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14 December 2011
Don't move megaliths, or Irish fairies may wreak revenge!

The Aughrim Wedge Tomb, a 4,000 year old megalithic burial tomb which once stood on the slopes of Slieve Rushden, in the township of Aughrim (Co Cavan, Ireland), now sits incongruously in the grounds of Slieve Russell Hotel, in Ballyconnell, Co Cavan. But why, was it in danger and needed saving from destruction, like so many other ancient monuments? Well, not really. It just happened to be inconveniently located in the path of the expansion of a massive quarry! The quarry owner, Sean Quinn, who was once purported to have had a personal wealth of € 4.7 billion, moved the monument, stone by stone, to the other side of the village, to allow the expansion of his quarry.
     Some believe that this interference with such an ancient site was bound to cause the wrath of the fairies, so the downfall of Mr Quinn, his bankruptcy and collapse of his empire would have come as no surprise to them. Others have put his demise down to him gambling with Anglo Irish Bank shares. But which is true? According to an Irish Folklore expert, Seamus MacFlionn "Cavan is full of ancient sites like these and therefore many people there would be more superstitious about moving any ancient rath, tomb or fairy tree". Others claim that such belief is "... A load of auld rubbish..." My money is on the fairies!

Edited from The Independent, Irish Central (22 November 2011)

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