Friday, June 17, 2011

Go Celts!

     My favorite romances are paranormal and fantasy.  It’s a natural fit because while I’m not restrictively a vamps and were-folk kind of girl (more of a magical and mystical gal actually) I enjoy any story where the characters and/or the circumstances are larger than life.  In high school, I loved when we read Greek and Roman Mythology and Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey.  I loved the battles, the mythical creatures, the special powers, the angst ridden love, the foreshadowing, and, most of all, when good triumphed over evil. 
When my own stories began to take form, I was drawn to Celtic Mythology.  They’re the myths of my ancestors and, while not as well documented as Greco-Roman, they’re equally compelling.
Today I’m going to blog a little about Celtic (namely Irish) Mythology.  My novel, Murphy’s Law (and the series it falls into), taps into these myths.  So many people have never been exposed to them or are unfamiliar, so I’d like to share.  I’ll start off with the basics and once a month I’ll cover a different myth or topic and how it’s influenced my series.
Today:  The Cycles of Ireland
Ireland is said to have been settled in three major Cycles.  These are actually just modern scholars’ way of dividing up the old stories into sections. Some of these Cycles are so ancient as to be considered only myth and legend.  But are they really?  So much of Ireland’s ancient history is documented only in oral form and fuzzy at best, who knows what mystical beings could’ve actually roamed those green hills?
The First cycle was the Mythological Cycle (or Book of Invasions), a settlement by the earliest Celtic people on Ireland: the Tuatha Dé Danann (later known as the Fey people) and then the Milesians. 

Second was the Ulaid Cycle.  It supposedly coincided with the time of Christ.

Third was the Fenian Cycle. It is perhaps the best recorded and its tales are the bedtime stories for Irish children today.

I am most captivated by the Fenian Cycle. The Fenian Cycle is a collection of stories about a band of Celtic warriors called the Fianna Éireann or Fianna for short (pronounced Fee-ah-nah).
Next time I’ll dive into the Fianna and their greatest hero, Finn Mac Cumhaill, or Finn McCool as he’s known in English. 

I mean, what’s not to love about a Celtic warrior???


Anonymous said...

I like to believe all of the mythical creatures that walked the earth are still lurking in the woods somewhere. Great post! I do love a Celtic warrior!

~Elizabeth Michels

Kim said...

Celtic Warrior--the things dreams are made of! OK now that I'm back to this reality. I love the Celtic myths most especially because of it being lesser known. So much more room to "play". I can't wait to read next month!

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