What? Orion is clumping around North Leinster?
According to The Meath Chronicle, artist Richard Moore and journalist Anthony Murphy are claiming that when viewed from above, the Barony of Ferrard, may represent a huge human figure, and even the star constellation of Orion. The baron stretched some 19km across the Boyne Valley, and in both counties Louth and Meath.
The article says that ‘the area covered by the colossal warrior-like individual is called the Barony of Ferrard, which comes from ?Fear/Fir Ard?, the ?High Man/Men?, originally Fir Ard Cianachta. In ancient times this area was called Muirthemne, which was ?the plain Cuchulainn called his own.?
The researchers have said that the roads bounding the barony of unusual straightness, forming the shape of the warrior.
At first glance, it’s hard to say whether if good research is behind this claim, or whether it’s a crazy notion, a prank, or an interesting artistic exercise. Personally, I can’t see any solid relationship between the ‘High Man‘ and the constellation of Orion. There’s a vague likeness, but…
As Joe McNally points out on the Forteana mailing list, it can’t be assumed that the ancient Irish saw that collection of stars as a warrior. Joe dug around, anf found that in Chinese astrology, ‘Orion’ is regarded both as two distinct constellations,
which are part of a larger region called the ‘White Tiger of the East’. In Japanese astrology, the hourglass-shaped ‘body’ of Orion is seen as a Noh or Kabuki drum. He concludes that the ‘Orion/hunter’ thing appears to be Mediterranean in origin, and that traditional Jewish astronomy may have identified the constellation with Nimrod.
Anyway, they’ve got a poster on sale, representing the ‘High Man’, and it’s being launched at an exhibition of Richard Moore?s paintings, taking place at the Martello Tower in Millmount, Drogheda, at 7pm on Monday 22nd March. The B2 sized poster costs ?15, and will be available from the Bru na Boinne interpretative centre or from www.mythicalireland.com
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