51. Ériu (Irish Mythology) (feat. Cathy)

To celebrate Saint Patrick's Day, Lizzie's friend and roommate Cathy joins to talk about the Irish goddess Ériu. We discuss sovereignty goddesses, the ways Irish mythology changed after Ireland adopted Christianity, and Irish solidarit


EU&U: https://www.instagram.com/eu_and_u/

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Sources:

https://irishstudies.sunygeneseoenglish.org/eriu-mebd/

The West's Asleep by Thomas Davis

Our cover art is by Helena Cailleaux.  You can find her and more of her work on Instagram @helena.cailleaux.illustratrice. Our theme song was composed and performed by Icarus Tyree. To hear more of their music, check out icarust.bandcamp.com.

Transcript

(musical intro)

 

Zoe 

Hello, and welcome to Mytholadies, the podcast where we talk about women from mythology and folklore all over the world. We're your hosts.

 

Lizzie 

I'm Lizzie.

 

Zoe 

And I'm Zoe. And Lizzie, who else is here today?

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, so today we are joined by a very special guest, who is my friend and roommate who I've mentioned a few times here and there throughout the podcast.

 

Zoe 

Our celebrity guest star.

 

Lizzie 

Yes. Cathy!

 

Cathy 

Hello!

 

Zoe 

Hi!

 

Lizzie 

And today, it's gonna be a few days before St. Patrick's Day.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

And, uh, Cathy, you are Irish.

 

Cathy 

Extremely so, yes.

 

Lizzie 

(laughs) And so we thought we'd talk about an Irish lady today.

 

Cathy 

Hell yeah!

 

Lizzie 

But, uh, before we begin, um, Zoe. How are you?

 

Zoe 

Ooh! I am all right. It's--I mean, I had this big project due this week. So I was, like, working on that like crazy. Um, very, very intense stuff. But I finished that, so that's good! I have spring break in a little over a week. I'm very excited for that.

 

Lizzie 

That is crazy.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, that's crazy it's March.

 

Zoe 

And, yeah. Um, yeah. It is crazy. It's March (laughs). Um, almost, um, like, halfway, three-fourths of the way through my sophomore year of college, which is crazy. Um, but yeah.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

That's exciting.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, it is exciting. How are you two doing?

 

Lizzie 

Um, I'm fine. I--my family just moved. We were living in this house for eight--well, not me, obviously. I'm not there right now (laughs). But for eight years. So that's kind of crazy.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Very weird.

 

Zoe 

Is it a nice house, the new one?

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, it's very nice.

 

Zoe 

Do you have a room in it?

 

Lizzie 

I have a place where I can sleep, but it's not, like, my room.

 

Zoe 

Uh huh.

 

Lizzie 

Actually, I don't really know what the arrangements are. But--

 

Lizzie 

--anyway. Cathy, how are you?

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

I'm good. Um, I am about to start a new job on Monday, which is so exciting.

 

Lizzie 

That is very exciting.

 

Cathy 

I'm a full time professional copywriter (Zoe gasps). Pretty sick. Yeah. Um, I'm really excited because like, I've always been a very wordy person. I love a good chat--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

As you'll see in an upcoming minute (Cathy and Lizzie laugh). But, um, yeah, I'm excited to make that, like, my full-time job and the company's really--

 

Lizzie 

And quit your service job.

 

Cathy 

I'm quitting my service job. I'm really excited to be able to sit in a chair for eight hours a day instead of walk around eight hours a day (Lizzie laughs).

 

Zoe 

Love that. That's always so nice.

 

Lizzie 

It'll be good 'cause Cathy's body's falling apart, like, now.

 

Cathy 

Literally, like, falling to pieces. First it was my knee that hurt. Then it was my lower back. And then it was the hip. Now it's the hip on the other side.

 

Zoe 

Mm. Mmm.

 

Cathy 

 And yeah, everything's just slowly crumbling (all laugh).

 

Lizzie 

Perfect timing to have a desk job.

 

Zoe 

Yeah. Yeah.

 

Cathy 

But it's great. I'm in--I'm in peak-peak mental--well (Lizzie laughs), I'm doing okay (laughs).

 

Lizzie 

I think you're doing good.

 

Cathy 

Thank you. Thank you so much.

 

Lizzie 

So who are we talking about today? Well,

 

Cathy 

Well, in honor of the feast of St. Patrick, which gets a lot of attention all over the world, we're throwing it back to pre-Christian Ireland.

 

Zoe 

Yes.

 

Cathy 

In fact, in the very beginning of the idea of Ireland. Uh, the name Ireland comes from the country's sort of matron goddess, Ériu, um, who represents Ireland in the form of a woman. So it's like Ireland, personified.

 

Cathy 

And so the name of the country comes from her name, and the old Germanic word "land," you know, quite common for a country to be called "land."

 

Zoe 

Ooh.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Yes.

 

Cathy 

Linguistically speaking, because, you know, me and Lizzie are both linguists.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Um, Ériu took on the literal meaning of like, fat, but in a more sort of poetic, you know, less literal sense.

 

Lizzie 

Like, prosperous?

 

Cathy 

Exactly. Abundant was the word that was used a lot in the--in the literature I found.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Zoe 

Nice.

 

Cathy 

So the idea then is that Ireland is the land of abundance.

 

Zoe 

Wow.

 

Cathy 

Which is true. We have a lot of...stuff (Zoe laughs). Or at least--or at least we did, until the famine.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

But that's a--that's a topic for later on.

 

Zoe 

That's so true.

 

Lizzie 

Yes. And Ireland in Irish is Éire.

 

Cathy 

Exactly. So that's the modern, sort of, connotation of the name, um, which is what you'd see on like, official government documents and coins and your passport and all that sort of thing. Um, interestingly, the dative form of Éire is Éirinn--

 

Zoe 

Ah, yes.

 

Cathy 

--which is where we get the name Erin from.

 

Lizzie 

Ohhh.

 

Cathy 

So, shout out--shout out to anyone called Erin who's listening (Lizzie laughs).

 

Zoe 

Hi.

 

Cathy 

You're great automatically. Um, it's also found in the phrase "Éirinn go Bragh," which is like a really, um, common thing you'd hear at, like, um, sports games and stuff. Um, it's sort of like the Irish version of "vive la France." It's like, Ireland forever, kind of like, come on Ireland!

 

Lizzie 

Oh.

 

Zoe 

Cool!

 

Cathy 

Yeah. Um, but yeah. Into the story of who Ériu was and what she did to get this great honor of being the namesake of Ireland. Um, so she was one of three sisters back in the pre-Christian pagan Irish days. Uh, the two other sisters were Banba and Fódhla. I guess--we should probably put the spellings of all of these--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

 

Cathy 

--in the notes of the episode, 'cause, like--

 

Lizzie 

Oh yeah, we always--

 

Cathy 

 --they're all over the place. Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Yeah!

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

And that's interesting because Brigid was also a triple goddess. She also had like, sisters who were also--

 

Cathy 

Um, and also--

 

Zoe 

(overlapping) There's a lot of triple goddesses in Irish folklore.

 

Cathy 

(overlapping) Triple goddesses feature so heavily in Irish mythology.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

It's so interesting. Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah!

 

Cathy 

The two sisters were also matron goddesses, but they weren't as big as Ériu. Um, and their story is often seen through the lens of, um, sovereignty goddesses. I mean, you guys probably know so much more about this than I do, but, um, (laughs) I'm not sure if you've talked about it before on the pod. But, uh--

 

Lizzie 

Eh, a little--a little bit. Ish.

 

Cathy 

A little bit. Yeah. What I found out, because I didn't know this either, before I started looking into it was that sovereignty goddesses are goddesses who, like, personify a certain land or area--

 

Lizzie 

Mmm hmm.

 

Cathy 

--and that if someone marries them or sleeps with them, they become, like, the king or the ruler or whatever of that land.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, so is that how, like, kings are appointed? Or is it more of a mythological thing?

 

Cathy 

I--yeah, it's kind of--it's a bit of both.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

I mean, it's sort of a symbolic representation of the king taking on the--the task of ruling the land.

 

Zoe 

Mm.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Cathy 

Like, they take the bride who personifies the land, ergo, they're taking on the land.

 

Lizzie 

That's very interesting.

 

Cathy 

This--yeah. This--this kind of trope actually features really heavily in Celtic mythology in general, but it's not really seen in, like, the mythology from a lot of other countries. It's kind of like our thing.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, like I was thinking that, like, for example, Amaterasu in Japan--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

--her thing is that, like, all of the emperors are descended from her.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

So like--so it's interesting that for Ériu, they're married to her.

 

Cathy 

Yeah!

 

Zoe 

Yeah, it kind of reminds me of the--

 

Cathy 

Or they sleep with her.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, the divine right of kings, and that, like--

 

Lizzie 

Oh, true. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

 

Zoe 

--all rulers are descended from gods or chosen specifically by God.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah!

 

Zoe 

But it's a little different, which is interesting.

 

Cathy 

But I mean, that kind of concept had to come from somewhere. So maybe that's where it originated, who knows?

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Oh, yeah. So the other three, like, super famous, uh, trio of goddesses in Irish mythology are kind of collectively known as the Morrigan. Um, they're--they're allegedly the sisters of the three sisters, Ériu, Banba, and Fódhla. Um, and they are--like I said, super unclear who actually is the Morrigan 'cause sometimes it's attributed to all three of them. Sometimes it's only one of them. But those three are, uh, Babh, Macha, and Anann.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah!

 

Cathy 

And they were goddesses of, like, war and fate, basically deciding who gets to live and die in battle. So kind of morbid, but also pretty cool.

 

Lizzie 

Ahh! I find that that's very Celtic-sounding to me (laughs).

 

Cathy 

Right? Like, you know, going into battle you pray to the goddesses. And they were represented by like, um, either a crow or a raven, and, uh, horses.

 

Cathy 

So very much like battlefield, kind of vibes.

 

Lizzie 

Ahh.

 

Zoe 

Mm. Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

But yeah. So, going back to our original trio, which is Ériu, Banba, and Fódhla, they were daughters of Delbaeth [dɛlbeɪθ] or Delbaeth [dɛlbɔθ] and Ernmas. This is, like, really old Irish and I'm used to more modern Irish, so this is hard for me to even get my head around (laughs). Bear with me.

 

Lizzie 

I mean, it's all nonsense to me.

 

Cathy 

Though, they were all--fair, I could be saying anything, and you guys would just have to believe it.

 

Lizzie 

It's true. I wouldn't know--I'd have no idea (laughs).

 

Zoe 

Yeah, it's true.

 

Cathy 

So they were all members of the Tuatha Dé Danann--

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

--who were a supernatural people in Irish mythology. You seem like you know about them a little bit. Did they come up when you talked about Brigid?

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) Well, you told me--yeah!

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

You pronounced them for me.

 

Cathy 

I did, I did! Yeah. Now I have to get them right. God, the pressure (Lizzie laughs). Um, but yeah. So they were a people way back when.

 

Lizzie 

They were sort of like a primordial god, um, race.

 

Cathy 

Exactly. Yeah. They were like the--I think they were the second round of settlers in Ireland, but they sort of came from the other world rather than you know, coming from another country. Um, It's really cool. Their name means "the people of Danu," and Danu was the sort of mother of Irish gods, sort of like, uh, Gaia in Greek mythology.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Like the-the OG goddess woman.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

So yeah. They were fun without their--

 

Lizzie 

Earth mother.

 

Cathy 

--the earth mother. Yeah. So she was the Ireland mother.

 

Zoe 

ah!

 

Cathy 

So the three sisters, Ériu, Fódhla, and Banba, they were married off to grandsons of the Dagda, who was the kind of head deity of ancient Ireland, sort of like Zeus in Greek mythology. Um, like the head of the Tuatha Dé Danann. Yeah. They were--I'm giving, like, a little bit of background because Irish mythology is really cool. And I really like it. Um, so they lived in the Otherworld, which is similar to, like, the concept of the Underworld, but less, like, death, more just sort of spirit world.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Cathy 

But they came out a lot to mingle with humans in the human world.

 

Lizzie 

So was it, um, conceived as being below the human world?

 

Cathy 

Not really. It was more just sort of different dimension.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Zoe 

Interesting.

 

Cathy 

You know, it wasn't like if you dug a hole into the ground, you'd hit the Otherworld, it was more like you--

 

Lizzie 

But it also wasn't conceived as, like, above, which I feel like is common.

 

Cathy 

No. It was more like you would go through a portal into it. Very, like, spooky.

 

Lizzie 

Hmm. Okay.

 

Cathy 

That's why a lot of, um, structures, natural structures, like fairy rings, and--

 

Zoe 

Yeah!

 

Cathy 

--you know, creepy intertwined trees, they're like super big in Ireland of being like, you know, be very superstitious of those because you wouldn't want to let the, the spirits from the other world into the human world.

 

Lizzie 

Mmm. Yeah, yeah.

 

Cathy 

--because they mess things up a lot.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

And speaking of, that's actually where we get the origin of the festival of Samhain, which is kind of like the precursor to Halloween.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

When the gates between the two worlds opens, and the spirits from the other worlds could kind of come in and roam freely in our world, and--yeah. They-they mess a lot of stuff up. But then the day after would be All Saints' Day, when the-the nice spirits would come and fix everything.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, that's so nice.

 

Cathy 

Yeah. Anyway, back to Ériu. Because you know me, I love tangents and sidetracking. Um, yes. So she was married to a guy called MacGréine, whose name means "Son of the Sun." That's s-o-n of the s-u-n. Uh, if we look back to the concept of sovereignty goddesses mentioned before, it kind of makes sense that the land of Ireland, in this case Ériu, would be married to the sun.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

I mean, not if you've ever been to Ireland, because all it does is rain (Zoe laughs). We don't get any sun. But, um--

 

Lizzie 

But as we were kind of talking about, like, in a previous episode, like, if you have a place that's cold, the sun is gonna be, like, really holy to you.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Exactly. Yeah, the Celts were such like, heavy sun wor-worshipping pagans. Like, they depended on it so heavily for all their crops. They were like, yes, we love the sun. Wish it came around some more.

 

Lizzie 

And it would be seen as, like, very, very special.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Exactly. And then it also kind of, like, ties into how Ireland is always seen as this, like, beautiful, green, prosperous, sunny place, even though it's just not. I mean, it's green, but that's from all the rain (all laugh). Yeah, so our girl Ériu was married to MacGréine, but she's also said to have had some affairs.

 

Zoe 

Ooh!

 

Lizzie 

Oh, okay.

 

Cathy 

Um, one with a Fomorian, which is a kind of another tribe--

 

Zoe 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

--named--I know! Very, like, Romeo and Juliet kind of story (Lizzie laughs).

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

So this Fomorian was named Elatha [əˈlæθə], Elatha [ˈɛləθə], something like that. Um, with whom she had a son, Bres. Uh, he went on to become one of the high kings of Ireland.

 

Lizzie 

Ahh.

 

Cathy 

So he was well up there, yeah. And then another affair she had was with really famous hero Lugh. He's actually a figure that's seen in a lot of ancient mythologies across Europe--

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

--so it's very, like, intertwined, it's really cool.

 

Lizzie 

Does he have the same name throughout?

 

Cathy 

Um, I think different versions of the same name. Like L-U, it's L-U-G-H in Irish but it might be, like, you know something else in other languages.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Um, so yeah, Ériu's, like, a little bit promiscuous, but go on girl, get your bit (Zoe and Lizzie laugh). You do you, and...Sorry. Compose myself (Lizzie laughs). This always happens. I'm, like, on a big long tangent and then I hit a very--

 

Lizzie 

Are you thinking about how Irish women are promiscuous? (Zoe and Lizzie laugh)

 

Cathy 

I mean, I'm thinking about how I'm promiscuous, I don't know about Irish women (all laugh). Um, so yeah. The Tuatha Dé Danann as a--as a whole, like as a whole clan, um, they fought a lot of battles to lay claim to Ireland.

 

Lizzie 

Mm.

 

Cathy 

First against the natives who were living there the, the Fir Bolg. They were, like, the original settlers of Ireland. Um, if you're looking at it from, like, um, an anthropological point of view, they were the ones who probably, like, actually came from Africa. The like, OG settlers.

 

Zoe 

Mmm.

 

Cathy 

Then came the Tuatha Dé Danann. Then was the Fomorians, so the tribe that Ériu had the affair with one of the guys from. Um, they sort of are generally seen as a more evil-spirited clain in mythology. I'm not sure why. I couldn't find any like, logic to why they are more looked down on.

 

Lizzie 

Mmm.

 

Cathy 

But yeah, that's why. Um, and then finally, the last sort of big battle they fought was against the Milesians. And this is where Ériu comes into play.

 

Zoe 

Mm.

 

Lizzie 

Oh.

 

Cathy 

Yeah! So the, uh, Milesians were a wave of Celts from the northern Iberian Peninsula. So like up the north of Spain and-and the top of Portugal, from Galicia, where--that's why we have, um, in Irish--the word for Irish is Gaelige. It all ties into that because--

 

Zoe 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

Yeah. Super interestingly, they brought the language with them. So Irish originated from Spain.

 

Lizzie 

I never thought about how the-the country name Ireland and the language name Irish don't sound anything related.

 

Cathy 

Right? Totally different.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

And the Milesians were descended from a guy called Míl Espána, uh, which is where we get the name Milesians from. Um, but now the name for Spain and Irish is Span. So possibly the name for Spain came from his name? I didn't do that in-depth of a search into the history of Spain, because that would have been like a whole other episode, I'm sure (Lizzie laughs).

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

I could have. Like, call me back for next week, but not this time. Yeah. So the Milesians eventually became the final settlers of Ireland after a very hard-fought battle. They're the ones who we know, say, like, the people of Ireland currently are descended from the Milesians. So I'm a Milesian.

 

Lizzie 

Nice.

 

Cathy 

I'm basically Spanish. Why am I so pale? (Lizzie laughs) Um, but the hard-fought battle is where Ériu and her sisters come in. So when the Milesians came to Ireland, the three sisters sort of stood very firm against them, um, 'cause they were also, like, brave warrior women, not just, you know--

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Lizzie 

Nice. Love that.

 

Cathy 

--idle maidens, and they--right? Strong female independent women. Um, but they--yeah, they demanded that the Milesians leave. And they said, no, and they were like, right, well, here we go. Um, Ériu was particularly bold against them. And when she was confronted by one of their leaders, who was called Donn Mac Miled [mɪld] or Miled [ˈmɪləd], I'm not quite sure, she, um, sentenced him to death is the way it's literally translated from the--from the folklore.

 

Cathy 

But what we--what we'd interpreted that as, uh, is she put a curse on him.

 

Zoe 

Hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Cathy 

She's kind of like witchy as well, a little bit cool.

 

Zoe 

Ooh!

 

Lizzie 

That's very fun.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Right? Because the Tuatha Dé Danann were all--they were sometimes said to be gods, sometimes said to be, like, fallen angels, sometimes said to be just humans with, like, magical powers. So no one's really sure what they did. But they did curse people. Yeah, so it was like, he--she--he was cursed, rather than, like, you know, she didn't just sentence him to death, the guillotine, that hadn't been invented yet. Um, but Mac Miled actually drowned very shortly after.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, okay.

 

Cathy 

So people kind of got a little bit scared of Ériu then. They're like, oh, God, this girl's for real. Like she can actually, she can actually do stuff.

 

Lizzie 

She sounds awesome.

 

Cathy 

Right? She's such a badass. Um, but sadly, even after this awesome power play, the Tuatha Dé Danann knew that they would be beaten by the Milesians because the Milesians were just much more powerful than they were.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

And they slowly started to fall back and retreat to the other world to live out their days there. Uh, they're just gonna kind of chill in peace. Um, but the three sisters, they wouldn't go quite so easily. They were a little bit stubborn in that regard, which we respect.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

And they insisted that their legacy be remembered, you know. They wanted their-their credit, credit where credit is due. Um, so they each stood on top of their favorite mountain, and they called out to the Milesians. And then they begged that the land that they loved so much would bear their names so that they could kind of live on through it.

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

Which I think is really beautiful. And because of her super powerful defeat over Mac Miled, Ériu was the one that they listened to the most. And that's how her name sort of lived on as the name given to the land. So that's how her name became the name for Ireland.

 

Zoe 

Wow.

 

Lizzie 

It's actually really nice that they, like, conquered the land but still allowed Ériu to--

 

Cathy 

But still had, like, the respect.

 

Zoe 

Yeah!

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

I love that especially, like, back in the old days, way back when, there was so much more respect given to women.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

And, like, women were treated so much more fairly than, like, you know...

 

Lizzie 

I mean, that makes a lot of sense, like, pre-Christian times?

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

Right? Don't even get me started on that (Lizzie laughs). Interestingly, though, Fódhla and Banba's names are actually also sometimes used to refer to Ireland.

 

Cathy 

But, like, not--not in any official capacity. It's more like in poetry and prose and stuff.

 

Lizzie 

Mm.

 

Zoe 

Mm.

 

Cathy 

But if you didn't know this story, you wouldn't be able to tell. You'd be like, what are they talking about here? So that's basically the origin story of Ériu, and, like, why we named Ireland after her, because she's about us. What do you guys think about--do you like--do you like the story?

 

Zoe 

Yeah! I mean, I think it's really interesting. I think that--I mean, I personally am really interested in sovereignty deities and gods that represent entire countries and gods that, um--and stories that tell the founding of a country. I think they're really interesting.

 

Lizzie 

Mm.

 

Zoe 

And I think that, like, this legend, about, like, the original, um, inhabitants of the island, and like, the different waves in which they existed. It's just a really interesting story. Like, I don't know, I just think it's cool. I find this really interesting. Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, I thought the story was like, really fun. Like, first of all, I think it's fun how Ériu and her sisters were like, they're warriors, and they're witches. And they're like--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

--I don't know, but it's just a lot going on and it's really fun.

 

Cathy 

They're a little bit of everything.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah! That's really--that's really great. And I also thought it was like--I feel like, well, it seems to me that a lot of Irish mythology is about, like, power struggles between different groups.

 

Lizzie 

So I think it's really beautiful that, like, they honored Ériu and her sisters.

 

Cathy 

True.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

They didn't have to.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

So true.

 

Lizzie 

That's quite nice.

 

Zoe 

It's also interesting that, like, the gods were defeated and sent back to their own world.

 

Cathy 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

I think that's, you know, an interesting, um--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, you don't see that very much.

 

Zoe 

Legend, like, they--that's why I think it's, you know, sort of like an explanation of where they are now, and that they're, like--exist, but not in the same plane as us. And they only--they come out very rarely, or you sort of have to choose to interact with them--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

--or accidentally stumble into interact with them. But I mean, the idea that, you know, this group of people can defeat the gods is interesting, because, you know, we're so used to seeing gods as being like, incredibly powerful, like normal--seeing gods, like, be able to be defeated. I think it's interesting considering, like, the history of, like, conquest and, like, battle, um, in Ireland, like thinking about, like, even before, like colonization, like the Vikings and stuff, like, and how...I don't know, I think that when a culture has, like, gods who are able to be defeated, it shows, like, a level of uncertainty about, like--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

--things.

 

Lizzie 

About the future of the people, maybe, as well.

 

Zoe 

Yeah. And so--but also, in the end, it's sort of like, they didn't die. It's not like they died. They were driven underground. So they're still there. And like, maybe they'll--like, they're still in existence. Maybe they'll come back one day? I don't know. Um, yeah. Maybe they're--

 

Cathy 

They're gonna pop their heads up again to say hi.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, they'll take back the land, maybe, they'll--or maybe, like, I mean, there's--they're still in existence, just not--just sort of underground in a different plane. Like, they're still there.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, yeah, you're right. Like, they weren't killed. And like, it shows that gods can be fallible, which is an interesting, like, societal view.

 

Cathy 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

We just--I guess you were--or, I think, as Kathy was saying to me earlier, like, it's kind of sad that there's like very few sources 'cause it was all, like, I don't know, destroyed, or like, lost throughout time.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

There was--there must have been, like, so many like, interesting Celtic mythology  stories--

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

--that were like, we just don't have now.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, I mean, Irish was always like, it always followed the oral tradition. So you would kind of--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

--you know, there was very few things written down up until, um, post-Christianity, when the monks, you know, came with their education or whatever. (laughing) Um, I say that like education is a bad thing. Obviously, education is great (Lizzie laughs) but, uh--

 

Lizzie 

But like, different-different education and, like, more preserving these stories--

 

Cathy 

Different education--exactly. Like, the stories would have just been told by one of the bards gathered around the fire at night, you know, or, like, in a little hut--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

And some of them also, like sort of adapted themselves into Christian-y types.

 

Cathy 

Exactly, yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Like--like the story of Brigid becoming St. Brigid.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Exactly.

 

Lizzie 

I don't know if anything similar like that happened to Ériu, but...

 

Cathy 

I think she was already banished to the other world by the time--

 

Lizzie 

Fair (laughs).

 

Cathy 

--the Christians came 'round (laughs).

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

But yeah. Uh, but she still is quite present in the--in the modern-day in Ireland, um, more so as, like, a-a symbol than an actual story.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Uh, like I said, she's sort of now the idea of Ireland personified. She represents us a lot. Um, in--yeah, she features very heavily in the arts, um, especially when the Irish Independent movement first came to fruition with Daniel O'Donnell's pro-Catholic anti-union activism.

 

Lizzie 

Hm!

 

Cathy 

Um, I could dive into the whole history of that 'cause, like, I'm a big history nerd, but I'll spare you that grief (Lizzie laughs). Basically--

 

Lizzie 

Sounds interesting, but sure.

 

Cathy 

Yeah. It was when the native Irish Catholics who were, like, very nationalistic first started saying, like, hang on, we want our country back.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Not that we ever didn't say we want our country back, but we were a little bit more passive in it at that time.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

But, um, Ériu became a very popular figure used by the Irish rebels because she kind of personified and gave shape to a particular kind of Ireland that was so unlike what people were used to seeing at the time. Like, it was throwing it back to a country of, like, brave warriors and mystical beings with magical powers and like, the idea of abundance and a thriving people. It was--she was almost--

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) And, like, before it was conquered by others as well, right?

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Exactly, exactly. It was almost like she was used as a propaganda tool.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

And--you know, if you're looking at it in kind of like a cynical way. But it was more like a, I don't know, call-to-arms of like, we want this kind of Ireland back. It was "make Ireland great again." (Lizzie and Zoe laugh)

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

We've talked a little bit about how like, like, goddesses have been used as propaganda tools.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Like, it can definitely happen. It could be--it could definitely be like, a negative thing.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Like, um, causing the displacement of other ethnic groups like we were talking about with, um, Xiwangmu.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

But also I love that this kind of sounds like very, like, the good side of nationalism, of being like--

 

Cathy 

Yeah!

 

Lizzie 

--being like, um, we want our country back.

 

Cathy 

Exactly.

 

Lizzie 

From, like, the colonizers. Yeah, like, together.

 

Cathy 

(overlapping) Exactly, yeah. And not even-not even necessarily, like, we want our country back, but we want our country to be as good as it was.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Because like, at the time, people were, like, under the oppression of the British, barely getting by, living off potatoes and milk 365 days a year. Like, that's just that's-that's not just a stereotype, that's literally--people ate that. Everyday, for their entire--

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) I mean, your dad was telling me about that.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, I know.

 

Lizzie 

 People ate, like, potatoes and, like, cabbage, and whatever.

 

Cathy 

I mean, to be fair, potatoes, cabbage, and milk provide you all the nutrients that you need in your daily life to survive (Lizzie laughs). Not thriving, but surviving (Zoe laughs). I will defend our diet until my dying day. I love potatoes.

 

Lizzie 

Okay. Great.

 

Zoe 

Alright.

 

Cathy 

That's a bit of a stereotype (Zoe laughs).

 

Lizzie 

I mean, potatoes are great.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

So, nothing wrong with that.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

Yeah. Um, but yeah. I mean, that's one of the reasons why I find sovereignty deities so interesting is because of how they're basically become symbols of nationalist movements. And, like--

 

Lizzie 

For better or worse.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, for better or worse, like, um, as I've talked about before, with, like--I mean, creating a figure, or not even like creating a figure, but using folklore and mythology from a country as, um, a call for the creation of a country and the, you know, like, the independence of a country in a culture is just so common throughout the world, and especially throughout, like, Europe. And it's just very interesting to me about how, like, these stories, which are, you know, passed down, um, from people, and, you know, most people, at first glance would think, Oh, it's just a story. But in fact, they have that much power to--

 

Cathy 

Mm.

 

Zoe 

--show people that they have an identity, and that there is like, a shared, like, experience of being--you know, in this case, being Irish and being Irish Catholic, and like--

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

--something to rally behind, which is--it's really interesting to me, um, whether the thing that they're r--like, the--in general, the thing that's being rallied behind with the symbol of the person from folklore is a good thing or a bad thing or like, something that I really don't know enough about to say whether I think is a good or a bad thing, um...

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

It's just really interesting to me. Um, I think that, like, folklore is, and mythology are all like, really powerful forces.

 

Cathy 

Very true. It's interesting that you bring that up, 'cause I actually, when I was doing, like, my little bit of research, I found this really beautiful, uh, poem by a guy called Thomas Davis. He was a nationalist around the same time as Daniel O'Donnell, so sort of, uh, early- to mid-1800s, I think it was? Um, but he--yeah, he differed a little bit in his policies. He was kind of pro, um, Catholics and Protestants mixing in terms of education, whereas Daniel O'Donnell was very like, no, the Catholics need to learn Catholicism. Um.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Davis was a bit more sort of nondenominational, shall we say. Still Christian, but you know, whatever (Lizzie laughs). But yeah, so he wrote this really beautiful poem. It's quite long, so I'll just read, like, a little excerpt of it, if I may--

 

Lizzie 

Go right ahead.

 

Cathy 

 'cause I think it really sums up what you were saying about--yeah. I think it really sums up what you were saying about, like, the person becoming, like, a-a rallying force that people can kind of come with and follow. But yeah, the last--the poem is called "The West's Asleep."

 

Zoe 

OH!

 

Cathy 

And it's sort of--have you heard of it?

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) Do you know it, Zoe?

 

Zoe 

Um, so it's quoted in the song "Let England Shake" by PJ Harvey off of her--

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

--album of the same title.

 

Zoe 

It's the first line of the album.

 

Cathy 

I love it.

 

Zoe 

It's a really good album. You should listen to it.

 

Lizzie 

Wait, is PJ Harvey Irish?

 

Zoe 

She's English, but it's about--basically, the whole album is, like, critiquing English imperialism with a focus on World War One--

 

Lizzie 

Ohh.

 

Cathy 

(snapping) Fair. Snaps, snaps, my gal.

 

Zoe 

It's a really good album, but yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, okay.

 

Zoe 

Anyways.

 

Cathy 

It sounds awesome. I would love to listen to that.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

But yes. So the original poem, not the PJ Harvey version (Lizzie laughs). It's basically--yeah, critiquing the English and sort of saying like, Oh, Ireland is doing so poorly and poor us, and this isn't great, and, you know, what are we doing? Um, but the last stanza I think, you call in the poem, right? No.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Yeah. Stanza. Is: "And if, when all a vigil keep / the West's asleep, the West's asleep / Alas! and well may Erin weep, / That Connaught lies in slumber deep. / But, hark! some voice like thunder spake: / 'The West's awake, the West's awake!' / 'Sing oh! hurra! let England quake, / We'll watch till death for Aaron sake.'" So that's a really nice--

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) Oh, that's really nice.

 

Zoe 

It is.

 

Cathy 

I know! It's a really nice--it's almost like a-a battle cry or something, like--

 

Lizzie 

Yes!

 

Cathy 

--we're doing it for Erin, we're doing it for her. We wanna--we wanna, um, you know, make her proud of us and stuff and stop her from weeping.

 

Zoe 

Yeah!

 

Lizzie 

That's really, really nice.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, I think--I love it. It-it kind of reminds me, weirdly enough, of all, like, the kind of Irish pub songs and sports songs and stuff--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Aww.

 

Cathy 

--of like, we may be shit, but you'll never keep us down for long! (Lizzie laughs)

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

(laughing) They'll come back! I'm sorry, am I allowed to swear on the pod?

 

Lizzie 

(laughing) That's such, like, an Irish mentality. Yeah!

 

Cathy 

I know, right? We suck, but we're coming back!

 

Lizzie 

That's awesome (laughs).

 

Cathy 

Yeah. I mean, we know that we're...weaklings, shall we say? We're underdogs.

 

Lizzie 

From what you told me, like, Irish solidarity is, like, real. Like, whenever you meet an Irish person, you're like, yeah! Even though you meet Irish people all the time.

 

Cathy 

I know, right?

 

Lizzie 

I don't--I don't feel that way with any Americans.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

I just start adopting them into my friend group (Lizzie laughs).

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

It was so funny. I came home from the pub one time to Lizzie and I was like, oh, yeah, I met this Irish guy and she was like, did you know him? And I was like, no, but I do now! (Lizzie laughs) We've a, we've a third cousin twice removed in common on our grandmother's uncle's sister's side (Lizzie and Zoe laugh). You know, we just all band together. It's great.

 

Lizzie 

That's really nice. And it's like, it's very beautiful that, like, people are honoring Ériu by being like, yeah, we're taking Ireland back and, like--

 

Cathy 

Right?

 

Lizzie 

--like, just calling to her, being, like, Ériu, like--I don't know.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

We're doing it for her!

 

Cathy 

She's both this, like, fierce warrior queen who, like, stood firm against the invaders, but also, like, that was sort of how she was originally portrayed. And then later on through history, she became more of like a maternal figure who was--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

--you know, supporting and nurturing the Irish people. And, you know, kind of--

 

Lizzie 

That's really beautiful.

 

Cathy 

 I know! It's lovely. And it shows you women can have it all.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

(laughs) And I feel like it's not even necessarily, like, at odds with each other. Like, her being a warrior and her being--

 

Cathy 

Right?

 

Lizzie 

--the mother of all Irish people. They actually--I feel like they go quite well together. Like, she fought for her people. And then she's like, continues to fight for the Irish people.

 

Cathy 

Right?

 

Lizzie 

You know?

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, I mean, some people consider kind of controversial that she became so, um, like, feminine.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

They think it's, like, a bad thing 'cause she's all, like, emotional, like all the talk of her weeping and all that. It's like, no, she's meant to be this fierce woman. I'm like, come on, people can weep if they're sad!

 

Lizzie 

She can be many things!

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Exactly!

 

Lizzie 

And, like, yeah, weeping isn't a bad thing.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

No.

 

Lizzie 

Weeping can be, like, very powerful, especially talking about Ireland. Like, the whole history of keening, like--

 

Lizzie 

--of mourning and--

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

--how crying can be, like, a healing, cathartic force.

 

Cathy 

Exactly.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

I have never seen anything as powerful as an Irish funeral. We know how to do funerals, right.

 

Lizzie 

Oh, I bet (Lizzie and Zoe laugh).

 

Cathy 

Just wait till one of my family members dies, Lizzie, I'll bring you with me.

 

Lizzie 

Fun!

 

Cathy 

But yeah, I mean, it is really interesting that so many people nitpick on different aspects of Ériu's sorta legacy. Um, you know, I--when you combine the imagery of the loving, caring mother figure with the kind of fierce and resilient warrior, it sort of--it personifies what a country should be. That, lik, it can care for and nurture its people and its land and provide for itself, but also, like, fight off and drive away the enemies.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

In this case, the British.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Not me being, like, controversial on the pod.

 

Lizzie 

I mean, it's the St. Patrick's Day episode. It's totally fine.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

True. But I mean, St. Patrick was British. Not many people know that.

 

Zoe 

Mm.

 

Cathy 

He--

 

Lizzie 

Did I know that?

 

Zoe 

I thought he was Roman.

 

Cathy 

No, no, no, no. He was Welsh. Basically a bunch of Irish--

 

Lizzie 

Oh, wasn't he brought as a slave?

 

Cathy 

Yes, a bunch of Irish pirates sailed over to Wales, snatched him up off the beach. I don't--I can't remember what his original Welsh name was. But it was something not Patrick. Um.

 

Lizzie 

Something Welsh?

 

Cathy 

Something super Welsh. And they brought him over to Ireland, and sold him as a slave. And he basically, uh, was a shepherd for this one farmer who I think wasn't terribly mean to him, but wasn't terribly good to him, either. He sort of just sent him out with the sheep all day and all night and was like, you're just looking after them. And while Patrick was out looking after the sheep, that's where he came--he came across the, um, shamrock with the three leaves on it.

 

Zoe 

Hmm! Yeah.

 

Cathy 

And used that as a way--no, hang on. I'm getting mixed up. First, I think there was some kind of burning bush, not like the burning bush in the Bible--

 

Cathy 

--a different burning bush. Basically, God--

 

Lizzie 

Oh! (laughs)

 

Lizzie 

At some point there were no snakes.

 

Cathy 

There were no snakes (Cathy and Lizzie laugh). That was after. But, uh, God appeared to him in some way, and was like, you know, bring Christianity to Ireland and share it with these pagan people. I wish all the listeners could see me waving my arms around so much (all laugh). I feel like it adds so much more to the story. But anyway. Yeah. So God appeared to him and was like, bring Christianity to these people. And he was like, cool, how do I do that? And then he found the shamrock, which to him, sort of put into context, the idea of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, all three of them as separate entities working as a whole. And he brought this to the high king of Ireland, and he explained it to him on the Hill of Tara, and then the high king was like, right! (claps) We're all Christians now. And then he got rid of the snakes.

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

And now there are no snakes in Ireland except in the zoo. I don't know where the snakes comes in, actually. I think it was more like, kind of like Jesus performing a miracle. The high king was like, okay, but really, like, what can you do? And he was like, snakes!

 

Lizzie 

I honestly thought that's what St. Patrick's Day was about, the snake thing. So I was very wrong.

 

Cathy 

No.

 

Zoe 

No.

 

Cathy 

Not at all. No. It's kind of--

 

Zoe 

It's his feast day, right?

 

Cathy 

Yeah it's a feast of him, and it's sort of a celebration of like, yeah, he brought us this lovely thing called Christianity, which was great for a while until the Catholic Church sort of usurped it and made it not so good. But I won't get too political on the pod (all laugh).

 

Lizzie 

I wonder if Ériu's sort of, like, maternalification and, like, the loss of her warrior side--if it had anything to do with, like, the coming of Christianity where, like, women were meant to be--

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Quite possibly!

 

Lizzie 

--more nurturing, you know--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

(overlapping) Definitely, yeah.

 

Lizzie 

--more just, like, mothers and wives.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, I would say that played a big part in it. I mean, I couldn't find any, like, concrete sources on it because academia and religion in Ireland are very intertwined. But, um...

 

Lizzie 

Fair.

 

Cathy 

Yeah. A hundred percent could see that being the reason she was sort of downgraded to this, like, oh, little mommy figure who's just looking after everyone and being really lovely. When in fact, she was this badass bitch who defended her country, like, as long as she could, until-until she was standing on top of Uisneach, which is her favorite mountain that she chose, and being like, you better name this land after me.

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) Ah, where is that?

 

Cathy 

Jesus, I don't remember now. I can look it up real quick. I feel like it's in Kerry. I don't know why Kerry's coming to mind, probably.

 

Lizzie 

I don't even know why I asked. I don't know--I don't know places in Ireland (Zoe laughs). Well, except County Dublin.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, you know now that Dublin is a county. I've been telling her for--

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, I asked--I asked Cathy what county Dublin was in and she made fun of me. That's the story behind that.

 

Cathy 

What county is Dublin in. Dublin.

 

Lizzie 

It's in County Dublin.

 

Cathy 

I mean--

 

Lizzie 

How would I know that?

 

Cathy 

(overlapping) --it's not to be confused with, like, Dublin City, and then Dublin County, so fair, we'll accept your stumble. Um...(Lizzie laughs) I think it's like--I think it's like Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Metropolitan Area. I don't--I don't know. I'm trying to pull things out of my--

 

Lizzie 

Counties are bigger, I feel like, in the US. I don't know. What do I know?

 

Zoe 

I don't know.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

I don't even know what we were talking about. Oh, I also feel like with the coming of Christianity, it changed the aspects of like--the figures were, like, just less multifaceted in terms of, like, they could be many things, but now it's like they're either good, or they're, like, bad, or they're like--

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

So true.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah. I mean, I don't know. I'm kind of speculating here. But...

 

Cathy 

No, that's--I would definitely agree with that. They became way more...binary, for lack of a better word. I think it possibly has to do with the fact that the old pagan gods were always connected with some form of nature. Like the, um--the husbands that the three sisters were married off to. MacGréine was to do with the sun. One of the other ones, I think, was to do with the forest. And then another one was, like, horses or something like that.

 

Lizzie 

Oh!

 

Cathy 

It was all, like, tied into the natural world, 'cause obviously the pagans were very into the natural world and worshiping, um, the world around them. Um, but you know, the natural worlds can be great, like the sun brings the crops and lets the food grow and stuff, but it can also cause drought. And, you know, the rains make the grass grow, but that also causes floods.

 

Lizzie 

Mm hmm.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

So I think that probably ties in with this sort of multifaceted element that you're talking about, Lizzie.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Whereas with more, um, modern gods, like in Christianity, for example, it was more just like this all-powerful, all-seeing all-doing being, but we just have to love him unconditionally. You know, it's very...different.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, whereas I feel like with like, the pre-Christian multi-, like, many deities, like they can be good and bad. And you can revere them, and you can fear them.

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Lizzie 

And think well of them and think poorly of them. And it's just like, everything is like a lot of complexity.

 

Cathy 

Exactly. Yeah.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

But it's super interesting.

 

Lizzie 

It is.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

I think the main element of the pre-Christian religion was more you had to respect them. Like, it didn't matter if you liked them or disliked them, like, you could curse the sun or revere it or whatever. But you had to respect that it was powerful. And therefore the god associated with the sun had to have your respect as well. And that's why they did like offerings and stuff to show, like, we're giving you something as well.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Cathy 

That's about all I had to say.

 

Lizzie 

Okay, I think we're good on time.

 

Cathy 

For once--for once, I'm out of words.

 

Zoe 

Wow.

 

Lizzie 

No, that's--it's nice.

 

Zoe 

I was--this has been super fun. Um, I have never been to Ireland, but I love Ireland and I love Irish history and Irish mythology. And so this is very fun for me. I'm

 

Cathy 

Good, I'm glad!

 

Lizzie 

I've also never been to Ireland, but I definitely plan on Cathy taking me at some point.

 

Cathy 

Hell yeah.

 

Zoe 

I want Cathy to take me to Ireland.

 

Lizzie 

I know. Group trip.

 

Cathy 

You should all--everyone, all the Mytholadies gang should come to Ireland (Lizzie laughs)--

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

We'll organize a meetup. It'll be great.

 

Zoe 

We should. We really should.

 

Lizzie 

A little tour of the mythological sites.

 

Zoe 

Yes, we should! Oh, my gosh!

 

Cathy 

Yeah! There's so many of them.

 

Lizzie 

I bet.

 

Cathy 

You can literally stop at any--the side of the road anywhere (Lizzie laughs). You'll find, like, a fairy ring or something.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, oh my gosh.

 

Lizzie 

That's so cool.

 

Zoe 

I love that so much.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, I know.

 

Cathy 

But Lizzie, you have to drive. Okay,

 

Lizzie 

Okay, (laughs) I can't drive on the left. But...

 

Cathy 

I can't drive on the anything. I don't have a license.

 

Lizzie 

Okay.

 

Zoe 

Wait, is Ireland on the left side?

 

Cathy 

Yeah.

 

Zoe 

Eugh.

 

Lizzie 

Maybe your dad can drive us.

 

Cathy 

It's fine! It's the same but opposite. Actually, my dad would love to give a tour of Ireland and just talk--

 

Cathy 

He would just talk and talk for days on end. Like, if you think I talk a lot, he--like, he's where I learned it from. So he's the OG chatter.

 

Lizzie 

I bet he would.

 

Lizzie 

He does talk a lot. Yeah.

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

Yeah (laughs).

 

Zoe 

So we'll go to Ireland and Cathy's dad will give us a tour (Lizzie laughs). Sounds great.

 

Cathy 

Shout out Jarlath.

 

Lizzie 

Awesome. Shout out.

 

Zoe 

Well, Kathy, where can we find you? Are you working on any other projects right now?

 

Cathy 

I am. So my personal social media is not super interesting at all. Don't bother following me there, I post my face and that's about it. Um, but I'm also working with this really cool organization called EU&U. We are a team of young people all around Europe, uh, sort of college-age, little older, a little bit younger. And we essentially are working towards, um, demystifying the concept of the EU, sort of breaking down the barriers to understand better what they actually do, who they are, who we are, I should say, because we're all EU, um, and sort of--yeah, just inform people more about this, um, political organization that does so much for us. Um, so you can find us on Instagram @EU and U--oh, no, @EU-underscore--

 

Lizzie 

We'll put a link in the description.

 

Cathy 

Yeah, it'll be in the--it'll be in the--link in bio, blah, blah, blah.

 

Zoe 

Mm hmm.

 

Lizzie 

Yeah, I follow them and they're very educational. I learn a lot from following them.

 

Cathy 

We are very educational, yeah.

 

Zoe 

Yeah!

 

Cathy 

I personally do a segment every week called The Weekly Roundup where we sort of recap the-the news that's been going on, uh, during the week, both--mainly focused on the EU but also a little bit from around the world. We also do, like, little history snippets and cultural snippets. We do, like, um, a gastronomy tour of different dishes from different countries. Um, there's a series on what the EU does to tackle fast fashion problem, it's a--

 

Cathy 

 --super well-rounded talk. I appear in a little reel, filmed in my bedroom (Lizzie laughs). But yeah, so it's a super interesting platform that you guys should check out if you want to know more about the EU in general. And...yeah. Have a look.

 

Lizzie 

Which you appeared in a reel.

 

Zoe 

Awesome.

 

Lizzie 

Nice.

 

Zoe 

Yeah, thank you so much!

 

Lizzie 

And Happy St. Patrick's Day!

 

Zoe 

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

 

Cathy 

And happy St. Patrick's, everybody. I gotta teach you guys how to say it in Irish.

 

Lizzie 

(overlapping) Yeah, what's that phrase again? Éirinn-Éirinn na Bragh, or something like that...

 

Cathy 

Éirinn go Bragh.

 

Lizzie 

Éirinn go Bragh.

 

Zoe 

Éirinn go Bragh.

 

Lizzie 

I think that's what I said.

 

Cathy 

Long live Ireland. And--

 

Zoe 

Yeah.

 

Cathy 

--how you say "Happy St. Patrick's Day" in Irish is "Lá Fhéile Pádraig."

 

Lizzie 

Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

 

Zoe 

La-Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

 

Cathy 

Lizzie, um, round out your vows a little bit more.

 

Lizzie 

(gasps)

 

Zoe 

(laughs)

 

Cathy 

Linguist! (Lizzie laughs). Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

 

Lizzie 

Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

 

Cathy 

Lá Fhéile Pádraig. That's better. Actually I think it's Lá Fhéile Pádraig [ɸɑ’ɗɾɪk], there's a H in there so...Don't get me started on Irish phonology. It makes even less sense than Dutch phonology.

 

Lizzie 

It's ridiculous.

 

Cathy 

It really is (Lizzie laughs). But yeah. Lá Fhéile Pádraig, guys.

 

Lizzie 

Exactly.

 

Zoe 

Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

 

Cathy 

Amazing, Zoe! Good job.

 

Zoe 

Thank you! Thank you.

 

Lizzie 

Whatever.

 

Zoe 

All right. Well, thank you so much for listening to this episode. It was so fun to have another guest star on

 

Cathy 

Thank you guys for having me on!

 

Zoe 

Yeah. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe, leave a review, tell all your friends. And we'll see you in two weeks for another episode. Thank you.

 

Lizzie 

Good-bye. Thank you.

 

(outro, underscored by music)

 

Lizzie 

Mytholadies podcast is produced, researched and presented by Elizabeth Lacroix and Zoe Koeninger. You can find us on Instagram and Twitter @Mytholadies and visit us on our website at mytholadies.com. Our cover art is by Helena Cailleaux. Our music was written and performed by Icarus Tyree. Thanks for listening! See you in two weeks.