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    ...the Fenian Saga, as a whole, does not seem to have had its origin among the Gaelic population proper, but among some tribes dispersed in early times among the general population and looked down upon by them as the remnants of an earlier and inferior race; the people whom the genealogists of the tenth century called the Firbolg.
    The only sept that claimed descent from Fionn is the Dal Cais, i.e., the O'Briens of Munster. It is said that Fearcorb, their progenitor, was son of one of Finn's daughters by Grainne, d. of Cormac mac Airt. As the Dal Cais, or Dalcassians, were unknown to fame until shortly before the time of Brian Boromhe (Boru) and his brothers, it is clear that this Munster genealogy was invented after that time to dignify the ancestry of their race.

    Eleanor Hull, 1906

    Detail from the Pinkerton map of Ireland, 1813.
    Above: detail from the Pinkerton map of Ireland, 1813.
    Map © Cartography Associates, from the Rumsey Collection.

    Left: detail from satellite photo (click for larger version).

    Charon (MIT Project) 1989, James Coleman ©