Thursday, 26 November 2015

The Field Names of County Louth and Meath

I was delighted to receive a copy of The Field Names of County Louth as a gift today. It joins my copy of The Field Names of County Meath as part of my ever-expanding reference and research library. These are both high-quality, comprehensive publications.

My copy of The Field Names of Louth, received today, alongside the Meath book.
Many fields in Ireland have names. These books are the culmination of a long period of research and fieldwork. As the preface of the Louth book suggests, "a  wealth of information not previously recorded and in danger of being lost in the sands of time has been gathered by our labourers in the field".

Here I will give you just a flavour of this wonderful tome, from a little section about Fairies:

The fairies are an enduring feature of Irish folklore. The Irish word for the fairies, sí, originally meant a mound. The inhabited a timeless otherworld, but they could slip between that world and this one when they so desired. There has been a long association with the fairies and natural hills, as well as prehistoric cairns and burial places (Ó hÓgáin 2006, 206). Three local versions of the name 'fairy hill' were recorded by the LFNP. They are Cruk Shee (Cnoc Sí) in Knockatober, Crogh Shee (Cruach Sí) in Baltrasna, and Crockshee (Cnoc Sí) in Haggardstown. This latter example is in fact an Anglo-Norman motte castle. Hills and mounds associated with the fairies often are sites of supernatural occurrences, like strange music.

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