The Celts have always been great storytellers. Across the years, Celtic
imagination and belief has spawned a host of heroes, monsters, fairies, spirits,
and phantoms, all of which have coalesced into a colourful tapestry of lore and
legend which has been transmitted from one generation to another. From the
earliest legends, told around the fires of the Celtic warriors, through the fireside
tales of the rural hearths to the written word of the polished scribe, these stories
have a resonance and an immediacy that is hard to dismiss. They represent a
vibrant and unbroken link to the Celtic past.
Celtic Lore and Legend includes tales of the heroes and gods from the Great
Myth Cycles and tales of witches, ghosts, and fairies—from Sir Walter Scott’s
Letters on Witchcraft and Demonology and Edmund Burt’s Letters from the North
of Scotland to Douglas Hyde’s Tales of Saints and Sinners and Lady Gregory’s
Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland. It is also a treasure trove of
lesser-known stories, such as Sir Walter Scott’s Wandering Willie’s Tale, James
Hogg’s The Brownie of the Black Hags and Don Byrne’s A Tale of the Piper.
Celtic Lore and Legend is both an examination and celebration of that tradition. It
is one of the first attempts to trace the development of these stories from their
earliest mythical roots, through the stores of the rural fireside to the writers of
fiction who have used Celtic belief as a source for their own stories.
This is the first anthology to seek out and record the traditions from many parts
of the Western Celtic world—Ireland, Cornwall, Scotland, Wales and
Brittany—from as early as the 17th century. It is a highly readable and enjoyable
collection of legend and lore never before available in a single volume.
Dr. Bob Curran was born in the North of Ireland in an area where such traditions
are still valued and cherished. Fascinated by culture and legend, he has
travelled widely, examining lore in many parts of the world. Educated at the
University of Ulster, he now lives in Coleraine, County Londonderry, with his wife
and children, where he teaches history and writes books.
Available as an eBook through Kindle