A meeting of the Co. Roscommon Historical and Archaeological Society will take place at 8.00pm on Tuesday, 13th November, 2018, in the Percy French Hotel, Strokestown.
Following the meeting, at 8.30 p.m. (sharp), a talk will be given by Mike McCarthy BSc. (Pharm) M.P.S.I, entitled ‘Cattle Raiding on a Grand Scale - Na Tána and Cruachan Aí’.
Many of the great Táin Bó (Cattle Raid) Tales in the Irish epic literature, such as Táin Bó Flidais, Táin Bó Aingen (the Adventure of Nera), Táin Bó Fráoch and Táin Bó Regamon have a heavy association with the ancient Connacht capital of Rathcroghan (Cruachan Aí).
Indeed the centrepiece of them all, the great Táin Bó Cuailgne (Cattle Raid of Cooley), our National Epic, has both its origin and dramatic ending in Rathcroghan and features characters such as the Warrior Queen Medb, the mighty Battle Goddess ‘Mórrígan’, the Connacht Warrior Fráoch, and the boy hero Cúchulainn, all of whose legendary deeds are inextricably linked with the landscape that surrounds us here in Co. Roscommon.
Mike’s talk will incorporate a telling of the great Irish literary epic - ‘The Cattle Raid of Cooley’, incorporating many of the supporting remscéla or foretales, all in the environs of where these stories are said to have taken place, at the ancient Connacht capital of Cruachan Aí.
A love of history, folklore and mythology brought Mike to Rathcroghan, the Royal Site of Connacht in Co. Roscommon, where he now works as a Tour Guide and Research Assistant. He is also involved in the organisation and promotion of the annual Rathcroghan Winter Conference and has co-authored a number of publications pertaining to Rathcroghan, including ‘Slí Seandálaíochta Ráth Cruachan’ - the Rathcroghan Archaeological trail and the recently published ‘Rathcroghan - The Guidebook’.