Eerieland: A Tour of Paranormal Ireland by
POSTED: 16 March 2000
Perhaps Ireland would be more appropriately named Eerieland. This Saint Patrick’s Day
weekend, kick back and take a tour of the strange and bizarre thriving in this beautiful
Banshees are female spirits whose loud cries are believed to announce the death of a
loved one, usually a family member or close relative. It is said of the Banshee:
"The banshees, the fairy spirits of doom, only appear to aristocrats. They are themselves
the spirits of beautiful young ladies from the finest families who cannot enter Heaven
until another equally well-bred and beautiful young lady has died to take their place.
The appearance of a banshee is not in itself an ill omen; but once she starts to weep and
howl, a death in a noble family is certain."
Banshees are found in Celtic folklore and have been reported in America and in other
Fairy folklore is widespread in Ireland generating some strange eyewitness accounts and
even more bizarre superstitions. In Unexplained Mysteries of the 20th
Century by Janet and Colin Bord, there is an account of a
schoolboy named John Keely who claimed to have seen fairies one day in 1938 in
Rathkeale while walking home. Although his story was met with skepticism, a group of
men hid as they watched John communicate with fairies that were 2 feet tall with beards
and no ears. The men chased the fairies away. In Ireland, they say:
"If you live in the country, do not stay up too late at night. The fairies may want to hold
a meeting in your house and they will be merciless in their vengeance if you prevent
them from doing so in secret. If you must stay up , make sure that there are animals with
you, particularly cats, for the animals will know if the fairies are coming."
Bleeding statues have been sighted numerous times among Catholics in Ireland.
However, the most fascinating accounts of statues of the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ
occurred in the summer and fall of 1985 throughout Ireland. Numerous churches
reported statues coming to life and moving around. On 16 August 1985, startled
church-goers in Melleray, Cappoquin, received messages from a statue of the Virgin
Mary that miraculously came to life.
The Ghosts of Ireland do more than make occasional appearances or move things around,
they also sing. In 1977, numerous people in Monkstown, Dublin, heard a man’s voice
singing songs such as "Danny Boy" and "Old Man River" in the middle of the night.
The Lake Monsters of Ireland
Many lakes in Ireland are "haunted" by mysterious, serpentine creatures. A few of these
lakes include; Lough Attariff, Waskel, Abisdealy, Auna, Dubh, Fadda, Mask, Nahooin,
Shanakeever, Bran, Lackagh Lake, Sraheens, Ree, and Bray.
On 22 February 1968, seven members of the Coyne family living in
Connemara, Ireland, watched a strange creature in the nearby Lough
Nahooin. It was about 4 meters long, had two humps on its back, and what
appeared to be horns on its head. It also had a long neck and slick,
black skin. Attracted by the commotion on shore, the creature swam toward
the startled witnesses with its mouth open, then turned and continued
swimming aimlessly. The Coynes watched the thing until nightfall and
never knew what it was.
Another strange creature of the Irish lakes is the Dobhar-Chu of Lough Mask. Also
called the dobarcu or dhuragoo, this "water hound" has been reported to attack people. It
is described as sort of looking similar to a large otter, white in colour with black ear tips
and black across the back. It is said by some to look like "half wolfdog/half fish".
In Roderick O’Flaherty’s book, A Description of West Connaught written in 1684, he
recalls a startling incident of the dobhar-chu.
"There is one rarity more, which we may term the Irish crocodile, whereof one, as yet living,
about ten years ago had sad experience.
The man was passing the shore just by the waterside, and spyed far off the head of a beast
swimming, which he took to be an otter, and took no more notice of it; but the beast it
seems lifted up his head, to discern whereabouts the man was; then diving swam under
the water till he struck ground: whereupon he run out of the water suddenly and took the
man by the elbow whereby the man stooped down, and the beast fastened his teeth in his
pate, and dragged him into the water; where the man took hold of a stone by chance in
his way, and calling to mind he had a knife in his jacket, took it out and gave a thrust of it
to the beast, which thereupon got away from him into the lake.
The water about him was all bloody, whether from the beast's blood, or his own, or from
both he knows not. It was the pitch of an ordinary greyhound, of a black slimey skin,
without hair as he imagines.
Old men acquainted with the lake do tell there is such a beast in it, and that a stout fellow
with a wolf dog along with him met the like there once; which after a long struggling
went away in spite of the man and his dog, and was a long time after found rotten in a
rocky cave of the lake when the waters decreased. The like they say is seen in other lakes
in Ireland, they call it."
And finally, let’s not leave out the famous leprechauns of Irish lore. It is said, "By using
the power of a certain herb, the leprechauns know how to find all the crocks of gold that
are hidden all over Ireland. But nobody has ever been able to persuade any of them to
reveal the name of the herb."
A Touch of The Irish by Sean Desmond. Unexplained Mysteries of The 20th Century by Janet and Colin Bord. Unexplained! by Jerome Clark.