The Legend of Sadhbh

Stair na hÉireann | History of Ireland

Sadhbh’s story, according to Lady Gregory’s Complete Irish Mythology describes how she was cursed by a dark sorcerer of the Tuatha Dé Danann named Fer Doirich. If he couldn’t have her, no-one would. Even better, she would be torn to pieces by hunting hounds. He transformed her into a deer where she lived in the wilds for three years, ever evading the hunters spear.

A servant of Fer Doirich took pity on Sadhbh, and told her how to break the spell. If she were to set foot in one of the forts of the Fianna, then Fer Doirich’s magic would no longer hold power over her. Immediately she fled, bounding through glens and forests to make her way to the home of Fionn mac Cumhaill. She took a great risk, finding him with his hunting party. It was only thanks to Fionn’s magical hounds, Bran and Sceolan, that she was…

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