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Old January 7th, 2010, 04:37 AM   #1
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Irish Fairy Forts

dunno if this fits here or not {as its part mythology}...anyhoo...

we have one outside our house..

Click the image to open in full size.

anyone here know much about them ?...they are protected by irish law for heritage reasons and you cannot build within 30 metres of one...legend goes that to damage a fairy fort brings bad luck upon the land...although when it has suited the Irish goverment they have destoryed some, for motorways and the like.
There are hundreds of Fairy Forts in Ireland dating back to the Iron Age {b.c. times}

A Fairy Fort looks just like a large mound of clay and grass with bushes, you wouldnt look twice at it if you didnt know what it was.
The purpose of the Fairy Forts was to be a round banked enclosure. The circular bank was formerly the base for a high fence of sharpened logs. Inside the circular enclosure, round wooden thatched dwelling huts were built for security. Domesticated animals were herded into the gated enclosure in bad weather and as a protection against cattle and horse raiding - common pastimes for the ancient Celts.

Im not sure about this next bit, but, i think the rings of earth that were chosen to build the Forts {they chose places with naturally formed circles in the ground} are said {by celtic mythology} to be formed by fairies dancing round in a circle in a particular spot.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 04:50 AM   #2

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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

In medieval times these mounds were believed to have been the hiding places of the Tuatha de Danaan, the old gods - now reduced to the role of "fairies" - that had been driven into hiding by the Celtic invaders.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 04:51 AM   #3
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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

And I thought gods were driven into hiding in Waco!
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Old January 7th, 2010, 10:08 AM   #4

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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

They are also known as "Raths". This appears to mean a small fortified village.
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Old January 7th, 2010, 11:30 AM   #5
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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

Yeah, i've heard about them. I used to live near one.

I think there probabaly is something special about them. Wouldn't advise anyone to do damage to them.

Have you ever walked in around it?
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Old January 8th, 2010, 01:10 AM   #6
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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

yeah...our dog used to chase rabbits from it...but they dont go there any more
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Old January 9th, 2010, 02:14 AM   #7
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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

In Ireland fairies were supposed to have been the same size as ordinary people but paler and with green eyes. The leprechaun was a medieval invention.
A lot of Irish people have a strange attitude towards the supernatural. Ask them do they believe in fairies? No way.
Ask them would they damage a fairy fort given the belief in folklore that this would lead to bad luck? No way

An old woman in Galway was supposed to have been asked by a folklorist or an anthropologist Do you believe in fairies? and she answered No but they` re there anyway.

In Irish folk belief it was felt that fairies were often malevolent beings who did damage to humans. One of the aims of fairies was to discover human magic and they would steal infant males in order to try and discover the secrets of humans. They would leave an iarfhlais or a changeling in its place. The way you knew it was a changeling was if the child` s personality changed inexplicably. (Obviously some disease or diseases affecting the brain). There were various ways of trying to protect your kids from fairies
1/keeping diry water in the house. Fairies were fastidious 2. dressing boys up like girls 3.keeping something made of iron in the cot. The fairies were reputed to be scared of iron 4. putting a small drop of urine on the kids (see number 1)
This is stuff I` ve heard or read. An interesting book for anybody who is interested is "The Burning of Bridget Cleary" by Angela Bourke.

It` s easy to laugh at this stuff now and fell superior but even allowing for superior education and allowances in technology and science etc. look at the amount of quacks who get rich peddling magic water to scared and sick people looking for explanations
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Old January 9th, 2010, 09:43 PM   #8

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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

I had never heard of these, pretty cool. Thanks.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 04:23 AM   #9

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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

Originally Posted by Chookie View Post
They are also known as "Raths". This appears to mean a small fortified village.
The ones around where I'm from were called lisses. I don't know how thats spelled properly. Liss is how its said by the locals. Its remarkable how they were left standing and not bulldozed away. The belief is very strong to this day. Don't mess with them!
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Old January 10th, 2010, 12:59 PM   #10

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Re: Irish Fairy Forts

Is this related to a fairy circle which is a mushroom circle and if you step inside it you are suppose to be taken away by the "bad" fairy's?
I had always wondered where those little fairy's came from that us little girls used to wear as badge when we went to Brownies.
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