Celtic Legends, Halloween, Interesting Stories

The Irish Legend of the Banshee

The Irish Legend of the Banshee

The image that comes to most people’s minds when they hear the word “banshee” is that of a floating ghostly figure that wails and is in general quite terrifying. You might also be familiar with the age-old concept that banshees are considered to be portents of impending death. The whole account of the Banshee may be found here.

220px-Banshee

The Banshee, pronounced bean-sidhe is the woman of the fairies and maybe an ancestral spirit appointed to forewarn members of certain ancient Irish families of their time of death. According to tradition, the banshee can only cry for five major Irish families: the O’Neills, the O’Briens, the O’Connors, the O’Gradys and the Kavanaghs. Intermarriage has since extended this select list.
Whatever her origins, the banshee chiefly appears in one of three guises: a young woman, a stately matron or a raddled old hag. These represent the triple aspects of the Celtic goddess of war and death, namely Badhbh, Macha and Mor-Rioghain.) She usually wears either a grey, hooded cloak or the winding sheet or grave robe of the unshriven dead. She may also appear as a washer-woman, and is seen apparently washing the blood stained clothes of those who are about to die. In this guise she is known as the bean-nighe (washing woman).
Although not always seen, her mourning call is heard, usually at night when someone is about to die.

Irish families of their time of death. According to tradition, the banshee can only cry for five major Irish families: the O’Neills, the O’Briens, the O’Connors, the O’Gradys and the Kavanaghs. Intermarriage has since extended this select list.
Whatever her origins, the banshee chiefly appears in one of three guises: a young woman, a stately matron or a raddled old hag. These represent the triple aspects of the Celtic goddess of war and death, namely Badhbh, Macha and Mor-Rioghain.) She usually wears either a grey, hooded cloak or the winding sheet or grave robe of the unshriven dead. She may also appear as a washer-woman, and is seen apparently washing the blood stained clothes of those who are about to die. In this guise she is known as the bean-nighe (washing woman).
Although not always seen, her mourning call is heard, usually at night when someone is about to die.

A banshee is a spirit that does not have a physical body and can take any one of the following forms:

A stunning woman who was wrapped in a shroud.
A slender woman with a white outfit, long red hair, and a red lipstick.
A woman who is silver-haired and wears a long garment of silver.
A headless lady who is completely nude from the waist up and is carrying a dish of blood.
An elderly lady with eerie red eyes, a green outfit, and long white hair was standing there.
A geriatric lady who was clothed entirely in black and had long, gray hair. She wore a veil over her face.

Origins of the Banshee Folklore

According to historians, the first accounts of the Irish Banshee date back to the eighth century and were based on a ritual in which ladies sung a mournful song to express their condolences over the passing of a loved one. These ladies were known as “keeners,” and because they took alcoholic beverages as payment, they were considered to be sinners. As a result, they were condemned to a life as banshees as their punishment. It is said that if a Banshee is seen, she would quickly disappear into a cloud of mist while making a sound that is comparable to the sound of a bird flapping its wings. This is a part of the legend surrounding the Banshee. According to urban legend, banshees do not bring about death; rather, they just serve as a warning of impending doom.

Banshees Are Both Good and Bad 

There are a few banshees that had deep links to their family in life and remained to look after them after death. These banshees are the exception to the rule that banshees are monsters filled with hatred. When they make their appearance, these Banshees take the form of beautiful, entrancing ladies who perform a mournful, eerie song that is full of care and love for their family. This song can be heard a few days before a member of the family passes away, and in the vast majority of instances, the song can only be heard by the individual for whom it was written.

On the other hand, there is the Banshee, a terrifying creature that most of us are familiar with. She is furious and terrifying. These ladies, throughout the course of their lives, had reasons to despise their family, and now they emerge as grotesque and terrifying apparitions that are full with animosity. The howls that are coming from these banshees are enough to give you the chills all the way down to your bones, and rather than appearing to warn a member of the family, these banshees are rejoicing in the impending death of someone who they despised.

Celtic Legends, Interesting Stories

The Legend of the Selkies

The Legend of the Selkies

Stories of seal people, also known as selkies, silkies, selchies, or roane, may be found woven throughout the mythology and folklore of several countries in Europe, including Ireland, Scotland, Iceland, and Scandinavia.

A selkie is a legendary creature from the ocean that is described as being half human and half fish. This creature is also known as the sea people, the seal people, and the mermaid. They are seals when they are in the water, but as they go on land, they lose their skin and take the appearance of humans.

It is believed that seal people are plagued with an unquenchable desire for what they cannot have. When they are in the water as seals, they crave to be on land, and when they are walking on two legs as humans, they yearn to be in the water. They are able to change from one creature to another by shedding their sealskin and then either putting it back on or putting it on for the first time.

The Mystery of the Selkie

The lore that surrounds selkies is rife with controversy over their place of origin. The black hair of the Spaniards is said to have reminded the natives like seals, which led to the legend that they washed ashore many years ago after being involved in a shipwreck. According to a different legend, the so-called seal people are actually Finns who paddle around in kayaks and dress in furs. There are many who believe that selkies are actually demons or angels that fell to their deaths and were turned by the water.

After the spread of Christianity across the countries, there is even the possibility that the seal people were intended to symbolize individuals who were stuck in purgatory, locked between two different realms. One of the most widely accepted explanations for their origin is that they are the resurrected souls of those who perished in watery graves and were allowed to reassume their human form for one night a year in order to celebrate by dancing on the beach.

Selkie Myth and Legend

It is a commonly held belief that tales of selkies, like many other myths from many civilizations, were invented as an attempt to explain something that could not otherwise be explained. There were certain infants who were born with webbed fingers and toes, faces that looked like those of seals, and scaly skin that had a fishy odor. These youngsters also occasionally had scaly skin. All of these things have been given names in the scientific community in recent times. There is a genetic illness known as syndactyly that causes webbed toes. Seal faces are the consequence of the extremely unusual medical phenomena known as anencephaly. Scaly skin was most likely caused by icthyosis, a genetic ailment that affects the skin.

It’s possible that the tales of the seal people were made up as an excuse to explain away the existence of women who did not appear to belong with the rest of society. They have characteristics that are comparable to sirens, mermaids, and mermen that are seen in other civilizations. However, for people who lived on the coasts of the seas and whose survival depended on the water and the gifts it provided, it seems natural for them to have believed legends of beautiful and mysterious creatures that shed their shiny seal coats and transformed into humans for a night of dancing under the moon. These people lived on the edge of the seas.

The ancient Celts lived in a world that was just as unpredictable as the water they sailed on. It may be turbulent and raging, yet it also has the capacity to be peaceful, abundant, and life-giving. The seal people are the embodiment of all that is kind and caring about the great oceans; but, they are also capable of shapeshifting and vanishing without a trace, qualities that make them the ideal protagonists for the tragic romance stories that populate mythology.

*Photo is a Statue of Selkie or Seal Wife in Mikladalur Faroe Islands

Celtic Legends, Ireland, Travel Ireland

What Are the Different Types of Fairies?

What Are the Different Types of Fairies?

Travel to Ireland , Legends and Folklore

types of fairies , fairies

What exactly are fairies? And where exactly do fairies originate? When you question various people, you will receive different responses each time you do so. These mysterious figures have been interpreted as anything from gods to the souls of infants who have not been baptized to an ancient race of miniature humans. They are the protectors of animals and holy natural sites, yet at one time they may have been thought of as gods. They are the spirits of nature. I’ve always had the impression that the answer was somewhere in the middle. Additionally, as was discussed before, this is contingent upon the culture as well.

For any Irish lass there is nothing more captiviating than the faery world. Childhood facination with all things fairy including films that had fairies, fairy tale novels and fairy figurines of all shapes and sizes facinate kids and adults alike. But do you know there are more than a few different kinds of fairies. And that the land of the fay is far more gorgeously complex and perilous than ever envisioned! Pixies and garden fairies are the two types of fairies that are most often seen in popular culture and media. However, this does not account for brownies, elves, gnomes, dwarfs, and a great many more beings.

Fairy Types

– Nymphs: In Greek mythology, nymphs are described as being similar to fairies who live in nature. They typically take the form of stunning ladies and are linked to natural settings such as lakes, mountains, springs, or meadows in where they might be found.

– Hobgoblins: This fairy lives on farms, and since it loves the warmth of the fire, it may enter the house to be closer to one. Hobgoblins may be found in the countryside. They may be a nuisance on occasion, but other than that, they are normally of a nice disposition until they are insulted by someone. They are considered to be a member of the Brownie tribe.

– Elfs: In Norse mythology, there are two different kinds of elves: the Dark Elves and the Light Elves. Trolls are the common name given to Dark Elves in Scotland. In Danish folklore, male elves would sometimes take the form of elderly men, and if you approached too near to them, they would open their lips and make you ill with their breath. Young men were cautioned to stay away from the attractive elf lest he win their heart over and cause them to abandon their sweethearts who were dancing in the moonlight.

– Dwarves: This specific fairy is related with the folklore of Iceland and India. Dwarves are said to have lived underground and dug the earth for rich stones and metals. They gained the capacity to see through walls and became wise as a result of the magical stones they uncovered.

– Gnomes: Although many ancient legends associate gnomes with goblins or dwarves, gnomes were first categorized as earth elementals in the 15th century. This classification stuck with them until the 20th century. It was stated that Gnomes had incredible speed, but unlike other elementals, they did not possess everlasting souls. However, they did live far longer than humans. They are also well-known for the immense valuables that they preserve.

– Hobgoblins: This fairy lives in farms, and since it loves the warmth of the fire, it may enter the house to be closer to one. Hobgoblins may be found in the countryside. They may be a nuisance on occasion, but other than that, they are normally of a nice disposition until they are insulted by someone. They are considered to be a member of the Brownie tribe.

– Brownies: These lone fairies get connected to a house and reside in a dark corner of the home, in a closet, or in a hollow tree next to the home. – Brownies may be found in the United Kingdom. Brownies are helpful fairies who maintain order and cleanliness. It is said that they value it when you show your appreciation by providing them with a bowl of cream as a treat.

– Pixies: This kind of fairy is connected to the West Country in England and is referred to as a Piskie in Cornwall. Pixies may also be seen in Scotland. People in these areas virtually universally believed in pixies and piskies many centuries ago, and some of them even built “pisky pows” on their roofs to provide a type of ballroom for the fairies they thought lived there. Pixies are naughty creatures that are capable of bringing either good or bad fortune to human beings.

Celtic Jewelry, Celtic Legends, Irish Jewelry, Irish Traditions

St. Brigid Blessings and Prayers

Saint Brigid’s cross made from straw stuck in window and blessed the house and protected it from fire and evil. Concept: religion, irish, traditional

A Traditional St. Brigid Blessing

Our wonderful Brigid’s Crosses were inspired by this beautiful heritage, imitating the delicate woven pattern of rushes in precious metals such as silver and gold. Also known as Bride, Bridget of Ireland, Bride of the Isles, and Mary of the Gael, she now reigns as one of the most recognized saints in Ireland.

May the blessing of God and the Trinity be on this cross and where it sits, and on everyone who looks at it,” is a customary blessing for St. Brigid Cross.

About the Brigid’s Cross

Brigid’s cross, like the shamrock and the harp, is a wonderful Irish symbol that may be traced back to Celtic folklore. The cross is weaved from left to right, following the position of the sun, on January 31st, the eve of St. Brigid’s day. It features a layered square in the middle and four arms extending out from it, each knotted at the ends.

St. Brigid’s Feast Day

St. Brigid’s Day is February 1st and traditionally the start of Spring in Ireland.

Prayer to St. Brigid

Dear St. Brigid, brilliant star of sanctity in the early days of our Irish faith and love for the omnipotent God Who has never forsaken us, we look up to you now in earnest, hopeful prayer. By your glorious sacrifice of earthly riches, joys and affections obtain for us grace to “seek first the Kingdom of God and His justice” with constant trust in His fatherly care. By your life of laborious charity to the poor, the sick, the many seekers for light and comfort, obtain for us grace to be God’s helpers to the utmost of our power during our stay on earth, looking forward, as you did, to our life with Him during eternity. By the sanctified peace of your death-bed, obtain for us that we may receive the fullness of pardon and peace when the hour comes that will summon us to the judgment seat of our just and most merciful Lord. Amen.

Celtic Legends, Ireland, Irish Traditions, St. Patricks Day

An Overview of the Irish Celtic Cross’s Origins, Symbolism, and Meanings

The Celtic Cross is well-known as a representation of Irish culture across the world.
Discover more about the beautiful stone monuments’ distinguishing characteristics, origin, history, functions, symbolism, and significance.

Ireland’s countryside is peppered with crosses.

If you have traveled on vacation or visiting family to the lovely Emerald Isle then a Celtic stone cross is likely to be seen on your travels across the stunning Irish countryside. Symbolic of Ireland and everything Irish, Celtic crosses may be seen in nearly all of the country’s 32 counties. Celtic cross jewelry and other ornamental arts, both ancient and modern, pay homage to these exquisite stone crosses.

A Look at the Celtic Cross’ Symbolism and Meaning

Many people point to the cross’s form as the distinctive characteristic of the Celtic Cross.
The ring strengthens the cross structurally by supporting the cross’s arms.
This has led some researchers to believe that this cross’s shape is a continuation of an earlier, more delicate one.

As well as representing an angelic halo, others believe it signifies the sun or some other celestial body, such as Jupiter. The early Catholic missionaries and St. Patrick himself, according to Christian and Celtic mythology, both failed miserably in their efforts to win over the Celts to Christianity.

These Are the Four Unique Characteristics of the Celtic Cross

It is estimated that Ireland’s oldest high stone crosses date from the 8th to 12th centuries. Intricate carvings may be seen on the crosses themselves, with the earliest showing knot-work and the most recent incorporating biblical narrative and inscriptions. They dominate the Irish countryside and are awe-inspiring. Most early crosses are no more than eight feet tall, although some later ones are considerably higher. At 23 feet, the highest point, it’s intimidating. These ancient Celtic Crosses have a number of unique characteristics despite their wide range in Celtic cross design.

  • The Foundation: which may or may not be present. Usually a pyramid form, although it can also be carved to give the cross more height.
  • The Shaft: a cylindrical structure divided into panels on both sides, each containing a different design or piece of artwork representing a different character.
  • The Cap: Often absent, the Cap is a decorative element found on the cross’s upper arm.
  • The Head: You have your head, which is split into a core and several arms. To identify them, stone Celtic crosses commonly have a ring-shaped center on their heads.

What was the purpose of the Celtic Cross?

We’ll never know for sure why ancient humans began constructing such massive stone structures in the first place! High Crosses, also known as Celtic Crosses, are frequently seen at or near significant monasteries. Many were used for preaching, teaching Scripture, prayer, and penance, thus it’s possible they were utilized to demarcate boundaries or specific areas of the monastery. The more ornately carved crosses might have been an indication of the monastery’s riches and power. Many crosses are devoted to a particular event or patron saint, such as St. Patrick, or the Irish High Kings, who are remembered on them.

Celtic Jewelry, Celtic Legends, Irish Jewelry, Irish Traditions, Irish Wit & Wisdom, St. Valentine's Day

The Romantic Translation of Mo Anam Cara: Pronunciation and Meaning of Mo Anam Cara

Mo Anam Cara translates loosely as “My Soul Mate” or “My Soul Friend

Many people believe that the phrase Mo Anam Cara is translates to ‘my soul mate‘ but its accurately translates as ‘my soul friend‘ as anam is the Gaelic word for soul and cara the Gaelic word for friend.

How do you pronounce Mo Anam Cara and Anam Cara?

Mo Anam Cara is pronounced (muh aun-im-KAHR-ah) .

Anam Cara or Anamchara is pronounced (aun-im-KAHR-ah]

The ancient Celts believed in a soul that radiated about the body. They believed that when two individuals formed a deep and lasting bond that their souls would mingle. Therefore, each person could be said to have found their “anam cara“, or “soul friend“.

What does Anam Cara mean?

Anam is Gaelic for ‘soul’, and cara is Gaelic for ‘friend’. To say ‘my soul friend’ you would say mo anam cara.’ The phrase comes from the Celtic belief that souls can be connected spiritually, and can create a strong bond. Anam cara can be used to describe a friendship and a love between family, friends and partners.

It is said that there is a Celtic belief that when two souls share a unique connection they are stronger together than they are apart.

There is an existing compound word known as anamchara that literally means “soul friend.” But this really doesn’t work as “soulmate” in either definition.

Anamchara is traditionally used to refer to one’s confessor or spiritual advisor.  Originally, it was used to refer to the spiritual advisor a young monk would be assigned when he joined the monastery.

Mo Anam Cara Trinity Band by The Irish Jewelry Company

Mo Anam Cara Jewelry

Aran Infinity Claddagh Ring

Mo Anam Cara jewelry is featured in a variety of jewelry styles such Irish rings, pendants, bracelets, and brooches in various precious metals such as Gold and Silver. It is also since as an inscription on or hidden as a romantic message inside claddagh rings and Celtic wedding bands. Mo Anam Cara jewelry makes an ideal gift for that very special person in your life.

Celtic Jewelry, Celtic Legends, Interesting Stories, Ireland, Irish Jewelry, Irish Traditions

The Irish Harp: The True Emblem of Ireland

Most people if asked what is the symbol of Ireland would probably answer the shamrock. But they would absolutely be wrong. The true symbol of Ireland is the ancient Irish harp.

The Irish Harp Pendant by The Irish Jewelry Company

The National Symbol of Ireland

The Irish Harp is the national symbol of Ireland. The traditional instrument is featured on Irish coins, the Presidential Seal, the Irish passport and the Irish coat of arms. Scholars have found that the Irish harp’s popularity with the Irish people dates back to the 1500’s. However the Irish Harp can only be considered the national symbol of Ireland when it’s in ‘left facing’ form.

Only a left facing harp is the registered symbol of Ireland, why is that you ask? Blame that beloved Irish beverage company Guinness. In 1922, when Irish officials tried to register the harp as the national trademark, they were advised it could only register the rights to a left facing harp because Guinness had already registered a right facing harp as the Guinness mark and had been trading under it since 1862!

Irish Brooch by The Irish Jewelry Company

The Celtic Harp

The Celtic harp is a wire strung instrument with a triangular frame. The Celtic harp also known as the Irish Harp is traditional to Ireland and Scotland. It is known as cláirseach in Irish Gaelic and clàrsach in Scottish Gaelic. The Celtic harp is an ancient instrument associated with the ruling class and required skill and much practice to play.

The Royal Harp for for an Irish King

Trinity College’s Trinity Harp

Ireland’s national emblem is actually based on the Brian Boru Harp. Irish legend says Brian Boru played the harp the night before the Battle of Clontarf. This Irish harp is also known as the Trinity Harp, and is on display in Trinity College Dublin’s Long Room. You know the place. Its the beautifully dramatic old library of Trinity College that holds a collection of 200,000 the oldest books with the gorgeous barrel ceiling used in numerous movie scenes.

Celtic Legends, Ireland, Irish Wit & Wisdom

Six Fascinating Mysterious Celtic Women of Irish Folklore

Mysterious Celtic woman

Ancient Irish folklore has many stories of beautiful and strong Irish women of the past. Celtic women have often been depicted as holding positions of great importance, and highly valued in a very male dominated Celtic tribal society. Irish women have been venerated as a goddesses, saints, as warriors even royalty and at the same time they have been portrayed as someone to fear. I am sure the truth about ancient Irish women in Irish mythology and folklore lies somewhere between fantasy and reality.   

Grace O’Malley, the 16th Century Pirate Queen of Ireland…

Grace O’Malley was born in Ireland in around 1530. She was the daughter of Owen O’Malley. O’Malley was a wealthy nobleman and sea trader. When O’Malley died Grace inherited his large shipping and trading business. Grace O’Malley commanded a dozen ships and thousands of men. Grace’s vast empire of ships stretched from Connaught on the Irish coast to Africa. Through the daring of her piracy, Grace nearly bankrupted the English treasury-and her outright defiance brought embarrassment to Queen Elizabeth I.

International Talk Like a Pirate Day or ITLAPD is on September 19. It is a parodic holiday created in 1995 by John Baur (Ol’ Chumbucket) and Mark Summers (Cap’n Slappy), of Albany, Oregon, U.S. Remember Grace O’Malley on September 19th, International Talk Like a Pirate Day and give her an Arghhhh!

Aoife, the Wife of King Lir and the Children of Lir….

The Children of Lir… Long ago there lived a King named Lir who lived with his four children, Fionnuale, Aodh, Fiachra and Conn and his beloved wife who would son die. After grieving for his wife King Lir married Aoife. Aoife was very jealous of King Lir’s love for his four children. She used her magic to turn the children into swans. As swans they were condemned to spend 300 years at Lough Derravaragh, 300 years at the Sea of Moye and 300 years on the waters of Irrus Domann. The only way to break the spell was a blessing from a monk. Finally, after 900 years of suffering they heard church bells and returned to shore. There the spell was finally broke by St. Patrick. Unfortunately, they were so old they died soon after the spell was broken and joined their parents in heaven. The story of the Children of Lir is one about the strength of the parental child bond.

The Legendary Irish Princess Isolde …

The Irish princess, Iseult of Ireland (also Iseult La Belle or Iseult la Blonde, “Iseult the Fair”), is the daughter of King Anguish of Ireland and Queen Iseult the Elder. She is a main character in the Tristan poems of Béroul, Thomas of Britain, and Gottfried von Strassburg and in the opera Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner. Iseult is first seen as a young Irish princess who heals Tristan from his wounds.

According to Arthurian legend, Iseult (also “Isolde”) was the adulterous lover of Sir Tristan. Sir Tristan was a handsome Knight of the Round Table. Iseult was an Irish Princess who fell hopelessly in love with Tristan. But Sir Tristan was sent on behalf the King of Cornwall to win Iseult’s hand in marriage for King Mark of Cornwall. This romantic tragedy was used as the basis of “Tristan and Isolde” by Richard Wagner, an acclaimed opera.

The Banshee …

The Banshee, bean-sidhe (woman of the fairy may be an ancestral spirit appointed to forewarn members of certain ancient Irish families of their time of death. According to tradition, the banshee can only cry for five major Irish families: the O’Neills, the O’Briens, the O’Connors, the O’Gradys and the Kavanaghs. Intermarriage has since extended this select list.


Whatever her origins, the banshee chiefly appears in one of three guises: a young woman, a stately matron, or a raddled old hag. These represent the triple aspects of the Celtic goddess of war and death, namely Badhbh, Macha and Mor-Rioghain.) She usually wears either a grey, hooded cloak or the winding sheet or grave robe of the unshriven dead. She may also appear as a washerwoman and is seen apparently washing the blood-stained clothes of those who are about to die. In this guise she is known as the bean-nighe (washing woman).
Although not always seen, her mourning call is heard, usually at night when someone is about to die.

The Two Brigids; the Saint and the Goddess

Saint Brigid – The Patron Saint of Ireland …

Saint Brigid was born Brigit, and shares her name with a Celtic goddess from whom many legends and folk customs are associated. St. Brigid, also known as “Mary of the Gael“, is a patroness Saint of Ireland. Born the daughter of a powerful Irish Chieftain St. Bridget or also spelled Brigid became a nun completely devoted to relieving the misery and hardship of the poor.

The Saint Brigid’s Cross

The traditional woven cross is said to have originated during a visit St. Bridget made to a dying Chieftain in which she wove it from rushes on the floor to show the significance of Christian faith. The woven rush cross has become synonymous with St. Bridget known as the Saint Brigid’s Cross.

Saint Brigid is also the Patron Saint of the LAOH. The LAOH stand for THE LADIES ANCIENT ORDER OF HIBERNIANS. The Ancient Order of Hibernians is an Irish order, and it was organized in The United States of America in New York City in the year of 1836. Her feast day, known as St. Brigid’s day is February first.

Celtic Goddess Brigid…

The Celtic Goddess Brigid is an Irish goddess of spring, dating back to pre- Christian Ireland.  She is a venerated deity whose name means exalted one derived from ancient Gaelic word brig.  Her name is also said as Brighid or Brighit. Brigid is the daughter of the Dagda, and therefore one of the Tuatha de Dannan. The Tuatha Dé Danann, the people of the Goddess Danu, also known by the earlier name Tuath Dé “tribe of the gods”, were one of the great ancient tribes of Ireland. She is known as the Goddess of Healers, Poets, Smiths, Childbirth, and is the Inspiration for the Goddess of Fire and Hearth and a patron of warfare or Briga. Brigid said to be gentle, yet she is extraordinarily strong and stern.  

Celtic Legends, Claddagh Rings, Ireland, Irish Jewelry, Irish Traditions

The Romantic Story of the Claddagh Ring an Irish Symbol of Love, Loyalty and Friendship

Panorama of the Claddagh in Galway city, Ireland.

The Claddagh ring is a famous Irish ring with a love story that transcends time. The story of the Claddagh Ring is one of enduring love that began long, long ago in 1675 in the small fishing village of Claddagh in County Galway, Ireland. It all began when a young lad by the name Richard Joyce. The Joyce family is one of the famous Tribes of Galway. An Irish fisherman who was very much in love with an enchanting Irish lass he was hoping to one day betroth. Unfortunately he was captured at sea by pirates from Algeria. The wicked pirates sold Richard Joyce for a hefty sum into slavery. As luck would have it in an Irish sort of way Richard Joyce was sold to a Moorish goldsmith who taught him in his highly skilled craft to be an accomplished goldsmith. So impressed with his skill his captor made him his apprentice.

It is said it was during his time of servitude that he saved tiny scraps of metal and created the claddagh ring for his love whom he hoped had waited for him. Thus the claddagh ring was born.

The claddagh ring is a type of fede ring from Roman times. A fede ring is one with two hands holding a heart to symbolize friendship and love. Richard Joyce added the crown to the design to symbolize his eternal loyalty to his true love.

In 1689 the King of England, William the Third persuaded the Algerians to release all enslaved subjects. Soon Richard Joyce was able to return to Ireland and the tiny fishing village of Claddagh to be reunited with family and friends. To his joy he soon discovered after all his years of servitude his true love had waited for his to return.

And just like that with a few hundred years of embellishment and a wee bit of the telephone game at play the romantic story of the Claddagh Ring was born. Now there are several variation’s of the claddagh ring legend but we think this version of the myth is most recognizable world wide. There are even more variations on the Claddagh ring design. Some early designs from over 200 years ago depict the claddagh with a narrow or slender heart. Other older design depict the hands as more pronounced and firmly grabbing the heart.

Today there are many interpretations of the beloved Claddagh Ring design that began in the 1600’s. Reputable online Irish jewelers like The Irish Jewelry Company, world famous for their unique Irish jewelry and Claddagh Rings offer a huge selection to choose from. There are Celtic Knot Claddagh Rings, Trinity Claddagh RingsIrish Claddagh RingsMothers Claddagh Rings and so much more just to name a few.

The romantic Irish Claddagh ring design that can be expressed in so many different ways. Which one of our Claddagh rings is just right for you?

Celtic Holidays, Celtic Jewelry, Celtic Legends, Halloween, Irish Jewelry, News

Have you Ever Heard of the Legend of the Celtic Cat?

The Legend of the Celtic Cat

In Celtic folklore there is a magical set of cats or “fairy cats”. In Scotland they are known as the cait sith. In Ireland they are called cait sidhe. Whether Gaelic or Scotch Gaelic they are both pronounced as “caught shee”. The cait sidhe aren’t your ordinary felines, they are thought as fairies, even witches, and as spirit creatures that merely take the form of a cat. Those that have seen them describe them as being unusually large, all black cats with a spot of white fur on their chest. Generally, the cait sidhe is viewed as fearsome and was used as a symbol by Celtic warriors.

Our Celtic Cat Pendant is absolutely purrrr-fect! This beautifully diamond accented Celtic Cat Pendant with black enamel pays tribute to the cait sidhe. The cait sidhe is a mythical fairy creature in Scottish and Irish folklore.

Read more about Celtic Halloween Origins, Samhain Traditions, and Halloween Superstitions online at The Irish Jewelry Company.

Shop Halloween Celtic jewelry like the Celtic Cat Pendant , Celtic Fairy Pendant and the Celtic Owl Jewelry at The Irish Jewelry Jewelry Company