There is an old tale told on the Isle of man about two giants. One was the Irish giant Phinn MacCooil and the other the Scottish. (Name forgotten - anyone know?)
They stood facing each other looking across the irish sea, threatening and glaring at each other. Suddendly, Phinn MacCooil scooped up a mound of earth and threw it at the scottish giant.
Where he scooped up his "mud ball" is now Lough Neagh, the large inland sea/lake in Northern Ireland. Unfortunately, Phil's "missile" fell short of Scotland and landed in the irish sea. That's how the Isle of Man came into being.
If you look at the map, the isle of man could just about fit into Lough Neagh.
Not absolutely sure of spelling the giants' name. Anyone know?
I'd always thought Mac was a Scots thing, and Mc was Irish. But I'm not sure.
As for the Scottish giant. It wasn't Fingal, was it?
"I am a Canadian by birth, but I am a Highlander by blood and feel under an obligation to do all I can for the sake of the Highlanders and their literature.... I have never yet spoken a word of English to any of my children. They can speak as much English as they like to others, but when they talk to me they have to talk in Gaelic."
-Alexander Maclean Sinclair of Goshen (protector of Gaelic Culture)
As far as I know, the Scottish Giant was not named - just known as 'The Scottish Giant'....
OR - the thing about Mac being Scots, Mc being Irish is a well-known fallacy! Both can be Irish or Scots - Mc was a contraction of Mac... used in writing names down. As lots of Scots emigrated to Ireland during the Plantation, the authorities used Mc as a shortform of Mac... which is why so many names which appear Irish have Mc...! The same thing happened when Scots emigrated to the New World.
Oh, well, thanks for clearing that up. (truth be told, I've probably been told it was a myth before and just forgot) As for the reasons why Mac went Mc, there's always a perfectly logical explanation, isn't there.
My family name is Coyle, and that name supposedly comes from Finn Mac Cumhail (Finn MacCool) so he is quite a popular figure for me. Oldraven, I have heard Fingal in relation to the story, but usually just a "Scottish Giant." Giants Causeway is a real lovely area of Northern Ireland...stayed at the Causeway hotel both times I was up there. Dunluce Castle just to the west is awesome as well. Careful for your whiskey lovers out there...Bushmills gives tours and tastings and it is close.
P.S. If there are any climbers out there, on the tall side of the Causeway, there are some great 5.3 hand cracks that you can free climb...
"I care not whether I die tomorrow or next year, if only my deeds live after me." -Cuchullain
"Bíodh roinnt de sin agat!"
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