F. fern, the alder of the Ogham alphabet. The name for the day called di-sathurna, Saturday.

The bird is faelinn, the gull, the colour flann, crimson, the dates March 19 until April 14.

FACHAN, a spirit of the sea-side described in folklore as possessing a single eye, hand and leg. This is also descriptive of one form of the shape-changing Famhaire. Related to fachant, puny, false, fachaint, ridicule, scoffing, satire, from fo + cainnt, under-speaking, speaking so as not be overheard; fachail, strife. Fachach, the sea-going puffin. Corresponding in kind with the unipedes maritimi whose name appears inscribed in the extreme northeast of Greenland on the Nancy map of Claudius Clavus (1426 A.D.) In the Norse Heimslÿsing and in the Rymbegis mention is made of the Einfötingar, the “One-footer,” with “a foot so large they shade themselves with the sun with it while asleep.” In the saga of Eric the Red these is also the incident of the encounter with a North American uniped, and the pursuit of him is described in an entirely believable and realistic manner. In this same account there is reference to the American land of Einfötingland where all the residents possed a single foot. Anglo-Saxon facen, treachery, crime; facenful, treacherous + han, cock, by extension a promiscuous male animal. May confer with fecchan, to seek, fetch, gain, take by force or cunning, bring back. Notice fetch, a mythological English sea creature a guardian of men at sea. Note also the Lunenburg dialectic verb, fachent,

withered. According to Gaelic myth, the island now called Ireland was first inhabited by Fomorians, who came from the west "out of the sea." Some of these were very credible humanoids, but others had the heads of beasts or were misshapen in some part. When Partholan's race fought against them, they were described as man-like but "with one foot, one hand, and one eye." Irish historian Katherine Scherman thinks they represented a memory "of mesolithic man, who crept round the edges of the country catching what food he could with his rude stone weapons...offering paltry resistance to more progressive successors." If so, they must have shown considerable damage from their battles with the "men" who pursued them. Thousands of years after their domination of the British Isles failed, their descendants inhabited the north-western coasts where they lived through thievery. When Europeans began to explore the sea-routes around Africa to India and China they brought back reports of similar creatures. Marco Polo heard that they existed in northern China and reported coming close to a colony of them in India. They were routinely illustrated on the margins of maps,. The natives of eastern North America convinced Jacques Cartier that unipeds existed in parts of the New World and he sought them out. His countryman, Marc Lescarbot, was incredulous: "(Cartier) says that he chased a two-footed beast, and that in the land called Saguenay, found men dressed like us in woollen cloth, as well as others of a kind who eat no food because they have no rectum. This is no more likely than his one-legged men or the pygmies who supposedly live further west, or the great fresh-water sea (the Great Lakes) which he thinks lies in the interior of this land." While the Wabenaki Indians of North America do not appear to have made mention of this singular character, the Ihalmuit, or people of the Barrens have, and she is called Paija:: "Of those evil spirits, the foremost is Paija, an

immense female devil. She is a giantess who has but a single leg, springing from her generative organs, and who is clothed only in flowing black hair, Paija stalks abroad in the winter nights, and her single track is sometimes found in the new snow, an immense twisted impression of a human foot. No man can tell you much about her, except from hearsay, for to see Paija is to die with the sight of her frozen in the mind..." FACT GOIBNU, the “Ale of the Smith." At the investiture of the Tuatha daoine within the elder religion of the sea-gods, they were given three gifts: the cloak of invisibility, an unending food source, and the "ale of old age", or fact goibnu. The drinking of this ale guaranteed virtual immunity from death except by "misadventure." Notice that this "smithy" confers with the Wayland Smith of English mythology, who is the Gaelic Culann also known as Manann mac Ler. FADH, obs. Science, blackness, confusion. druidic practise. Fadhach, black,

FADH, FAEDH OR FAIDH FIADA, FAET FIADA, FACT FIALA, the deer-magician; the cloaks of invisibility, granted to the Tuatha daoine when they became liege to Manann mac Ler and the elder gods of the sea; faec, see, "the "f" is prophetic; fiadh. the deer, Ir. fiadach, the god-like one, Br. guez, savage, wild-man, linguistically related to the English wood, whose root-word is Woden or Odin. The sith-woman named Ethne lost her cloak after Finnibar "insulted her." When this happened the bafinn that granted her invisibility fled, but a Christian angel came, instead to her side. With this, her kinship with the Daoine sidh ceased, but she had gained a Christian "soul." The angels of God were capable of bestowing this magic on those they favoured, for when Saint Patrick chanted the incantation known as "The Deer Cry", he and his flock were able to pass through enemy lines without being perceived as human. Notice that this magic was a form of visual misdirection, as those that practised it often remained visible, but as unrecognizable beasts of

the forest. FAFNE MAC BRIC. The brother of Aige. The death of his sister at the hands of King Melige’s warriors prompted him to compose a satire, which caused three blotches to appear on the face of the high king. For this he was condemned to death. FAGAIL, curse, fate, fatality, destiny, the act of leaving. custom, habit, failing,

FAIDBHILE, FAIDHBHILE, a beech tree, Ir. faegha, fagh-vile, the Lat. fagus, cf. bile, the old word for a tree, having the same origin as bile, a leaf. Having reference to Bile or Bil, the god of death. The leaves of the beech tree were thought capable of causing death at the midnight hour. FÀIDH. a prophet, seer, soothsayer, OIr. faith, vati-s, the Latin vates; Norse othr, a song, MEng. wood, Scand. wud, mad, Der. wuth, rage. Ultimately Woden or Odin. One of the branches of druidic tradition the others being the bards and the senachies or historians. Allied is faidhbhile, the OG. bile, a tree, a beech-tree. Note the death-god Bil. Faidheadair, a prophet; faidheadaireachd, propecy, prediction, divination. The leaves of the beech tree brushing the face after dark were thought to cause death. FAIDHHIR, fair, market, cattle sale, Adjuncts of the Quarter Days. founded on English fair.

FÀIL, a ring, OIr. foil, additionally a well, a stye, a bathing place, to bathe, to lave. Alternately, fàinne, a ring, OIr. foil, a twisted circle of vines; root, vel, circle. Fâinne, a ring, Lat. annulus, Eng. annular. the Lat. anus, Eng. anus The Celtic symbol for eternity and unending reincarnation. Hence finger-rings, often seen studded with magical amulets. Magical rings were so innately linked with pagan magic, Christian priests would not wear rings unless they were so simply designed that it was patent that they carried no amulets. Notwithstanding, rings were commonly used by the

Christian laity and many superstitions still attach to wedding-rings. An old book of occult information says that the moment when the husband gives the ring to his bride is significant in determining who will rule: “If the husband allows the ring to remain on the end of her finger and does not push it beyond the second joint, the woman will dominate him; but if he pushes the ring to the base of her finger, he will be her lord and master.” See Lia Fail. FAILC, to bathe or lave on, Ir. folcadh, OIr. folcaim, Bry. goalc’hi, to wash. Teut. volce, to bathe, a peculiar habit which the Germans noted in the Rhinish Gauls. They entitled them the Volkâ, or “bathers,” and called their country Volcae or Wolcae. Not also the god Voli or Vali, a son of Odin, supposedly destined to survive the “twilight of the gods” and the promised avenger of his slain brother Baldur. Odin surrounded himself with a personal guard of females known as the Valkyra or Walkyra. They were those who built the first structures which the Anglo-Saxons termed waeals, the palisades we call walls.. When the Anglo Saxons came to Britain they reapplied the name Wealas or Walas to the country occupied by the peoples of western Britain. The form Wylisc became the modern word Welsh, and Wyliscemen evolved into Welchmen. The singular for Wealas is wealh, a stranger or foreigner. The word is similar to OHG. wath, an outlander and to the Celt./Germ. wal, which has similar meaning. Wal appears as a prefix in the Germ. wal-nuss, our word walnut. FAIGH, FAIDH, prophet, seer, sooth-sayer, license, use, obtain, acquire information. begging under

FAILEAS, FALIAS, INNIS, fa or fo + leus, fo + Lugh, “under the light,” shadowy, a shadow, reflected image, spectre, ghost, cf. ail, mark, an impression, a rock. An island in the western ocean where the Tuatha daoine received their education in druidism; the Underworld. FÀIL INIS, fail, corrupt, from vel, to bubble, Norse vella, Eng. well. A hound owned by the king of Ioruiadh said to be

invincible in battle. One of the prizes brought back to Ireland by the sons of Tuireann to compensate Lugh for the slaying of his father Cian Contje. FAILNEAS, the unconscious mind, fail + neas, that which boils or bubbles + neas, a weasel, boil, wound, cut. FÀILTE, welcome, hail! OIr root vál, to glow (with warmth from the sun). The Germanic heil as in Heil Hitler! Address aimed at the sun-god Lugh. The English wealth. See féile. FÀINNE, ring, OIr. ánne, Lat. ánus, Eng. annular. Probably connected with the old Gaelic goddess Anu or Danu. See fail. FAIR, FAR, a fetch, to fetch, bring. A shortened form of tabhair, cf. with thoir. A supernatural light seen on the ocean or over water. The word relates with the old Norse god Thor, see clann-thoir, a light seen over water. See next. FAIR CHLAIDH. The fetch of the chlaidh, burying place, mound, dyke, trench, hollow. The last person buried was considered the soul-warden of all those previously put to earth. In Cape Breton two elderly miscreants were equally at hazard from Death. The elderly man’s friends busied themselves at the traditional business of clipping his finger and toe-nails, a traditional activity to keep the ghost from scratching the living. Aroused by this, the old fellow set bolt upright and exclaimed: “Stop, stop, you do not know what use I may have for them, for all my nails, in compelling Kate Raudh (his nemesis) to keep fair’e chlaidh (watchmanship of the grounds) in place of doing it myself.” FAIRC, the Eng. park. Originally tidal lands sometimes covered by the sea. Fomorian real estate. To bathe. Fairge (pro. fairce), the ocean, Ptolemy’s Vergiovios, the “Green” or Irish Ocean, the temperate portion of the North Atlantic. In Sutherlandshire fairge indicates the “ocean in storm.” The Cym. Môr Werydd, “Great Morgan’s Ocean.” fairsing, wide. Same as fairg.

FAIRCE TEINE, EIr, forcha tened, mallet of fire, a thunderbolt,as delivered by the Cailleach bheurr or the Norse god Thor. FAIRG, FAIRC, the Ocean, particularly the Atlantic Ocean, Ir. fairge, Ptolemy’s Oceanus Vergivios, from the root fearg, wrathful, puffed up, provoked to storm. Cy. Mor Werydd, the “Ocean of the Weirds” or Fates. Eng. weird, feirce. See fairc. FAISNEACHADH, FAISTINE, a prophecy, an omen, from faisneis, a speaking, a whispering in the ear from the Ir. root vid, to know by seeing (a vision). Faisnear, a prophet or soothsayer. faisniche, a wizard. The Gaels believed that those with the "two-sights" could perceive other places and times by sending their runner into the past or the future. Omens of up-coming events, or times past, were typically seen as a vision overlying reality. FÅITH, obs., heat, warmth, a prophet or seer among the druids. The vates mentioned by the classical writers. FALA-DHÀ, FEALA, Eng. fa-de-dah, a jest, irony, fun. A sense of humour was considered god-given. FALAIR, burial of the dead, funeral entertainment, a wake. See also alnachus, burial customs. FALGAS. FALGA. Synonymous with the Isle of Man a holding of the god Manann mac Ler. “Some say that the smith Culain, that gave his name to Cúchulain, was Mananann himself, for he had many (names) and shapes. Anyway before Culain came to Ulster, he was living on the Island of Falga, the location of one of the palaces of Manann mac Ler. And one time came to the kingdom (of Ireland), and he asked advice of a Druid, and the Druid bade him go to Falga and to ask Culain, the smith he found there, to make arms for him. So Conchabhar did so, and the smith promised to make a sword and spear and shield for him.” The likeness of the sea-princess Tiabhal was placed on the shield and using it as a totem the king found his personal strength, and that of his kingdom,

increased. In thanks, Conchabhar gave Culain lands and a building on the plains of Muirthemne. “And whether he was or not Manannan, it is known that he gave Cúchulain good teaching.” This may be the Tuathan island known as Fal or Falias. See next. FALIAS. One of the four mythic islands of the “northern ocean” where the Tuatha daoine perfected their knowledge of druidism. FA, FAN, FO, under, low. See next.

FA MH AI R , Ir. f o m ho r ,

a pirate, a giant, champion, mole-catcher, a man used to burrowing underground (having reference to the banishment of this race), famh-uir, earth-mole, EIr. fomór, fomórach, Eng. Fomor, Fomorian. The mythic elder race of the British Isles. Fo+mór (from) under the sea. muir, the ocean. Mor or Morach, confers with the goddess Mhorrigan, and is the Gaelic morach or night-mare. plural. famhaire or famhairean. The “sub-mariners. the race of mythic seacreatures, shape-changers who came from the mid-Atlantic. The sea-kingdom of An Domhain was in the hands of Dom and his consort Domnu . Like the Atlanteans, his famhair, or “undersea people,” appear to have been god-like. When the spirit of the creator god, as expressed in his offspring, became mixed with that of mortal men, who they met on the shores of Europe, “they became unseemly, creatures of darkness and ill.” Similarly, Plato wrote that the Atlanteans subjected the continent to their will: “parts of Libya as far as Egypt, and Europe as far as Tyrrhenia (Germany)...” These may have been the same mythological folk. The famhairaig aparriar, or “western under-sea mercenaries” were similarly war-like, “a sept descended from one of the sons of Nodha.” The Annals of Clommarcnois represent Nuada as “Noah,” but characterize them properly as “those that lived by pyracie and the spoiles of other nations, and were in their days very troublesome to the whole wide world.” As a result, the land “gods” headed by the Dagda, gathered what forces they could find in Ireland, and fought a decisive war with the Fomors. During the last battle the sea-folk carried off the Dagda’s harp, and he followed ravaging An Domhain and looting it of the famed “Kettle of Regeneration.” As this device was the essential genius-astral of the Atlantid-dwellers, their sea kingdom was never able to rise again against its enemies. The Kettle was transferred to Hugh’s Hill, at a site between the four provinces of ancient Ireland, and this place became known as the navel of the land-world.

Although they were defeated by men and the “gods,” some of their kind supported the human warrior-wizards known as the Tuatha daoine. In particular, there was Manan mac Ler, son of the immortal Ler, who fostered the land-god Lugh, the opponent of Balor of the Evil Eye. Before the final battle, Manann loaned Ler the use of his sea-horses, invincible armour, and a sword that was "flesh-seeking." When the Tuathans were themselves defeated by the Milesians, Manann met with the survivors at the Brugh-naBoyne and granted them sanctuary in Tir-nan-Og in exchange for their promise of loyalty. In point of fact, the forerrunners of modern men were in England as long as 500,000 years ago and Homo sapiens has been in the British Isles for 50,000 years. Since glaciation buried the relics of these first men, and melt waters inundated relics from 10,000 years in the past, most of what we know of men in this part of the world pertains to the relatively "modern" culture, termed Aurignacian. These people are thought to have originated in the Near East settled in France and pursued game across the land bridge to England some 30,000 years ago. These nomads were sometime residents of southern England; Scotland and Ireland still being under the ice. It is suspected that they may have been driven out by the final advance of glaciation sinces the caves they inhabited have been found blocked by glacial till. After the Aurignacians came the Gravettians, a culture of herdsmen who came out of southern Russia by way of Spain. THey may have been associated with the Solutreans, who also came to England from France and Spain. These people lived in a time when bison, horses, wild oxen, mammoths, reindeer and the woolly rhinoceros were the chief game animals of the region. At that, few humans preferred Britain and it has been estimated that the winter population was no more than 250 people. As the cold and the ice receded, some of these hunters

settled the far west. By 10,000 B.C., the Magdalenian culture had come to the Continent. These people were a highly advanced stone-age culture, but there equal was not found in Britain. Some archaeologists have suggested that the islands were too cold to attract the newcomers, but otherrs suggest that by then the North Sea had developed out of melt-water separating the ancient islanders from the advantages of commerce with the rest of Europe. After the North Sea separation other immigrants began to arrive, presumably by boat, although the first "sea voyages" involved nothing more than crossing what would now be considered a wide river. The earliest arrivals were the Tardenoisians, users of flint tools, who brought with them the first dogs and either assimilated or were incorporated into other tribes already on the islands. The oceans were better established when the shore-loving Azilians arrived. "They hunted with dogs, fished and rarely pushed inland from the coast. Some of them survived into the bronze age." In legend, a similar people are recalled as the Fomors (Gaelic fo+mor, under+the sea). They are remembered by their numerous enemies as "gloomy sea-giants...warlike and very troublesome to the world." Some said that they were "sea-demons...creatures of darkness and ill." It was generally agreed that all of their kind were huge, deformed in some way, often with a single eye (and sometimes a single arm and leg to match), or with the heads of animals. The malignant giants of fairy-tales and nursery rhymes were invariably sea-giants, the land-giants being regarded as a separate race, who damaged through bumbling misadventure rather than with purpose. Aside from their "wild, unsociable, behaviour", the Fomors had the nasty habits of shape-changing and anthrophagy (i.e.they ate people). The Fomors were supposedly led by an immortal sea-god named Ler (Gaelic) or Llyr (Cymric), who was singular among their kind. It was guessed that the Fomorians originally lived far

out in the depths of the Atlantic Ocean in caverns where they were able to breathe the oxygen of the water. Although they could remain beneath ordinary water for long periods, it was agreed that they could drown like ordinary men when deprived of their "sea-suits". These took various forms including that of seals and large ocean-going fish. Sometimes the sea-people travelled as creatures that appeared to be men from the waist up and fish from their down. It was noticed that giants who were deprived of their ocean-gear were unable to return to the sea. Most historians argue that the Fomors were "African" sea-rovers, in which case they might have been surviving descendants of the sea-peoples worshipped by the Atlanteans. The animal heads could have been masks, and shape-changing a primitive misconception. The first men mounted on horseback were sometimes mistaken as unusual four-footed creatures who might also appear in two-footed form. The Innu in his kayak apppears to walk waist high in the water. Taking events at face value, he removes his "tail" on land, and cannot satisfactorily re-enter the water without it. Since primitive people knew nothing of the curvature of the earth ships coming to shore seemed to rise out of the water; while those departing, went to some subterraneran kingdom. The accusations of cannibalism have to be taken in context, since the Fomors were rarely allowed to characterize themselves. It was later maintained that witches feasted off roast babies (and) the same charge was levelled at the Jews in the Middle Ages and in Nazi Germany. At one time the Roman Catholics made a similar criticism of the Protestant Clergy, while they charged monks, nuns and priests with the same vice. The Irish historian, Katherine Scherman has noted: "This race surfaces time and again through The Book of Invasions, always uncouth and vicious, always seeping in from the shore and being driven back again by the more civilized and better equipped newcomers." The first protagonists were the Partholans (whose descendants are called the Macfarlanes). They landed on the ancient land,

now called Ireland, with nine thousand settlers. The Fomors seemed to have favoured the western coast of that island, a major stronghold being located on Tory Island, to the northwest, with others of their kind located on the Isle of Man and inb the Hebrides. The Fomors built towers on the plains of Sligo in Connaught County and it is presumed they were herders since, "they made sheep land". They were apparently not an agricultural people, and Partholon, the patriarch of the opposing race, noted that they had no control of fire and "ate poorly". He was the first to note that they possessed only "one foot, one hand and one eye", but nevertheless he found them worthy antagonists. Scherman supects that the Fomors "represent a faint memory of mesolithic man, who crept about the edges of the country catching what food he could with his rude stone weapons...presenting his infelicitous countenance and his paltry resistence to more progressive successors." 1 Other scholars surmised that the Fomorians represented older sea-gods worshipped throughout Ireland before the Celtic deities arrived. There is even blood of this race in the Celtic Cailleach Bheur, who has been described as a oneeyed giantess, who sometimes shape-changed into a gray mare. The "winter hag" had charge of the "geamhradh" (season of thunter), and had care and charge of the animals of the wilderness. Celts who harvested these animals were careful to propitiate this spirit, who strode from mountain to mountain carrying a staff which showered snow and could blast men with lightning. These descriptions of pre stone-age peoples do not correspond with the Fomorians that Nemed encountered when he sailed his thirty-four ships out of the Caspian Sea into the boundless Atlantic: "There appeared to them a golden tower in the sea close at hand. Thus also it was: when the sea was in ebb the tower appeared above it and when it flowed the water rose above the tower. Nemed went with his people towards it for greed of gold." Their

Scherman, The Flowering of Ireland, p. 255.

first sorties were ineffectual and they were forced to retreat to Ireland. There they dammed the rivers to create new lakes and cleared plains for farming. They were harassed by the Fomorians who demanded two-thirds of their milk, corn and children as "crop insurance". The Nemedians sent word to their Greecian allies that they were being oppressed. Their plea must have been persuasive for soon help came in the form of "an immense host of warriors, along with druids and druidesses, all accompanied by venomous animals, hurtful, strange creatures." Whatever the nature of this beast, it helped them take the sea-towers of the Fomorians. They lived in prosperity until "a great wave" swept in from the sea and "drowned an annihilated" both men and giants. Some Nemedians survived this catastrophe but "downcast and fearful of the plague" these neolithic farmers abandoned Ireland for England and ultimately returned to the Near East. The sea-islands presumably returned to the control of the Fomors while "the land of Ireland was desert for the space of two hundred years." The Firbolgs and roving Firgallians Came next like the waves in their flow; The Firdonnans arrived in battalions. And landed in Erris - Mayo. These newcomers, equipped with only slightly better weapons that the Fomors, held them off well enough to estalish themselves at Tara. They were unequal to the next invaders of Ireland, the warrior-wizards known as the Tuatha daoine. These bronze-age folk fought decisive wars with both the Firbolgs and the Fomors and forced both host to retire to the western “undersea kingdoms” and the “hollow-hills” of Great Britain.

FANAID, Eng. FAND. “Mockery,” Ir. Fanomhad, cf. with EIr. fanomat, a compound of va-nom-anto, from the root nem, the verb “to take,” from which nàmhad, an enemy, similar to the Germ. nâma, rapine, the Eng. nimble, Cy. & Bry. nam,

blame. From this same root, néamh, heaven, the Lat. nemus, a scared grove, OIr. nemed, a druidic place of worship, also OIr. ném, a pearl, an onyx, hence her nickname, the “Pearl of the Ocean.” The “wife” of Manan mac Ler who lived with him at Tir Tairnigri, the “Land of the Daughter of Thunder.” Alienated from him, she was attacked by three Fomorian chieftains, and promised her love to Cuchullain if he would help defend her kingdom. He did as asked and became her lover but Cúchullain’s wife Emer was outraged and so was Manann. In the end, the sea god insisted that Fand choose between him and the mortal. Noting that Cúchullain already possessed Emer, the sea-goddess allowed her husband to shake his cloak of forgetfulness between her and her human lover, and they parted. See the related Eumhann. FÀNAS, the void, space, a rent in the wall, from Lat. vanus. Confers with vei, wind, after the Old Norse god Ve, one of the trinity of elemental spirits present at the creation. A god of the upper air. FAN LEAC, altar of rude stones, a leaning stone. temple, chapel, Fan, obs. A

FAOBH, booty, a dead man’s clothing, carcase, unlooked for good fortune - a windfall, Ir. fadhbhaim, I despoil. Skr. vadh, slay, Eng. wager. Next. FAODAIL, goods found by chance, a waif, a foundling. FAOIDH, a-gathering, going the rounds to get food and drink for sacrodental or personal reasons. “Gentle begging expeditions.” FAOL, FAOLCHU, obsolete, EIr. fael, fael-chu, Cy. gweilgi, the sea; "wild-dog", wolf, a wild thing, a sith. The travelling-form preferred by the goddess Mhorrigan. See next two entries. FAOILLEACH, FAOILLTEACH, last fortnight of winter and the first fortnight of spring; a period from mid-January to mid-

February. a Gaelic month formerly extending from mid January to the middle of February. Ir. faoillidh, holidays, carnival, days formerly devoted to the goddess known as the Cailleach bheurr, or “Winter Hag.” From faol, wolf, thus "wolf-month". Currently, February in Scotland, the month called Brighde, or "Saint Brigit's Month" in Ireland. The Cailleach's Day was February 2. Also known as the "Bear's Day", which we call "Groundhog Day" in eastern North America. Sometimes the first half of this month is called Am Faoilleach Geamhraidhe and the second, Am Faoilleach Earraich. In this case, it is presumed that fitfull weather in the last half prognosticates a fruitful season to follow. Faoilteachd, the business of extending hospitality. FARACHAN, death-watch beetle or click-beetle, the “hammerer.” from fairche, hammer. These “bugs” still live between the walls of buildings and may be heard ticking when the temperature is right. They sound exactly like an old mechanical wall clock and are considered a death omen. FARAGAS, the most technically involved magic, e.g. taghairm of rats (which see). the

FARFONAD, a warning, Indo-European vor-svon as seen in the G. fathunn, news, a rumour, sven, a sound. Or. atboind, proclaims. FASGADH, FASGAIDH, a shelter, the cleansing of vermin through the application of Quarter-Day smoke within an enclosure, or more simply by “picking.” Fasgnadh, to purge. Based on G. sgath, a shade. FAR-AINM, "nick-name." A necessity in lands where it was believed that knowledge of the birth-name gave one’s enemies magical advantages if it was known. FAS IS GNATHA IS TORADH. “Growing indigenous and fruitbearing.” On New Year’s morning a branch or twig was brought into each household for good luck. This bit of nature had to have life in it, had to be plucked directly from a tree

on the land, and could not be a non-native species. If this custom was followed it was believed that the fruit trees would prosper.

FATHACH, giant, monster, genius. This spelling was the form in the oldest tales, now often seen as athach. Obs. fathach, prudence, knowledge. fathas, skill, poetry, prudence. fathbhan, or famhan, a mole hill. FATH-FIDH, fath, awesome + fideadh, from the root vid, wit, cf. with the English witch. Note also figheadair, a weaver. A word that has special reference to the sian, or charm employed to make persons or things invisible, or to conjure a magic mist which might hide them. Fathamas, awe, fear, a warning; fathunn (see next), news, “floating” information, a hag’s rumour. Also confers with feath, from

the Celtic root vei, the Eng. wind and weather, the two most important provinces of witchcraft, see next entry FATHUNN. FATHANN, communications, ordinary and occult, telepathy; also news, particulary rumour. The root is svenn or tabhann, sound, similar to the English ban and banshee. FÈ, wild, inconsistent in fury,OIr. fèth. Root vei, to blow. Eng. wind, perhaps after the ON Ve, the god of the upper air. Confers with the English weather and witch, both words linguistically attached to Woden or Oden. Also fe, an aspen rod used to measure corpses as a preparation for burial. Inscribed with ogham it could not be touched by any person other than the undertaker. Also, the name given one of the sons of Brigit. Her other son was Femen. Together they were termed “the oxen of Dil.” FEA. See last and following entries. The goddess wife of Nuada. A warrior-woman who confers with the Macha or the Cailleach Bheurr. From this perhaps the Middle English, faee, related to the Old French fee, witch-women of the ancient Gauls, supposedly located on L'Isle des Saints, off the French coast near Brest. See our companion volume for a dissertation on the land fairies. Notice that the ending "ry" diminishes the significance, and power, of this spirit; thus, the "fairies" are adherents of original "fee." Writing of these Celtic women Pomponius Mela said they were nine in number "having singular powers to raise by their charms the wind and the seas, to turn themselves into what animals they will, to cure wounds and diseases incurable by others, to know and predict the future; but this they do only for navigators who go to their island to consult them." Helen Creighton noticed a survival of this tribe in the expression "That was the fairy (belief) of the time." In Lunenburg County, Poteet was told "fairies painted the water", when seamen wished to express the idea of a colourful sunrise or sunset over the ocean. These are the white-women, or witch-women, described elsewhere. Anne Ross suggests the heroes, fairies, shape-shifters and pseudo-historical characters of Irish myth are personages “into which the

Church transformed the gods and goddesses of the preChristian world.” FEAD, a whistle, hiss, blast, relating vei, wind, MIr. fet, a flute or whistle, Lat. sibilus, the Eng. sibilant. The chief means of sympathetically influencing the velocity of the wind. “Whistling up the wind” was accomplished by increasing the intensity of sound generated from the human vocal cords. “Whistling down the wind” required that the whistler decrease the intensity of sound being produced. FEADAN MOR, “of Great Extent or Length,” a gully situated in the western part of Sutherlandshire. It was claimed that a hogshead of gold was concealed there by Duncan MacRae after being shipped to the Highlands to aid the Jacobite cause. Duncan was known to have been endowed with the two-sights and the ability to make objects invisible. It was hoped that the gold might prove useful to Charles Stuarts cause, but Bonnie Charlie never passed that way. It was claimed that the gold became visible in cycles of nine years, and in 1845, a century after it was hidden, the gold was seen by a country-woman as she stood spinning while watching her cattle. Wishing to set the location she stabbed her distaff into the ground and went to find her neighbours. When they returned neither the marker nor the gold could be located. FEADELMA. “The Hissing One,” The fay-woman approached by Queen Mebd when she sought information concerning the outcome of the Tain war. Although this yellow-haired, green mantled lady predicted the downfall of Connacht, Mebd went ahead with battle plans. FEALL, treachery, false, EIr. fell, Cy. gwall, a defect, Bry. goall, Cor. gal, evil, Bry. gwall, cf. G. gall, lowlander, a stranger, the root vel which is also seen in the ON. vel, deceit, Eng. wile, through combination we have the Goth. ubils and the Eng. evil. FEALLA-DHÀ, joking, irony, literally “double-dealing.

Another ability considered a gift of the gods. FEALLSANACH, the Lat. philosophus, Eng. philosopher. Note the above and feall, treachery, cheating, deceit, the Eng. wile and evil. FÈANNAG, the Hooded Crow (Mhorrigan) and hooded crows generally, the latter being a particular familiar of the Gaelic magicians, “He thought on the hoodie, and went into his hoodie.” cf. fionna, piled, the crow with piled feathers about the neck (Celtic Monthly, p. 19). In Welsh myth Llyr is said to have mated with Penardun, the daughter of Doon, the Gaelic Domnu. Her father was Beli, the Gaelic Bil or Beul, the god of death, whose holiday is still Beultuinn, or “Beltane,” the first day of May. In the Cymric tales, their son Manawyddan (the Irish Manann) is said to have allied himself with Rhiannon, who is Mhorrigan in the Erse tales. This makes sense when one considers that the Gaels said that Mannan was wedded to Fand. Her name is a version of the Gaelic word feannag. There is a further association with the word feann, to flay, relating to the fact that this bird is a scavanger. Mhorrigan , sometimes Mhorrigu, has a name which translates as, “born of the sea,” but she defected to the land after mating with the Dagda.. She afterwards became the sovereigngoddess-queen of the land-folk, the deity their king had to annually “marry” in order to hold power. The “rape” of the “Cauldron of the Deep” parallels this story. The feannag was a triune deity, often represented as the bas-find, or befind, the death-maidens, who also appear in Norse myth as the nornr or valkyra. These three ladies are known elsewhere as the Fates. Mhorrigan’s favourite birdfamiliar was the black crow or the raven, and it will be remembered that two of these birds always travelled about on Odin’s shoulders. It was as a crow, Mhorrigan assisted the tribe known as the Tuatha daoine at the battle of Mag Tuireadh, the “Plain of Thundering Tears;” appearing before their individual enemies as a foretelling of death. At other

times she flew above the fray, cawing to encourage her side to greater effort. She appeared as a woman to Cuchullain when he held the pass of Ulster against the southern Irish. When he rejected her offer of sex she brought about his death by magic, and in crow form, settled at last on his shoulders and plucked out his unseeing eyes. She was also the forerunner to Conaire Mor prior to his death at Da Derga’s Hostel. The famous whirlpool of Coryveckan, off the Hebrides of Scotland, was frequently referred to as Coiremhorrigan , “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. Peter Ellis gives the befind triune as Macha, Badb and Nemain, but the more usual listing is Mhorrigan, sometimes translated as Great Queen; Badb, Mebd or Maeve, the Carrion Crow; and Macha, The Hag or Cailleach. Nemain is frequently identified as the wife of Nuada, as is Macha, so it is probable that they represent local forms of the same goddess. FEANNADH, friction, sexual gratification, a lazy-man's bed. Resembles EIr. fennaim, I skin, cf. English wound. One of the means of gaining personal power, the flow of spirit being always towards the more inspirited individual, whether male or female. This was once considered a means of gaining power. FÈAR ANACH, a philosopher, fear, man; feallsanach (see above), philosophy. anacail, to defend;

FÈAR DREAG, , fear (f-ar), pl. fir, a man; Confers with the Cymric gwr, super, or above normal, and the Anglo-Saxon wer. dearg (d-areg), red, a red-man, probably referring originally to his hair and skin colour. The Anglo-Saxon deorc, from which the English dark, is similar. "red-man", "meteor-man". This phenomenon consisted of "a big ball of light with a tail," usually considered to presage the death of a relative or friend. When it appeared as a forerunner of death it materialized before an immediate relative as a “dead-light” or as a double (doppelganger) of the dying individual; finally presaging the path of the corpse from the death-place to the wake-house and on to the site of cremation or burial. The light which this sith carried was known in English lore as "the corpse-candle." "The Hebridean Sir Lachlan his sons in a terrible massacre three days. His own death had comet as befits the doom of Connection, p. 74). (Maclean) was avenged by of the Islay folks lasting been presaged by a fiery princes..." (The Hebridean

"Among all the things they used to talk about - I heard about the "fear dreag". It seems it was like stars - as they say a shooting star - except that it passed very low. They would see the light going past and it would look as if there were sparks or a tail of light following in its trail. The

longer it was - the more light there was behind it - that would be a teacher or that would be a clergyman. It might be a priest or teaching minister and since the congregation would follow him to the funeral, that accounted for the "dreag" of one of them being longer. It would be drawn out longer in the firmament of the sky than that of a lay person. I never saw the "dreag" but I heard it being described quite often." (Tales Until Dawn, p. 210). "Old MacLean on this day was haymaking, raking near the door and she seen this ball of light coming. fell right by the door, right along-side him, and she (his wife) started to cry. He said,"Don't cry. You may come ahead of me yet." Fortunately this forewarning was perceived in the early morning, indicating that death was not imminent. In this case, the man in question remained for twenty more years and did outlive his wife. If the "dreag" had appeared close to dusk he would have been agitated as this indicated his immediate departure from earth. "The appearance of mysterious lights was looked upon as a warning of death...A light seen going very quickly towards the graveyard was regarded as a sure sign of death. A clear, round light indicated the death of a man; a light with little rays around it or sparks after it, that of a woman. If you could see the house it started from, you would know where the victim was. A falling meteor brought death to one belonging to the person who saw it." The Gaelic "fire-man," the Scottish equivalent of the Anglo-Saxon dracan, and a cousin of the Atlantic Canadian "gopher." The "dearg" in fear dreag may have referred to the red colour of his hair and skin. Probably related to various northern fire-gods, for example the Norse, Lokki; the Gaelic, Aod; the Cymric, Hu. Here is a description of this creature from the last century: "It came one night, during a storm of wind and rain, knocking at the door of her father's cabin, a voice like that of a feeble old man craving admission. On the door's being opened, there came in a little old man, about two feet

and a half high, with a red sugar-loaf hat and along scarlet coat, reaching down nearly to the ground, his hair was long and grey, and his face yellow and wrinkled. He sat over to the fire (which the family had quitted in their apprehension), sat down and dried his clothes and began smoking a pipe which he found there. The family went to bed and in the morning he was gone. About a month after he began to appear regularly at eleven o'clock. The signal which he gave was a thrusting of his hairy arm through a hole in the door, which he opened, and the family retired to bed, leaving him the room to himself. If they did not open the door, some accident was sure to happen the next day, to themselves or the cattle. On the whole, however, his visits brought good luck, and the family prospered, till the landlord put them out of their farm, and they never saw the fear dearg more."2 This fellow is reminiscent of Washington Irving's, "King of the Golden River". In the Kilmarnock woods of New Brunswick, they still tell tales about Smoky Joe, a little one-eyed man who wandered in from the forest looking for work. Men who spoke with him learned that he claimed to have fought in an English battle under the command of Oliver Cromwell. While he worked in the camp unfortunate happenings occurred almost daily: horses halter ropes were found untied from hitching posts, and these animals frequently stepped free of harnesses which had been carefully secured. It was seen that this new workman could do the labour of four ordinary individuals which would seem to have made him an asset, on the other hand it was rumoured that he talked with the crows, ravens and jays, and he was seen to generate fire by rubbing his fingertips. When he was in camp, spontaneous fires erupted in remote lean-to and "accidents" plagued the cook-house and the cookie. Finally the little man saw a lightning bolt take down a tree and predicted that would mean the loss of life. The next day a co-worker struck his leg with an axe and bled to death before he could get help. After this, the

Thomas,as, World Mythology, p. 369.

attitude of the workers shifted against the fear dreag and the men went to the "main john" insisting that he be fired. The boss of the woods was loathe to part with such a good worker and refused the request but, sensing hostility, the fear dreag left by himself. He departed the camp on a snowy moonlit night but no one saw him leave and in the morning there were no footprints in the snow. Some Miramichi woodsmen afterwards saw his "light" in the forest and a lesser number said they saw him sitting on a log by a lumber-road, pointing to his empty pipe. No one dared refuse him a plug of tobacco. The fear dearg was frequently considered a death omen, and as such, appeared carrying the "copse-candle", "death-light" or "gopher light". As the fear dearg could be invisible, those who observed the phenomena, often termed the “will o' the wisp,” usually saw nothing more than a sphere of "cold light". Hugh MacKinnon of Glendyer Mills, Cape Breton, said that one had come to visit a neighbour he identified as "Old McLean": "(He was) haymaking on this day and (his wife) seen this ball of light coming, fell right beside the door, right alongside of him...He died ahead of her yes. But it was a forerunner. It dropped right near the man's toe...It's only light you know... This light would go in the direction of the graveyard or come from that direction and stop at this man's house. One ball of light and a bit of a tail on it." 3 Mary L. Fraser has said that, "The appearance of mysterious lights was looked upon as a warning of death...A light seen going towards the graveyard was regarded as a sure sign of death. A clear round light indicated the death of a man; a light with little rays or sparks after it was that of a woman. If you could see the house it started from, you would know where the victim was." 4

3Caplan, 4Fraser,

Ronald, ed., Down North, p. 30. Mary L., Folklore Of Nova Scotia, p.50.

Joe Neil McNeil characterized the fear dearg as follows: "It seems it was like stars, as they say a shooting star, except that it passed very low. They would see the light going past and it would look as if there were sparks or a tail of light following in its trail. The longer it was, the more light there was behind it, that would be a teacher or that would be a clergyman...It would be drawn out longer in the firmament or the sky than that of a lay person. I never saw the fear dreag but I have heard it described quite often."5 Sadie Campbell added that the dearg might drop to the ground in which case its light expanded to cover a very wide area, sometimes becoming attached to physical objects: "It's an eerie light. You know it's not a natural thing. I have seen one in a house. It was about midnight I guess. It was in the wintertime. We had a horse and sleight. And this was a house where after nine o'clock you'd never see a light, they'd gone to bed. We stopped at the brook to water the mare. I looked up at the house and just joking to my sister, I said, "This old lady" - he name was Ann - "she must have a bridge club or something tonight. The house is all lit up." The house was lighted upstairs and down...And you couldn't see anybody moving in the house. Not a shadow in the windows." Sadie's husband, Malcolm Campbell added that, "A very short time after that the old lady died and it came a snowstorm. She had a son away and a daughter and they waked the body four or five nights -maybe they were a whole week, waked the body. And that was a very unusual thing for because it was two nights usually...and there were lights on every night, all this time. People congregating at the wake. The house was lighted up every night." 6 Bodb Derg has a counterpart in the "little man" known as the fear derg (red man), a continuing resident of Gaelic countries. Folklorist Crofton Crocker heard that he often
5MacNeil, 6Caplan,

Joe Neil, Tales Until Dawn, p. 210.

Ronald, editor, Down North, pp. 30-31.

came to remote farmstaeds at the onset of thunderstorms. When he knocked, residents opened the door on what appeared to be a feeble bodach, "about two and a half feet high, with a red sugar-loaf hat and a long scarlet coat, reaching down nearly to the ground, his hair long and grey, and his face yellow and wrinkled." Typically this visitor went straight to the hearthfire where he twisted the moisture from his clothing, and began smoking a pipe as his garmentys dried out. Although fearful, the family ended by going to bed and in the morning found that the little man had vanished. Unfortunately, the fear derg formed attachments for particular households, and once seen was likely to reappear, coming regularly at eleven c'clock. His arrival was usually uncanny, as he thrust a hairy arm through the latch-string hole to announce that he wanted admittance. When it was opened, he went to the fire and the householders to bed, leaving him with the keep to himself. "If they did not open the door, some accident was sure to happen next day to themselves or their cattle. On the whole, however, his visits brought good luck, and the family prospered..."7 The red man appeared on the moors as a wandering light after the fashion of the gopher light or will o' the wisp, and is mentioned as a death omen among the Gaels of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia: "It seems that it was like stars as they say - a shooting star - except that it passed very low. They would see the light going past and it would look as if there were sparks or a tail of light following in its trail. The longer it was - the more light there was behind it - that would be a teacher or that would be a clergyman. It might be a priest or a teaching minister and since the congregation would follow him to the funeral, that accounted for the "dreag" of one of them being longer. It would be drawn out longer in the firmament or the sky than that of a lay person. I never saw the "dreag" but I heard it

quoting Mr. M'Clise, the artist, from Thomas Keightley, Gnomes Fairies Elves, p. 370.


being described..."8 Nancy Arrowsmith suspected that the fear dreg were not true sidh, but those born of unions between the sidh and humans. They were generally stouter and darker than the sidh "and some," she said, "have large pot-bellies. They dress in local peasant costumes of the eighteenth century, preferring reds and plaids." She noted that they were mortal but long-lived and were capable of shape-changing. 9 FEARG, wrath, EIr. ferand, OIr. ferc, the root vergo, to swell, puffed up. From these feargnadh, provocation. FÈAR GOITAC, the "hungry grass", goirt, sour, salt, bitter; fear, man. The Daoine sidh were once men, reincarnated by the sea-giants as earth-gods. As such they expected their "due", a small portion of food and drink from every repast eaten out-of-doors. Where this little ritual was omitted, the under-earth people reacted by creating "hungry grass" wherever an offense took place. This grass corresponded in form to our quitch, couch, or crab grass: luxuriant, tall and deep green in colour. It was also said that this grass grew wherever human blood was shed, or where an unavenged murder took place. There is still a patch between two great stones at Omeath, Ireland, at a place where "no scraps were left for the gods." It is said that any man who falls within this grass will not arise alive unless he first eats a “grain of the soil.” Where there was hungry grass, wise travellers carried a few grains of the local "corn", since the smallest portion would relieve the starving hunger that arose among all men who passed through its "cutting" blades. FÈARNA, the alder tree, believed to be the spiritual wellspring of all men. Men were sometimes said to be spirits released from an alder; women had their genesis in an elm.

Neil MacNeil, Tales Until Dawn, translated by John Shaw, p. 210. Arrowsmith, A Field Guide to the Little People, p. 83.


FEARANN TUATHA, “Northern people’s custom,” the socalled run-rig system of land ownership. By it, pasture land and lands surrounding a village were held in common, tenancy and individual ownership being unknown. The arable land was divided under the supervision of an official called the maor. See tuath. FEART, obs. a grave. tomb, miracle, host, OIr. fert, a tumulus, the root ver, cover, enclose, seen also in fearann, land. Burial ritual is concerned with and mirrors Otherworld beliefs. In the Celtic world death was no more than a progression within reincarnate life. This idea made it natural that graves should be the focal points for ritual and the religious games that the Gaels like so well. Tara, in Meath, and Emain Macha, further north in Ireland, were prime sites for tribal and festive gatherings. These places were never the site of human habitation, although it was said that Daoine sidh lived there. Nevertheless there is evidence that people were periodically on these grounds at least from the time of the Bronze Age. The burial mound, like the well, the cave, and the sea, was regarded as a jumping-off point for the Otherworld beyond the western ocean. The great tumulus at New Grange, on the Boyne, was thought to house deities. It may be that the sidhe, or “sidehill” of the fay-people originated in burial mounds. Traces of shrines have been found on the mounds. FEARTAN, a little miracle. grave, attention or notice, Eng, ward. tomb, Feart, to get

FEARTHUINN, rain, EIr. ferthain, feraim, I pour, from the root verao, rain. The Lat. urina, Norse ur, a drizzle, AS. war, the sea, Skr. vari, water, Eng. urine. The control of weather was thought to rest, ultimately, with the bafinne. FEAR ULOH, “man-wolf,” a werewolf, a corresponds with the Eng. were, from AS. literally “you brute!” from the Norse similar to mere, and the Latin merus, “man-brute.” Fear wer, a man + uloh, ulfr, a wolf. also a body of water,

particularly a lake; and also, moor. Perhaps from the Gaelic mor, wide or great and their word muir, the ocean. Similar to the Norse mooer, famous or powerful. See mhorga, who was frequently described as the "wolf-queen." FEATH DUBH,” black breeze.” A “dead breeze.” A deal calm in the paralance of hill-folk. FEATH GEAL. A “white” breeze.” Again a dead calm but in the tongue of shore-dwellers. See next. FEATHNAN CUN FIONN. Euphemism for a hurricane. The state of calmness. FEDELMA. A female soothsayer of the Tuatha daoine who prophesied that Mebd’s efforts to take the Brown Bull by invading Ulster would fail. She was described as a yellowhaired maiden dressed entirely in green and is thus the Samh. FE FIADA, fe, calm, from the word ve, to blow. Relates vei, wind, and to the Norse god Ve, said to have control of the winds. Fiadh, deer; the deer wind, also known as the ceodruidechta (druid’s fog). The magic mist which the Tuatha daoine employed when they invaded Ireland. A device retained by them to hide their Atlantic islands and their entrances to the Otherworld after they became the Daoine sidh. FÉILE, obs. charm, incantation, an antiquated word no longer in use. EIr. éle, héle, fhéle, the ON., heill, an auspice or omen, after their goddess Hel, controller of the Underworld and ruler of Scotland, sometimes entitled Hellrland. The English words: hell, heel, heil, hale, helm, helmet, heller, holy, holly. etc. etc. allied to OIr. cél, to con-ceal and the Eng. cell. The Gaelic ceòl, music, particularly wails of grief. From the idea of concealment the modern féileadh, a kilt. Eng. veil, literally, “he might clothe us.” The word is allied with fàilte. Cf. Germ. heulen, to howl. Eng. Celt and kilt.

FÉILL, a fair, feast; vigil, market, fair, holiday, banquet, Ir. feil, festival, holiday, OIr. feil, Eng. vigil, wake. festival market, e.g. Feill-Brighhde, Feill-Micheil. An offshoot of Quarter Days rites and activities. The Celtic words are believed borrowed from Latin vigilia, a watch. Note alnachas, burial customs. FÉILL BRIGHDE, Once known as Imbolc, February first is still remembered at St. Bride's Day in Scotland. Those who remember her attachments to pagan rites may prefer Candlemas. In either event, it is the beginning day of Gearran, the month of complaints. The obselecent English verb "imboak" relates to the Gaelic "imbolc", and these are confluent with the Italian ""imboscarsi", to retire into the woods. These words relate to "ambush", which indicated "concealed, as in bushes or trees." The Brigantes were a continental tribe, who came to Ireland and hence Scotland, by way of England. Driven from this last location by the Romans, they re-established themselves in County Covan and near Tara. They claimed that their matriarchal-goddess was Brigit, Brigid, or Bride. People bearing the names Bird, Burden, Burdon, Bryden, Brydon, Brydie, or Bryde came claim some relationship to this clan. The Gaelic word brigh indicates something which is the true essence or meaning. The Anglo-Saxons also had a related word, bridd, the young of an animal. I n the old tales, it was claimed that the goddess was born with a corona, or wil o' the wisp, encircling her head, a certain proclamation of her divinity. Her people took lighted flames from this ambience and with it established a perpetual fire near Tara and elsewhere in Ireland. These flames were guarded by a house of virgins, who specialized in metal crafts and medicine. The legend laps over into history because Dunlaing MacEnda, King of Leinster broke into one of these retreats and put the ladies to the sword. For this, the High King decreed the death of MacEdna and extracted the Tara Tribute from succeeding kings.

Bridd's kind preceded the Christian monks to the Scottish village of Abernathy, where they converted the Picts, who came to regard her shrine as the most sacred in the country. The Columbian monks centred their earliest attempt at conversion against this "notorious" pagan place, building the round tower of Abernathy, which they dedicated to "Saint" Brigit. The fires here were extinguished, but in parts of Ireland virgin nuns replaced the tenders and they were not damped for several more centuries. The Pictish kings favoured the name Bruide, as a male manifestation of this goddess, who was considered the patroness of conjugal love, poetry, hearth, home, fields and crops. In the Highlands, the revival of vegetation in spring was, until recently, celebrated on the Bride's Day, the first of January. In the Hebrides (obviously named for the Bridd), the people in each home used to dress a sheaf of oats in woman's clothing and place it in a basket with a wooden staff or club on the nearby floor. This they explained was the "Briid's bed". at dusk, the residents assembled on the door-stoop and called out three times: "Briid is come; Briid is welcome!" In the morning, they would inspect the ashes on the hearth to see if they had been disturbed during the night by Briid's club. If so they expected a good crop and a prosperous growing season, but the contrary was taken as a bad omen. The marriage of the spirit of vegetation was implied in certain May Day celebrations where a human representative was named the May Queen or Bride. Thus in villages of the north at Whitsuntide, boys carrying a Maytree, led by a one dressed in ferns, vines and flowers, paraded about. At the same time, a similar group of girls accompanied a white-gowned May Bride from door-to-door, singing songs and asking for small gifts as an offering to the spirit of fertility. In parts of Germany, the girls asked for eggs, which are a symbol of procreation. References to Saint Bride or Saint Brigit are threadbare attempts to disguise the nature of this very old goddess of agriculture.

FEILLEACHADH. The keeping of holidays. In pagan times there were severe penalties for non-attendance. Feillachd, festivity. FÉINN, g. FÉINNE, FEINNTAIDH, the Fingalians (white strangers) of southern Ireland. EIr. fian, a hero; root vein, to strive (against adversity). Lat. vénari, to hunt; Skr. vénati, to go. Perhaps from the Norse fjandi, an enemy, the Eng. fiend. Some have supposed that these Irish troopers were so feared they were compared with the Norsemen. A band of warriors raised to guard the High King of Ireland especially against intruding Norsemen. Gathered in 300 B.C. by Fiachadh ard-righ, they consisted of cern, or backcountry rustics in twenty-five battalions. they became an elite band, mostly members of Clan Bascna and Clan Morna. Fionn mac Cumhail was their most noted leader, and their adventures comprise the Fenian Cycle. During the nineteenth century this name was revived for members of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and Fiann Fáil (shin fain) is still used to identify Irishmen who see themselves as politically motivated Robin Hood-like characters. FÉISD, FÉIS, FÉUSD, obs. Convocation, synod, sexual intercourse; now: feast, formerly a preliminary to Quarter Day fire-festivals. Some of the gatherings were principally banquets, the great feasts of the past being Féis Temrach (Tara), Féis Cruachan (Croghan, in Connacht) and Féis Emna (that at Emain Macha). The gatherings at Tailltenn, Tlachtga and Uisneach were more in the nature of aenachean, or fairs. The word is neither cognate with the Latin festus nor the English festival . FÉISDREAG, comedienne, an actor, feis + dreag, feast + red. This art was considered god-given. FÉIS GOIBNIU. feast against aging, gob + nios, morsel + from the weasel, up from below. The Tuatha daoine, as part of their contract with Manann mac Ler, received from him the "Pigs of the Sea", a source of inexhaustible nutrition, as well as proof against aging. Seasonal feasts were other held

at the burial place of supposed deities. Thus Carman came to southern Ireland with three violent sons. She brought blight on the land through witchcraft but they were filled with rapine and plunder. It is said that the Tuatha daoine sang lampoons about these boys and with their superior witchcraft forced them to retreat back across the sea. When Dian, Dubh and Dothur retreated their mother was seized as a hostage against their possible return. After she died of loneliness and grief the ever-wise Tuathans gave her own oenach, or “rites,” along with a fair which was held at her burial place. See muc. FÉIS POCA, BOCA, Puck Feast, Puck Fair, more fully referred to as "The Puck Fair and Pattern." Annually at Killorglin on the river Luane which arises from the lakes of Killarney, Ireland. "There can be no doubt that the Puck Fair was originally associated with the Festival of Lugnasad (named after the sun god Lugh), one of the four great festivals of ancient Ireland. The Lugnasad was sometimes said to coincide with the taking of the first fruits of harvest. Similar fairs continue at Mullinavat in Kilkenny where a goat is enshrined. At the Cappawhite Fair in Tipperary a whitewashed horse takes the place of this animal. This celebration is keyed to the old Gregorian calendar, and thus commences about the time of the Lugnasad (Old Style). It lasts, three days, August 10 being termed "Gathering Day;" August 11, "Puck Fair Day" (the Lugnasad proper) and August 12, "Scattering Day." Throughout West Munster all native men and women consider it mandatory to "go home for Puck." For many, the ancient pattern makes this more routine and necessary than going home for Christmas. On the evening of the first day a procession gathers at the bridge end of town and a large "boca", a male goat (enclosed in a large cage and all bedecked with ribbons and rosettes), is born into the village to a three-story platform in the town square. Here the animal is "enthroned" for the next two days, presiding over a great cattle and horse show which is superintended by the hereditary "Baron of the Puck.” The title is more than an honour, for with it goes the right to collect a toll on every animal sold. For three days the King Puck and King

Carnival reign, and for three days all shops are open twenty-four hours a day. On the second day all commercial transactions take place. On the last day, sometimes referred to as "Children's Day" gaily dressed children working at defrocking the Puck. He is paraded three times round the town and back at the bridge is released into the wild, his reign ending for another year. See A Treasury of Irish Folklore, p. 406 for guesses as to why these actions are taken. All are incorrect, the Puck and the "king" clearly represent the incarnate sun-god Lugh. In former times, one or the other (or both) would have been burned to return the spirit of the god to the soil, for the benefit of plants, animals and men. FÉISSI, obsolete, literally, the “she-feast,” a sow. The EIr. feiss, related to the Latin festia and the Engish feast. The male “boar” is cleitech. Having reference to the sea-born daughters of Ler (or Manann mac Ler), “the pigs of the sea,” who were periodically eaten but became reincarnate by the next dawn. See saigh, a bitch, sod and Mhorrigan. See above entries. See muc. FÉISTEARRAS. baseness, blackguard, villainy, féis + tearuinn, feast + escape from. Those unwilling or unable to participate in the pagan feasts and allied rites. These individuals were sometimes ostracized but could be put to death. FELIM, FEDILIMID. The father of Deirdre of the Sorrows. A bard to Conchobhar mac Nessa, he was entertaining for him when news of her birth arrived. Cathbad the druid cast her horoscope and prophesied: “This infant shall be the fairest among women and will wed a king but because of her death and ruin will fall upon all Ulster.” FENIUS FARSA. The king of Scythia whose son Niull went to Egypt and married Scota, a daughter of the Pharaoh. Their son was Goidel, the”father” of the Gaels. FEORN. things of opposing qualities, as: hot and cold; large

and small; hard and soft etc, similar to feoirne, a boardgame resembling chess (see fidchell). The “ying” and “yang” of Gaelic philosophy. FERADACH FECHTNACH. FERADACH FURBAIDE, “Fortunate Horned One,” a hero described as having two horns growing from “his fair staunch head.” In a second reference it is seen that he had a helmet made to accommodate them, “having two projections of silver and one of gold.” Perhaps he developed a third horn as he aged? Actual horned individuals are recorded from our own time and this actuality is the basis for the idea of horned gods. Whether this, or the reverse, men and women who were horned were regarded as having magical attributes and connections with deities. A high-king of Ireland whose sons, Tuathal and Fiacha followed the old tradition of dividing Ireland into a northern and southern half. FERAMORC or FIR MORC. The “People of Land Liable to Flood.” The kingdom of Gaul (France & Belgium). Having particular reference to the people living in the lowland portions of these countries. FER CHERDNE. The bard of Cú Roi who, seeking vengeance for his lord’s death, seized Blathnat and carried her over a cliff to their mutual death. See Cú Roi. FER COILLE. The “Man of the Wood.” A monstrous black man with a single eye, one hand and one foot whose mate was a similar loathsome woman. He predicted the demise of king Conaire Mor at Da Dearga’s Hostel. In Gaelic, tree-names often appear incorporated as family names suggesting the former cult importance of trees. Thus we have the hero named mac Cuill, the “son of the Hazel. There is also mac Cuilinn, the “son of the Holly,” and mac Ibhar, the “son of the Yew.” In the Finn legend we note the related “Man in the Tree,” an Otherword being who is clearly an incarnate god. See famhair. FER DOIRICH. The Dark Druid who turned Bobd Dearg’s

daughter into a fawn. In this form Sadb met Finn mac Cumhail whose love enabled her to temporarily overcome this disability. FER FERDIAD, the Tuathan druid to Manann mac Ler. Disguised as a woman he abducted the beautiful Tungee to Manann’s realm. Leaving her magically enthralled and unconscious on a beach, while he went to search out a boat, she was drowned. Finding her less than diverting as a corpse, Manann slew the magician. FER FOGNAMADH, a servant man. Also called fer for ban thincur, a man under the power of a woman.” One possessing less wealth than his mate. Thus “King” Ailill was completely under the will of Queen Mebd because of her superior standing in this and other respects. FER GRUACH, The druid to Meagragh of the Green Spears and his wife Aille the Fair. When Meagragh was slain by Osgar, one of the Fianne, Aille had this magician drug and abduct Fionn mac Cumhail, the leader of this tribe. The Féinn pursued Fer Gruach and Aille, but were entrapped by magic, until Conan tricked him into lifting the spell. Osgar killed the druid and the lady committed suicide. FERGHAS MAC ERC. A brother to the Irish high-king Murtagh (512 - 533 A.D.) He asked his brother to loan him the magical stone Lia Fail for his coronation as king of Dal Riada. After the ceremony he failed to return it from Scotland. FERGHAS MAC LEIDE. Ferghas mac Leda is often represented as a king of Ulster, but as he was a contemporary of Conchobar ard-righ and it is necessary to assume that he was a princeling, after the manner of Cúchullain. He fought with the forces of Ulster and survived all the troubles with the south. While he lived a race known as the Fiolan, the “Earwigs” or “Maggots,” dwelt in the far west led by a king known as Lubdan (pronounced youb-dan). This is an obvious compound of Lugh with Donn .

The king’s bard, a man named Eisirt, had heard of a huge race of men living in the east in a land called Ulster, each of these giants able to annihilate a whole battalion of the little people. Thinking his own kingdom the centre of all power, Lubdan reacted by clapping the poor poet into prison while he rethought his concept of the lands overseas. The little fellow was a solid scientist and demanded to be allowed to travel to Ulster so that he could bring back artifacts which would prove his point. The king allowed this, and it was thus that Ferghas found a little man at his gates, a persona able to be borne on the hand of the dwarf of the court. Notwithstanding his size, Eisirt proved a strong source of entertainment at court, being both wise and witty. Eventually, the bard was allowed to return to the west, taking with him Æda , the court dwarf, who seemed a Fomorian giant in the eyes of Lubdan. Convinced that a race of giants existed in Ireland, Lubdan and his wide Bubo travelled there to see the sights in that strange place. Thus it was that Lubdan’s white steeds bore their chariots to the gates of the rath of Ferghas. Here, the couple were so amazed by the proportion of things that they decided to go no further than the king’s kitchen, where they might find a bit of porridge before returning home. There Lubdan found he could only reach the rim of the porridge bowls set out for breakfast, by standing on his steed’s back. In the act of eating he became overbalanced and slid into the oatmeal, and was found there by the scullions. Taken to Ferghas , the pair were well treated but he refused all appeals to let them return to the west. The nubile Bubo (Boann?), who is obviously a type of the Mebd engaged in several spirited but difficult assignations with the giants, while her husband was diverted in telling the gilles how to do their work. At last, a host of wee folk came to Ulster seeking the release of their king. When Ferghas refused, he soon found that the Daoine sidh were not without power: Soon the country was plagued by dry cows, defiled wells, and aborted pregnancies and blighted by crops

that shrivelled without cause. But the king was obdurate and tried to ignore the dei terreni or “earth-gods.” At last Ferghas agreed to return the tiny monarchs if they would ransom themselves with some valuable from the Otherworld. Thus, Lubdan suggested some objects for consideration: the cauldron which was always filled with food and drink, the harp that played without hands upon it, and water shoes, which allowed people to walk upon or under the water. Fergus was most impressed by this last object and agreed to take it in exchange for the release This was not the end of the matter, for it is never easy for men to outwit the sithe. With the “water-fins,” Ferghas never tired of exploring the undersea lakes and rivers of Ulster. However, one day, in Lake Rury, he encountered the muirdris, a spine-covered sea-monster, from which he barely saved himself by flying to the shore. From terror (or from poisonous contact) his mouth became twisted awry. As no monarch could hold power with a blemish, the members of the court put away all mirrors to keep his condition from him. One day he unjustly struck a servant and the girl cried out: “It would be better for you to avenge yourself against the fish that has so twisted your mouth than do brave deeds against women.” Ferghas demanded to see a mirror and soon saw what she meant. Ferghas now put on the magic shoes and went seeking the muirdris or “sea-bramble,” (a huge sculpin?) The Ulstermen who stood watching on the shore saw the loch boil and redden with undersea action, and eventually the king rose with the monster’s head in his hand and his sword in the other. The blemish was gone, but tired from the effort he sank back into the water and drowned. FERGHAS LETHDERG, “Redside.” A Nemedian leader who escaped the sea “victory” which forced his folk to abandon Ireland. FERGHAS MAC NEMED. The slayer of the Fomorian giant Conan, the latter having a redoubt located on Tory Island. FERGHAS MAC ROTH. A one-time king of Ulster he loved

Nessa, the widow of his half brother, but she would only marry him if he surrendered his kingship to her son Conchobar mac Nessa for one year. Conchobar was so popular that the people supported him when mac Roth tried to reclaim his kingship. Notwithstanding, Ferghas served the new king as ambassador to Scotland, going there to extend a pardon to Deirdre and Naoise. Conchobar had all of that party murdered forcing Ferghas to lead dissidents against the young king. With his supporters he wasted Emain Macha and was forced into exile where he took refuge with Aileel and Mebd of Connacht. For sixteen years the three thousand exiled Ulstermen made certain “that the weeping and trembling never ceased in the north.” It was said that the Táin wars were first described in Ogham by Ferghas, but became lost to the Gaels when the wands of writing were taken by a druid to Italy. Ferghas was eventually killed by the jealous Aileel when he was found bathing in a lake with Mebd. FERDIAD (fer-dee-ah) MAC DAMAN, a Firbolg and the closet friend of Cuchulainn when he trained in Scotland as a warrior. In the Tain war he fought for the south and sought to avoid direct contact with the northern hero. In the end Queen Mebd goaded and bribed him into single combat which he lost after five days of fighting. Cúchulllain suffered so grievously from this encounter he was left for dead, but he recovered to renew hostilities. FERGNA. One of the three sons of Partholon. FER IUBHAR, FER HI, the “Man of the Yew,” the son of Eoghbail (the death-god Bil) fostered to Manann mac Ler. He probably confers with Fergus mac Roi or mac Roth of the Deirdre story, who was said to possess a pilotless oceangoing ship (Manann’s ship of the dead). The name is interesting in linking the EIr. ibar, a yew with i, she. This is the Irish í or sí, conferring with the Cy and Bry. hi, the Germ. sie, they. See iubhar. FERONN, FERON, the seal-man. Confers with Finntann, one of

three Irish survivors of the World Flood. In some of the tales this gentleman survived as a fish, elsewhere he is noted as having spent the time in a “flood-barrel.” FEUN, a wagon, a wain, hollow of the hand, OIr. fen, Cy. cywain, a vehicle, from vegh, to carry. Lat. veho, vehiculum, Skr. vahati, to carry. The constellations of stars were often spoken of as “wagons in the sky.” Those about the north star were considered to be the wagon of the creator-god. The bodies of wealthy chieftains were sometimes laid out, unburnt, on four-wheeled wagons made of oak, which were then covered with rocks and earth. These burial mounds were often considered appropriate places for making contact with the Otherworld. FEUR-GOIRTAC or FÈAR GOIRTAC, hungry, sore, sour, bitter, rough grass, EIr. goirt, bitter, rough. Our quitch or couch grass, of unusual dark green colour and intense lushness. It was said that one needed to carry food to cross safely over the "hungry grass." This grass grew where blood had fallen upon the earth or where men had failed to leave a remnant of food for the earth-gods or Daoine sidh. If a person slipped in this grass it was said that he could not rise without eating. See note under alternate spelling. FEUSD-TEINE, “Feast of the Fires.” Also feusda, feisd, feis from EIr. feiss, cf. Latin festa and the English festival. OIr. tene, Cy & Br. tan, from which the proper name Tanner. Celtic root tep, hot. Eng. tan, all from the Gaelic goddess Anu or Danu. FIACAILL NA’ FIOS, the “Tooth of Knowledge.” Prophets often consulted their muse by touching a tooth. See Cúchullain. FIACHA MAC FIRBA. A warrior for Connacht in the Táin wars. Nevertheless, when he saw Ulster warrior Cúchullain opposed by the Calatin magicians he cut off their heads and rescued this enemy champion. In later myth he kept the sword which gave strength and battle fury when it was held

against the forehead, and this he gave to Finn mac Cumhail. FIACHA FINAILCHES. “It was by this king that earth was first dug for the wells of Ireland.” FIACHADH, FIACHADH, FIACHNA, FIACHRA, FIANN. The Irish high-king of Ireland, who organized the Féinn as a personal bodyguard about the year 300 B.C. FIACHAIL MAC CONCHINN. A champion of the Féinn, who visited the Paps (Breasts) of Anu on Samhain eve. When he saw two sidhe opening he bolted in spite of the fact that he carried twelve lead balls as talesmen against the Daoine sidh. FIACHNA FIONN. The one-time king of Dal Riada, Scotland. Hard pressed while fighting in Lochlann (Norway) he was offered help by a huge warrior (afterwards identified as Manann mac Ler) who agreed to help him for bed privileges with his wife Fiachna. Fionn accepted the deal and she bore Mongán, who Manann fostered in the Land of Wonder. FIACHNA MAC DARI. He fished a “water-worm” from a river in Cuailgne and this was swallowed by one of his father’s cows, which thus impregnated gave birth to the Brown Bull of Cuailgne. This worm was the reincarnation of Donn, a swineherd to the Tuathan Boabd Derg. FIACHRA. A son of Ler, who with a brother and sister, was turned into a swan by a malevolent step-mother. FIAM, awe, reverence,fear, obs. ugly, horrible, horrible. Cf. EIr. feth, aspect, having the look of. EIr. fiam,

FIANN, the mythic Fingalians, or “White Strangers.” See Feinn which is more often used, although this word is the true nominative case. Fiannach, the month of August, heroic, gigantic, like a Fingalian, also a thin slender fellow. fianntachan, a Fingalian dwarf.

FIANCHUIBHE. anglicized as Finorchy. A sunken island in the Atlantic from which the sons of Tuireann recovered a magic spit for Lugh. It will have been noticed that the objects that the Tureens sought were former possessions of Lugh. Some of these magical objects had been lost to Fomorian enemies in the heat of battle, so the sun-god was naturally anxious for their return. In six years the three brothers had obtained five of the required six objects needed to complete their imrama. Because of his ability at farsight, Lugh knew what had been accomplished by the Tureens, and wishing to have the treasures so that he could keep the Fomorians in their places of exile, he threw a spell upon the these men, so that they forgot the remaining requirement of their quest and returned to Ireland. There Lugh took from them the apples, the spear, the pigskin, the horses and the swine, and smiled wryly as the warriors boasted of their exploits. Having had his moment Lugh reminded them that the spit from Fianchuibhe was not in evidence. The unhappy men were therefore required to turn their ships westward one more time, the undersea kingdom of the “white out-beings,” of mhorgu, those “born of the sea.” This appears to be the first mention of the “land of women” in Gaelic mythology. To get there Brian had to obtain and put on the colleen druith, or “water helmet,” which the sea-maidens used to pass from the world of men to their own island beneath the sea. As Brian was not unattractive he was only a short while persuading the thrice fifty maidens who guarded the mythic “cooking-spit of the deep” that they should pass it into his hands. FICH, nasty, an interjection in speech, obs., a country village, Eng. fie, ON. fy, Germ. pfui. There is also G. fuich, fuidh, rotteness. FIDEAN, a green islet or spit uncovered at high tide, where men were sometimes staked down prior to death by drowning. ON. fit, the webbed foot of a waterfowl, meadowlands on the banks of firths or rivers, Eng. fit and fid, a pointed peg for staking things.

FIDHAICH, wild, awful, terrible. See next. FIDCHELL, FIDCHEALL, an ancient board game said played among the gods in order to maintain order in a chaotic universe. See entries below. The Irish form is usually called Brandubh, which, see. This game remembers the fact that the chief totem of the Fomors was a black bird sometimes identified as the European hooded crow or the raven. Interestingly, the people of Dagda and Danu also used this symbol because of their deep blood ties with the sea folk. When the Cauldron of the Deep was purloined to the land, the work of the Befind tended to be routed through the sun-god Lugh and his offspring, who frequently played at the game of the gods, in order to see that a balance was maintained between the Middleworld and the Underworld. Odin’s gods had a similar magical preoccupation in the game they called Nnefatafl. The brandubh, or “black raven,” was played upon a grid of seven squares to the side, and had a fid or peg placed in a hole at dead centre to represent the raven-leader. Surrounding squares were filled with smaller pegs meant to represent defenders of the “navel of all things.” The raven seems to represent the Cauldron of the Deep, for game boards which have been recovered, often feature a head feet and hands at the four sides, indicating that the board itself is the slain giant, so well known to Indo-European cosmology. The god who expired, his blood becoming the oceans of the world, is of course the creator-god, or Allfather as embodied in his first gigantic creation, the sea-world known as An Domhain. In later days the “gods” suggested that the deity who died was some lesser giant. In Norse tales his name was given as Ymir, in the Celtic realms as Don, but this was all creative propoganda. In some of the tales it was clearly the stated that the magical object taken from the depths of the sea was not a cauldron, nor a belly-button, but a talking head, or some other object representing masculine powers of regeneration. Whatever this object was, it served as the

talisman of the west, protecting it against invasion. In the fifteenth century an Arab writer noted that a Genoese mariner named Kolombo (Christopher Columbus) had just returned from the far lands bearing this talisman westward, thus opening the western Atlantic to development (?). FIDEAN, a bog, a marsh, a fen, a green islet or spit uncovered at high tide. Meadow land on the bank of firths or rivers. FIDHLEIR. fiddler, borrowed directly from English. Fid, a peg for tying hostages to the earth; Leir or Ler, the supreme ocean-god, cf. fiodhull, a fiddle from Low Latin vitula, whence the Eng. viola. Also, fidchell, the board-game of the gods, which they played in attempts to regulate chaos on earth. Thus, the musical instrument known as the fiddle was said to be the instrument favoured by English devils, in particular, the Devil. The Anglo-Saxons had much the same outlook on the rural bag-pipes of the Scottish countryside. Both instruments were implicated in the left-hand dances of pagan times and in the rituals of witchcraft. FIGHEADAIR, a spider, a weaver, a maker of quarter-day garlands, a plaiter, a twister, a knitter, figh, to weave, EIR. fighim, Cy. gweu, Br. gwea, MBr. gweaff, Germ. wickeln, to roll, wind or curl, wieche. our English word wick. AS. wicca, wicce, witch. "Usually referred to the root word vei, ve, the wind. Cf. the ON elemental god Ve. See fath, fid, fe, fead, filidh. FIGOL MAC MAMOS. The Tuathan druid who created charms that reduced the Fomorian warriors strength so that they could be beaten in battle. “I will cause three showers of fire to fall upon them. I will take away two-thirds of their bravery and strength and give them illness instead. As for our men, every breath they breathe will increase the strength and bravery within them, and if they have to battle seven years they will never be tired.”

FILBHEAS. apparition, shade, a ghost of the dead, OIr. fili + beag, seer + little. All ghosts were thought capable of rendering foresight and hindsight and were consulted by necromancers. FILIDH, FILE, a poet, OIr. fili, a seer, Cy gwelet, to see, Br. guelet, sight, ON. vulva, valva, valkyra, seeress, prophetess, sibyl. The old Germanic goddess Veleda. These men belonged to the bardic orders of the druids. In the ancient social order the "filid" held a rank near that of the king. At the eating-table he sat nearest royalty and was entitled to the "king's haunch" of meat. In sacredness of person, he ranked above the ard-righ; kings and princes were often assassinated but the life of a poet was not often taken. An exception was the poet who confronted Cúchullain demanding he surrender his potent gae-bulgae. At first the hero refused, but finally let him "have" the weapon directly between the eyes. The dying poet cursed Cúchullain and the Ulsterman’s history was downhill from that point. On the other hand, Fachta Finn, chief poet at Ulster long before the Christian era, learned that Ulster chieftains plotted against their kings and deliberately seated the latter between poets at the crucial banquet. The assassins had to stay their plans in case the poets might be accidentally harmed. When Cuain O'Lochain, chief poet of all the land of Erin, was killed in 1024 it is said that his murderers soon revealed themselves, "for about them there clung an evil scent of the grave." It was explained that "God manifestly wrought a poet's power upon the parties who killed him, and when they were found they were put to a cruel death." See fath, fe, fead, fid, filidh, fidhler, figheadair. FINDBHAIR of the Fair Eyebrows. The daughter of Ailill and Mebd, who fell in love with Fraoch and helped him kill a muirdris or water demon. She was offered to the warrior Ferdiad when he balked at entering single combat against his Ulster friend Cuchullain. FINÉ, a tribe, kindred, clan, nation; Old Norse vinr, a friend;

AS. wine; Latin Venus; English venerate. From the Irish root ven, love. A term applied to almost any subdivision of Gaelic society from the tuath, through the clann to the individual family. FINÉ-AGHAIDH, the “Tribe of Old Men.” When the Celtic Gaels came to Ireland they left nothing to the Tuatha daoine except the hollow hills where space and time had little dominion. When Boabd Dearg, the “Red Crow,” was elected their leader, his candidacy was opposed by Ler or Lir nan Finaghy. Ler’s original kingdom was An Domahin, and renaming it Fine-aghaidh, the “tribe or kindred of the aged faces,” suggests its decline in influence after the seapeople were defeated by the Tuathans and the Milesians. Having lost his bid to control the Daoine sidh, Ler quietly retired from politics, leaving dominion of the seas in the hands of his son Manann mac Ler. For his part, Ler would give neither fealty nor tribute to the new chief of the Daoine sidh, and this attitude was also that of his son. Ler was an immortal, but he married Aobh, sometimes given as Aebh, the eldest daughter of Ailell of Aran, a foster-child of the despised Boabd Dearg. She had two pairs of twins by him, but died giving birth to the last set, On the death of this princess of the Tuathans, Boabd Dearg and his old rival were somewhat reconciled, when the former suggested that Ler take his second daughter Aoife in marriage. FINIAS, FINEAS, FINIAS, from fionn, white. One of the four mythic islands where the Tuatha daoine studied magic before they invaded Ireland. The magic spear of Lugh was purloined from this place. FINEGAS. “Fair but strong,” obs. The druid-teacher of Finn mac Cumhail. He caught and hoped to eat the Salmon of Knowledge in order to obtain the wisdom of the ages. His pupil, Fionn, after boiling the fish burnt his thumb on the animal and inadvertently stuck the injured member in his mouth, thus acquiring the knowledge intended for his master.

FINNBEARA, FIONNBHARR. the “White Bear," a king of the Daoine sidh at home in Connaught under Cnoc Meata (Knockmara). It was noted that good crops were to be had when Finnbeara was seen in the fields, but they failed when he was absent. He had seventeen sons and took part in the famous uprooting of the palace of Midir. He and his wife Oona became known in the latter days as the king and queen of all the “fairies” in Ireland. FINNBEARA, 2. Originally named Loan, the illegitimate son of a metalworker and a woman of noble birth. In his youth he used magic to rid an Irish town of its resident dragon. His monastery attracted a large following in Cork, and his reputation as a healer was very wide. It was said that Finnebar could cause hazel nuts to ripen on the branch by merely looking at them. When the Pope expressed his wish to come to Ireland to anoint Finnebar as a bishop, the saint refused explaining that Heaven would make the arrangements, and indeed it was claimed that the rite was preformed by angels. During the ceremony it is rumoured that Christ appeared in person, taking Finnebar by the right hand, which afterward emitted a ray of healing light. While crossing the English Channel he encountered Saint Brendan, heading westward toward America. At his death it was claimed that the sun remained visible in the sky without setting for two weeks. FINN-SGEUL, romance, fiction, untrue tale. FINN-TANN. FINN-TUNN,. It is said that Bith, Finntan and Ladra built an idol in the form of a standing stone. This structure spoke to them warning them that the Near Eastern land of their birth would be submerged by a deluge and strongly suggested that they construct a ship and sail away if they hoped to escape their fate. They all fled to Ireland, but the flood-waters followed and all butFinntann were drowned. A cautious man, he secretly constructed and provisioned a tul-tunna or “flood-barrel” which he anchored at the crest of the Irish mountain which still bears that name. When he saw the waters closing about him this

“gentleman” quietly stole away from his wife and... For a year, while the waters encumber The Earth, at Tul-tunna of strength, I slept, none enjoyed such sweet slumber As that which I woke from at length. In an alternate myth Finntann shape-changed himself into a salmon and so remained until the skies cleared. However he managed, duplicity had its rewards, and Finntann, the grandson of Nodha, having escaped his fate, lived afterward, as a virtual immortal, at Dun Tulcha,, in southwestern Kerry. He lived for a very long time, once commenting that he had passed one day through the woods of west Munster and brought home the red berry from a yew tree. He planted it and saw it grow to a size which allowed “a hundred champions to recline beneath its foilage.” When it died he had seven huge vats made from its wood. When the hoops of the vats decayed from old age he made other objects from the wood, until all was finally reduced to a single wooden cup. At that, he outlived the cup which fell into dust while he continued in ruddy good health. Thousands of years later Fintann was called to court by Diarmuid mac Carroll to solve a question of the limits of the Royal propoerties. When he travelled he brought with him nine companies of direct descendants, and nine additional companies of his close kin. Incidentally the name Finn-tann translates as “the slender white one,” and this may be decriptive of his condition on emerging from his long sleep at sea.

FINNE, a maiden from fionn, white, fair, pale, sincere, true, certain, small, fine, pleasant, pale, wane, somewhat cold, resplendent, bright, prudent, a known entity. But note: milk (which is white), cow, a cataract in the eye (also white), a sow. See next entry. FIODH, wood, OIr. fid, Cy. guid, gwydden (sing.), Cor. guiden, Bry. gwezenn, a tree, Gaul. vidu, Eng. wood, AS. widu, falling back on their god Woden or Odin. Thus we have fiodhcheall,

the “game of the gods.” Thus also the EIr. fidchell, which is a combination of fiodh with ciall, and is sometimes interpreted as “wood-sense.” From this same word fiodan, a wooden cheese vat. The veneration of trees and groves in Gaelic pagan Britain is well-known. The link between trees and deities in without question, the largest specimens being considered their incarnations. Celtic toreutic tradition shows heads adorning metalwork, and these frequently are seen wearing woodsy-crowns, or are seen emerging from a background of foilage. We also know that many Celtic idols were carved from wood, and it has been guessed that “an actual anthropomorphic representation of the deities was attempted.” Place-names derived from the word bile, “tree,” make it evident that trees were important to these folk. Furthermore, certain trees were sacred, individually and sometimes as an entire species, viz. the oak. Although almost all remaining Celtic art is inscribed or cut from stone, or cast in metal, we know that they made extensive use of wood. Much of Britain is now stripped of forests but three thousand years ago, when the Milesians invaded Ireland, the land was entirely forested. The trees were designated by law as chieftain, common or brambles, the first being protected for their superior usefulness. "Chieftain" trees included the oak, yew, ash, pine, holly, apple and hazel. The oak was a superior building material whose acorns fed pigs, possessing a bark which was used to tan leather. The hazel also yielded nuts and had flexible branches useful in making the frameworks of the halfspherical boats and houses of the sons of Mil. Yew was considered for manufacturing kitchen containers and fine furniture. From the ash came shafts for spears, while pine went into barrels and casks. Holly was almost iron-hard, yielding shafts for chariots. The apple yielded fruit in addition to tanning chemicals. In the "common" catergory were the alder, willow and hawthorn and the shrubs: "the blackthorn, elder and arbutus. The "brambles" were the furze, bog myrtle, broom and gooseberry. The legendary home of Queen Maeve, the Rath

Cruachain may have been beneath a "hollow-hill" but "the house was composed of beautifully carved red yew" arranged in seven concentric compartments, all faced with bronze from foundation to roof-line. The outermost wall was of pine, "with a covering of oak shingles,"and beyond this stood thirteen foot walls of dry masonry, beyond which were five concentric ramparts. See next.

FIODHULL, a fiddle, EIr. fidil, said descendant from Lat. vitula whence the Eng. viola, viol and violin. By implication an instrument of the father-god. FIOMHALACH, a giant from fiamh, fear, awe, reverence, ugly, horrible. Confers with fiam, horrible. The Famhaire, Eng. Fomorians. FIONGHAL. The legal term denoting the killing of a kinsman or relative. It supposedly derives from the misfortunes of Fionghal Ronan, and elderly Irish king who married a young wife. She preferred his son, but he was non-compliant. As a result she accused him of rape and he was put to death by his father. Ultimately, Fionghal discovered the truth and died of grief. FIONGIN MAC LUCHTRA. A king of Munster who took advice

from a prophetess who he consulted each Samhain. FIONN, white, OIr. find, Cy. gwyn, thus the names Fionn and Gwyn corresponds. Bry. gwenn from which Gwenn, Gaul. vindo, from Celtic root vid, the G. fios, foresight, knowledge, Lat. video, I see. A variant is the Gaelic word fion, which relates directly with the Latin vinum, the English wine and the Old Norse win or vin, “white or clear wine.” The Gaelic heroes were often named Fionn in consideration of their war with the fer dubh or “black men.” In Welsh myth we have Gwyn ap Nudd who had annual battles with Gwythur ap Greidawl for physical possession of Creudylad the summer goddess and there is a parallel between this and Lugh’s annual search and rescue of the Mhorrigan or Samh by May-day of each year. Lugh was, of course, the sun-god and thus a god of “whiteness.” His enemy was Cromm dubh, “Black Crom.” See Tir na Fionn, Fionn mac Cumhail. Note also ban, “white (woman).” FIONNACH, ach, an expression of disgust. An aged “maiden.” hairy, rough, shaggy, old antique. FIONNAR, the “finger-cooler,” a nickname given Fionn mac Cumhail after he inadvertently touched the Salmon of Wisdom and cooled the burnt finger in his mouth. This act of sympathetic magic gave him supernatural wisdom. See entries above and below. FIONNBHENACH. The White-Horned Bull of Connaught, part of the herd of Queen Mebd. This creature was the reincarnate swineherd of Oichill Ochne, the arch-rival of the swineherd to Boabd Derg. This bull considered himself misplaced in the herd of a woman and had himself transferred to that of her “husband” Ailill, thus setting the stage for the Tain war against Ulster. This bull was eventually slain by his rival Donn. FIONNDRUINNE, obsolete designation for white bronze, EIr. findruine, fionn (b) ruine, the latter conferring with the Eng. bronze.

FIONNGHALL, “tribe of strangers.” A well known district in Ireland settled by the Danes of Dublin. They resettled Galloway, Scotland in 1014 and were well known for being fair-haired blue-eyed and having “wunnerf’ feet for size.” As opposed to the Duibhgall who hailed from Norway. FIONNLA, Fionnlagh, Finlay, MG. Finlay or gen. Finlaec, sometimes Fonnlaoich or Finlaeg, ON. Finnleikr, from fionn+laoch, fair+hero. A rendering of the earlier Finnlug, relating to the god Lugh. From these Finlayson, Mackinlay and the G. M’Fhionnlaigh. See Lugh and Fionn. FIONNLADH MAC IAIN ‘IC DHUIBH-SHITH, “Finlay, Son of Ian, Son of the Black Fairy.” A largely human individual allied with a fay-sweetheart. On Beinn Phi he heard fairy music. FIONN MAC CUMHAIL, the “Fair One.” Anglicized as Finn Mac Cool. the southern equivalent of Cúchullain. His father was Cumhail of Clann Bascna, the first leader of the royal bodyguard to the high-king Conchobar mac Nessa. This organization entitled the Feinn was put together some seven hundred years after the defeat of the Tuathans on the orders of Fiachach ard-righ. They consisted of twenty-five battalions of men, and constituted a military élite, mainly drawn from back-country cernach of Clann Bascna and Clann Morna. A man named Cumhail was their first leader but their most prominent hero was Fionn mac Cumhail , his son. The king’s manadate said that this army was raised, “To uphold justice, and put down injustice, particularly that instigated by the lords and princes of the realm, and to guard harbours from foreign invasion.” These men were soldier in time of war and police in times of peace. They prevented and halted robberies, exacted fines and tributes, and put down public enemies all over Ireland. This ability was due to the fact that they were wood’s runners rather than cavalrymen, living upon the land from between Beltain and Samhain, camped in the open, living on the produce of the chase.

During the long winter they bivouacked at the expense of the people. Notwithstanding, Fionn was a wealthy prince in his own right with a residence upon the Hill of Allen (Alma) in Kildare. The Fiann recruited at the times of the annual fairs and had extremely high physical standards for admission to their ranks. Fionn. like most Irish heroes had the blood of the Daoine sidh in his veins. His mother Murna was the grand-daughter of the “god” named Nuada who was identified with the mortal named Cian Contje. It will be remembered that he impregnated Ethlinn the daughter of Balor, giving rise to the sun-god named Lugh. She had later married Cumhail mac Trenmor, the head of clann Bascna, who became Fionn’s father. Unfortunately Murna’s father was the leader of the rival clann Morna and did not approve of the union. Cumhail was pursued and killed by members of clann Morna, and the wrathful grandfather would have eliminated his new grandson except that he was hidden with two “woods-women.” As a youth, mac Cumhail, who was then named Demna, killed Lia, lord of Luchra, and recovered the magical treasure bag which had once been the chief possession of the Fiann. This bag was made from the skin of the airdaemoness known as Aoife, who had been caught and killed in crane-form. The “treasures” in question were all from the western sea-realm, and included the knife and shirt of Manann mac Ler. These objects had the property of becoming visible at full tide and disappearing at the ebb. With this in hand, mac Cumhail sought out his uncle Crimmal who now held leadership of the Fiann. As Demna was not old enough to become a warrior-hunter, he was fostered to Finegas, a druid who dwelt near the Boyne where he had spent years attempting to catch the mythic Salmon of Knowledge whose name was Finntann. As mentioned elsewhere the apprentice-druid burnt his finger while cooking the salmon for his master, and accidently acquired the wisdom of the ages. Afterwards he

was nicknamed the fionnar, or the “finger cooler,” a name contracted as Fionn. Having defended the high king’s palace against an invading demon in a Beowulf-like episode, he was made head of the Fiann by Cormac mac Art. thus by-passing Goll of Clann Morna one of his traditional enemies. Although this private army was supposed to uphold the power of the ard righ, the oath of fealty of members was to their chief rather than to that more distant power. While mac Cumhail always supported his patron, he was less fond of his successor Cairbre Lifeachar and joined Breasil, king of Leinster in resisting the old Boru tribute. One reason for this revolt was Caibre’s open support for Clann Morna a Connaught off-shoot of the Feinn led by Aedh the Comely. He had many loves during a long career, but was most devoted to Grainne, who eloped with one of his warriors, a man named Diarmuid. Fionn overcame Donn, “King of the World.” but was killed while trying to suppress an uprising among his own men. Some say that Fionn did not die but sleeps in a cavern awaiting a second coming in some future time of need. He is thus seen to be the ancient prototype of the slumbering King Arthur. FIONN MAC OISIN, born of Fionn mac Cumhail’s son Oisin when he tarried with Niamh in the Otherworld. FIONN-SGUEL, a romance, one of the chief classes of tale. FIONNTUNNA, Finntann, fionn + tunna, wine cask. One of the settlers of Ireland who sailed with Bith from the Mediterranean in an attempt to outrun the World-Flood. Finntann was not caught off guard by the great inundation of the British Isles. A cautious man, he secretly constructed and provisioned a tul-tunna or “flood-barrel” which he anchored at the crest of the Irish mountain which still bears that name. When he saw the waters closing about him this “gentleman” quietly stole away from his “wife” the Lady Cassir and... For a year, while the waters encumber

The Earth, at Tul-tunna of strength, I slept, none enjoyed such sweet slumber As that which I woke from at length. In an alternate myth, Finntann shape-changed himself into s salmon and so remained beneath the waters until the skies cleared. However he managed, duplicity had its rewards, and Finntann, the grandson of Nodha or Nuada (frequently given as Noah) having escaped his fate, lived afterward, as a virtual immortal, at Dun Tulcha,, in southwestern Kerry. He existed in the flesh for a very long time, once commenting that he had passed one day through the woods of west Munster and brought home the red berry from a yew tree. He planted it and saw it grow to a size which allowed “a hundred champions to recline beneath its foliage.” When it died he had seven huge vats made from its wood. When the hoops of the vats decayed from old age he made other objects from the wood, until all was finally reduced to a single wooden cup. At that, he outlived the cup which fell into dust while he continued in ruddy good health. Thousands of years later Fintann was called to court by Diarmuid mac Carroll to solve a question of the limits of the Royal properties. When he travelled he brought with him nine companies of direct descendants, and nine additional companies of his close kin. Incidentally the name Finn-tann translates as “the slender white one,” and this may be decriptive of his condition on emerging from his long sleep at sea. There is a similar tale in Welsh mythology connected with the river Dee: "The Dee springs from two fountains high up in Merionethshire, called Dwy Fawr and Dwy Fach, the great and little Dwy (Huy), whose waters pass through the Lake of Bala, without ever mingling, and both come out at its northern extremity. These fountains had their names from Dwy Fawr and Dwy Fach, who escaped from the Deluge when all the rest of the human race were drowned..." (Wild Wales, pp. 28-29) FIONNTUNNA. An eighth century Irishman who led a strict order of monks. They subsisted on bread and muddy water,

and that taken only after sunset. A gifted prophet, Fionntunna was surrounded in prayer by a light so bright it once struck a fellow cleric blind. Neighbouring monks were intimidated by Fionntunna’s austerities and tried to convince him to lift his restrictions. At first he refused until he cured a deaf mute, and the first words from this man were a request fora lifting of this regime. Afterwards he accommodated these “weaker vessels,” while continuing on his own conservative way. The heads of buried Celtic warriors used to be buried near Fionntunna’s tomb in the belief that the proximity of the saint would hasten their salvation. FION UANN, foaming wine, cf. anguis, a snake, aoneagan, wallowing. Said to consist of fifteen ingredients, the recipe being long lost to men. Somewhat like champagne, a holyday drink meant to inspire poetry and sexual activity “for the good of the land.” FIODH, wood, OIr. fid, Cy. guid, Cor. guiden, Br. gwezenn, tree, Gaul. vidu, Eng. wood, AS. wudu, OHG, witu, all conferring with witch and Woden or Odin. Hence fiofhcheall,, the Ir. fidchell, literally "having wood sense." See fath, fe, fid, fead, filidh, fidhleir etc. FIODHAGACH, the bird cherry, whose wood was never used for building, fiodh + aghach, wood + warlike. It was believed that those who lived within a structure made of this wood would invariably quarrel. FIOLAGRAS, deceive. sophistry, a formal argument intended to

FIOLLAIRT, alliteration; a means of memorizing the Gaelic ranns of blight and blessing. The druids believed that it was bad luck to commit these expressions to permanent form on paper or wood. In addition, the bardic system prevented these "old saws" from becoming general knowledge.

FIOMHALACH, a giant, from fiom, horrible, inspiring fear, awe and reverence A Fomorian. FIONN, white, fair, pale, sincere, true, small, pleasant, fine, pale, lilac, resplendent, bright, known, prudent; also, to fly or skin, to strip away the surfae, to find secrets, chief, hewad, milk, cataract in the eye, sow, pretty female, obs. cow; fionnachdainn, experience, knowledge. Investigation. FIONN-BHRUINNE, fine brass.The divine race of mortal deities arose from the Tuatha daoine, who were skilled magicians but possessed brass and bronze weapons where the Milesian invaders carried iron. When they were finally defeated in battle at Taillte, the newcomers shrewdly deeded them all lands beneath the earth and beyond the horizon. History suggests that many of them fled to the largest island of Britannia (Great Britain), while others took residence among the "giants" on the mythic island of Tyr-na-N'Og, the Land of Youth, somewhere in the western Atlantic (possibly America). Celtic myths suggest that the rest "vanished" into the very real souterrains of Ireland and Scotland. The occasional reappearance of these cavedwellers may have led to stories of the "sidh", or side-hill people, who were censored for their riotous life-style, but feared because of their god-like magic. FIONN FAOILIDH NA SGOILE DUIBHE, a phrase: "the secret teachings of the school of black arts," occultism. See dubh, dub luidneach and the like. FIOSAICHE, a fortune-teller, sooth-sayer, augur, diviner, sorcerer; fiosachd, sorcery. augury. foretelling, diviniation, fortune-telling. FIOS FITHICH, foresight of the raven, foresight generally. The raven was said to sense the presence of carrion even before it was available as food. Fios, knowledge, root word vid, to know. Lat. video, to see. Fios was one of the three druids travelling with Partholon’s entourage. See bran.

FIR ALBAINN, the Gaelic appellation for the “men of Alba,” this being at first construed as the new Gaelic kindom in Dal Riada. Aedan mac Gabrain was thus noted as ri Albainn, the “king of Alba.” His kingdom was considered distint from Cruithentuath, the “british folk.” who occupied “Pictland” the eastern side of Scotland north of the Firth of Forth. Later this designation was that of the larger Gaelkic kingdom centered at Scone. Adamnan writes that the Scots were separated from the Picts by montis dorsi Britannici, which the Gaels used to call Druim Albainn. In the fourth century it si noted of Niall noi-ggallach that “many shall be his deeds upon Druim nAlpuind, which is exactly the same word. The headwaters of the Tay are still known as Braghaid Albainn, rendered into English as Breadalbane. One of my ancestors transferred this place name to the bankdsof the Maguaguadavic River in Charlotte County, New Brunswick. An assocuiated Scottish river is Locha Albainn. These Gaels extended their control into Sutherlandshire in the far north where we have Allt an Albannaich, the “Burn of the Albans.” The people who render this, and many similar names, obviously considered themselvres distinct from this Scottish race, and all date from a time when Alba was thought of as being south of the Spey. It was only in Caesar’s time that the larger island was termed in Latin “Britannicus,” some form of the above names being common in earlier times. FIRBOLG, fir + bolg, plural of fear, thus men, from root ver, supermen + of the goddess Bolg (the Belgae, see separate entry). Some translate bolg as bag, thus travelling men, wanderers. Some have suggested they were miners who carried the dross off in bags. The first "humans" to successfully colonize Ierna, later termed Hibernia or Ireland. The Firbolgs and roving Firgallions Came next like the waves in their flow; The Firdonnans arrived in battalions And landed in Erris - Mayo.

As noted the Firbolg or Vir-bolc. were the first of these related peoples. They came ashore about 400 years after the Nemedians; the Firdonnans were next after them and the Firgallions, or Gauls, the third tribe of invaders. The form Ver-bolc is the older designation, but the Gaels had trouble sounding that first letter and it became an “f” rather than a “v.” It is guessed that the first part of the word confers with the Sankrist vira and the English word virulent, The Welsh equivalent appears to be ver , “super.” having unusual strength. The last part of the name seems to arise from bó, a “cow,” added to leagh, “leaky or dripping.” Taken as a whole: the “super-abundant cow,” and indeed these folk should be identified as the fir, or “people” of Bolg, the cowgoddess. Most wordsmiths miss this connection, identifying them as the “people of the bag.” We do not know what type of ship the earlier races used to reach Eiru but the Firbolgs are known to have travelled in coracles, hide-covered sailing ships. The Roman writer Nennnius says that the people of the Bolg came from “Spain” which makes us suspect another rationalization of the Celtic word for the Kingdom of the Dead. It is very certain that this new race was at least acquainted with westerners for their king Eochy (pronounced yeo-hee) mac Erc is recorded as having married Taltiu or Telta, a daughter of “the Great King from the Great Plain (of the Ocean).” In the later tales this lady is sometimes connected with the great sea-lord Manann mac Ler, a son of the god Ler who is generally equated with Domh (in Wales he was identified as Manawyddan, the son of Dön ). Telta had a palace at Teltiu, and after her death a great annual festival was held there, an assembly that persisted into medieval times. Gerald S. Hawkins interprets "bolg" as "bag" and explains that these people created fertile fields through the labourintensive practise of carrying sub-soil to their land in leather bags: "They made clovery plains of the rough-headed hills with clay from elsewhere." These "people of the bags" found the work tedious and their masters, "the well-greaved Acheans", increasingly demanding. In the end, they grew

"tired, weary and despondent", and threw off their "intolerable bondage." Creating "fair vessels of the skins of animals" they quit the Mediterranean for the lands of northwestern Europe.

Hartley Alexander, a one-time professor of philsophy at the University of Nebraska, has identified these Firbolg races as "a dark population of short stature, believed to have Iberian (Spanish) affinities. He equated them with the Silures, another pre-Celtic people who occupied southern Wales. His translation of Firbolg was "people of the goddess Bolg".The Irish historian Catherine Scherman considers them to have been "an offshoot ofd the continental tribe known as the Belgae." This is tenuous since the Belgae were first recorded in Caesar's time as "residents of northern France and Belgium." The Firbolgs, on the other hand, were in position in Ireland before the arrival of the Celts in 1,000 B.C. The argument that they were people of Bolg is more likely, this goddess having given her name to the waterway known as the River Boyne in Ireland. "Boyne" is a combination word, the latest spelling variation in a long line of phoenetic interpretations of local dialects. The Gaelic "bo" indicates cow, while the obsolete "ann" corresponds with both the Cymric "tan" and the Gaelic "teine" (fire). Bolg, or Boann, was in fact a fire-goddess corresponding closely with the Teutonic god Donar, or Thor, master of the north wind, lightning and thunder. It is also noteworthy that the prosperity of the Firbolgs ultimately depended herding cattle, explaining their choice of deity. This fact also explains the erection of their capital on the eastern side of the Island, at a place later called Tara, the site of the best pastures in Ireland. The Scottish clans bearing the Gaelic prefix "mhac" (son of) or "mhic" (sons of), or "O'" (grandsons of) frequently claim descent from the Firbolgs, although this ancestory is far from certain. We have seen it said that the Firbolgs cleared the forests of Breg ,divided the country into five principalities, raised

their chief city on the site of Tara and managed to ward off the troublesome Fomors for thirty-seven years. Katherine Scherman insists that the Fir Bolg were “an offshoot of a Continental tribe, the Belgae,” but we see no evidence of this aside from a loose coincidence of names. They actually show a greater affinity with the Firdonnan who worshipped the goddess Boann or Boyne. These latter were also a cowherding folk, who settled near Tara to exploit the best grassland in Ireland. Scherman says they held their own against the Fomorian sea-giants because of "their war like aristocracy". They brought other novelties to the Island; a system of monarchy and bronze weapons. This last marked the end of the stone-age. "They did not disappear from the story like those that had gone before, but left descendants. Patrician as they were in their time the remnants of this race was enslaved by Irelands last pre-Christian conquerors." 10 With the Firbolgs there were kings in Ireland for the first time. Scherman has identified the Firbolg tribes with the Picts, who were displaced from Ireland to northern Scotland. The Scottish historian MacNeill also feels the Picts were in Ireland ahead of the Gaels and inhabited portions of Scotland at the same time. On the other hand, Seumas MacManus thinks that the Picts arrived well after the Firbolg settlement, landing in the southwest where they assisted Gaelic tribesmen in driving off a tribe of marauding Britons. Afterwards they had quarrels with Crimthann, the chief of that quarter of the land, and he arranged their resettlement in Alba (Scotland). Rolleston says they “play no great role in Irish mythical history, and a certain character of servility and inferiority appears attached to them.” Nevertheless, the Firbolgs did not disappear from history as earlier settlers had done, nor did they survive as a remnant race, but left numerous descendants still identifiable in their habit of

Katherine Scherman, Ibid, p. 255.

prefixing their names with the words mhic, “sons,” or mhac, “son,” or with the designation ogha, “grandchild”. The gene pool of the “mics” and “macs” of Scotland and Ireland and the maps of Wales continues to flourish as do the O’Neills, O’Banions, O’Briens and host of similarly designated men and women. They were forced to contend with supernatural seagiants and the warrior-wizards known as the Tuatha daoine. Sensing their innate inferiority (the Tuathans had bronze weapons), they were able to put off the final battle for one hundred and five days. The Firbolge had overwhelming numbers, but in the negotiations gave away this advantage, agreeing to fight man-on-man. At that the Tuathans won a pyrrhic victory and willingly settled Connaught Province upon the Firbolgs. When the Milesians defeated the Tuatha daoine, they did not distinguish between them and the Firbolgs, who were all given the option of banishment or retiring beneath "the hollow-hills." At that, the Firbolgs made a notable return to Ireland during the reign of Crimmthann. They had been resident in the islands of Alba (Scotland) but were pressured by the mainland Picts. A colony of them, led by four sons of their high-king Umor, sought asylum in Ulster. There they had quarrels with King Conor mac Nessa, the husband of the amazonian "goddess" Mebd. At night they fled westward out of the land they had been granted in Meath and crossed the River Shannon into their old homeland of Connaught, which (to some extent) was still inhabited by their kindred. Soon after Mebd parted from her husband and teamed up with King Ailill, a southern prince, to rule Connaught. The champion named Ferdiad was one of this tribe, and he and his friend Cúchullain had gone surety to the high-king of Ulster for the good behaviour of the Firbolgs. This race of men marched with Mebd against the north and Cúchullain single-handedly opposed them with his magic and battle skills, killing great numbers of the Umorians. The only survivor was Aonghas, who after the war, settled his people on the Isle of Aran; there they built the redoubt still seen and known as Dun Aonghas. See Fir domnann.

FIR BHREIGH, seen translated as “false men,” actually fir+brigh, men of pith or power. The circle of standing stones better known as Callanesg or Callanish (from callan, to cry out). Located on the Isle of Lewis there name suggests the legend that they were giants turned to stone for their failure to embrace Christianity. Another legend claims that Lugh walks among these stones at sunrise on Midsummer Day , and at this time it was once thought appropriate for men and women to come to the stones and exchange marriage vows. It was also local tradition to visit the stones at the Beltane. It has been noticed that the layout of these stones makes them useful in observing lunar cycles with the moon appearing “within the stones” once every eighteen and a half years, an event which will next occur in 2008 A.D. FIR-CHLIS, dancing people, the northern lights. France they were known as the “Dancing Goats.” In Celtic

FIR DOMNANN. FIRDONNANS, based on Ecelt. Dubnos, dumnos, deep, world, as in Dumno-rix, “World-king.” G. domhan, Cy. dwfu, deep, the deep, world. The Domnnu, the goodess of the “deep.” Tuatha daoine, the people of Domnu.” Daoine, sidh, the “side-hill diggers.” “To Ruairaige and Genann with there people was this name applied. And it was at Inber Domnann that they took harbour (Malahide Bay, north of Dublin). With them travelled the Fir bolg, the “bag men” for it was they that were carrying the earth in bags.” The folk migrated to the counties of Ayr, Renfrew, Lanark and Stirlingshire, Scotland. There, they were allied with the Caledonians on the north and with the Novantae on their south. In Ireland they were located In Connaught and gave their name to the peninsula Irrus Domnann, now called Erris. In the records it is noted that this name was once applied to the folk of Leinster. It was said that they were descended from Semion who was of the race of Nemed. They were therefore of pre-Gaelic stock. Some learned Irishmen have allied them with the Britons.

It is worth noting that Cuchullain’s first name was Setanta which derived from Semion. This suggests he was of British origin. Remember that Cuchullain was unwilling to fight the Damnonian named Ferdiad. In explanation he said: “Thou art my own race, my own kin.” In the “Leabhar Gabhala” we are further informed that the other descendants of Nemed included “the Clan Roderick and those known as the Britons of the Clyde.” Confers with ECelt. dubnos, deep. Tradition has it that these people were originally miners. The word confers with the Gaelic domhain, deep, a hole in the ground, a ravine, and it is claimed that these folk gained their name because they were always “digging in the earth.” It has been guessed that they came to Ireland from Devon, England and later some of them migrated to Domanonia in Brittany during medieval times. It is thought to be more than coincidental that the Scottish tract known as Damnonii was extremely rich in iron. The name may have come from the goddess Domnu, who had charge of the great ocean. She has her counterpart in the land-dwelling Danu. Since her people were the Daoine sidh, or “side-hill” dwellers, this mining connection is reinforced. FIREANN, manniken, dwarf. Ean, obs., water. A “water-man.” Allied with the next. FIREUN, fir + eun, man-bird, the eagle. The man-bird, the totem of the sungod Lugh. The eagle was certainly a sacred and magical bird and the Welsh god Lleu often took the form of an eagle. The cries and character of flight of this bird was considered omen-bearing. Considering the powerful aspects of this bird it has a small place in the vernacular traditions of the Gaels. Finntann, “The Ancient White One,” is noted as one who spent part of his reincarnate cycle in eagle-form. The Welsh god Lleu is known to correspond with Lugh so it is informative to note that when his wife killed him

Lleu “flew up in the form of an eagle and gave a horrid scream, and after that was seen no more.” Some time after Lleu flew away, the magician Gwydion tracked him down, found him in an ancient oak, and restored him to human form. The continental god named Lugus is pictured on the Lyon silver cup as an eagle and Lleu is once described as “a being perched in the topmost branches of the magic tree.” As we know the god Odin frequently took his place at the apex of the world tree called Yggdrasil, which is, literally “Odin’s horse.” Odin supplanted the god named Lokki who is the counterpart of the Gaelic Lugh. In later mythology it is claimed that King Arthur’s burial place on Snowdon was guarded by a pair of chained eagles. There is also a current legend that sixty oracular eagles gather yearly at Loch Lomond and may be consulted for their views of future events. In the Irish tradition the eagle is almost as antique as the owl. FIRIASE, fir + iase, man-fish, the salmon. Literally, the man-fish, another totem of the sun-god Lugh. See Fionn mac Cumhail. Like the owl, the salmon was considered an animal of unusual sagacity. The salmon was at once sacred and divine. Anne Ross notes that representations of this fish are of special interest and she associates it with the Brythonic god Nodons who is akin to the Gaelic Nuada.. This fish is associated with sacred wells and it is usually considered that their wisdom has its source in the Otherworld. Finn traditionally obtained his great wisdom after he sucked a thumb burned on the flesh of the salmon of Linn Feic, which he had been cooking. This animal was the totem of certain Gaelic chieftains, and the first act of an enemy was often the destruction of a neighbour’s salmon-pool. FIRID, FIRIDEACH, prediction after divination, fior + each, truth, root var, cf. English beware, ward. Before a noun the spelling is fir + each, horse. FIRGEAS, intricate spell-casting for the purpose of

divination. fir + geas, truth + taboo, spell, charm. FITHEACH, (fee-ach), a raven, OIr. fiach. A common familiar of the shape-changing Fomors and their adherents including latter day boabhe, magicians and witches. The expression tha fios fithich agud, (possessing) “the knowledge of ravens” was often applied to children who appeared knowledgeable with no apparent means of gaining such information. Ravens and crows were consulted as soothsayers out of time. Notice that Odin had a two-part soul that travelled as ravens and these brought him his memory and knowledge of the worlds. “Nest at Candlemas, egg at Inid, bird at Pash. If that hath not the Raven, death he hath.” FITHEACH DUBH, the black raven "the means by which a message from the measureless (see Bafinn) was to be fulfilled." Just before Iain Mor was drowned he was informed that he would die by his befind, who appeared to him first in the form of a woman and then by "a black raven on his house." (The Hebridean Connection, p. 51). A weregild or banshee. See Mhorrigan, the penultimate “raven.” FLACAILL-GLIOCAS, "tooth of wisdom." Some of the druidic magicians consulted their wisdom teeth, touching them to prognosticate the future. FLATH, a chief, prince, Eng. Valid; flaitheanas, the place where the nobles stay, “the happy hunting-ground,” currently “heaven.” Flatheanas, The Place of the Nobles, Heaven. It was believed that these folk lived here in corporeal form. FLEADH AISE, the feast of age; the annual festival of the Tuatha daoine, which took place at each of their palaces in rotation. At this rite the “little people” consumed food and drink which was proof against aging. FLEADH NA MARBH, the feast for the dead. “Samhain, the month that heralds the rule of darkness, no other festival in

the old Celtic year fires the imagination in the supernatural mysteries of life and death. Like all Celtic festivals, it was celebrated on three levels. On the material level it was the time of stock-taking on supplies for the winter ahead, bringing people and cattle in from the hills and glens to their winter quarters and re-tying the social bonds of kinship. This level of the festival was practical and necessary but even so it conformed to the religious philosophy, that all were part of the great clan spirit that was invoked at this time of year. To be alone and missing at this dangerous time was to expose your spirit to the perils of the chaotic Otherworld. In present times the importance of this part of the festival has diminished for most people living in this country, but you should try to see this from the stand- point of a tribal people for whom a bad season meant facing a long winter of famine in which many would not survive to the spring. On the second level this was a very inner time for the people. As a warrior race Death was never very far away, yet to die was not the tragedy it is in modern times. What was of great importance to these people was to die with honour and to live in the memory of the clan and be honoured at the great feast Fleadh nan Mairbh (Feast of the Dead) which took place on Samhain Eve. This was the most magical time of the year; it was the day which did not exist. During this night the great shield of Skathach was lowered, allowing the barriers between the worlds to fade and the forces of chaos to invade our realms of order. At this time the Spirits of the Dead and those yet to be born of the Clan walked freely amongst the living. Food and entertainment were provided in their honour. In this way the Clan was at one with its past, present and future. This level of the festival was never totally subdued by Christianityand survives today as Hallowe'en. It has been adopted by most as the sum and

total of Samhain. Finally, on the third level of Cosmic event, the rising of Pleiades, the winter stars, heralds the supremacy of night over day, the dark half ruled by the realms of the moon...” (S. McSkimming Dalriada Magazine, 1992).

FLEAGSGAIGH EALADHNA, wand-bearer, bachelor, an itinerant medicine man. Fleasg, wand, a rod, a garland, the last sheaf, Eng. wold. From the Celtic is derived the Fr. fleche, arrow, hence the Eng. name Fletcher, an arrowmaker. In Gaelic the word is Fleisdear. FLIDIAS, the wife of Adammair . Next to the Cailleach bheurr she had the best claim to the title “goddess of venery and wild things.” She was the owner of supernatural cattle and the mistress of stags. In other places she was the wife of Fergus, whom is more often associated with Mebd. It is said that she was carried behind a chariot drawn by deer. A female Cernu. FLÓ, hallucination, ifatuation, stupefaction, related to flod, floating (mentally). FOCHLACH, obs., the lowest cast among the poets and philosophers. Fochaid, a mocker, a minor satirist. FOCHMART, “Questioner.” One of Partholan; the others being Eolas, “Knowledge.” the three druids of “Wisdom,” and Fios.

FODLA, FODHA, FODHLA, FOTLA, (fola), “a sunken rock,” fodh, obs. Knowledge, skillfulness; one of the three mythic Tuathan queens of Ireland who offered support to the invading Milesians providing they would rename the countryside in their honour. The name was also in use in Scotland as Åth (New) Fhótla, anglicized as Atholl. FO-DUINE, “under-man,” fo, below, at the foot of, obs. Good,

King, sovereign, easy, quiet, powerful, decent, honourable. Now: dwarf, servant, ploughman, farmer. FOGHAR, harvest, Ir. foghmhar, EIr. fogamur, originally the last month of autumn, derived from fo + gamur, “under the winter,” presaging winter, cf. Cy. cynauaf, harvest. Foghar nam ban braid-gheil, “the harvest of young widows;” any presage suggesting that men would be slain in battle. Fogharach, echoing, loud, noisy, clamorous; fogharadh, the produce of the harvest. FOIDHIRLISE, the “forests of the deep." Kelp beds, the dwelling place of the dangerous kelpies and tangies. FOMACH, FOMHAIR, FAMHAIR, “Under-sea dweller,” a seagiant, a pirate. FOLLAMAN. The youngest son of Conchabhar mac Nessa. He became the commander of the Boy Corps of Ulster. When the men of that province were “inconvenienced” by the curse of Macha they were the only ones left to oppose Queen Mebd. They held the pass for the required time but were all slaughtered by the southern armies. FOMHORACH, a fomach. See above. FONN, land from Lat. fundus which is connected with the Gaelic bonn, foundation, Eng. bun and bum. FORANA, syllogism, for + anam, a super soul, gifted on heroes by the gods. FORBAI. The son of Conchobar mac Nessa, remembered for killing Queen Mebd as she bathed in Loch Riabhach. Knowing there would be no second chances against this redoubtable enchantress, this friend of the dead Cúchullain practised for weeks with his sling and succeeded in striking away her spirit with a “brain-ball” to the head. FORCHA TENED, fire mallet, thunderbolt. A weapon

possessed by the Cailleach Bheurr, or “Winter Hag.” FORGAN, super man, keeness, anger, passionate. Side form of fearg, puffed up with self importance. FORS, son of Electra and Seth. He survived the World-Flood in Ireland and was later killed in the Near East. FORTAN, for, super; obs. tain, mental endowments, fortune, luck, particularly good luck. FORTREEN. The name for the southern Irish settlement of the Tuatha Cruithne, or Picts, who left here for Alba. Afterwards the name was given to a Pictish province of Scotland, and when the Picts were ascendant in Ireland to Ireland itself. The seven children of the original king Cruithne were Ce, Cirech, Fiodh, Moireabh, Folda and Fortreen, names given the provinces after Alba was divided among them. FOTARLAS, a false doctrine, fotus, flaw, refuse, rotten pus. FOT NA FIRINNE, “the sod of truth,” obtained by Fuat from an island in the Otherworld. Those who stood upon it could not escape a falsehood as it turned roots up in response to a lie. It was transplanted to Sliabh Fuait, Ireland where it presumably may be found to this day. FRAOCH, “Wrath” or “Fury.” The son of Idath and Connacht. The latter was the befind of that western province of Ireland and a sister to Boann who was the astral genius of the east. The hero of Tain Bo Fraoch, sometimes taken as the source for the English Beowulf. He loved Findbhair, the daughter of Queen Mebd and king Ailill of Connacht, but could not persuade her to elope. Worried by the attentions of this penniless swain, the parents plotted his death. On a quest to seek a magic rowan branch at the request of Queen Mebd, Fraoch was attacked by a water monster which he managed to despatch. After this the marriage was allowed but the new wife was afterwards abducted and rescued

from continental enemies. Also, the swords of Manann mac Ler which were called Fraoch, Fraoch Mor and Fraoch Beag, Fury, Grand Fury and Little Fury, FRAOCH ôL, “furious ale,” ôl, drink, drinking, OIr. oul, the Celtic po, to drink, Lat. pôto, Eng. potable, drinkable, Skr. pâ, drink, Possibly borrowed from ON. öl, ale, Eng. ale, “wrath consumed,” the “furious” fraoch, “heather ale,” said brewed by “Pictish” distilleries into the last century. This “nectar of the gods” was not brewed from hops but used aromatic herbs and plants. Among these were broom and gorse, plants which shepherds know for their intoxicating effect on sheep. Another preferred plant was the bog myrtle (myrica gale). Ale was a continental product, preferred in the Scottish Lowlands and the north-east coast and largely ignored by the Gael “who was not a drinker of ale.” McNeill says that he usually preferred water from a mountain spring taking uisgebeatha the “water of life,” also known as “whisky,” for ritual purposes. In 1578 John Leslie, Bishop of Ross, admitted that Scottish ale was probably inferior to hop-brewed English ale but noted that the “heather ale” kept for a few years was “in the opinioune of strange natiounes thouchte baith (to be) the colour and taste of Malmsey.” FRAOILEADH, a clouding of the senses from drinking alcoholic beverages. The old Gaels were not committed drinkers, reserving whisky for the fire festivals, when it was used to rouse sexual activity at the round dances. FREAGARTHACH, the “Answerer.” The sword of Manann mac Ler brought by Lugh from Tir na mBeo, the “Land of Women,” as a gift to the sea-god from the gods of the land. FREC, crooked, bent, bending, an itch, a pimple, one of the dwarfs, Eng. freak, Latin pruina, hoar-frost, winter, snow. This is the Old Norse fryjoosa; Anglo-Saxon, freosan, frozen, the English freeze. The word is related to the goddess Freya or Fryja, the daughter of Niord. See next.

FRESEN, fris, OIr. frith, a wild mountainous place, a mythic island kingdom occupied by Fomorian pirates. Probably in memory of the Old Norse goddess Freya and/or her twin “brother” Freas, a god of the sun, war and agriculture. Said to lay “to the southeast of the Great Plain (of the Sea).” Cathmann raided Munster from this outpost in the Atlantic and carried away Liban the wife of Tadg mac Cian, the heirapparent to that throne. Following in a hide-covered curragh the prince and his men spent many months at sea visiting Tir-nan-Og before completing the liberation of Liban and the people taken away with her. This lost island in the Atlantic may confer with Frisland, an island community often noted as being southwest of Iceland on maps from the great age of discovery. The geographer to Queen Elizabeth I noted that his monarch had declared title to “Greenland, Estotiland and Friseland” in November of 1577. In the following year his diary notes that “King Arthur and King Maty, both of them did conquer Gelinda, lately called Friseland.” On a map issued in 1580, these notes are added: “Circa Anno 530 (A,D.) King Arthur not only Conquered Iseland, Groenland, and all the Northern Iles compassing unto Russia, but even unto the North Pole did extend his jurisdiction; and sent Colonies thither, and also unto all the isles between Scotland and Iseland, whereby it is possible that the last named Friseland Island is of the British ancient discovery and possession; and also seeing Groeland beyond Groenland did receive their inhabitants by Arthur, it is credible that the famous Iland Estotiland was by his folks possessed.” This being the case, Fresen may confer with An Domhain which was traditionally located in this geographical location and was also said ravaged (and possibly settled) by King Arthur or his kin. FREITEACH, a vow or resolution, OIr. fristossam, a renunciation; the root tong, to swear (by the gods or spirits), to promise, the lowland freit. "Many old Scots friets are connected with fire. When a man throws a lighted peat after a married woman, or a lover throws a blazing stick over his shoulder without looking at whom he aims, or the shepherds and young folks kindle the Beltane fire on the

hill and dance around in circles, cooking their eggs and cakes afterwards on the red glowing ashes - how little they think of Baal...” Same as frith, below. FRIGRIU MAC RUIDE, the artificer to Crumthmag of Ce in the time of Fubthaire, king of Alba. He eloped with Ailech, Fubthaire’s daughter, and fled to Ireland. There he constructed a home for his lover. It was of yellow yew, “adorned with gold and with silver and with bronze and with gems, so that it shone brightly both night and day.” This gentleman was also known as Crinden and it was said that he was kin to the Fomorians of Fir Falga (in the Western Isles?) His redoubt was named Ailech Frigriu,, later Ailech Neit, “Ailech’s Sanctuary.” Located near Derry it became, in Columba’s time, the redoubt of Hy Neill. The lady, ultimately, became the wife of Eochaidh Doimlen and the sons were the Conlas of Collas. FRIOBART, false analogy, friog + artan, den + stone. A place where truth is barred. FRIOGHAN, FRIODHAN, a bristle, especially a pig’s bristle, root vrg, cf. Cy. gwrych, a hedge. Hence frioghail, sharp keen. Relating to the ON deities Frey and Freyja, the former being a sun-god whose totem was the wild boar, the bristles being symbolic of sunbeams. See muc. FRIDE, FRITH, (frid) an itch, a pimple, ring-worm, an elf., rock-elf, gnome. EIr. frigit, root MBr. verg, cf the English wiggle, witch, weather etc. Confers precisely with Woden or Odin. ON. frid, peace, hence the OS. fridland, a place where foreigners could live in freedom and where there was relative peace. The Norsemen who went to Normandy were granted fridland by the Norman dukes who were of the same ancestry. Note next entry.

FRIDH, FRIDD, FRIDEOGH, frioghan, bristled, a pig’s bristle, a hedgerow in forestland. Unltimately after the ON. Frey whose totem was the pig. Note also frith, a forest, a deer forest, wild, mountainous. This is a Highland word and is supposed to have once described the “goddess of forests and trees.” Fridh is sometimes compared with Bridd the artificer in metals who used the wood of the dead forest to fuel her industries. They may anciently have represented deities of life and death. See frith. FRIDOLIN, the “Traveller,” a sixth-century monk who penetrated as far east as the Rhine. At Poitiers in Gaul he visited a monastery recently sacked by the Vandals, and miraculously possessed of X-ray vision he helped the inmates recover the relics of Saint Hilary which were buried in the ruins. For this he was himself canonized. FRITH, FREITH, augury, incantation, spell, rage, anger, fate, a sour or ugly look, profit, gain, advantage, “a kind of

horoscope much in use (Miss Freer, 1901).” “An incantation to discover if distant individuals remain alive.” From the ON, fritt, an enquiry of the gods concerning the future. See friteach. The act requires a vow, or vows, directed towards a god, or gods. The frith was often enacted using a knowing stone or divining stone (see entries under clachd). The family name Frith, Freer or Frere is derived from frithir a prognosticator, and it was these people who were once astrologers to the kings of Scotland. As an adj. a small trifling thing, also asour angry look, Ir. frithir, peevish in aspect. From the place of such prognostications, frith, a deer-forest. The frith was enacted before sunrise, the augurer fasting in advance. At the time of prognostication, the individual went head and feet bared, eyes closed to the threshold of the house and stood with his two hands on the wooden lintel. With eyes closed the petitioner chanted to the spirits asking help in pursuit of the unknown. He then opened his eyes and looked for possible guidance in the scene before him. Real objects, or supernatural images superimposed upon reality, were interpreted according to the peculiarities of the augurer or his clan. In general a man standing was seen as auspicious; one prone as a bad sign. A woman standing before the soothsayer was a bad prognosis for the individual in question, but a woman in motion was taken as a reasonably good sign. The sight of a red-haired woman was not wanted; a woman with dark hair was considered lucky; a brown haired lady seen in that altered state, luckier still. A lark or dove was thought auspicious, a raven or crow not, excepting clans having these birds as their totem. A cat was a desired sight for those who happened to be attached to Clan Chattan. A pig, or a boar, was good luck for the Campbells. A Christianized variant of the ceremony in South Uist is recorded by Sigismund Freud Totemism and Taboo: “The frithir or seer, Mary”...and then walks deiseil or sunwards house, his eyes being closed till he reaches as practised in his book says a “Hail around the the door-sill,

when he opens them, and looking through a circle made of his finger, and thumb, judges the general character of the omen by the first object on which his eye has rested.” FRIUCH, “Boar’s bristle.” The swineherd of Oichaill Ochne of Connacht, a man perpetually at odds with Nár, the swineherd of Bobd Dearg. They fought their way through numerous reincarnations until Friuch was reborn as Finnbhenach the White Horned Bull of Connacht And Nár as Donn, the Brown Bull of Cailgne. FUAD. “Impressive,” a Milesian hero slain on the slopes of present-day Sliab Fuad, Ireland. FUAR, cold, OIr. uar. Root ug, damp. Anciently, a month, corresponding with the Bry. Ogron, the English October, the last month of Summer. This month was divided into two halves. The last half was entitled in Bry. atenouex, “afternights,” and may have indicated the waning of the moon. FUATH, hatred, aversion, abhorrence, hateful object, scarecrow, insignificant individual, apparition, ghost, demon, kelpiue, spite, a spectre, a wandering or unbound spirit. OIr. uath, supernatural forms or figures perceived as generalized shapes rather than in detail. A shape-shifter," awe, terror, terrible. Sometimes, a giant with several limbs and/or heads. “The Fuath, or Evil Spirit is sometimes seen, and we were interested in seeking a description of him. As of old, he had the power of forming himself into an angel of light, but he is generally found out in the long run." It is well known that any being that changes its shape is of evil origin (this was the chief magic of the malevolent Fomors). When I asked my informant if such cases were frequent, he referred me to his sister, who tells that when she was a servant, the doctor's horse and trap rushed into the yard one night, the gate being happily open, which was not usual. The driver followed soon, also in a state of alarm. He had come to meet the ferry and the doctor was staying the night at

the inn; but there was not room for the trap and he drove on further. Suddenly the horse stopped, and on getting out to see what was wrong he saw "a beast climbing up from the shore to the edge of the road, like a pig. It went up the face of the brow of the hill, and went back from there like a coil of heather rope, and after that it went into the shape of a dog." (Celtic Monthly, p. 164). It was claimed that the fuath would track those who fished during the spawning season of that animal. "Alexander W. of Buaile Mor above Milton, South Uist, about sixty years ago (1840) was catching fish by night at Seaoch, when he perceived a man coming down the stream. (This man) told him to step aside so as not to frighten the fish and he obeyed. W. had caught a good quantity of fish by this time, and following up the stream he was surprised to see something like a mill-wheel rolling down towards him, in a way he did not think canny. He picked up his fish hurriedly and put them on a withe (stick), with the exception of one which he accidently decapitated by tramping on it with his boot. As he departed he stowed all the fish in a nook where he could afterwards easily recover them, and hurried away to the nearest dwelling. On his way over the moor he was frequently thrown to the ground by some unseen power...In the morning he returned for his fish but he got none except the headless one. (Celtic Monthly, p. 193). Ronald MacD., the bodach of the Rev. John Chisholm, a priest at Bornish made a similar error in setting gill nets at spawning time. Pulling the net at midnight he was confronted by "a man of gigantic stature at the other end of the next." He was chased from the scene "and believed ever after that he had encountered a fuath." FUATHAS, alarm.. spectre, apparation, prodigy, fright, sudden

FUAIM BAS, "death-noise", the three knocks presaging a death of a relative or close friend. Rendered up by the befind of the individual at death's door. Sometimes the

double of a dying person was seen by "gifted" individuals when they opened the door after hearing these sounds. At other times the death-runner took the form of a globe of light or a totem animal or was entirely invisible to those it approached. Alternately, this knock was thought rendered by an evil spirit seeking admission. If granted access it was in a position to do harm. "If a knock comes at a door after midnight, it is not right to say, "Come in." Wait until the knock is repeated and then say, "Who is there?" My father being a ferryman many persons came to his door asking to come in, but my mother always insisted on hearing a name before it was opened. He used to tell her not to be so particular, but she said, "The wandering ones would be often knocking, and when a person would go to open, there would be nobody there. They would be playing tricks this way on people." A goblin came thence to a door one night but failed to get admittance." (Celtic Monthly, p. 163) FUAMNACH. The daughter of Beothach of Iardanel, fostered by Bresal Etarlam. She became the first wife of the Tuathan known as Midir the Proud and grew jealous when he took Étain Echraidhe as his second wife. Using skills obtained from her druidic foster-father the lady turned her rival into a fly in order to part her from Midir. Although clever and resourceful she was slain by Aonghas Og while he was helping Midir find his lost wife. Eventually her head decorated the palace of Aonghas at Brugh na Boinne. FUARSN, FHUARAIN, well, spring, a green spot. See tobar. FUATH, FUOAH, a spectre, hatred, awe, terror, from EIr. uath, terrible. Possibly named for the mythological Fuait. It is said that he was a son of Bil or Bile. On coming to Ireland he stopped first at Inis Magdena, whose soil possessed the property of causing those standing upon it to utter literal truth. He took a sod from it and removed it to Ireland where “it pronounced dooms and judgements.” If an untruth was told before it the sod turned roots upward, so that none standing upon it could escape their falsehood. This fot na firinne, or “plot of truth,” was planted upon

Sliabh Fuait. In Christian times this site was wellremembered and identified as fotan tire tairngiri, the sod from the Land of Promise.” This creature is a well known supernatural of Sutherlandshire, Scotland, where reference is still made to Drocht na Vougha, the “Bridge of the Spectre.” This is now called Gissen Briggs and is a baymouth bar across the mouth of Dornoch Firth. It is claimed that these creatures used to cross in cockleshells but being subject to the weather resolved to build a causeway. It was once a real bridge, consisting of piers and piles all headed with gold. Unfortunately a passing Christian blessed the workers and their work and everything collapsed into the sea. The sand accumulated creating the quicksands found there to this day. There was also a moulion na fuadh which lived near Tubernan, Scotland. This creature was captured by a local who tied her to his horse and kept her quiet by threatening her with a iron awl and a needle. Coming to the inn at Inveran the man went in to get his friends and show off his prize. When they came out and the light from lanterns fell on this creature she dissolved “and fell to earth like a fallen star” a small lump of jelly-like material being her only remain. Notwithstanding, the fuath could mate with humans and it was said that the Munroes married on of the vough of Beann na Caluinn. As a result their descendants, for many years, had manes of hair on their necks and were born with tails. This condition ceased after four generations. J.F. Campbell decided that this species was a water-sprite in its chief haunt of Sutherlandshire. “...there are males and there are females... thy have web-feet, yellow hair, green dress, tails, manes, and no noses...they marry men and are killed by light, are hurt with steel weapons and in crossing a stream become restless...They are also hairy, have bare skin on their faces and have two large round eyes.” See brolaichean. FUC, push, shove, ram, the waulking of cloth. The Eng. push. Confers with the field-activities of the pucca. Fuicheall,

lust, lechery. FUIDIR, fool, lout.clown, quarter-day victim. FUIL, blood, the connotations. root vel, Eng. well, with suggestive

FUTHAR, the dog-days (Perthshire) from the Scot. fure-dags. A period of from four to six weeks, variously placed between the early part of July and the early part of September. Also known as the canicular days. They were so called in ancient times for the rising of the Dog Star, Sirius, in this period of time. These are the last lazy, hazy days of summer, its sultry close, a time when dogs were said to go mad. The conjunction of the rising of the Dog Star with the rising of the sun was regarded as the cause of the diseases and heat that plagued that time. This conjunction is variable at different latitudes and is constantly changing in each location so there is much variation in the coming of the dog days. Note that the Sun was considered an embodiment of Lugh while the dog-star was Cromm. Futhar an fhoghair, “the height of autumn;” futhar an earraich, “the height of spring;” futhar an t’samhraidh, the latter half of July, “high Summer.”