Seanachaí (Irish Storytellers)

  • When: 8th Mar 10:30am & 12:30pm & 2:30pm
  • Where: Arney St
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A seanachaí was traditionally a servant to the chiefs of the tribe and kept track of important information for their clan. It was a position of power and respect. They held the key to the culture’s past and its most important memories and traditions. Over time, many of the seanachaí became wandering souls, belonging to no one community. Instead they travelled from one community to another offering their skills of storytelling. This was usually in exchange for a warm bed and some food. It is here that the stories began to be used to entertain and thrill the listeners.

The seanchaí could recite ancient lore and tales of wisdom whenever it was needed. It could be considered as something of the Google of ancient times.

Due to their role as custodians of an indigenous oral tradition, the seanachaí are widely acknowledged to have inherited–although informally–the function of the bard of pre-Christian Ireland.

The seanchaí is an important link in Celtic/Irish cultural heritage. It continues to play a dominant role in the oral tradition, bringing old stories to life for modern-day listeners.