Irish Sagas at UCC University College Cork



Echtra Fergusa maic Léti

Background information

References in the Annals of the Four Masters

M2545.1 Rudhruidhe, son of Parthalon, was drowned in Loch Rudhruidhe, the lake having flowed over him; and from him the lake is called.

M106.1  Tuathal Teachtmhar, after having been thirty years in the sovereignty of Ireland, was slain by Mal, son of Rochraidhe, King of Ulster.

M123.1  The first year of Conn of the Hundred Battles as king over Ireland.

M157.1  Conn of the Hundred Battles, after having been thirty five years in the sovereignty of Ireland, was slain by Tibraite Tireach, son of Mal, son of Rochraidhe, King of Ulster, at Tuath Amrois.

Annals of Tigernach, Revue Celtique, 16, 1895

p. 404 Fergus mac Leti, qui conflixit contra bestiam hi Loch Rudraige et ibi demersus est, regnauit in Emain annis .xii.

Lebor Gabála Érenn (Macalister), Volume 1

p. 165 The Scoti … are called Feni from Fenius Farsaid.

Lebor Gabála Érenn (Macalister), Volume 3

p. 7 Loch Rudraige [is named] from Rudraige. It was there that Rudraige was buried; when his grave was dug and he was buried, it was there that the lake burst over the land at that time.

Lebor Gabála Érenn (Macalister), Volume 5

p. 301 Eterscél Mór … took the kingship of Ireland for a space of five years. Fergus son of Leite was over the Ulaid at that time.

The History of Ireland (Geoffrey Keating), Volume 1

p.165 … the eruption of Loch Rudhruidhe, in which Rudhruidhe himself was drowned.

The History of Ireland (Geoffrey Keating), Volume 2

p. 159 It was Eochaidh Feidhlioch who divided the provinces of Ireland amongst the following. He gave the province of Ulster to Fearghus son of Leide.

p. 243 Tuathal Teachtmhar … held the sovereignty of Ireland thirty years. He was called Tuathal Teachtmhar, as every good came in his time.

pp. 255-257 It was this Tuathal Teachtmhar of whom we are speaking who imposed the Boraimhe on the people of Leinster, as a tax to avenge the death of his two daughters, whose names were Fithir and Dairine. Now, there was a king over Leinster whose name was Eochaidh Aincheann, and he married Dairine, daughter of Tuathal Teachtmhar, and took her to Leinster to his own fortress, that is to Magh Luadhat; and some time after that he went to Tara and told Tuathal that Dairine had died, and asked him to give him his other daughter, that is Fithir, and Tuathal gave her to him, and he took her to Leinster to his own fortress; and when Fithir saw her sister Dairine alive before her, her soul quitted her body suddenly through shame; and Dairine having come to lament her died of her grief on the spot.
Now when Tuathal heard of the death of the two ladies he became enraged, and sent out messengers in all directions to the nobles of Ireland to complain of the treachery which the king of Leinster had practised against him; and accordingly the nobles of Ireland gave aid in warriors and auxiliaries to Tuathal with a view to avenge this outrage; and when Tuathal resolved to plunder and despoil the people of Leinster though they were unable to meet him in the field, they agreed to pay a tribute, themselves, and their descendants to Tuathal, and to each king who should succeed him, as a retribution for the death of these ladies.
The following is the amount of the tribute that was paid every second year by the Leinstermen to the kings of Ireland as a penalty for the death of the children of Tuathal, namely, three score hundred cows, three score hundred ounces of silver, three score hundred mantles, three score hundred hogs, three score hundred wethers, three score hundred bronze caldrons.

pp. 261-263 Conn Ceadchathach son of Feidhlimidh Reachtmhar, son of Tuathal Teachtmhar of the race of Eireamhon, held the sovereignty of Ireland twenty years, and was treacherously slain in the district of Tara, being found alone there by Tiobraide Tireach son of Mal, son of Rochruidhe, king of Ulster. Indeed, Tiobraide sent fifty warriors disguised as women to slay him; and it was from Eamhain they set out to do that treacherous deed.

p. 267 This king … was called Conn Ceadchathach, from the hundreds of battles he fought against the provincial kings of Ireland.

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Related poem online: Aidheda Forni do hUaislib Erenn Inso (The Deaths of Some of the Nobles of Erin, This)
Whitley Stokes, Revue Celtique, Vol. 23, 1902, pp. 304-305, verse 3.
Digital Edition at (pp. 304-305)

Fergus son of Léite was a hero:
he went to the monster — ’twas a silly start —
so that they have fallen together
on the red Fertas Rudraigi.

Related saga online: Aidedh Ferghusa meic Léide (The Death of Fergus mac Léide)
Standish H. O’Grady (ed. & tr.), Silva Gadelica, (London: Williams and Norgate, 1892), Volume 1, pp. 238-252; Volume 2, pp. 269-285.
Irish text at (pp. 238-252); English translation at (pp. 269-285 (302-319)); English translation at; English translation at Tech Screpta

Related saga online: Caithréim Conghail Cláiringhnigh (The Martial Career of Conghal Cláiringhneach)
Patrick M. MacSweeney (ed. & tr.), Caithréim Conghail Cláiringhnigh, Martial Career of Conghal Cláiringhneach, (London: Irish Texts Society, 1904).
Digital Edition at

Related saga online: Aided Chuind Chétchathaig (The Death of Conn of the Hundred Battles)
Osborn Bergin (ed. & tr.), Zeitschrift für Celtische Philologie, 8, 1912, pp. 274-277.
Digital Edition at (pp. 274-277); English translation at CELT; English translation at
Eochu Bélbuide (See Section 1)

Related saga online: Bóroma (The Boroma)
Whitley Stokes (ed. & tr.), Revue Celtique 13, 1892, pp. 36-124.
Digital Edition at (pp. 36-124)); Irish text at CELT
For Tuathal Techtmar (See Section 1), see §§1-14.

Standish H. O’Grady (ed. & tr.), Silva Gadelica, (London: Williams and Norgate, 1892), Volume 1, pp. 359-390; Volume 2, pp. 401-424.
Irish text at (pp. 359-390); English translation at (pp. (401-424 (434-460)); English translation at

O’Mulconry’s Glossary, Archiv für celtische Lexicographie, 1, 1900
p. 270 (282), §795. Luchorp .i. oirb locha.

Airec Menman Uraird Maic Coise (Byrne), Anecdota from Irish Manuscripts, Volume 2
List of the gnathscela Herenn includes:
Echtra Fergussa maic Lete, p. 44 (140), §4, line 4

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R = The Rennes Dindshenchas (Stokes), Revue Celtique, 15-16, 1894-5
M = The Metrical Dindshenchas (Gwynn)
S = Silva Gadelica (O’Grady), Volume 2
R: Emain Macha §161 (See Section 7), Part 5, pp. 279-283
M: Emain Macha (See Section 7), Volume 4, pp. 309-311, p.459
R: Laigin §9 (See Section 1), Part 1, pp. 299-301, (‘Laigin’)
M: Lagin I (See Section 1), Volume 2, p. 51, p. 102
M: Lagin II (See Section 1), Volume 2, p. 53, p. 102
B: Laigin §3 (See Section 1), pp. 471-473, (‘Laigin’)
S: Laigin (See Section 1), p. 500 (535)

Cóir Anmann: Fitness of Names (Stokes), Irische Texte, Ser. III.2
Conn Cétchathach §111 (See Section 1), p. 335, p. 415
Laigin §174 (see Section 1), pp. 363-365, p. 419
Tuathal Techtmar §109 (See Section 1), p. 333, p. 415
Ulaid §245 (See Section 1), pp. 387-389, p. 422

Cycles of the Kings
Conn Cétchathach; High Kings of Ireland
Fergus mac Léti; Kings of Ulster
Túathal Techtmar; High Kings of Ireland
Emain Macha


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