89. Nannie’s Fun Facts! (20)

J.M.J.

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Hello, my Friend!  Nannie here!

What does Finney mean when he says…

” We didn’t get to how we can

Just hear, and feel, and sense it when

Colors come to us in these ways,

At certain times in certain days…

Let us be sure we talk again

Of rainbow’s colors…how they can

Be real to us though we don’t “see…”

Let’s just keep this ‘tween you and me…”

The concept of color is so way far beyond seeing a simple rainbow!  And when I say simple, I don’t really mean “simple”…I just mean at least the colors are right there…organized…When God gave the earth the rainbow after the Flood, we know this was the sign He promised that the world would never again be destroyed by water…  “This is the sign that I am giving for all ages to come, of the covenant between me and you and every living creature with you:  I set my bow in the clouds to serve as a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.  When I bring clouds over the earth, and the bow appears in the clouds, I will recall the covenant I have made between me and you and all living beings, so that the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all mortal beings…”  This is what God told Noah…  (Genesis 9: 12-17)

I once heard it said that God uses the natural to draw us to the supernatural. I love the wording…

Boy oh boy, a rainbow is sure a good example of that!  A rainbow can help us envision a true “bridge” to heaven…can help us with our imaginatin’s…as Finney would say!  What better place for the “golden treasure” than at the “end of the rainbow?”  Think of the wonderful song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow!”

In the early mornin’, the sunrise can bring with it so many palettes of color…”sky blue pink” is one of my favorites!  It seems like such a grand way for God to say, “Top o’ the Mornin’ to ye!”

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But let’s get back to a little talkin’ about color…think for a minute about how we say things like…”makes me see red”…”green with envy”…”purple with anger.”  They are just simple references to accepted phrases that we all understand, but color is used in a defining way to communicate intangibles.  And think about music we hear…does loud, bombastic music make us think of blue?  I don’t think so…probably red…right?  Or does sweet mellow music make you think orange?  Or maybe blue/green…do you agree?  Or maybe pale yellow?  I don’t know.  Maybe we would all have different answers to this…or maybe similar.  The point is we are relating to color to help us define how we respond to different things.  Think also about the why of the colors we love and choose for our homes, our clothing…fun to give a few thoughts to these things.                                     How about those devices that can tell where there is warmth…the “warmer colors”…red, orange, yellow.  Coolness does not register, but warmth and life do.

Check out this picture of an oil spill…the colors even seem to be in the “right” rainbow order.. 1230151003

Lack of color is not really much fun.  Finney certainly loves color… flowers, sea, sky, plants, food…

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Now going to our Dr. Joyce and his Smaller Social History of Ancient Ireland…Dr. Joyce tells us that “The ancient Irish loved bright colours.  In this respect they resembled many other nations of antiquity – as well indeed as of the present day…  ‘Whenever men are noble they love bright colour,…and bright colour is given to them in sky, sea, flowers, and living creatures.’  The Irish love of colour expressed itself in all parts of their raiment:  and…they well understood the art of dyeing.

0130161255-1-1  This is a building on the island of Inis Mór of the Aran Islands!

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This is part of a poster called “Doors of Ireland!”

126-335a In the Claddagh Village area of Galway City

Everywhere in our ancient literature we find dress-colours mentioned.  In the Ulster army, as described in the Tain, was one company with various-coloured mantles: – ‘some with red cloaks;  others with light blue cloaks;  others with deep blue cloaks; others with green, or blay*, or white, or yellow cloaks, bright and fluttering about them:  and there is a young red-freckled lad, with a crimson cloak in their midst.’  Any number of such quotations might be given.”

Dr. Joyce also tells us “We are told in our legendary history that exact regulations for the wearing of colours by the different ranks of people were made by King Tigernmas (Teernmas) and by his successor, many centuries before the Christian era: – a slave was to be dressed clothes of one colour; a peasant or farmer in two, and so on up to a king and queen and an ollave of any sort;  all of whom were privileged to wear six.”

John O’Hart in the Origin and Stem of the Irish Nation also mentions King Tigernmas.  Mr. O’Hart places the life of Tigernmas in the time frame of 1500-1600 years Before Christ.  In regards to the regulations of colour-wearing, he says that ” the clothes of a slave should be of one color;  those of a soldier of two;  the dress of a commanding officer to be of three colours;  a gentleman’s dress, who kept a table for the free entertainment of strangers, to be of four colours;  five colours to be allowed to the nobility (the chiefs); and the King, Queen, and Royal Family, as well as the Druids, historians, and other learned men to wear six colours.

Fr. John Sullivan speaks of the colors of the priests’ vestments for Mass…the white and gold (celebratory), the red (fire and blood), green (hope), purple-violet (expressive of penance and sometimes sorrow)…the rose color was not always used, but has been inserted (encouragement/refreshment).

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A beautiful rose of Tralee!

Dr. Joyce also says, “At the present day green is universally regarded as the national color;  but this is a very modern innovation, and as a matter of fact the ancient Irish had no national colour.”  Of course, we all know that in the present day, green practically = Irish…But we’ll talk about that more when we get nearer to the grand Feast of our great St. Patrick!

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So, think about the “colors” in your life…what they mean to you, and, if you can, why they mean something to you.  I love thinking about the comment mentioned earlier of how God uses the natural to lead us to the supernatural.  Just fun to think a bit about…

God bless you and thank you for visiting Finney and me!

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*blay – did not know what this represented…thefreedictionary.com says it is an adjective for Irish unbleached…and Merriam-Webster.com gives it a meaning of “bleak.”

88. Colorin’s!

 J.M.J.

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Hello, my Friend !  Hello today!

I hope you are in a good way!

No matter rain, sleet, snow, or shine,

I always hope your day is fine!

After the time of the great Flood,

I’m sure there was a lot of mud!

But God gave us a grand rainbow!

He did this so that He could show

A great, grand and wonderful sign

That from flood waters we’d be fine.

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Do we think, though, that what was seen

Was…COLOR…like our fields of green,

And roses red…orange…yellow…

Some colors of the grand rainbow…

Like flowers…water…skies of blue…

And lovely buds of violet hue.

But that’s not all…let’s think a bit…

Let’s think of  RED…like fire lit…

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Like those red roses… sweet fragrance…

Like cardinal birds we see by chance…

Like apples, berries, mornin’ sun…

There’s lots to say before we’re done

Speaking of reds and where they are…

Just where to find them…near and far.

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…Mittens and hat for my small head…

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 …little legs with fine stripes of red…

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…grand warm socks…my Cork tartan, best!

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…the red on Uncle Obie’s vest!

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…like berries that grow on the trees,

 And also leaves that change with ease.

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Also the berries Holly shows,

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And yet another grand red rose!

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Christmas reds for decoratin’

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Add much to anticipatin’,

Jesus’ birth’s Grand Proclamation…

Flowers red, help adoration

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As with joyful exclamation,

We love Christmas celebration!

…Finney’s Lantern and the red door

Of the cottage on Inis Mór…

 With Finney’s scarf… pillow…flowers…

We could think of reds for hours!

I’ll just show you my own red door…

And then I’ll speak of red no more…  😉

Sometimes I live inside a tree,

And here I am…Can you see me?

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Now ORANGE, too, is fun to see

In fire, too, just like red be!

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 In sunsets, too, and basketballs…

In many flowers…talls and smalls!

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 To speak of orange, we’ll take care

To ALWAYS mention…Finney’s hair!

And also, of course, we will say

That Finney’s Family…every day…

They each show off an orange-do,

That some can see…like me and you!

…a snowman’s orange carrot nose

…a candle’s light gives orange glows

…Pumpkins in Fall, leaves from some trees,

…Orange clouds that everyone sees

…Bright orange skies span far and wide

As we see sunset skies outside,

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Bathing the duckies with soft light,

As they do swim right in our sight!

…Dear Poochie Finney’s orange toy

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 As Finney’s by his little boy.

…Robin’s sometimes more orange breast,

…St. Pat’s hat looks like orange zest!

Christmas decorations – like red…

They come in orange, too…’tis said…

The orange glow from fire’s place,

Can dance upon a nearby face!

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Even if Finney hides his head,

Or has a cover on in bed,

Orange color finds ways to show,

Just like for flowers that do grow!

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For Yellow color, ’tis the same,

Though it does go by yellow’s name.

Some leaves…sunrises…pots o’ gold…

And sunsets, just like days of old.

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3-274 Wonderful light and gold’s grand glow,

Are all provided by yellow!

 And, of course, yellow flowers all…

For much attention, they do call!

 Their lovely color speaks of good…

Like warmth and worth and sun’s shine should…

And, now, it’s time to speak of  GREEN!

So easy to describe its scene…

On plants and branches of the trees,

We see so many different leaves!

In lovely fields with shamrock plants,

Green adds beauty to homes of…ants!  😉

We may see a grand bird of green,

But more than not, ’tis a plant’s scene.

A color of hope, green is there…

To uplift flowers…green takes care

That trees and leaves are not left out,

While flowers bloom and beauty shout

To all the world that they are here…

But always…always…green is near!

Now we have the color called BLUE!

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So often ’twill be the sky’s hue…

Or maybe ocean water… lake…

Where we might, a fine swim, just take!

A small hand loves blue water, too,

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And blue stained glass, Sun shines bright through!

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And ’tis the color mostly giv’n,

To Mother Mary, Queen of Heav’n.

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A rainbow blanket will have blue…

And some dark berries are blue, too.

Some morning glories look like sky,

Even when closed…when day’s gone by…

My gosh, I’ve had so much to tell…

I hope that I have spoken well.

But still we have two more to go…

After blue, we have INDIGO!

But I, Finney, am tired now,

And to finish…I’m not sure how!

But please be sure I’ll try my best,

For Rainbow’s tale…to tell the rest…

VIOLET comes after indigo…

But the blue still just seems to show…

After blue …before violet’s there,

Indigo’s just in there…somewhere…

_DSC4014I do not know what more to say,

So maybe what is the best way

Is to show you grand darks and lights

Of violet shades…some lovely sights!

 I am so tired…have to sleep!

Don’t worry I won’t make a peep…

Seems like there’s so much more to say…

We’ll get to it another day…

We didn’t get to how we can

Just hear, and feel, and sense it when

Colors come to us in these ways,

At certain times in certain days…

Let us be sure we talk again

Of rainbow’s colors…how they can

Be real to us though we don’t “see…”

Let’s just keep this ‘tween you and me…

But I’m so glad we talked today…

God bless you is what I do say!

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87. Nannie’s Fun Facts! (19)

J.M.J.

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 Hello, my Friend!  Nannie here!

Finney loves to talk about the Seasons!  He speaks of them, however, as we know them now…Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall.  He loves watching the quieting of the Earth’s growing during the wintertime…and especially loooves Christmastime!

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But when Winter eases away and Spring begins to announce itself, Finney is very excited about the “life” that seems to begin again as grass gets greener and new little plants begin to show themselves!

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 And when Summer blasts upon the scene with growth and budding and blooming and springtime newborns getting used to their legs…why it is just so exhilarating…

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And, then, of course, when Summer simmers down and harvest time comes and leaves start to change, Finney knows that time’s coming to cozy up by the hearth and celebrate the fruits of the Earth and thank God for it all!  Knowing that Christmas is not far away…again…the cycle of Seasons just keeps going…

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Again we go to http://www.libraryireland.com to learn from Dr. Patrick Joyce, an Irish historian who lived in the late nineteenth century to the early part of the twentieth century.  Dr. Joyce tells us in his A Smaller Social History of Ancient Ireland 1906 that “The Irish divided their year into quarters…

Earrach (sounds like arragh), SPRING…began on the 1st day of February

Samhradh (sounds like sowra), SUMMER…began on the 1st day May

Foghmhar (sounds like fowar), FALL…began on the 1st day of August

Geimhridh (sounds like gevre), WINTER…began on the 1st day of November.”

Dr. Joyce tells us that “We have historical testimony that festivals with games…were celebrated at the beginning of Summer, Autumn (Fall), and Winter; but we have no account of any such celebrations at the beginning Spring.”

The 1st of February, the beginning of Spring, was called Oimelc, signifying ‘ ewe-milk,’ for that is the time when sheep’s milk comes…It is now known as ‘St. Brigit’s festival.’ …The 1st of May, the beginning of Summer, was called “Belltaine or Beltene (sounds like beltina)…still always used by speakers of Irish.”

The 1st of  August, the beginning of Autumn, was, and is still, called Lugnasad (sounds like Loonasa).” This day is named for the “Dedannan King Lug (sounds like loo) of the Long Arms…The 1st of November, the beginning of Winter, was called Samain or Samhuin (sounds like sowin).”

Finally, Dr. Joyce tells us that “The ancient Irish counted time rather by nights than by days.  Thus in the Life of St. Fechin we are told: – ‘Moses was forty nights on Mount Sinai without drink, without food.’  In coupling together day and night they always put the night first:  in other words, the night belonging to any particular day was the night preceding;  so that what they called Sunday night was the same as Saturday night with us.”

It’s a nice bonus that Dr. Joyce often gives us pronunciations of the Irish words that would certainly be hard for any of us who have not had the blessing of hearing Irish spoken in our homes.  My Dad (David of Cobh, Co. Cork) never learned Irish as a boy in Ireland because it was during the time that it was not allowed.  He was born in 1904, and was baptized in the grand St. Colman’s Cathedral!  The following three pictures are St. Colman’s Cathedral overlooking the grand harbor…My Dad, David (feeding the birds as they come to his hand!), and the resting place of my Family in the Old Church Cemetery in Cobh (sounds like Cove).

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In regards to pronunciations of Irish words, a wonderful website is www.talkirish.com.  So many fun Irish words are presented with an audio provision…also used in a sentence.  This is a fun way to learn some Irish!

It won’t be long now and Spring – Earrach will be in the air!

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 God bless you and thank you for stopping by to visit Finney and Me!

86. “Seasonin’s!”

J.M.J.

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Hello, my Friend !  Hello today!

I hope you are in a good way!

No matter rain, sleet, snow, or shine,

I always hope your day is fine!

 It’s not been long since it’s been warm…

But now we see some snowflakes form.

Right now it feels a bit colder,

‘Twill be warm soon… when I’m older.

After that, ’twill be cool again,

Then cold…then warm…then colder when

Spring and Summer and Fall are gone,

To let, again, winter come on!

These are the Seasons that we know!

And each has its own fine, grand show!

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Christmastime, for us, has just passed…

We would have liked for it to last

A little longer, might be nice…

But ’tis not so…for now we’ve ice

And sometimes we’ll even have snow!

What days those are, we just don’t know!

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We still sometimes see geese at rest

Before they get to a southern nest,

Where each will find the warmth they need,

As well as food with which to feed.

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We still see hawks chasing their prey…

They need to eat, still, every day.

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We also see the eagles rest,

Together in their high, safe nest.

We also see the eagles fly,

When someone’s near…they fly so high!

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We see the ducks swimming some days,

Back and forth in their own ways.

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Sometimes the seagulls…they swim, too!

Right with the ducks…Yes!  They do!

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The squirrels don’t stop runnin’ ’round,

Huntin’ to find food on the ground.

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Of course, the sheep with wool so thick,

If given choice would surely pick

To just be left alone each day,

To spend their time in their own way!

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‘Tis fun in ways, when winter’s here,

But so nice, too, when spring is near.

When time comes for Winter to go,

All the while, we always do know

That seasons change and bring good things!

like Springtime when the robin sings…

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And colors of spring flow’rs appear…

Whites…Pinks…and yellows there and here…

Reds and purples and orange, too,

Are all part of flowers’ spring view!

The air smells fine…so fresh and cool,

‘Tis fun to see the raindrops pool

In puddles to jump in and spray…

Water flyin’ ev’ry way!

The frost and cold are left behind,

And no one really seems to mind!

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 …like Summer when warm breezes blow,

Also bringin’ flowers to show!

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 The horses graze in fields so green,

And sheep relax in sunshine’s scene!

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 The birds and bees fly everywhere,

While summer’s warmth is in the air…

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Days at the beach with water’s fun…

We all miss so…when summer’s done!

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 …like Fall when time for it does come,

When blazing colored leaves come from

The branches of some fine, grand trees,

That let their leaves fall with such ease!

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 Once more the brisk, cool air returns,

And Fall, its welcome, easily earns!

Cozy fires and apples fine,

Golden leaves…a grand Fall sign!

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 Chipmunks & squirrels race to find

Good food to store of every kind!

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 So,winter, spring, summer, or fall…

‘Tis just grand if you’re tall or small!

These “Seasonin’s” we have each year,

Help us to think of Heav’n as near…

God always meant for us to see

Peeks of Heaven where’er we be!

I, Finney, always want to see,

Each day’s blessin’s God gives to me.

Something I see…something I hear…

Something that seems so fine and dear…

All that’s good comes from God, I know,

To Him, I want, my thanks, to show!

 I’m sleepy now…a nap sounds good…

But I’ll get right up when I should!

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A little while, my eyes I’ll rest,

And then I’ll try to do my best,

To do what I can help to do…

Maybe…who I help will be you!

I might be near…you just don’t see…

But never be afraid of me!

I, Finney, know that you’re my Friend,

My best to you I’ll always send!

I am so glad we talked today!

God bless you is what I do say!

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85. Nannie’s Fun Facts! (18)

 J.M.J.

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 Hello, my Friend!  Nannie here!

Well…as you can see the eminent 2nd Graders had wonderful questions for Finney.

I know that Finney hopes he answered them well.  He tried!

The questions were very smart-minded in that Leprechauns are shrouded in mystery.  Those questions were a direct hit on what little we know or have heard.

It seems as if I should mention here that my perspective is one of an Irish American, daughter of an Irish immigrant.  I was not born and raised in Ireland, so my understandings are simply that of an Irish American trying to absorb and pass on the heritage that I cherish and always want to know better and better…a wonderful and mystical heritage that is so singular and unique to we Irish, and for which I am fiercely grateful for and proud of…a heritage that I sense and feel deep within myself.

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Having said that…let us continue!

Going to one of my very favorite sources, http://www.libraryireland.com, we find references to leprechauns just as naturally as to the weather or what was served by the monks to their guests who happened to drop by.

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For example, James Bonwick, in his Irish Druids and Old Irish Religions (1894), refers matter of factly to what “hospitable neighbors” provided the Leprechauns for supper!

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St. Enda’s Cemetery (Inis Mor*, Aran Islands) where history records more than 120 Saints have been laid to rest!

Dr. Joyce, in his Smaller History of Social Ireland (1906), tells us that “the leprechauns are an ancient race in Ireland, for we find them mentioned in some of our oldest tales…”  Dr. Joyce gives us a hint, too, of his opinion of the evolvement (if that’s the right word), of how a “present day story” can draw from an actual account that may have not been exactly the same.  The example I can refer to is that Dr. Joyce tells us that in an 8th Century tale, the King of the Leprechauns had been taken captive by King Fergus Mac Leide.  The King of the Leprechauns “ransomed himself by giving him (King Fergus) a pair of magic shoes which enabled him to go under the water whenever, and for as long as, he pleased…”

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Southwest Ireland

“Dr. Joyce goes on to say that perhaps this story of the magic shoes is the original version of the present superstition that the Leprechaun is the fairies’ shoemaker.”                                    (Towne, Susanne O., Irish Food…For Thought)

So, the story just got dressed up a little.  Keeping that in mind, most any written story often has a long oral tradition that precedes it, which can account for stories with an historical basis developing into topics that many believe are just made up.

‘Tis sorrowful for those who quickly come to that conclusion, when indeed there may very well be true facts at the root of a “story”… especially in Ireland.

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The casual and persistent mention of Leprechauns in Irish culture certainly shows us how ingrained their “existence” is, with many sources having “eye-witness” accounts…Walker, Mathew, Ireland, The Island of Saints (1907); The Carlingford “Story”; Peter J. McCafferty in the Herald Star Newspaper; and the Leprechaun Museum to mention just a few!)

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 Speaking of the Leprechaun Museum…I would love to be the one to let you know that “the” Leprechaun Museum is “based in the heart of Dublin.”  And I quote from their website (www.leprechaunmuseum.ie)…”Irish people have told stories about the Leprechaun for more than a thousand years.  There are many tales about him and the people he meets…leprechauns, rainbows, and pots of gold.”

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At http://www.irishcentral.com, we learn that “In his collection of Irish fairy and folk tales, W. B. Yeats offered an 18th Century poem by William Allingham titled “The Lepracaun; Or, Fairy Shoemaker.”  It describes the tapping sound of the sprite…”  Mr. Yeats, according to http://www.yourirish.com, explains the need for shoemakers in the fairy kingdom, because they love to dance!

That same website, http://www.yourirish.com gives a pretty traditional understanding of Leprechauns with mentions of little suits, hats and buckled shoes…pots of gold, underground homes guarded by trees, and caves masked as rabbit holes…leprechauns being keen musicians who love to dance and sing…  We find talk of how Leprechauns guard their gold at http://www.ireland-now.com.

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 So, now, going back to Dr. Joyce and seemingly made up stories having roots in something true…Lady Francesca Wilde in her Ancient Legends, Mystic Charms, and Superstitions of Ireland, tells us that “it is believed by many people that the cave fairies are the remnant of the ancient Tuatha-de-Dananns who once ruled Ireland, but were conquered by the Milesians.” (hard to determine exact date–one source says around 1500 B.C. — Hart’s Origin and Stem of the Irish Nation)

The Tuatha de Danann were, simply said, possessed of “special” skills (that seemed to some as “magical”) and were “excellent in all the arts as builders, poets, and musicians… and that they lived for a very long time.”  (www.libraryireland.com)

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So, even just this small example shows how some of the “ideas” we have about Leprechauns may have come from true historical fact…combine that with a possible smaller stature and all of a sudden it seems more plausible.

Hmmm…

This sure is a lot to think about…my last thought is to quote again from the Leprechaun Museum (in Dublin) website…

The Museum attempts to give you an experience that will help you “Feel what it’s like to journey deep beneath the rocks of the Giant’s Causeway” (Northeastern Ireland) to “open up your minds to the sights and stories of Ireland’s mythical otherworld on a trip to fairy hill.  Find yourself in a leprechaun-sized world and take a journey to the end of the rainbow to see if the elusive crock of gold really exists.”  (www.leprechaunmuseum.ie)

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Of course, please keep in mind you have heard from Finney directly about all these things…   🙂

God bless you and thank you for visiting Finney and Me!

*Inis Mór

84. Hello 2G!

 J.M.J.

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Hello my Friends, hello today!

I hope you are in a good way!

No matter rain, no matter shine,

I always hope your day is fine!

Thank you, dear Friends, in Class 2G!

Thank you so much for writing me!

You’ve asked fine questions and I’ll try

To answer them…each how and why!

First question is…“How much gold do you have?”

This question is such a great one!

To answer will be so much fun!

The way it’s been since times of old,

Is for Leprechauns to hide gold.

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And this is what God asks of us,

And that’s why we don’t make a fuss.

Sometimes it’s hard to do this task,

But we do it ’cause God does ask.

The golden treasure we do hide,

‘Tis both outside…as well, inside!

You ask how much we have of gold.

‘Tis been the same from times of old.

‘Tis many pots…’tis a great deal.

We work so that no one can steal,

Any bright gold that’s in our care,

‘Cause God wants it hidden somewhere…

  1. Do you have any other leprechaun friends?

Oh, ’tis yes…the fine answer here!

I love my Friends…so, have no fear!

Some Family members are grand Friends!

We often play before day ends!

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Their names are Daíthí and Pronshi.

You say David…we say Daíthí…

You say Francis…we say Pronshi!

 Pronshi, Finney, Daíthí, …we, three!

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  1. Have you ever been to St. Clement’s School?

Yes!  This is somewhere I would go!

 But this St. Clement, I don’t know!

Is he a Friend of good St. Pat?

Could be he wears a St. Pat’s hat?

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Grand place to go…St. Clement’s School!

You all must be so very cool!

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You’ll know if I have gone your way…

You just might find gold dust one day! 

  1. Is there really gold at the end of the rainbow? 

‘Tis a good question you’ve asked me!

Not easy to answer, you see.

The reason is it’s hard to find

The rainbow’s end you have in mind.

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For Leprechauns, ’tis indeed so,

Because where gold is, we just know.

Next time a rainbow comes your way,

‘Twould be so hard, though try you may,

To get to it before it’s gone…

Not so for any Leprechaun.

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God gives to each of us the ways,

To do fine things within our days.

We’re all special… just not the same…

For Leprechauns…we’ve rainbow fame.

So, though the answer’s yes for me…

‘Tis not the same for you, you see.

This story of the rainbow’s gold,

Goes to a time in days of old.

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So, though sometimes, it could be so,

Not every time would some gold show.

So, answer’s YES!  IT COULD BE SO!

That at the end of a rainbow,

A golden treasure may be there,

Hidin’ from you…hidin’…somewhere!

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  1. How old are you?

Such a good question to ask me…

Hmmm…I wonder how old I be!

I do not know just what to say…

Time for us is a certain way.

I know that I have lived so well…

But just how long I can not tell.

We, Leprechauns, we live each day,

Doin’ our work…make time to play.

I’ve seen the moon…I’ve seen the sun…

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I have been sad…I’ve had good fun.

Me Mum cooks me such fine, grand meals;

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Me Dad helps me so no one steals

Me pot o’ gold, safe, I must keep,

Yes, even when I’m fast asleep.

I’ve Family Love and Angel friends…

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A comfy bed when the day ends.

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But there is work we do…we must!

God gave to us a special trust,

God put us here…I don’t know how…

But we do know our work is now!

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How old I am, I do not know.

My memories, though, to me, show

My life is busy ev’ry day,

And that is all I know to say! 

  1. Can you swim?

A Leprechaun must learn to swim…

A needed skill, not just a whim.

Sometimes when we move pots o’ gold,

Just like we’ve done from days of old,

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We’ll stop at some nice stream or lake,

We are so thirsty that we’ll take

Some fine, grand water and we drink…

If we fall in, we will just SINK!

So, how to swim we just must know,

For when we’re near fine water’s flow…

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We will be safe, as well, our gold,

Just like it’s been from days of old!

  1. Can you slide down rainbows?

I have to say the answer’s no…

I can not slide down a rainbow.

A rainbow’s like a colored cloud…

Gentle and quiet…never loud.

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It’s soft colors and lovely bow

Will always make for quite a show!

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And you could, through it, put your hand,

But right on top…you could not stand!

It is like mist…not like the ground…

Never hard…like some stones you’ve found.

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But, Heaven’s Light, it gives the Earth,

It’s splendid sight gives it grand worth!

And just remember what we know…

“That at the end of a rainbow,

A golden treasure MAY be there…

Hidin’ from you…hidin’ somewhere!”

  1. Can you ice skate?

Ohhh…Yes!  I do love to ice skate!

When winter comes…I just can’t wait!

I take my fine red scarf with me…

It keeps me warm when it’s frosty!

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And then I go to Slippery Lake,

Where winter’s cold, the ice, does make!

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And then I slide, and race, and jump!

I have to watch for any bump!

But even if I might just fall,

(Which happens even when you’re small!)

I just get up and start again,

And I will not stop until when

Me Mum calls me and says “Finney!

Time to come home, soon dark will be!”

Maybe some day, I’ll see you there,

At Slippery Lake which is…somewhere?”

9.Where is your pot o’ gold?

Me pot o’ gold is safe with me.

But, hidden, it must always be.

Our pots o’ gold, God asks that we

Take care of them so careful-ly.

I’m sorry I can’t tell you more,

Of what the pot o’ gold is for…

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Of where the pot o’ gold does hide,

When I am inside or outside.

Just know it is part of God’s plan,

For Joy for the Fam’ly of Man.

When time does come that all is new,

Just ask our God for what is true.

He’ll tell you all you need to know…

Of pots o’ gold and the rainbow!

  1. Where do you live?

I live in more than just one place.

I, most times, need to hide my face.

Our golden treasure can’t be seen,

Not even on our fields of green.

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We Leprechauns love our Ireland,

It gives us homes that are so grand.

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Sometimes we live under a tree…

We try to live where none can see.

Our secret doors, the trees help hide,

When we come in from the outside.

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Sometimes where rocks are all around,

Gives us a home under the ground.

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That’s probably where we live the most.

And if you go to Nannie’s post…

Where my adventures she helps write…

To bring my life into your sight,

Post Number 9 will tell you more,

Of where I live and my folklore!

Thank you so much for writing me,

Thank you for being Friends to me.

You’ll always be in my heart’s prayers,

I’ll pray for you and all your cares.

I am so glad we talked today!

God bless you is what I do say!

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Note from Nannie:

Thank you to the second graders who asked Finney these wonderful questions!

God bless you and thank you for stopping by to see Finney and Me!

83. Nannie’s Fun Facts (17)

J.M.J.

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Finney is getting to be quite the Christmastime storyteller!  Must be because it is his favorite time of year!

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All…well, maybe most of, his mischief is put aside during Christmastime because Finney has on his mind that Santa Claus will know if he gets too carried away with his fun!

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But Little Christmas has a wonderful story, too!  Most of us have seen many pictures of the “Three Wise Men” or the “Three Kings,” but what do we really know about them…

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CNN had a nice little report about the “Three Kings” two years ago.  The article “Three Kings Balthazar, Gaspar, Melchior” opened with a fun picture of the “Catholic celebration of the Three Kings in Kaunas, Liturania,” on January 6, 2013.  This article tells us that Bede the Venerable, an 8th century saint, “described the kings this way:  The first was called Melchior;  he was an old man, with white hair and long beard; he offered gold to the Lord as to his king.  ”

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 “The second , Gaspar by name, young beardless, of ruddy hue, offered to Jesus his gift of incense, the homage due to Divinity.”

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The third, of black complexion, wit heavy beard, was called Balthasar;  the myrrh he held in his hands prefigured the death of the Son of man.”

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As you can see, not every image of the “wise men” stays true to these descriptions, but it is fun to have some kind of mental image.

In regard to their appearance, the article also says they are often depicted as “representing the three races.”  The name Casper is also offered as an alternative for the name Gaspar.

The article also mentions that “the Bible says they came from the East, but exactly where is not known. Arabia, Babylon, and Persia are popular choices.  According to one tradition, Balthasar was king of Arabia, Gaspar was king of India, and Melchior was king of Persia.”

Finally, this grand article tells us that the Bible (Matthew:2) doesn’t call them kings or say their names.  They are called “simply Magi, or Wise Men.”  The article explains that the “Magi were a Median priestly caste who rose to power in ancient Persia (today’s Iran).  Their religion, Zoroastrianism, was founded around the 6th century B.C. by a Median man named Zoroaster.  The Magi were held in awe as highly educated scientists and scholars who could interpret dreams and even control demons.”

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Another fun source, http://www.archive.archeology.org, has an article “The Three Kings and the Star” by Mark Rose,tells us that “in Cologne, Germany, there is a gilded shrine that, if you choose to believe, has held the remains o the wise men since the middle ages.” This article refers to the writings of a fourteenth-century cleric, John of Heldesheim, called the Historia Trium Regum (History of the Three Kings) and tells a little more about “the Star!”

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“When the day of the nativity was passed the Star ascended up into the firmament, and it had right many long streaks and beams, more burning and brighter than a brad of fire, and as an eagle flying and beating the air with his wings, right so the streaks and beams of the Star stirred about.”  More info about the wise men is given which gives the homes as “India, Chaldea, and Persia,” and that they “only meet on the outskirts of Jerusalem having traveled from their own lands “in great haste” and without stopping.”  After they offer their gifts and leave Bethlehem, they “continue together” until the reach the border of India, “before departing to their own countries.”  Apparently, there is an indication they decided they wanted to be buried together…also the indication that their remains were moved a few times…ultimately to Cologne.

So interesting these possibilities…the great Star must have been one incredible sight…never mind being bathed in its Light and guided and directed by it…

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 As it led them to the King of Kings!

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Just a little reality check…the various places given as possibilities of where each of the wise men came from and their distances from Bethlehem were:

Arabia – (Saudi Arabia) – in the area of 600 miles away

India –  in the area of 2500 miles away

Chaldea & Babylon (Iraq) – in the area of 600 miles away

Persia (Iran) – in the area of 970  miles away

Though we don’t know for sure what the details of their journeys were…and no matter how exact these distances actually are to the true journeys of the wise men, they are put into a thought provoking perspective when we remember that Joseph and pregnant Mary took almost a week to go from Nazareth to Bethlehem which was 80 miles…(catholicireland.net)

No matter how you cut it…wow…I mean it’s not like you can catch a cab!  Those camels…good for them!

Thus is the story of the great Star and the three wise men.  In regards to the Star…we tend to focus on what the “star” was and when it happened, etc.  I think the best way to say what its value is…is that it leads us to Jesus.

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God bless you and thank you for stopping by to visit Finney and me!