Episode 43: Fionn Pt 5 – The Lad of the Skins

Tales of Britain and Ireland
Tales of Britain and Ireland

A storytelling and folklore podcast.

Telling some of the famous and not so famous British and Irish myths, legends and folktales, in no particular order.

Coming direct from South Yorkshire it is currently regularish, and will feature all of the above and whatever other miscellaneous snippets take my fancy.

Presented by Graeme. Website at http://www.TalesofBritainandIreland.com

43: The Lad of the Skins (Fenian Cycle Pt 5.)
byTales of Britain and Ireland.

A tale of Fionn and the Fianna featuring heroism (maybe), murder (definitely), theft, even more animal transformations and other laddish pursuits. Stick around for the post credit sequence!

For musical credits, sources and more visit the website: https://talesofbritainandireland.com/episode-43-fionn-pt-5-the-lad-of-the-skins/https://talesofbritainandireland.com/

#myth #mythology #folklore #Feniancycle #IrishMythology #FionnMacCumhaill

Lacking any public domain images of the lad of the skins I opted for this AI generated one which I’m judging as “ok.” There was one that was basically a trench coat. This is a little better.

“The Lad of the Skins will destroy ourselves and the whole of the Fianna!”

A tale of Fionn and the Fianna featuring heroism (maybe), murder (definitely), theft, even more animal transformations (it wouldn’t be a Fenian tale without some animal transformations) and other laddish pursuits. Stick around for the post credit sequence!

This is the story of the Lad of the Skins – otherwise known as the Céatach/Ceudach tale. Possibly the most popular folk tale of the Fianna.

Even if you’ve not listened to the rest of the Fenian cycle episodes this is a great one to jump in at as it’s fairly stand alone – though you can also find links to the other Fenian tales below.

Statue of Manannán mac Lir (who has a tangential link to the story) on Binevenagh Mountain.
Incredibly in 2014 the statue was removed from the site – a cross was left with the words “You shall have no other gods before me” written on it. The old gods are still contentious for some!

The Cauldron of Plenty

So in the episode I mention the Cauldron of Plenty when I haven’t told the stories of The Dagda yet – and I’m afraid that’s how it’s going to remain (sorry! I’ll get round to it in a decade or so).

But it’s some kind of law that when you mention that Cauldron you have to show a picture of the actual Gundestrup cauldron – as below. This exceptional Iron Age Cauldron is actually from Denmark but is so striking in its pagan imagery and its state of preservation, due to being in a bog for a couple of thousand years, that it has become the exemplar par excellence of magical Iron Age cauldrons.

Its exact origins are unknown but many believe it shows specific scenes from Celtic, and specifically Irish, mythology. It certainly seems to involve a lot of animal/human hybrids, which as you will probably have noticed is rife in the Fenian tales, as well as other Irish stories (though of course also in a lot of other myths of the time, not least those of Greece and Rome).

It’s certainly a fantastic piece of work anyway – and if you want to imagine the Cauldron of Plenty I reckon you could do far worse than use this as your basis.

More from the Fenian cycle….

Episode 16: Fionn MacCumhaill Part 3 – Bran

The origin story of two of the most important characters in The Fenian cycle: Fionn’s dogs.

We’ll learn about the dangers of an angry ex, the benefits of signing a pre-nup with your nephew and how a beloved pet really can be one of the family.

Salmon of Knowledge

Episode 4: The Boyhood of Fionn Part 2

This episode continues the podcast’s look into the beginnings of the Fenian cycle. There’s a grisly plot item, a definitive answer to the question of whether fish-oils are good for the brain (in very specific circumstances), one weird trick to beat narcolepsy and an obligatory climactic showdown for the young Fionn Mac Cumhaill.

Lady Augusta Gregory

“The Nationalist playwright” – Lady Gregory and the translations of the Ulster and Fenian Cycle

Selected Sources

Intro and outro theme from the incredibly talented Alice Nicholls Music
Outro music by Josh Keely and Mitch Newman

Other music, used under various Creative Commons licenses:

Damiano Baldoni
Celtic Warrior

Aaron Kenny
Saving the World

Brian Bolger
Black Mass

Kevin Macleod (incompetech.com)
Welcome to Horrorland

Lionel Schmitt
Protector of the Ocean
The Beast
Castle of Darkness

Ben Von Wildenhaus
Week Thirty Two

Sláinte 
Lark in the morning. The Atholl Highlanders
Sally Gardens
Banish

Jimnea Contreas
Goddess of the sea

Woodspider
Hot October

Doctor Turtle
Rotisserie Graveyard

Sound effects
inspectorJ:
Boiling Water large A
Destruction, Wooden, A

Various other Public Domain sounds/music used without attribution

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Welcome to Tales of Britain and Ireland!

Welcome to Tales of Britain & Ireland: A podcast telling folktales, myths and legends from across Britain and Ireland. Hosted by Graeme Cooke.

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