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Sgéalta Mhuintir Luinigh/Munterloney Folktales: Published in Autumn 2015

Sgéalta Mhuintir Luinigh/Munterloney Folktales is a unique compendium of Tyrone lore in the Irish language including folktales, legends, songs, proverbs, riddles, charms, toasts and accounts of various calendar and other folk customs.

The bulk of its contents was collected between 1929 and 1932 by the Professor of Irish at Trinity College Dublin, Éamonn Ó Tuathail, and the main body of his material was taken down from Eóin Ó Cianáin, an Irish countryman born in Greencastle and resident in nearby Creggan. The balance was collected earlier in the twentieth century elsewhere in Munterloney by individuals such as Father Cornelius Short, a curate in Termonmagurk, Peadar Mhac Culadh of Glenelly and Pilib de Bhaldraithe, a native of county Mayo.

First published in 1933 by Institiúid Bhéaloideas Éireann/The Irish Folklore Institute, its republication by Comhairle Bhéaloideas Éireann/The Folklore of Ireland Council eighty-two years later marks a landmark event in the history of the Irish-language culture of Tyrone.

This new edition of Sgéalta Mhuintir Luinigh/Munterloney Folktales comes with a full English translation by Seosamh Watson, former Professor of Modern Irish at University College Dublin (UCD), a foreword by Séamas Ó Catháin, former Professor of Irish Folklore and former Director of the National Folklore Collection at UCD, and updated folklore notes by Dr Kelly Fitzgerald, also of UCD.

Tuar dóchais is ea é do Ghaeil Thír Eoghain an saothar seo a bheith ar fáil arís!

Sgéalta Mhuintir Luinigh/Munterloney Folktales will be published in Autumn at a cost of €20

The Otherworld
Music & Song from Irish Tradition

There are those who would deny the existence of ghosts and fairies, laugh at notions of the banshee but are there many who would cut down a lone bush or descrate a fairy fort and not expect consequences? A wise man on being asked recently whether he believed in the existence of the good people replied, “No, not really....but... they’re there all the same.”

The Otherworld-Music and Song from Irish Tradition will be launched on November 21st by traditional musician Paddy Glackin. This is a 220 page, illustrated book (92 b/w photographs) with accompanying CDs- featuring music, song and lore. It has been compiled and edited by Rionach uí Ógáin and Tom Sherlock. Comhairle Bhéaloideas Éireann is the publisher.

Belief in the existence of a parallel world and in otherworldly phenomena has long been established in Irish tradition and facets of this belief continue to be found in contemporary Irish society.

This book, with two accompanying cds, examines aspects of the enduring belief and fascination which the Irish imagination has with supernatural beings, encounters and occurrences as represented in song and music. The material contained in this publication is from the National Folklore Collection/Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann in University College Dublin.

Aspects of popular tradition are addressed such as the connection between the supernatural and excellence in the performance of music and song, the dangers inherent in engaging with the fairies, the fear of abduction or loss, benign supernatural encounters, the existence of otherworldly creatures such as the banshee or the leprechaun and the physical landscape as perceived in oral lore. There are encounters that reflect the blending of Christian and non-Christian ideas.

The musicians, singers and narrators on these recordings represent past and current performers. The material reflects the circumstances, hopes, anxieties, fears, beliefs, modes of entertainment and sometimes the sense of mischief, in both urban and rural environments. The examples are illustrated with black and white photographs, many of them taken by the original collectors. This publication gives an insight into many aspects of Irish life.

The Otherworld book and CDs will be launched by the noted musician Paddy Glackin on Wednesday 21st November at a reception to be held in the Irish Architectural Archive at 6pm.

Ríonach uí Ógáin is Director of the National Folklore Collection/Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann, University College Dublin. She has published numerous articles on traditional song and music and has lectured widely on the subject.

Tom Sherlock is a music business manager and consultant with wide experience in the promotion of traditional music. He has worked as a production manager with Claddagh Records, an artist manager and agent, a promoter and producer, a festival programmer and as a writer and commentator on Irish music and culture.

Paperback 220pp; ills. November 2012 | ISBN: 978-0-9565628-3-8
Catalogue Price: €25.00 | Web Price: €22.50

The Otherworld is available for purchase from Four Courts Press


Seoda as Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann/Treasures of the National Folklore Collection launched on the 9th of December

Seoda as Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann/Treasures of the National Folklore Collection is primarily visual, drawing on the diverse collections found within the archive. The book consists of sixteen essays, with a Foreword by Dr T.K. Whitaker, showcasing some of the treasures and including illustrations, paintings, photographs manuscripts, music transcriptions and books. The publication will provide an opportunity to re-visit, and reflect on, the work carried out by one of the most innovative government-funded bodies in western Europe during the first half of the twentieth century in a time of acute economic need.

Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, M.A. is collector/archivist with the National Folklore Collection, University College Dublin. He has published and lectured widely on a number of subject areas within Irish folklore and ethnology. His publications include articles on migratory legends, vernacular architecture and material folk culture. In 2008 he edited the book Traditional Boats of Ireland.

Séamas Ó Catháin spent some time as a lecturer at the University of Uppsala in Sweden and at University College Galway before his appointment as Archivist with the Department of Irish Folklore, UCD. He was appointed Professor of Irish Folklore as successor to Professor Bo Almqvist. His best known publications include Uair a Chloig Cois Teallaigh, and Scéalta Chois Cladaigh based on his own field work. He spearheaded a number of schemes towards the collection and dissemination of Irish folklore.

Ríonach uí Ógáin is Director of the National Folklore Collection UCD. Her research interests are primarily related to traditional song in Irish. She has also published and lectured widely other areas of folkloristics. Her publications include the cds Beauty an Oileáin: Music and Song of the Blasket Islands and Amhráin Shorcha Ní Ghuairim. She is current editor of Béaloideas: The Journal of the Folklore of Ireland Society and her most recent publication is Going to the Well For Water: The Field Diary of Séamus Ennis 1942-1946.

Seosamh Watson was professor of Modern Irish Language and Literature at University College Dublin, 1998-2008, and Dean of the Faculty of Celtic Studies, 1996-2001. He has conducted fieldwork throughout Ireland, in the Scottish Highlands and eastern Canada, and published widely on aspects of the Irish and Scottish Gaelic languages. His book, Saoghal Bana-mharaiche (2007), gives an account of life and tradition in a 20th century Gaelic fishing community in the Eastern Highlands. Professor Watson was a founding member of the International Society for Dialectology and Geolinguistics in 1993 and has served since 1991 on the editorial board of Atlas Linguarum Europae, a UNESCO-sponsored multi-volumed project, recording material in dialect from all Europe’s languages.