s flesh suggests this, and note the following, from Highland Scotland: “If a person is thought to be too long alive, and it becomes desirable to get rid of him, his death can be ensured by bawling at him thrice through the keyhole of his room, “Will you come or will you go? Or will you eat the flesh of cranes?” A church record at Alves for 1663 upbraids parishioners for using this means to hasten the death of

Margaret Anderson. In the Book of Leinster the three cranes totem to Midir, a god of the Underworld, are mentioned. These birds are symbols of parsimony and unpleasantness. Although not involved in battle like ravens, their presence constituted a bad omen if seen by a warrior on his way to a fray. This creature has also been associated with mean unpleasant women; thus Hugh of the Little Head was married to a disagreeable “crane-woman.” On account of his wife’s saving-ways Hugh lost an important battle. The top of his head was sliced away with a broadsword but, failing to fall dead, he jumped back on his horse and rode back into battle. There is a myth that a woman was once transformed into a crane because of the jealousy of a baobh. No ordinary bird, this crane was said to be sed ilbhuadhach go mbrigh, “a powerful (magical) treasure having many virtues.” In life she became the possession of Manann mac Ler, god of the ocean, and in death she was skinned and made into a bag in which the god’s most treasured possessions were kept. This bag was eventually stolen by Feinn. In the Hebrides it is considered bad luck to hear a crane cry at night. Note also Saint Columba’s relationship with cranes: He was sometimes called the “crane-cleric” because of the “crane” which he kept “in his service.” He was reputed to “have the language of birds,” and it was claimed that a “crane” came annually from Ireland to Scotland to visit with him. Columba’s psychic-“Armour” was aimed against cranes: “This is protection from the fairy-arrows, proof against the screeching of cranes, against the gnawing of cranes, against temptations of the world, against wickedness in the world.” Notice that the Gaelic corr as used above is a synonym for “woman.” See next two entries. CORRACHA-MARGAIDH, denoted people who stood about in market places ostensibly seeking work. Campbell has noted that the word also identifies a “bastard.” Notice that the related French grue, a “crane,” is also that used to identify a “prostitute.” In Gaelic speaking Ireland the bird was commonly identified as siothlagh a’ bhoga, the “sheelagh of

the bogland.” The obscene attitudes of the related figurines suggests sexual looseness in the same way as the Scottish Gaelic corr, a “whore.” See siothlagh. CORRUGUIANACHT, “crane-tricks,” a “woman’s-tricks,” corr, may be read as “crane, queer” or “tricky.” Specifically the act of standing on one foot (like a crane) using one hand, with one eye closed, to enact a glam dicend, or “poet’s excreation.” This was the attitude assumed by druids when they were enacting powerful magic. Note the word corrchleireach, “crane cleric” which was applied to certain Christian missionaries.

CRAINN BETHACH. Ancient trees were seen as little mountains and were called crainn bethach, “trees of life.” Men of the north were agreed that their spirits arose from trees and sacred trees were often the talesmen of a particular clan or tribe. Each had its own venerable tree, usually spotted at the centre of their territory. Tribal raids sometimes had no other objective than the destruction of this minor version of the world tree in hopes of demoralizing the enemy. It was often supposed that the gods

sprang, like men, from trees of the forest and returned there upon death. In the Irish tradition the oak, the yew and the ash were particularly respected. Assemblies were held under old trees and it was taboo to damage them. The sidh who lived in trees had their second spirit resident there and when the tree was cut down they died. CRANNCHUR, CRANCHUR, the casting of lots for divination or gambling, fortune, whether good or evil, fate, desting, predestination, a ballot, sortilege to foretell the future or as gaming; OIr. cranchur from crann + cuir, tree, wood + drive or cast. In Gaelic communities dies, or dice, were constructed from wood and these resembled the Norse runes. In both places it was claimed that these devices were gifted on men by the father of the gods. Odin's runes were divided into two categories the maalrunor and the trollrunor. The former "speech-runes" of the Anglo-Saxons enabled men to embed words on wooden tablets. retrieving them as desired. The "troll-runes" or "mischief-runes" were again subdivided into the skadirunor, i.e. Skadi's runes" or the "Scottish runes" and the hjelprunor, or "helpful runes." Use of the former could subject enemies to the runeslag or "rune-stroke", a condition now referred to as a "cerebral haemorrhage." The help runes were medicinal in effect. Skadi was of course the Cailleach bheurr, the winter hag who abandoned Lochlann, or Norway, for old Abla, now called Scotland. In her time this shape-changing giant, with the single eye, carried a rune-decorated staff similar to Odin's spear. This instrument was considered the source of winter storms. When the Winter Hag directed her energies at men and animals though this staff, they were partially or completely stricken by the disease which is still sometimes called "the stroke". This cailleach was the goddess of death, who sought souls as she travelled on the winds of Nollaig or Yule. CRANN TABUAIL, the staff mounted sling, a favourite weapon of the gods. A normal sling was tailin, a sling-shot the lic-tailme. The shot material used in these weapons was often constructed following magical formulae. Connall

Ceranach of the Victories having killed Mesgora mac Da Tho, the king of Leinster, constructed a “brain ball,” using a little of the dead man’s grey-matter consolidated with lime. Unfortunately Cet of Connacht laid hands on this fearsome shot and used it against King Conchobar mac Nessa. The king was not immediately killed, but the ball became a tumour within his skull, and seven years later when his blood pressure became elevated it burst with fatal result. The Fomorian Balor of the Evil Eye fell before a similar weapon as did Queen Mebd. It was said that the Tuatha daoine routinely made balls from the blood of toads, bears and vipers. CRAOBH A B’ AIRDE DE ‘N ABHALL THU’. expression indicating the god-like nature of trees. Applied to champions it indicated: “You are the tallest tree in the orchard.” See next entries. See also crainn bethach. CRAOBH NAM BARR UBHAIL, craobh, a tree, crab (fruit) of the prime apple. "Among the many island of Loch Scadabhagh (Loch Skye in Northern Uist), there is an island more valuable than the rest, because it was more fruitful. They called it Sunny Island because on it was growing the Tree of the Prime Apple. Comparable with the forbidden fruit of Biblical lore. In some accounts these "crabs" are described as "red berries", the "fruit of the gods," and the island on which they grew is sometimes located at the eastern end of Lake Awe, much further south than UIst. They were held responsible for the longevity of the gods and were withheld from men by the presence of a guardian boar, a poisonous dragon, or something of that ilk. When Fraoch and his sweetheart Fiondbhar vacationed on Uist with his father Ideih, they were followed by the Irish goddess Mebd. Accusing Fraoch of cowardice, Mebd was able to rouse him to swim the Loch seeking the "apples of the sun." Mebd placed the guardian-boar in a trance, so it seemed that the hero would return to shore with the forbidden fruit, but the animal became aroused and swam after him. In the end Fraoch tore the boar asunder, but was poisoned by its tusks and cloven hooves. He died and was buried within the Loch

on an island that still bears his name. According to the islanders Mebd drank a fatal dose of aconite being overcome with grief at his passing, but the Irish wordsmiths assure us she was killed by an enemy while bathing. CRAOBH, a tree, EIr. croeb, able to be split. Root kri, same as the Eng. tree. Some trees were deliberately split and ailing humans passed through the opening as a cure for disease. Trees were considered to be the resting places for deities and nature-spirits. Irish sacred trees included Craobh Tortu, which was an ash, Eo Rosa, a yew, Eo Munga (which see), a yew, and Craobh Dath-i, an ash. Mebd was in possession of Bile Meidbe. The link between divinities and trees is specified in Celtic art where gods or goddesses are depicted as wearing crowns of foilage or having heads seen emerging from a surround of leaves. From the comments of classical writers it may be assumed that the majority of idols were carved from sacred wood. There are numerous Irish references to tribal assemblies in groves or under a huge ancient tree, presumably a totem for the group. See bile and neimhidh. CREAG ASDUINN, "crag of the man-god," Asa, one of the Old Norse names assumed by Odin; by extension any god, similar to asgan, a little person, a dwarf, a prankster, a merry "grig"; duine, a man, a mortal creature. The rock was said to have been located at the beginning-time in the centre of An Domhain, presumably within the "Cauldron of the Deep." "In was in the very middle of the Meadow of Allure on the Plain of the Creag, a big black stone. Manan, son of Lidhir (Ler), King of the Ocean was living then upon the Plain - his royal residence. Once, Manan said to Caoilte: "Take this Stone of Destiny (see Lia Fail) from here and leave it at Tara in Ireland (other versions of the tale claim it was purloined)." Caoilte was warned not to spend more than a thousand years in the task or a "gyve" will be placed on your forehead." Of course, the messenger of Manan was entranced by court life among the mortals and overstayed his visit. On his return his forehead was branded so that his crime would be known to all of the sea-people and he was

given the task of moving a black stone out of the water and placing it on a pinnacle of the royal palace. Caoilte thought this might prove an easy matter for the Creag Asduinn was light in the water, but as he attempted to move it Manan magically drained the ocean from around his burden, causing it to become unwieldy. At each attempt, the ocean currents dragged the crag further and further from the Fomorian lands. After a thousand years it fell from his shoulder in its final place off the Hebrides. (Highland Clans, pp. 348349). CREAG SGRIADLAIN, behind Loch Derculich, Sdcotald. Often spoken of as “the real house of the fairies.” CREAG SHIANT, creag, a rock, the English crag; shiant, a pile of grass, a "fairy" mound, foxglove (containing digitalis), freckled. A number of sith mounds have been identified in the British Isles. In medieval times these were understood to be the nexii of unseen forces and were rededicated by the Christians to their own ends when they held masses on site: e.g. "Father John - used to say mass at Creag Shiant, a fairy or enchanted rock in Baile, Eriskay (the Hebrides)." Again: "as you pass northward from the Port-na-Curaich, the Bay of Landings (on Iona), westward lies the Machair Bay...and inland from it is a tiny rise of ground, almost indistinguishable to strange eyes, called the Fairy Hill, or Hill of Visions, where myth and history join hands. The villagers will tell how it was regarded as a pixie dwelling and at certain seasons (the quarter-days) the farmers would gallop their horses three times around it for luck, but there are other stories of how (Saint) Columba used to go apart to pray there. The Machair had its pagan associations. Here was enacted the Ceremony of the Great Porridge, when a chosen villager ran waist-deep into the waves and threw porridge, an offering to the goddess of fertility and spring (see Mhorrigan). CREAN, CRION, an earthquake, to tear up, to consume. Earthquakes were thought of as manifestations of nature spirits in action.

CREBHÁN. A High King of Ireland, who accompanied Náir, “The Shameful One,” to the Otherworld. He returned with many valuable treasures. CREDNÉ CRED. CREDHE, (Crae-a), The goldsmith to the Tuatha daoine. He fashioned a prothesis for Nuada of the Silver Hand and made weapons for use at the second battle of Magh Tuireadh. His brother craftsmen were Goibhniu and Luchtar. In the last great battle he supplied “rivets for the spears and hilts for the swords, and bosses for the rims of the shields.” CRÉIDE FIRÁLAIND. A goddess in the Otherworld who presented the visiting Art, son of Conn, with a splendid mantle, and tried to persuade him to stay with her, when he came searching after Delbchaem. CRIATHAR, Crerar, from craithar, a maker of riddles. Confers with Eng. Sieve (w)right. This craft was considered sanctioned by the gods. CRIMTHANN. critheann, the Aspen. High King in 65 A.D. Also Crimthann Cass, a mythic king of Connacht, the father of Loaghaire. He recovered the wife of Fiachna after she was abducted by Goll, a Fomorian who lived in Magh Mell. In addition, Crimthann mac Fidhaigh, noted for his death at the hands of a female supernatural on the eve of the feast of Samhainn. CRITHEANN, CRITHEACH, the aspen tree, from crith, to shake or quiver. CRò, CRA, a circle, completion of the cycle, witchcraft, the witch-hovel, a fold, an enclosure, eye of a needle, saffron, the heart, Death. The same word as blood. From the Sc. cro, "the weregild of various individuals in the Scoto-Celtic Kingdom." In short any form of banshee, a spirit announcing approaching death. See also Aog. Cròc, to beat or pound. The Lat. cruor, gore, the Eng. raw, Skr. kravis, raw flesh; cf.

craven. In some of the myths the Tuathan invaders of the Fomorian undersea kingdom are said to have struck off the head of the proto-giant (who is the Allfather or Don) and it was explained that his spilled blood created the worldflood which wiped out Bith’s people when they tried to settle Britain. Croch, punish by hanging, suspend, CROCAN CORR, at the glebe of Kilbrandon, Lorn, Scotland. Crocan, a crook, coire, a cauldron, an indentation in the land. The site of a sidhe. CRòGAN, “born of blood,” thornbush. a gnarled tree, crô, blood, death, the eye of a needle, the drink of blood, from crog, an earthen vessel, originally "a skin-vessel", one containing blood; also an aged ewe, our word crock. Additionally, a hand that looks like a paw. Crolot, death wound. Crògan, (with long accent on the first syllable), a concoction made from the extract of sorrel roots, bun sealbhaig, and other herbs mixed with blood which the Vikings drank at certain times during the worship of Odin. It was drunk out of scallop shells and when they were under its influence they often went berserk." Thus, the Scots routinely prayed for deliverance, "from the crogan, the scallop shell and the dreadful Odin." Also, the thornbush, the gnarled or "clawed" tree, the "blood-letting plant" because of its many thorns. The crògan produced the effect known as the warp spasm. The sorrel yields oxalic acid, which is poisonous in large doses. Notice also the fact that a crown of May flowers was placed on the heads of pagan men and women destined for the fires. It is thus, even yet, considered unlucky to bring the May blossoms from this plant into a home. CROICH, gallows, cross, EIr. croch, Cym. crogbren. Also seen as the G. crois, from the Lat. crux. CROIS TARAIDH, CROISTARA, the “fiery-cross,” EIr. cross, from Latin crux; traidh. truncheon or staff of authority. Also related to tara, from the ON. tara, war. This is the equivalent of the Old Norse "fire-arrow." "Two pieces of

wood were charred at the upper end and fastened together to form a cross, to which was attached a rag dipped in sheep's or goat's blood. Being both burnt and bloody, the cross represented fire and sword. In time of war, the chief sent it in relays throughout every township and clachan in his territory. Each successive bearer usually mounted on a garron, or pony, shouted as he passed, a single word, the name of the Gathering place. Every able-bodied clansman, thereupon, seized his weapons and hurried to the spot. (Highland Clans, p. 23). See cros. CROMM, CROM, CHROMM CRUACH, bent, having crooked horns like a sheep, concave, eddying, winding, crooked, curved, OIr. cromm, twisted; cromag, a hook; Cy. crwm, Br. krom, OBr. crum, AS. crumb, crooked; cf. the English crumb and crumple. Confers with cam, crooked, one-eyed, which see. Cruach, a pile, a heap. the Eng. rick. After the pagan day-god Cromm, whose site was Cromm Cruachan, where he was incarnate as a great standing stone figure set up on Mag Slecht (the Plain of Prostrations) in County Cavan. Some accounts say that the god-figure was entirely coated in gold and silver, while twelve surrounding lesser idols were decorated with brass and bronze. A high-king of Ireland in the first century after the Milesian invasion (1,000 B.C.) was Tighernmas, who accepted the demand of his druids that "the firstling of every issue and the chief scions of every clan" should be killed to assuage this violent latter-day god. Cromm was apparently an agricultural deity for it was explained that this was done to assure good weather for the crops. It was said that the king and his people routinely bowed before this stone with such exuberance that "the tops of their foreheads, the gristle of their noses, and the caps of their knees often broke with the stress." In spite of their avidity, this tribe was reduced by two-thirds by the blood-thirsty habits of their god. Long after Tighernmas was dead, Saint Patrick is supposed to have heard this tale and looked on the standingstones. In response he "lifted the crook of Jesus and by the power of God caused the idol to fall on its face; the silver

and gold powdered from it like dust. On the hard stone was seen impressed the image of the pastoral staff, and as for the inferior gods, they were swallowed to their necks in the earth." Often mistakenly taken as a alter-ego of the sun-god Lugh, this "day-god" was said to control "the light of day and the darkness of night." He corresponds with Balor of the Evil Eye, the sun personified as a spirit of drought. According to some authorities, Lugh invaded Crom's underworld and "cast him down" thereby guaranteeing the light of summer as the recurrent right of men. In Christian times, Saint Patrick was given this same status when he conquered the deathgod by toppling his statue at Mag Sleacht. Crom Dubh's Sunday became the less controversial "Garland Sunday" in the last century, but the pilgrimages to his plain, and the athletic games held at that place, were pagan ritual remains. In some quarters, it is said that the flowers strewn on this day are to commemorate Lugh's victory over the forces of darkness, Lugh being the pagan counterpart of Saint Patrick. CRO LUGH, “Lugh’s blood,” the equivalent of check-mate in the game known as fidchell. Lugh invented this game and foreshadowed his defeat of the Tuatha daoine by defeating them at this board game. Cro lugh also implies the magical warding of Ireland by this land-god. CROMAG, the magical crooked staff of the druids, from crom, bent. See above entries. In the Christian era these symbols of Cromm were confiscated by the "saints" and sometimes enclosed in metal sheaths as pastoral staffs. As such they were credited with the same properties as before, but their virtue was said due to the supernatural power of God rather than earth spirits, tree spirits, or pagan gods. This word may also mean a hook, a clasp, crook, catch, gallows, clip or peg. Notice that after a child was given Christian baptism friends were invited to partake of crowdfie or fuarag. The father filled a basket with bread and cheese and hung it upon an iron cromag or pot hook. This

was suspended over a peat fire and to further frustrate the soul-seeking Daoine sidh, the chikld was handed over the smoke across the fire “in an attempt to frustrate all attempts of evil spirits or evil eyes.” CROMAN, the kite or hawk, from its bent beak. See above entries. The long-lived Fiontunn, the “White Ancient” was variously reincarnated as a salmon, an eagle and a hawk. As a predator this bird was somewhat infamous. There was, for example, the hawk of Mossad mac Moen. He found this animal in Fid Eoin, the “Bird Woods,” and reared it until it became a giant of its kind. It ate whole herds of Irish horses along with communities of human beings, picking them off by twos and threes. Note Cromm and next entry. CROMAICH, a standing stone, or stones, used as a place of asylum or refuge. Criminals who reached these places were absolved of their oversights. In arriving the supplicant said: gabham do chromraich, “I claim thy protection!” CROM-AN-DONAIS, a bungler, an impotent individual, a dolt, a failed person. CROMLEAC, CROMM-LEAC, CROMLEAG, the Eng. cromlech. Lat. lapis, stone, root. EIr. lep, shale, cf. Latin lapis, a stone, English plank. Crom’s Stone, see Cromm, above. Strictly, these are flat horizontal stones supported on three pillar stones, they are sometimes called table-stones but most are too large for conventional household use (one in Pembrokshire is 20 ft in circumference and twenty-eight feet off the ground). More generally, the standing-stones of the British countryside, numbering in the thousands, and largely pre-dating Gaelic occupation of the islands. Some were burial stones or memorials but many of the stones, like that at Turoe, County Derry, are considered to be phallic symbols central to former religious rites. It is said that Bith, Finntan and Ladra built “an idol” in the form of a standing stone in some Mediterranean land. This structure spoke to them warning them that the land of their birth would be submerged by a deluge and it strongly suggested

that they construct a ship and sail away if they hoped to escape their fate. The cromlech was unable to say exactly when catastrophe might fall upon them, so they sailed into the ocean as soon as they could gather an expedition and ultimately settled in Ireland. The ultimate cromlech was that built to contain the spirit of Crom the Crooked. This stone and its surrounding circle, situated in Ireland, is said to have been destroyed by Saint Patrick. CRONN, CRON, fault, harm, the Ir. cronaim, I bewitch, i.e. forepoken by witchcraft. Cf. cronaich, rebuke, the AS. hream, a din. Also a prayer offered to a river. When Cuchullain and his charioteer were trapped with their back to a river Cuchullain uttered this cronn: “I beseech the waters to help me; I beseech the sky and the earth and Cronn in particular. Cronn rise to fight my enemies; Cronn do not let them pass into Muirthemne.” At this the Waters rose to the height of the tree-tops aiding the Ulster hero. In the elder days such manoeuvres were not restricted to pagans. St Ciaran prayeda at the river Brosnach and it reacted against an invading arm from northern Ireland. Gildas says that he would never cry out by name to a mountain, well, hill or river since these were known to have destructive potential “now made serviceable to man’s usage (through the Grace of God).” Nevertheless the pagan conception of benificent waters persisted and many were renamed for Christian saints. CRONACHADH, see above, cronaich, a rebuke, the Teut. hru, a loud noise, ON. romr, shouting, AS. hream, a din; the opposite of a blessing, harming, ill-wishing, cursing, the antidote being the beannachadh or blessing. See next note. CRONAN SNAGACH, SNAGUE, cronan, dirge, croon, purr, a dull note, mournful tune, buzzing of a fly, humming of bees, purring of a cat, purling of a brook, the bass in music, dirge, any pathetic ode, the bagpipe drones, bellowing of a deer, wheezing in asthma, Sc. croyn; snaig, creeping, sneaking, the "slow croon", mouth music, the purring of a cat. An exercise intended to calm children, plough-horses and cows

at milking-time. A distinction is made between the common croon and the snagach, the latter having serious implications. In the elder days it was once reported that 27 druids almost spent their life force on a magical curse. In the process, their leader Senthen burst an eye from increased blood pressure. “The low murmuring of chorus to each verse of choral singing. Note LG. kronen, to growl and the ME. croon. The Gaelic is considered borrowed from Teutonic sources. CROS, CROIS, a cross. Crosda, perverse, irascible, unreasonably demanding, from Latin crux and Greek models. Croistara, the “fiery-cross.” CROSACH. crossing, saining, thwarting good or evil spirits. Based on crois, cross, above. An “X” across the chest to prevent evil; an “X” signed at the external world to create mayhem; crostan, a peevish man, one wishing revenge. Crosanachd, one of a number of these folk banded together to do good or ill, a chorister. Note that it was considered bad form to take a mare out after dark as it was thought that the animal would ally herself with the dark forcers against her master. If it was necessary to ride after dark it was considered necessary to sain the space between the ears of the animal. If this was not done the world of darkness might surge in through this “gateway.” CROSONACH, a cross-worshipper. The Christian fathers were truly without peer at propaganda, assimilating rather than destroying the pagan cults. Having initial difficulties in moving trees, standing-stones and mountains they were told to reconsecrate the pagan places. It was official policy that, “If these temples are well constructed it makes sense that they be redevoted to the worship of the true God to the detriment of native devils. A nation, seeing their temples left undamaged are more apt to see the error of their ways and move towards the true God. Further the mere familiarity of an old place of worship will draw many to worship even where the rites are new.” St. Patrick followed a similar policy, and once preached “before a

fountain, which the druids had worshipped as a god.” CROTAL, any lichen used in dyeing, MIr. crotal, a husk, anything dry, the lichens on a tre, a “husk,” a “kernal.” In the last two senses the word confers with the Lat. crotalum, a rattle. The Irish and the Scots used a pearshaped bronze rattle affixed to the ends of their spears to unnerve potential enemies. Hence the English word crotal. When the “magic-ones,” still ruled Ireland they were hard pressed by the Fomorians until a young man-god came to their rescue. He was called Lugh of the Long Arm, because his spear acted almost as it were an extension of his body. The spear of Lugh is sometimes referred to as a “dart,” which makes it clear that it was what the Romans met on the battlefield as a crotalum, a bronze spear with a small pear-shaped bell filled with gravel at the nether end. This was rattled before battle to disturb the enemy. A short spear, the crotalum could be used as a stabbing instrument, or it could be thrown over short distances, and usually retrieved, since it was tied to the wrist by a leather thong. Hence it was, symbolically and actually, a part of the arm of a champion CRUACHA. The maid of Etain who went with her when she married Midir of the Daoine sidh. Sometimes credited with giving her name to the infamous hill known as Rath Cruachan. CRUCHAN, cruach, a heap or pile. Cy. crug, Bry. cruc, ON. hruga, heap, AS. hreac, the Eng. rick. A place sometimes entitled Rothcroghan, three miles north-west of Tulsk, County Roscommon. This “town of fortresses” was the capital of King Aillil and Queen Mebd. Rath Cruachan was still the Connacht royal city until King Ragallach was assassinated there in 643 A.D. Connacht was frequently named “The Land of Cruachan.” Site of a major entrance to the Otherworld. CRÚADAN, CRUADIN, “The Adversary,” the magic sword of Cúchulainn, sometimes confused with Caladbolg, the sword

of Fergus mac Roth. The name derives from the same root word cruaid, “hard,” but here it appears in the diminutive form. CRUNNCHU. A “Woodsman” of Ulster. One day a beautiful woman came to his door and agreed to live with him. While she was pregnant he boasted she could race faster than any horse. His unguarded talk led to a contest which she won, afterwards giving birth to twins. The Sovran queen of Ulster (Mhorrigan) she cursed the men to suffer pains of delivery when faced with battle. CRUIMH DOMHAINN, world-worm, note Cromm, above. The “Middle Earth Snake” of Norse mythology, born of the giantess Angurboda by the god Lokki. Banished to the depths of the ocean-sea by Odin.

CRUITHNE, CRUITHNICH, men of the grain, confers exactly with the Celtic Breatan, a Briton or Pict. He had seven eponymous children who divided Alba (scotland) among themselves, thus naming the ancient provinces, viz. Cet

(Marr and Buchan); Fiobh (Fife); Cirech (Angus and Mearns); Cat(Caithness); Folta (Atholl); Moireabh (Moray) and Fortriu (Strathearn). Two thousand years before the Christian era, legend says that the Cruithne, better known as the Picts, arrived among the Milesians. These may very well be the Firgallions, the word does point to the “Gauls” of France and Belgium, who were closely allied with the CeltoIberians of Spain. At any rate, the Irish people who lived about Inver Slaigne in the extreme southwest were plagued by a tribe of virulent visitors from the east who were decimating the population using poisoned arrows. The Picts were known as mercenaries and were invited to fight for pay. They were conscripted “for their skill in magic” and were very successful at eliminating the unwanted element. They were rewarded with a grant of land. Sadly, they were almost as barbaric as the earlier strangers and the chief of that quarter, a man named Crimmthann decided that they needed to be persuaded to “pass on over.” Three Pictish chieftains were therefore given Irish wives and granted land in Alba, and according to Seumas McManus this was their wellspring in the land now called Scotland. CRUITHENTUATH, Pictland, in general the territory which the Picts once held between the Forth and the Clyde. More generally the land north of the most remote Roman wall. Bede says that in his day the Firth of Forth divided the land of the Angles from that of the Picts. He also says that, long before his time, the Britons in the east were separated from the Picts of the west by the Firth of Clyde. In Irish tradition mention is made of Cruithneachan mac Lochit maic Cinge (or Inge) who went with the sons of Mil and with the Britons to fight a common war against the Saxons. The first of these thus gained land called Cruithentuath “and stayed among the Britons.” This it was said was an event in the time of the Irish High-King Eremon, i.e. Just after the arrival of the Milesians in Ireland (1,000 -250 B.C.) We are told that the newcomers cleared “swordland” for themselves creating the Plain of Fortriu, afterward Magh Circin. There are several other versions of the Pictish settlement which can be seen in the notes above and below.

CRUITHNE-TUATH, grain-folk. Cruithentuath, Pictland. In modern Scot. Gaelic, Breatann, Britain, the inhabitants being Breatnach or Breatannach, a Briton. In Irish Gaelic the forms were Breatnaibh or Breathnach. The island dwellers may have been named the Pretani by their Continental Celtic neighbours. ON., Pettr, Oeng, Peohta, Scots., Pecht, Ocelt. Pect, Cy. Peithwyr, related to their peithyn, a Pictish stone-slab. The Latin form is said derived from “local models.” The expression Cruithne-clar, “the Heroic Bretons,” was entirely poetic in use. This was a name applied by outsiders to former occupants of parts of England, Scotland and Ireland. They were distinct from the Albannach who are discussed elsewhere. Eumenius (297 A.D.) was the first classical writer to mention the Picts and the Hibernians, describing them both as traditional enemies of the Britons. In 570 Gildas, a native Briton, described them as having “more hair on their faces than clothing on their bodies.” He says that they crossed “the Vale of Tethys,” (the Ocean) to get at their victims, Bede claimed that they came from Scythia to the north of Ireland “where the Scots would not receive them.” The Picts, he says, came into Britain after the Britons but before the Scots. In 800 A.D. Nennius adds that the Picts occupied the Orkneys in 300 B.C., afterwards wasting the lands of their neighbours and occupying the north of Britain. Nennius says they were of the line of Gelon son of Hercules and that they landed in Leinster where they used their skills with magic to aid the king. In the end they decided to move on and according to another account “settled Tiree beyond Islay.” (see another traditional account directly above.) From here, they took possession of Alba “from the bounds of Cats to Foirchiu,” in other words parts of Sutherlandshire and present-day Caithness. It is noted that they had agriculture but also used the sea “boldly and freely” for raiding Ireland and Britain. It is possible that the depredations of the Picts may have aided legends of the

Fomorian sea-giants. The Picts were no easier on the Fomorians than anyone else and they raided and pillaged the main Fomorian hold on Tory Island. In 612 they destroyed an Irish fleet off Donegal and murdered fifty-two residents of Eigg in 617. The island Picts remained willfully pagan after their mainland brothers were converted to Christianity. The number of Pictish ships on the water is evidenced by Tighernach in 729 when he writes that “thrice fifty” of their craft were lost in a storm off Cape Cuissini. As further evidence of their activity we have an old poem that mentions that the North Atlantic was formerly called the muir n-Orc , the “Sea of the Orcs,” that is the Picts of Orkney. The more southern sea was the Sea of the Britons and these two had their boundry at Coire Bhreacain, which see. Dr. Alexander Carmichael confirms the fact that tradition knew the ocean north-east of Long Island, Scotland, as Cuan nan Orc. This also agrees with a statement by Nennius that “The Britons once filled this whole island of Britan with people from the English Channel to the Sea of Orcs. The Book of Ballymore also speaks of the occupation of the Hebrides by the Picts. It says that when the Tuatha daoine came to Ireland they fought the Firbolge who were forced to the outer islands of Islay and Arran and to Rathlin off the coast of England. The Tuathans then trounced the Fomorians who fled to similar retreats. These defeated folk held these islands until the beginning of the Christian era when Pictish mercenaries drove them out forcing many of them to resettle the mailnad of Ireland. Like the Norsemen, the Picts expanded their land bases amidst the Western Isles and mainland Scotland. In the fourth century they came into increasing contact with the Caledonians at a time when their power was in declinedue to the Roman intrusions. The Picts, largely untouched by the Roman invasions, were in control of the north. By Saint Columba’s time their capital still stood dominating the north-lands, and their king was overloard of the Orkneys. The country beyond the Forth was thus, for a time, known in Latin as

Pictavia. CUAIRT, circuit, pilgrimage, expedition,, whirl or eddy,,, a gathering of sheep, anus, from kur, circle, the left-handed path of witchcraft and druidism. Thus, the Quarter Day “circuits.” Making the “rounds.” House-visiting at the Quarters. “Beating the bounds,” usually in pursuit of a devil-figure dressed as an animal. In Christian times the direction of travel was reversed. Cuairtir, a tourist, formerly fodder for the quarter-day fires. CUACHAG, the resident water spirit of Glen Cuach Inverness-shire. Also, the cuckoo, a neat young girl. in

CUAN, CUAIN, the ocean, originally a harbour. The Deep, deceit, a pack of wolves. The classical peoples, who lived close by the supposed centres of ancient civilization regarded Ireland as the most ancient place, This is revealed in the fact that Greek scholars routinely referred to it as Osygia. It may be useful to our arguments to note that Osygius, who gave the land its name, was the supposed founder of ancient Thebes, and that his is the antique name for Bacchus or Pan, one of the more antique gods of agriculture and fertility. Rufus Festus Avienus , a Latin geographer of the fourth century remembered this place as, Insula Sacra (the Sacred Isle) so named by all the antiquarians, From times immemorial in the womb of Chronos, (the ocean) This Isle rising over the waves of the Ocean, Covered with a sod of rich luxuriance. The place peopled far and wide by the Hibernii. The English antiquarian William Camden (d. 1623) wrote that no one of his time could conceive why the Greeks referred to this western island as the “Insula Sacra”” and “Osygia,” “unless from its antiquity, for the Greeks call nothing by this name unless it is extremely ancient .” Notice also that this individual was often regarded as the

lone survivor of the Grecian version of a World Flood and that the name is sometimes given as Ogygia, which makes it confer somewhat with the Gaelic og, young; hence, a “commencement place.” The ending is comparable with ùigean, a “fugitive or wanderer.” Personalized by capitalization this word becomes the Gaelic equivalent of the name for the Anglo-Saxon god Woden. Woden, or Odin, was given this name for his tendancy to tour during the winter season. There is also possible connection here with Ogma mac Elathan, sometimes identified as the son of Dagda, His island in the west was Tir nan Og, the “Land of Youth,” a place of perpetual beginnings and ever-renewed youth situated somewhere in the western ocean. These are not the only indications that Ireland once harboured a prehistoric civilization. In Sankrist texts it can be seen identified as Hiranya, the “Island of the Sun,” the centre of a religion for sun worship which extended far beyond its borders. In his Gallic Wars, Julius Caesar wrote of the druids, who tended the earthly affairs of Lugh: “...it is believed that their rule of life was discovered in Britain and transferred thence to Gaul.” In this context, note that the Algonquin tribes of eastern North America identified themselves with a creator-god who came down to their land as the morning sun, and that they called themselves the “people of the dawn.” The Caeronii of northern Scotland also referred to themselves as Daoine aod, the “people of the day.” This may simply show that world myths are amazingly similar, but the correspondence, at least, helps the idea of prehistoric contact between the two groups. The sum of all this is the possibility that there might have been a transatlantic commerce in people and their ideas. quite possibly in both directions. The Irish “saint” named Vergile (ca 750A.D.) got into difficulties for expounding this idea in public. He was accused of promoting heresies by speaking on the subject of the antipodes (the world beneath one’s feet (that on the opposite side of the globe). The Church wrote suggesting that he mend a few fences, and Vergile

responded by going to Rome, where he convinced Pope Zachary that the Irish had not only believed in a distant world across the ocean, but were in communications with it. Farley Mowat insists that “History preserves the records of several “discoveries” of Europe from America.” Unfortunately he does not give us the names of these histories, or even those of the supposed travellers, so must assume he speaks in supposition, thinking of Neolithic men, who might have come inadvertently to Europe riding the Gulf Stream and the prevailing mid-Atlantic winds. Some might have made the harder northern crossing from historic Thule (Greenland) in the skin boats now known as umiaks. These were never the primitive unseaworthy craft they appeared to be, and surviving examples have been seen to be capable of carrying forty passengers on extended sea-voyages. The umiaks are not unlike the Irish curraghs or coracles, and this correspondence may not be accidental since the Innuit of northern Canada have said they were descendants of people from Thule and these people were perhaps the mythic Tuatha daoine. Indian bark canoes were of immense size in the past perfectly capable of testing the open ocean. The east coast tribes living in Newfoundland had twenty and thirty seat sea-canoes when they were first spotted by European fishermen in the seventeenth century. These craft hold little resemblance to the “crystal” ships that supposedly came to the shores of western Britain, but they could have made the crossing following the Stream and the prevailing westerlies of the mid-Atlantic. The European equivalent of these early Amerinid ships could not buck the wind or the current against the Stream, but they did have an advantage in travelling westward. The tribes of old Alba and Eiru were already well out on the Atlantic to begin with, and had a chain of northwest trending islands leading from the Hebrides to the Shetlands to the Faroes, to Iceland, to Greenland, to Baffin Island to Canada, all places within a few days sailing of one another. Nowhere along this route is there more than 400 miles of distance between landfalls,

and the prevailing wind in that quarter is up-and-along Iceland and Greenland, and finally down-and-along the coast of eastern North America. For either group of travellers, getting home was only a matter of being aware of the alternate route, which could be discovered by simply following the major currents and winds of the ocean. See ionn drain cuain. CUAN A’ BOCHADAIN, BHOCHDAIN, “Ocean of the Bochdan,” “Ocean of the Spectre.” A name given the waters between Barra and Ireland. In days long past the Scots girls used to travel to Ireland for employment in the potato industry. Two girls, one from the isle of Pabbay and another from Mingulay had decided to travel this sea-lane. The girl from Mingulay had a bochdan, a poor male stranger she met on the road. He predicted that she would settle down in the far country but claimed that her friend would die of a fever while in Ireland. While the girl was listening she happened to look to sea and there she saw a sailing vessel, some miles from the coast. As she watched in turned belly-up in the water and all of its occupants were seen struggling for life. Screaming with shock she drew the strangers attention to this scene, but he dismissed it as having no part in present-reality. The grand-parents of those destined to be lost in this accident, he explained, were not yet born. When the girl returned home she told her folk of these strange predictions and the weird “ghost.” Afterwards the sea to the westward was given this name and the prophecies were fulfilled as promised. CUAN MOR, the “Great Harbour,” The Atlantic Ocean. Also known as “The Green Sea,” with reference to its productivity and supernatural aspects.

CÙ, a dog, gen. con, Cy. ci, Br. ki, Lat. canis, Eng. hound, Skr. cuá. These animals are associated with Manann mac Ler and Cromm, in their roles as lords of the dead. Notice that the Gaullish god Sucellos, “the Good Striker,” who confers with the Gaelic Dagda, is always seen accompanied by two dogs. The Germanic goddess Nehalennia protectress of sea-faring merchants, had similar pets. Epona was also a dog-fancier, and in British iconography Nodons, who is the Gaelic Nuada is also connected with this animal. It is suspected that the presence of the bones of dogs in votive wells reflects their attachment to healing cults.

Like the bull, the raven and the cat, the dog was a beast of divination. In the Irish tales Cormac says that the fili or “seers” resorted to chewing the flesh of a dog, a red pig, or a cat “in order that the gods show him the things which he desired they should reveal.” Dog-names for heroes, of course, abound, thus: Conmhael, Cuchullain, Cu Roi etc. mac Con was named for his childhood attachment for a dog named Eloir and was thus “The Son of the Hound.” Fionn possessed two dogs, Sceolang and Bran, who were said to be his shape-changed nephews. The god named Lugh was overcome by the death of an oirce or “lap-dog” because she was his altered mother Ethlenn. These examples are capable of almost infinite expansion. In folklore, at Claggan, on Loch Tay, Scotland, a ghostly dog prevented the locals from straying after dark. One evening an elderly man walked into the dusk before reaching his sister’s farmstead, an met this huge grey dog at the heap of stones known as An Carn Mor, “The Great Pile.” He did his best to avoid looking too closely at the thing, and tried not to show fear, but noticed that the “animal” moved with him on a parallel line, stopping when he stopped, moving when he picked up the pace. At the Mackay farmhouse he seemed to lose the apparition but as he rounded a gable came upon the creature face-to-face. Terror-stricken he bolted for the door and fell into the arms of his neighbours. He asked some of the boys there to accompany him the rest of the way to Ardtalnaig, but the patriarch wouldn’t allow it that night. CÙCHULLAIN, (cu or hoo-hoolin or cu-hullin), the “Hound of the Dog-master,” or Hound of Ulster. the most famous northern hero in Irish myth. His mother on the eve of her wedding to Sualtaim mac Roth was stolen into the Otherworld by a flock of birds, impregnated by the god Lugh, and returned to marry her intended. In training as a warrior he was sent to the Otherworld where he studied under Sgathach and had an affair with her daughter. He is chiefly famous for his singlehanded defense of the pass into Ulster against the invading forces of Queen Mebd. In the course of

that battle be killed his best friend Ferdiad, who fought for the south; rejected the love of Morgan, goddess of battle, and thus sealed his own doom. CÙ DUBH, the Black Dog, having special reference to the two black dogs who were the totems and companions of the death-god known as Cromm “the Crooked.” CUGAR, cougar, a mab or wildcat. Less often any cat of any species, tame or wild. The travelling form preferred by the goddess Mhorrigan. CUIGEAL NAM BAN SITH, “The Fairy Wives’ Distaff,” the stalk with root attached of Typha latifolia, the “Great Bullrush” of northern Scotland and elsewhere. The plant totem of Clan Mackay. It was commonplace for highland ladies to dry and place these remnants in a “kist” or trunk to ensure the “safety of the house.” This talisman was frequently wrapped in burial clothes which were always purchased well before the event of death. Those who kept such ornaments often claimed to have escaped all but their final illness. Some of the folk still say that this remedy must be pulled on midsummer at midnight, or on a midnight near the midsummer. The gathereer must go barefootd, be female, and have her hair ungathered. She must go without pin, cap, ribbon, comb, or head covering of any kind. If this is done the relic is thought to have special virtues against tinneas-tuiteamas, “the falling sickness” now called “epilepsy.” The talisman, once placed in a home, is said to bring instant benefit to patients of disease. CUILIONN, holly, holy, EIr, cuilenn, W, celyn, Br. kelenn, AS. holegn. One of the three important Quarter Day plants used in the decoration of homes to protect them from evil. Note that the famed souther hero Fionn mac Cumhaill was the “Son of Holly.” CUIREID, CUILBHEART, turn or trick, a wile, from car, leftward turning, against the sun. Note also cuirpidh, wicked, corrupt.

CÙIRN GLAS, The Grey Cairns, Camster, Scotland. Neolithic burial chambers of unknown significance. CULANN. CULLAN, cuaille, bludgeon, hammer; the smithy who forged Conchobar’s weapons; thought to be Manann mac Ler in human form. Acting as a smith he forged Conchobhar’s weapons within the sidh of Slievegallion. While he entertained the king one evening, the gates were left in the charge of a huge watchdog. Young Setanta arriving late for the party, was attacked and killed the hound. Culann was angry at the loss, but Setanta offered to act the part of watchdog for a year and a day. Afterwards he was known as Cúchulainn, the “hound of Culann.” This character corresponds with the Gaelic Goban Smith and the AngloSaxon Wayland Smith, the latter a character in mythology said to confer with Woden. CULLACH, boar, OIr. caullach, Br. qellecq, a stallion or boar. Note the Celtic root-word kalljo, testicle, the Cym. caill, testicles, the ultimate root being kal, hard as a rock. This is the ON. hellas, flat stones, and refers to their promiscuous goddess Helas well as to the Eng. Celt and kilt. The Lat. culleus, bag, scrotum, whence the Eng. cullion, testicles and the better known word cull. See Calluinn, New Year’s Day, Nov. 1, a time of human promiscuity. Cullachas, impotency. The totem-animal of numerous Gaelic clans. CUMAL, CUMHAILL, (coo-al, sometimes hoo-al), chief of clan Boscna, and leader of the Feinn. He eloped with Morna in spite of a prediction that their union would end his line. Afterwards Goll, a contender for leadership of this private army, killed Cumal and scattered his adherents. Morna escaped and bore Fionn mac Cumhail, the greatest southern hero. Cumail signifies sky and confers with the Brythonic name Camulos, a god of war. This god was commemorated in the one-time city of Camulodunum, later the fortress of Camulos in Colchester. The same name is given for Almondsbury, Yorkshire. Camulosessa, his seat in Scotland, may be cognate with Camelot, King Arthur’s famous court in

the north. CUMHACHD, power, co+mag+tu, the Eir. meg, great, which has conference Mag Molloch, the goddess Mhorrigan. The first legendary peoples to occupy Ireland for any long period of time were the pre-Celtic Fomorians who fought to a stand-still against the another stone-age race, known as the Firbolgs. Both races were opposed by the bronze-age Tuatha daoine, but even they had a sense for ethics in warfare: When the two armies stood opposite one another on the Mayo-Galway border, the obviously over-matched Firbolgs announced that they would not do battle until they were given several days to sharpen their weapons. When they had done this, they insisted on more time to perfect their shields and brighten their helmets. On another occasion they noticed that the Tuathans had a superior light spear and successfully sued for a long interval in which to have similar weapons made. This was not the end of this fretful manoeuvering, and in all, the Firbolgs were able to talk their enemy into one hundred and five days of delay. At the last hour, the Tuathans, noting that the Firbolgs outnumbered them, got in a point of their own, demanding that the armies be matched man for man. This was agreed to in recognition of the fact that it would leave the Firbolgs with a back up force. At that, they suffered defeat after four days of battle and reconferred, reducing potential losses of life by cutting the warring forces to 300 men on each side. The Tuathans won this struggle, but recognizing the valour of the Firbolgs, granted them possession of the province now called Connaught. In these early "wars" men managed to get exercise but relatively few people were killed. As Dyer says this was a time when there were "no leaders, no strategy, and no tactics", when only kinship groups were usually involved "most often to revenge a killing or a ritual offense committed by another group..." Warfare was, at its "best", "an important ritual, an exciting and dangerous game, and perhaps an opportunity for

self expression, but it (was) not about power...and it most certainly (was) not about wholesale slaughter." 9 Gwynne Dyer says that "the gulf between primitive and civilized societies is as vast in warfare as it is in other respects. The essence of the Neolithic revolution was not the discovery...that food could be obtained more reliably and in greater abundance by planting and harvesting crops and taming or breeding animals...It was the insight that human will and organization could exercise control over the natural world - and over large numbers of human beings."10 In other words, the development of agriculture allowed the creation of a class-society whose most elevated members began to see the possibilty of great personal gain in exercising power. Lewis Mumford has suggested that it was "the essence of civilization" to exert power in all its forms. The roots of the first civilizations, he claimed, are to be found in states that were so absolutist and awesomely cruel they make Nazi Germany seem a moral commonplace. Dyer thinks that the first experiments at weilding power went to the heads of the earliest leaders of state causing them to build practical irrigation canals on one hand, and to pursue vast personal memorials, such as the pyramids, on the other. Between ends, powerful men waged wars of extermination which were often little more than personal vendettas waged with the complicity of newly "civilized" men. In the days when there were no permanent leaders of men power was recognized as a temporary attribute. Among the primitives any man who could raise a following became the chief of a war party. In some tribes he might maintain absolute control of those who followed for the duration of the expedition. This elevated state lasted as long as the band's interest in war-like play. Before physics became a science, primitive men understood that physical force was any push or pull resulting in motion, and formulated the idea that work was force acting through a height or distance. Power was understood as the work done in a unit of time.

This idea was extended to psychic concepts and the most powerful men and animals were seen to act, mentally or physically, with greater force or speed than others of their kind. At that, the greatest power was seen to reside in the natural world, where it periodically acted against men in violent movements of fire, earth, wind and water. Considering this, the early hunter-gatherers probably supposed that ultimate control must lay with a creator-god whose will was channelled through lightning, vulcanism, earthquakes, hurricanes and whirlpools. The creator god was often left unnamed, it being thought presumptuous and dangerous to draw his attention by referring to him directly. Early on, it was noticed that the god behind nature was quixotic, a dangerous easily aroused enemy and an unreliable ally. Some men may have privately thanked this creator for their existence and the world within which they found themselves, but the father of all things was rarely credited with much continuing interest in his universe. He was thought to stand outside of time when he started the celestial mechanics of the sun, moon and stars. It was further suggested that he provided the life force inherent in plants and animals, but the mortal gods were often credited with actually creating life. Some pagan philosophers suggested that the supreme god suffered from boredom and, on a celestial whim, divided his "cumhachd", or power, among three elemental gods of fire, wind and water. In doing so, the one god appears to have shielded his creations from the fact that they were divisions of a single force destined to reunion at the end of time. The vital spark given these gods was known to the Gaels as "rong"; the Anglo-Saxons called it ghost; the Anglo-Normans, spirit. Thus the elemental gods used to be referred to as god-spirits or god-ghosts. Like the creatorgod, these three god-spirits, or elemental gods, were generated out of primal chaos. The Norse scalds, or poets, declared that before the world existed there was nothing where our earth now stands but the Ginnungagap (Beginning Gap) , "whose depths no eye could fathom, as it was

enveloped in perpetual twilight. Yet in the beginning, when there was no earth, nor sea, nor air, when darkness ruled over all, there existed in this place, a powerful being called Allfather, dimly conceived, uncreated, unseen. (Moreover) whatever he willed came to pass." 11 CURACH, Eng. coracle, from curradh, unstable, crowded together, exhausted; an ocean-going craft made of hides tied to a half-round wicker framework. The building of a curragh is really an extension of the craft of wickerwork, since the basic structure is cross-framing of scantlings (thought to have been ash, about 1x2” in size). The old Celtic hunters often built temporary dwellings by creating an oversize basket frame, which was then covered with water-proofed hides, and turned mouth-down to the earth. Turning it over and closing the door-opening created an almost useable boat. Gunwales had to be added (and these may have been constructed of 1x6” oak planks). Without these protective edges the boat would soon have become tattered above the water-line. When linen sails came into vogue, they were set upon a mainmast, or mainmasts, ranging to perhaps twenty feet in height, It is guessed that the masts were probably placed within mast steps made of oak, rewsting directly on the keelson. In 1977 Tim Sevrein led a number of fellow countrymen in a reconstruction of a curragh and a transatlantic voyage from Ireland to Newfoundland. They built a 36-foot boat, tying together ash strips with thongs that had been pre-stretched by hand to limit their elasticity. The hull members were then soaked with wool grease to preserve the wood and limit friction between the timbers. They found that forty-nine oxhide butts were required to cover the framework, the whole being stitched in handmade cord waxed with a mixture of beeswax, resin and grease, so as to fill the awl holes between pieces. In finishing their reproduction, the workers attached leather to the oak keel-skid with copper rivets, this being “a very highly developed technique in Christian Ireland.” It is said that Brendan’s men applied “oxhides tanned with the bark of

oak,” and carried spares aboard ship in case of puncture or other form of damage. For the modern-day craft, oxhides were prepared using this antique process, and after specimens were laboratory-tested it was noted that “oak-bark leather proved very strong even when wet.” It was also revealled that it had an open fibre structure particularly suited to taking up waterproof grease. The dressing of the butts also followed the advice that the monks used “fat for preparing hides,” to cover the boat,” and “smeared all the joints of the hides on the outside with fats.” To remain as authentic as possible the ship “Brendan,” was treated only with substances known in medieval times - tallow, beeswax, cod-liver oil, wool grease, in places single, elsewhere in combination. After many experiments the essential dressing was recognized as raw wool grease. The leather was first dipped in baths at 50° centigrade and the hides were then stacked, after which it was found that there was a 37% uptake of this waterproofing agent. At the end of the Atlantic voyage, the hides were reexamined and found essentially unchanged in chemistry and physical condition. The thongs used to tie together crossmembers were alum treated, an approach known to men from Roman times or earlier. These were swathed with a tallow and fish-oil combination before being put to use. In all twenty three miles of flax thread were used to stitch the oxhides to one another and to the frame. After the crossing, Severin’s crew had this to say of the “Brendans” performance at sea: “The maximum distance achieved (under sail) in a 24-hour period was 115 miles. The minimum day’s run was, of course, nil in a flat calm, and on bad days “Brendan” was actually driven back by adverse winds. The average days run was 40 miles and cruising speed of 2 to 3 knots...The maximum reading on the log scale was 12 knots in heavy weather and high seas... The most impressive aspect of “Brendan’s” performance was her seakeeping ability even in severe weather. She successfully negotiated prolonged periods of heavy seas and strong

winds,,,The stability was enhanced by ballasting with 1600 pounds of fresh drinking water, half stored beneath the floorboards. Without doubt the chief danger was a capsize at sea. Deliberate capsize during sea trials proved extraordinarily difficulty, even when the boat was unballasted. After being downed “Brendan” could be turned right way up by a 5-man crew and it took 12 minutes bailing...to empty her...” In the course of travel, the “Brendan” got into an ice-field off the coast of Labrador, and sustained a puncture two hundred miles from land. After long hours of removing water with a manual bilge pump, Severin found “a sizeable dent in the leather hull.” Despite its tensile strength of two tons per square inch, the leather had burst below the water-line. Once the source of the leak was found, it was patched from the outside after three hours “of bone-chilling work.” This enabled the admittedly undermanned boat to gain a landfall on Peckford Island, Newfoundland. Summarizing what he had learned, Severin noted that the voyages of days gone by had been “little appreciated” because the descriptions of them seemed naive to latter-day readers. Tales of sea-monsters and fantastic buildings, in or on the sea, seemed at least overblown, but more likely fabulous. “The real fault lies not in the medieval author for his writing, but in the modern perception of the older experience. It is easy to dismiss such tales as worthless and childish when viewed from the commanding heights of twentieth-century knowledge. But “Brendan” taught us to look at them otherwise. “Brendan” helped us to understand by placing us in situations similar to the original. Time and again we found ourselves deeply impressed and sometimes awed, by what we encountered at sea... How much more impressive these same scenes much have been to medieval sailors, especially those eager and expectant to see God’s marvels. Their vivid prose (actually) fails to capture the splendour of the occasion, and it is scarcely surprising that they should have come back (to land) and reported so extravagantly and with such wonder.”

CURAGH SGIATHACH, CURACH, CHURACH SGIATHACH, curach, , a coracle; sgiath, a wing; The “Winged Coracle.” A ship used by Fionn mac Cumhailt when he travelled beyond the moon. While he was recuperating from the loss of his fiancee Grainne, Fionn wandered in the wilderness at St. Kilda, Scotland. It is said that this sky-ship came down on wings between Heisgeir and Haisgeir and landed “on the Lagan of Arnal - below the beach...” It came to rest in shallow water and there he was met by travellers who knew his identity. This company often to divert the hero by taking him on a journey “where no man has gone before.” Fionn accepted the offer and within the coracle was told that they would first travel “to her hiding station under the moon.” The pilot explained that this strange craft could travel the heavens “sailing on a ray of light.” As the ship moved upwards Fionn observed the earth falling away soundlessly “while the moon seemed as if it were coming to meet them.” Fionn was surprised to see that the earth, as seen from space, appeared smaller than the sun. After a brief stop on the far side of the moon, the craft continued on toward Barr-result, the “prime star.” They did not pause here but went on “beyond the Bow of the Children of Uis,” or the “Milky Way,” leaving the Upper and Lower Pedestals far behind. Soon they by-passed Ruaill Mhor, the largest star in druidic lore, and landed on the planet of a wandering star well beyond the Solar System. Here Fionn entered an Otherworld , in every respect the equivalent of Hy-Breasil in the western Atlantic. At landfall the hero was met by a Gaelic-speaking “bird,” After feasting he was given a travelling guide which had the appearance of a lion. When he toured he soon came upon less identifiable aliens: “This filthy creature was standing on two legs. It was between five and six feet in height. It was about the weight of a calf or a small stirk. It was hairy and shaggy. It was giving off an offensive stench that nearly floored Finn; a filthy discharge (ran) from its mouth, rheum and scum (issued) from its eyes and nose.” These creature proved quite humanoid, yelling and fighting with one another

and showing all kinds of “un-nameable” behaviour. After that the two travellers returned to rejoin a number of cleaner, more compatible “animals” at a second banquet. At it Fionn observed that none of the dishes offered previously were re-offered: “They had sweet music, hospitality and good cheer; carefree enjoyment and cheerful happiness. Fionn knew that such feasting could not be duplicated on earth; by this time Fionn had learned that the kind friends who were entertaining him could so many things of which earth-dwellers had not the remotest conception. Consequently, he was feeling very humble among the birds and animals.” When the feast ended, the earth-man was approached by “Big-Bird,” who addressed him as follows: “Your visit has been too short, there is a lot to know here that would do you good if you had the time to stay with us, but we are satisfied - we know that your earth shall be improved after they hear your report. Good-bye my friend, good life and happy smiles of fortune on you.” Following this Fionn was given many gifts, “a full pack load,” and then boarded the coracle. “They travelled (homeward) on the wing of velocity the light ray. Greater stars than the sun appeared and went out of sight and constellations quite unknown on the earth moved into and out of their ken...They were now back at the sun; in a short time they were beneath the moon, day was beginning to break. They came down on the Lagan of Arnal when the rays of the sun were diffusing their tresses across the Coolin of the Island of Skye. And Fionn came out of the Winged Coracle...(and) came straight to Creag Asduinn...at the Bed of the Sweetheart.” According to the tale-teller this was during the time “when the birds (of the earth) still spoke Gaelic.” Notice that this coracle confers with the "crystal boat" which transported men to the Islands of the Dead within the space of a single hour. (from The Hebridean Connection, p. 444). CURAIDH MIR, the hero’s portion; the choicest cut of meat at a feast, reserved to the greatest champion in attendance. Apportionment of this bit from the thigh often led to heroic

confrontations. CU ROI. King of Munster in southern Ireland. His judgement was sought in selecting Cúchullain as the champion of all Ireland. With him Cúchullain raided Inis Fer Falga making off with the king’s daughter, Blathnat. Blathnat loved Cúchulainn but became wed to Cu Roi. She led Cúchulainn against his former friend by using milk poured into the storm sewers to indicate a secret entrance to his fortress. 1.Dyer, Gwynne, War, London, 1985, p. 6. 2.Dyer, Gwynne3, War, London, 1985, p. 11. 3.Eliade, Mircea, Patterns York) 1958, p. 207. In Comparative Religion (New

4.McNeill, F. Marion, The Scots Kitchen (London) 1920, p. 234. 5.Bulofinch, Thomas, Bulfinch's pp. 596-597. Mythology (New York) 1913,

6.Guerber, H.A., The Norsemen, London, 1985, p. 8. 7.Peete, Tom, Ancient Irish Tales (New York) 1936, p. 28. 8.Guerber, H.A., The Norsemen, (London), 1985, p. 2. 9.Dyer, Gwynne, War, London, 1985, p. 6. 10.Dyer, Gwynne3, War, London, 1985, p. 11. 11.Guerber, H.A., The Norsemen, (London), 1985, p. 2.