Kings & Queens

Cormac Mac Art

3rd Century A.D.

Name:  Cormac Mac Art/ Ua Cuinn  

Profession:  Warrior & High King  (227 -266 A.D.)

County:  Meath

Province:  Míde (now part of north Leinster)

Associated Sites:  Tara   Cormac's Well, Co. Sligo.

Father:  Art Ui Cuinn

Mother:  Etain Echtach daughter of Ulc

Grandfather:  Conn of the hundred battles

Consort: Der Droighen (mother of Cairpre Lifechair) :: Ciarnait (a servant of his whom he made pregnant)

Son:  Cairpre

Daughter:  Gráinne

Army:  The Fianna

Associated Deities: Morrigan Medb  Manannán Mac Lír

Warriors:  Cumhall Fionn Mac Cumhaill  Goll Mac Morna Oisín  Diarmuid O' Duibhne Fiachna Mac Conga.

King Cormac Mac Art, ruled in Tara, Co. Meath in the third century A.D.  He is credited with streamlining the Army of the Fianna which was set up with troops from many different clans around Ireland to guard the country against invasions.  

In the words of the later Chronicles of Clonmacnoise (translated by C. Mageoghagan) he was:

'Absolutely the best king that ever reigned in Ireland before himself.... wise, learned, valiant and mild, not given causelessly to be bloody as many of his ancestors were; he reigned majestically and magnificently.'

He is also credited with being a great law-maker and was instrumental in formulating Ireland's Brehon Laws.  He also is credited with rebuilding some of the monuments on the hill of Tara.  He lost an eye in battle and had to abdicate for it was an immutable law that the High King must be completely whole in body.

He owned a magical cup which broke in three if lies were told in its presence but miraculously restored itself if it heard three truths.

Stories, Myths and Legends associated with Cormac Mac Art:

Diarmuid and Gráinne

The Boyhood deeds of Fionn

The Boar of Beinn Gulbain

The Coming of Finn

The Fair of Tailtiu

Dindshenchas Teamhair (Tara)

The Siege of Knocklong (summary)

The Roscs of Mogh Ruith

The Story of Tlachta

Fighting and Peace

Cormac Mac Art in Faery

The Flight From Teamhair

The High King's Son

Cormac's Adventures in the Land of Promise

Forbuis Dromma Damghaire/The Siege of Knocklong


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