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Publication of Volume 3

28 Jun 2018
Cork Studies in Celtic Literatures
John Carey, The Mythological Cycle of Medieval Irish Literature

Now available online at


A striking feature of medieval Irish literature is the prominence accorded to beings who are sometimes called the ‘Túatha Dé’ (Tribes of the Gods), and sometimes the people of the ‘síde’ or hollow hills: a magical race, in whom it is possible to recognise the divinities once worshipped by the pre-Christian Irish. Tales in which the ‘Túatha Dé’ have a central rôle have conventionally been assigned by scholars to a “mythological cycle”. This book examines the background and rationale for this classification; discusses the nature of the ‘Túatha Dé’ themselves; and offers a survey of the tales of the ‘Túatha Dé’ that are attested from the Old Irish, Middle Irish and Early Modern Irish periods.

Roinn na Sean- agus na Meán-Ghaeilge

Department of Early and Medieval Irish

Bloc A, Urlár na Talún, Áras Uí Rathaille / Block A, Ground Floor, O'Rahilly Building, UCC, Cork