Tuesday 14 June 2016

Colm Cille agus Na Mic Ó gCorra

Another story of Saint Colum Cille with a Tory connection - the curious tale of the Mic Ó gCorra. Here we see the saint turning those who opposed him to stone. There are some photographs of the rocks, which seem to be known a whole lot less colourfully in English as the Stag Rocks, here.  Linking natural physical features in the landscape with tales of the saints is found all over Ireland. This particular story was collected as part of a project on the devil in Donegal tradition and published in Béaloideas, the Journal of the Folklore of Ireland Society, at the end of the 1980s. A summary in English was included by the authors. It looks like the Mic Ó gCorra live on for another generation in the children's book by Donegal author Proinsias Mac a'Bhaird (see cover on the left):

20. Na Mic Ó gCorra

Bhí triúr deartháireacha orthu seo a dhíbir Colm Cille san am sin a dtugadh siad na Mic Ó gCorra orthu agus rinn sé trí chreag daofasan agus tá siad le feiceáil ansin ina seasmah go dtí an lá inniu. Deirtear go rabh oiread feirge orthusan le Colm Cille agus go dtógann siad a gcuid seoltaí uair achan bhliain le pilleadh ar Thoraigh le muintir Cholm Cille a bhruith agus a dhódh ach comh luath agus a títhear iad, caithfidh siad a gcuid seoltaí a ísliú arís agus tá siad ansin ó am  Cholm Cille. Tá muid uilig ag dréim nach bhfaghann siad bogadh choíche nó dá mbaineadh siad Toraigh amach bhéarfadh siad drochbhail air agus ar a bhfuil fágtha ann.

20. The Mic Ó gCorra
Colmcille turns three brothers called the Mic Ó gCorra into three rocks. They are said to hoist sails once a year to return to Tory and kill all its inhabitants, but as soon as they are seen they must lower them again and turn to stone once more.

S. Ó hEochaidh agus L. Ó Laoire,  'An Diabhal i Seanchas Thír Chonaill',  Béaloideas Iml. 57 (1989), 37, 86.

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