Irish Fiction Friday: The Four Jewels of the Tuatha Dé Danann


Welcome to a new year of Irish Fiction Friday! We’ve temporarily said goodbye to Erin, who has been writing the entries for you for the last couple of months, as she’s off to help with Boskone (where of course, we will be having a Dublin 2019 table!). But it’s also her birthday today, so we wanted to celebrate with something she is particularly fond of – Irish mythology. Today’s story is in both English and Irish, and  it’s part of a much larger online repository of Irish myths and legends in both languages.

The Four Jewels of the Tuatha Dé Danann tells of the Tuatha Dé Danann’s arrival in Ireland, and of what they brought with them. The Tuatha Dé Danann have been variously depicted in Irish mythology as superhumans and gods; and are thought to be the pre-Christian deities of Ireland. They are a popular theme in fantasy writing, as are their enemies, the Fomori.

The Tuatha Dé Danann bring with them four magical artefacts – artefacts which are recognisable as a common trope in fantasy writing:

The Dagda’s Cauldron

The Spear of Lugh

The Stone of Fal

The Sword of Light

The tale can also be read in Irish here.

Timeless Myths have a great site about the Tuatha Dé Danann, where the author tries to unravel the complicated family trees of both the Tuatha Dé Danann, the Fomorians and other people from Irish mythology: