Ailsa has asked us to travel to the land of MISCHIEF with our photos this week. Let me encourage you to visit her at
Her tales of mischief are lots of fun especially the one about the Deer/Raven tag team!
Here are my mischief makers:
Here is a little history on the famous giant and his causeway courtesy of Wikipedia
Many geographical features in Ireland are attributed to Fionn. Legend has it he built the Giant’s Causeway as stepping-stones to Scotland, so as not to get his feet wet; he also once scooped up part of Ireland to fling it at a rival, but it missed and landed in the Irish Sea — the clump became the Isle of Man and the pebble became Rockall, the void became Lough Neagh. Fingal’s Cave in Scotland is also named after him, and shares the feature of hexagonal basalt columns with the nearby Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland.
In both Irish and Manx popular folklore, Fionn mac Cumhail (known as “Finn McCool” or “Finn MacCooill” respectively) is portrayed as a magical, benevolent giant. The most famous story attached to this version of Fionn tells of how one day, while making a pathway in the sea towards Scotland, known as The Giants Causeway, Finn is told that the giant Benandonner(or, in the Manx version, a buggane) is coming to fight him. Knowing he cannot withstand Benandonner due to his size, Fionn asks his wife Oona to help him. She dresses her husband as a baby, and he hides in a cradle; then she makes a batch of griddle-cakes, hiding griddle-irons in some. When Benandonner arrives, Oona tells him Fionn is out but will be back shortly. As Benandonner waits, he tries to intimidate Oona with his immense power, breaking rocks with his little finger. Oona then offers Benandonner a griddle-cake, but when he bites into the iron he chips his teeth. Oona scolds him for being weak (saying her husband eats such cakes easily), and feeds one without an iron to McCool, who eats it without trouble.
In the Irish version, Benandonner is so awed by the power of the baby’s teeth and the size of the baby that, at Oona’s prompting, he puts his fingers in Fionn’s mouth to feel how sharp his teeth are. Fionn bites Benandonner’s little finger, and scared of the prospect of meeting his father considering the baby’s size, Benandonner runs back towards Scotland across the Causeway.
The Manx Gaelic version contains a further tale of how Fionn and the buggane battle at Kirk Christ Rushen. Finn’s feet carve out the channels between the Calf of Man and Kitterland and between Kitterland and the Isle of Man, while the buggane’s feet make an opening for the port at Port Erin. The buggane injures Finn, who flees over the sea (where the buggane cannot follow), but the buggane tears out one of his own teeth and strikes Finn as he runs away. The tooth falls into the sea, becoming the Chicken Rock, and Finn curses the tooth, explaining why it is a hazard to sailors.
In Newfoundland, and some parts of Nova Scotia, “Fingal’s Rising” is spoken of in a distinct nationalistic sense. Made popular in songs and bars alike, to speak of “Fingle,” as his name is pronounced in English versus “Fion MaCool” in Newfoundland Irish, is sometimes used as a stand-in for Newfoundland or its culture.