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Posts Tagged ‘Ireland’

Picture by The Library of Congress

The Giant’s Causeway is an area of about 40,000 interlocking Basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic eruption. It is located in County Antrim on the northeast coast of Northern Ireland.

The legend:
Finn McCool an Irish Giant lived on an Antrim headland and one day when going about his daily business a Scottish Giant named Fingal began to shout insults and hurl abuse from across the channel. In anger Finn lifted a clod of earth and threw it at the giant as a challenge, the earth landed in the sea.
Fingal retaliated with a rock thrown back at Finn and shouted that Finn was lucky that he wasn’t a strong swimmer or he would have made sure he could never fight again. Finn was enraged and began lifting huge clumps of earth from the shore, throwing them so as to make a pathway so he could face the Scottish giant and prove to him who the stronger fighter was.

However by the time he finished making the crossing he had not slept for a week and decided to rest for a while to refresh himself. Fingal however was impatient and decided to cross over himself and start the fight. Finn’s wife noticed him approaching and devised a cunning plan to fool him. She covered Finn up with a baby’s blanket and disguised his resting spot as a cot. When Fingal had crossed over and came to face his adversary, she told the giant that Finn was away but showed him his son sleeping in the cradle. The Scottish giant became apprehensive, for if the son was so huge, what size would the father be?

In his haste to escape Fingal sped back along the causeway Finn had built, tearing it up as he went. He is said to have fled to a cave on Staffa which is to this day named ‘Fingal’s Cave’.

Story researched and contributed by: Chitra Roy
Best of Fables index page >>

Fingal's Cave Photo by Marco Franchino

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