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Irish Fairy Tales Fairy Legends and Tradit…
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Irish Fairy Tales Fairy Legends and Tradit

af Parragon (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingSamtaler
271706,380 (3.67)Ingen
Medlem:shotwell.librarium
Titel:Irish Fairy Tales Fairy Legends and Tradit
Forfattere:Parragon (Forfatter)
Info:Parragon
Samlinger:Study
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Nøgleord:Ingen

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Irish Fairy Tales : Fairy Legends and Traditions af Parragon Books

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I don't know who Barry Leonard is, but what I have discovered after picking this up randomly in a charity shop and finding myself intrigued and irritated enough to do a bit of digging, is that this is a cheap and shoddy reprint of a volume called Fairy Legends and Traditions of the South of Ireland by 18th century folklorist Thomas Crofton Croker. What's irritating is that the final section, Rocks and Stones is abruptly truncated, along with, according to the table of contents, an appendix featuring a letter from Walter Scott.

Anyway, this is not a collection of oral tales faithfully collated and transcribed, these are muscular, literary, earthy retellings, complete with character sketches, historical anecdotes, travelogues and touches of memoir, which might make a modern folklorist pull their hair out, but which make for entertaining reading. I'm not even sure how much Croker might be over-egging the Oirishness to any degree, since his affection and delight are obvious and his ear for a good story undeniable.

The most striking aspect of this collection, for me, was that the opening story takes place at Knockshegowna, which is about five miles away from where I'm sitting typing this review. In fact, many of the stories take place in Limerick, Cork and Tipperary with recognisable places and features of landscape, making the whole thing both well-grounded and peculiarly evocative. Again, I suspect a certain amount of caricature, however familiar and affectionate, but the various social milieu and their concerns seem broadly accurate.

The stories themselves embed aspects of the oral tradition in literary constructions to highly readable and often comic effect. The tale of the Banshee of the McCarthy's is a highlight with its grand gothic bravura, and there's a hilarious ballad of a headless coach barreling through Cork. On the whole recommended, with the proviso that they are literary retellings rather than 'pure' folklore. But now I have to go see if I can find a complete edition to find out what the heck Walter Scott had to say for himself. ( )
  Nigel_Quinlan | Oct 21, 2015 |
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