Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

From my reading:

"The Druids called themselves the "Naddreds" which is Gaelic for "Serpent Priests." The Druids or Naddreds held the symbol of the Serpent and Dragon in the highest honor as the symbol of royalty. It was recorded the Druid Arphaxad referred to himself as thus: "I am a Serpent." The main symbol was a serpent wrapped around a rod or a tree. The title Dragon is passed down from Latin Draco which means "Serpent" " http://goo.gl/Jf3neX

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

He didn’t drive any snakes out of Ireland, so they weren’t of a kind. Also, the rod of Asklepius was mentioned in Greek mythology, so the Druids didn’t have dibs on it.

Posted by .

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

They were green snakes.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Ask Samuel L. Jackson.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Don’t know about snakes, but I understand he banished a few things from sessions:

http://tinyurl.com/m6uwt5x

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

What did St Patrick say to the snakes as he was driving them out of Ireland?
"Are ye all right in the back lads"

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"What did St Patrick say to the snakes as he was driving them out of Ireland?"

Hiss off.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

**snorts tea out of nose**

Thank you for all of the above. :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Long, thin, wriggly ones I expect.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Don’t know about St. Patrick, but Noah - when the floods subsided - release all the creatures from the Ark (including all the snakes) and told them to: "Go forth and multiply!!

But the adders appealed to Noah, saying: "We are adders, and therefore we cannot multiply!"

So Noah got out his toolbox and made them some log tables ….

… cool sharp exit … ;-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"The Druids called themselves the "Naddreds" which is Gaelic for "Serpent Priests."

The Welsh for snake is ‘neidr’ - plural ‘nadroedd’. This actually has the same root as English ‘adder’ (‘a nadder’ => ‘an adder’, cf. German ‘Natter’).

Since grass snakes (the only other native snake in the British Isles) are harmless anyway, it seems likely that the snakes banished by Pat were adders…. There again, maybe the poor harmless grass snakes got banished as well.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Since grass snakes (the only other native snake in the British Isles) "

There is a third native species, though it is rare -

http://www.arc-trust.org/advice/species-id/reptiles/smooth-snake

There are three native lizards as well. The common lizard, the sand lizard and the slow worm.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"There is a third native species, though it is rare - (smooth snake - ed.)"

Oh, I’d forgotten about them. Just looked at the pictures - beautiful creatures. Ireland doesn’t know what it’s missing.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

The slow worm (a legless lizard) is NOT native to Ireland but was introduced by some jerk in the 1970s. Furthermore, Ireland has NO native snakes. The landmass that became Ireland was separated from the old European continent before the end of the last ice age, whereas Britain was separated later, giving time for the snakes to move north from Europe to Britain. The ancient Gaelic kingdom of the Isle of Man (Ellan Vannin, named after “Manannán Mac Lir” the Gaelic god of the sea) also has no native snakes, showing that it once belonged to the separate landmass that became Ireland before Britain separated from continental Europe, before itself splitting off.
“Nadredd” is NOT Gaelic! It’s the Welsh word for “adders”. (the ‘dd’ is a dead give-away that it Welsh rather than Gaelic). The Druids of Ireland have no association at all with serpents, none whatever! ‘Nathair’ is the Gaelic for “adder”. Of course Irish people knew of snakes, not just because of their knowledge of Greek and Latin literature but because they travelled and were sea faring folk. Clearly wishing the Irish to believe in the great magical powers of their novel middle eastern religion, Christians made the extraordinary claim (by lying) that Ireland’s snakes were deported by the Welsh bishop who was appointed “Bishop to the Christians in Ireland” (i.e., the British Christians living in Ireland.) Snakes simply don’t feature in ancient Irish religion.

It’s important to get good scholarship on all things Irish, Gaelic, or Celtic in general. Surfing the web for ‘information’ will land you firmly in ‘make-it-all-up-as-you-go-along-and-hope-no-one-will-notice-land’. For Gaelic or Christian mythology you really need to ditch the net and go find some books!

Liam de Paor’s book “Saint Patrick’s World” is the definitive historical work on the famous Welsh tourist.
On the genuine beliefs of early medieval Irish society: “Pagan past and Christian present in early Irish literature” by Prof. Kim McCone is good.
On Irish legends Dr. Muireann Ní Bhrolcháin’s “An Introduction to Early Irish Literature.”
A great translation of some of Ireland’s great myths: “Early Irish Myths and Sagas” (translated by Jeffrey Gantz, Penguin Classics) is truly excellent, for the selection of mythology as much as for the superb translation. Jeffrey Gantz has also translated the Welsh epic “The Mabinogion” (also Penguin Classics).
Myles Dillon’s translations and classic commentaries on Irish mythology are also interesting.
And if you want some Fianniacht legends from Ireland, then read “Tales of the Elders of Ireland” (also Penguin Classics), the dialogue between Saint Patrick and Oisín (son of Irish hero Fionn Mac Cumhaill) after he returned (after 300 years) from the land of youth.

And if all this appeals to you, why not learn Gaelic and immerse yourself in the source of all this wonder?(it will also be the door to mastering the subtleties of Irish traditional music!)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"The slow worm (a legless lizard) is NOT native to Ireland "
Did anyone say it was?

"Furthermore, Ireland has NO native snakes"

Did anyone say there were any?

"British Isles" were the words used.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

And is Ireland included under that colonial collective term?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"And is Ireland included under that colonial collective term?"

Irrelevant. It seems that you assumed it included Ireland, however.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I understand the sensitivity around the words "Britain" and "British". Even so, it does always make me pause, remembering that those words are of Celtic origin. Also, that the islands concerned have been called "the British Isles" since the time of the Ancient Greeks. It’s not a colonial term, at least not in origin. It vastly pre-dates such stuff.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I wonder what Breandán Breathnach thought of all this?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

That’s a pretty good summary of the historical facts, gam. Not a bad video. I caught what I think are a couple of little errors, plus it doesn’t take into account the changing political meaning of terms such as "the British Isles", whatever their bland, technical meaning might be.

The two errors, assuming I’m right that they are errors, are:

1 that England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are "Sovereign States". They’re not. That’s why they’re in a Union.
2 that someone who calls themselves "Irish" is saying that they come from The Republic of Ireland. I know plenty of people who come from Northern Ireland who would call themselves "Irish".

Useful vid, even so. It’s quite simple really, isn’t it? :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

We call them "The Atlantic Isles" now (academic writers typically use this term now, as it doesn’t have colonial or pro-occupation connotations). Elizabeth the first’s court sorcerer, noted deviant and Satanist John Dee was the first to coin the phrase “British Isles” (this during mass-extermination of the Irish in the north by Elizabeth’s forces), and it was used throughout as a term to mean that Ireland’s natural place was to be subservient to Britain. In Iceland the Islands were apparently known as the Western Lands, but “The Atlantic Isles” is probably best.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

As someone resident in Northern Ireland, who has faced too much bigotry and sectarianism, can we keep personal opinions and political viewpoints out of the forum and just stick to music? Please?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Atlantic Isles? Really? Can’t say I’ve seen that one.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"John Dee was the first to coin the phrase “British Isles” "

Somewhat short-sighted. Dee’s words were the first recorded by the OED in something approaching English (Brytish Iles). There were others well before him (Pytheas- who Ben was probably referring to) and, of course, Claudius Ptolemy in the 2nd century (Brittanicae Insulae - which included "Hiberniae Britannicae Insulae").
This might enlighten you:

"The term British Isles is an older name than Britannia; and the British Isles of the writers anterior to Caesar are the two large ones of Albion and Ierne, along with the numerous smaller ones that lie around and between them. Albion means England and Scotland; Ierne, Ire-land. The distinction between Britannia (== Great Britain), as opposed to Ierne, begins with Caesar; the distinction between Britannia (== South Britain),as opposed to Caledonia, is later still. The Greek writers keep the general powers of the term the longest."

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus:text:1999.04.0064:entry=britannicae-insulae-geo

Blame the Greeks and Romans if you must blame anybody.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Greek and Latin terms are not used as pro-colonial weapons. The English term “British Isles” (favoured by the colonists) is!

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Dia dhaoibh! Greetings all!

Given Celticagent’s previous discussion, perhaps St. Patrick listened to music on "serpents" and that’s why he banished them!

All the best

Brian x

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

So when they said certain species of reptile were native to "The British Isles" they really meant they were native to "Britain". I’m glad that’s cleared up.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

But it’s not a "pro-colonial weapon". If it was, why use a Celtic word? What it actually means is the "Celtic Isles". How can that be "pro-colonial"? I do accept the *change* of meaning for some people later, but it’s not the origin of the term.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"So when they said certain species of reptile were native to "The British Isles" they really meant they were native to "Britain". I’m glad that’s cleared up."

It perhaps meant that they were native to the mainland of Britain, the Isle of Wight, some of the Inner Hebrides, bla bla bla. And saying that they were native to "The British Isles" would not be wrong, (though it would not mean all of the islands - for example, they are not native to the Scillies, and there are only slow worms on Lewis - no snakes).

"Greek and Latin terms are not used as pro-colonial weapons. The English term “British Isles” (favoured by the colonists) is!"

It could only be conceived as a weapon by those touchy enough to let words cause wounds.
Most of the people I’ve met who have been particularly touchy in that respect have turned out to be settlers - Americans or Australians - or feigning it for political effect.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Look at a field guide to almost anything and you will find species "native to Europe" that are not native to any of the islands you are talking about. It doesn’t mean that "native to Europe" is not correct and useful.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"So when they said certain species of reptile were native to "The British Isles" they really meant they were native to "Britain". I’m glad that’s cleared up."

Reptiles don’t respect political boundaries - they’re just not very good at crossing the sea. It’s still reasonable to say that a creature is ‘Native to the British Isles’, however restricted its range within the isles.

From a geographer’s perspective, the mainland of Great Britain, The Isle of Man, Orkney, Shetland, Fair Isle, The Hebrides, The Scilly Isles, The Isle of Wight and the whole island of Ireland are all, like it or not, part of the same big archipelago. An archipelago needs a name and, until anyone comes up with a better one, ‘The British Isles’ is what it’s called, irrespective of any political boundaries (of which there could soon be more than one) within it.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

A breathless video, gam! And lots of inaccuracies.

The narrator incorrectly states that “Great Britain” does not include off-shore islands such as the Isle of Wight. If this were true, the inhabitants of the Isle of Wight wouldn’t be UK citizens. UK is short for: “United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland” - not “United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and sundry off-shore islands”

The narrator refers to the Shetland Islands and the “Auckland Isles”. Never heard the Orkneys called the Aucklands. The Auckland islands lie the sub-Antarctic, south of New Zealand – on the other side of the planet! I think that our narrator needs a geography lesson!

Referring to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales he states that “.. all three have their own devolved parliaments. Wales doesn’t have a parliament, it has an Assembly.

I don’t recall it being mentioned, but the British Isles also include three dependencies of the British Crown: the Isle of Man and, by tradition, the Bailiwick of Jersey and the Bailiwick of Guernsey in the Channel Islands - although the latter are not physically a part of the archipelago. A couple of years ago, A TV advertising campaign which claimed that Jersey was “the warmest place in the British Isles” upset the Scillonians, who claimed that Scilly was the warmest place, as Jersey wasn’t part of the British Isles. They lodged a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority, but they didn’t win …

Notwithstanding the above, the term “British Isles” is considered to be politically incorrect my many these days. Some atlas makers no longer use this term on their maps and the Irish government uses the term: “Britain and Ireland”.

But back to the question of there not being any snakes in Ireland. I’ve visited the zoological gardens in Dublin, and they definitely have some there! ;-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

You’re wrong about Great Britain, Mix. It really is just a name for the big island. The fact that the other things, as defined, make no sense doesn’t alter the definition of Great Britain.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I’ll look up the others later …

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Ah. I see where the confusion lies. Apparently, there was once a political animal called "Great Britain", with a slightly different definition from the geographical definition of - AFAIK - the only extant use of the term, which is that "Great Britain" is the big island, and not the surrounding islands. That definition has existed throughout, even when the separate, political definition (which included some, but not all, of the surrounding islands) also existed.

IOW, the video is right on that score, as I said previously. :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I dread to think of the disputes in store if there is a "yes" vote up north in September.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I see no logical reason why The Isle of Wight could not be part of a "Kingdom of Great Britain" but not be part of Great Britain, if that (K of GB) was what the kingdom was called.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

A sort of terminological opposite to the "Lordship of the Isles" since I don’t think "the Isles" included the big one even though the Lordship was over part of it.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Up north" meaning Scotland. Let’s hope the foreign occupation there is ended, which it should be provided the BBC fail convince people that the Scots really can’t govern themselves and that the ATMs will start dispensing bubonic plague if the Scottish people reject colonial English rule.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

""Up north" meaning Scotland. "

Yes. Up here. Most of Scotland is "doon sooth" to me though.

"Let’s hope the foreign occupation there is ended"

What "occupation" is that?

You seem to be a bit confused.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Ben @David - Wikipedia - albeit a generally a reliable source for information - is not always accurate.

Other websites carry a different definition:

http://www.know-britain.com/general/great_britain.html

"Great Britain is the largest island in Europe. "Great Britain" is the collective name for the three countries of England, Scotland and Wales. It also includes the small adjacent islands but it does not include the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man."

The term: "Great Britain" is merely a shortened form of "Kingdom of Great Britain".

Otherwise, the Isle of Wight wouldn’t be part of "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" (UK) - as I said above!

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Hey! No one has yet mentioned the difference between "Northern Ireland" and "Ulster".

And what about Shetland? There’s some guy who’s occupied one of the smaller islands up there, claiming that he has evidence that Shetland isn’t part of Scotland …

And what about those followers of St. Piran, down in the south-west? They don’t consider that Cornwall (Kernow) is part of England. There’s ongoing arguments between them and their Devon neighbours north of the Tamar regarding the origin of the pasty ….

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"And what about Shetland? There’s some guy who’s occupied one of the smaller islands up there, claiming that he has evidence that Shetland isn’t part of Scotland …"

And yet, in 1979 when there was a referendum over Scottish devolution, Orkney and Shetland voted no - Orkney having the largest no vote of all regions. Jo Grimond sought dispensation that the Northern Isles would remain part of the UK if Scotland voted to depart.
Not Norway or Denmark, but the UK.

Strange old world.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"And what about Shetland?" My deleted post above was poking a stick at Weejie over "up north" but I saw I was crossing with him. Also, at the time, I couldn’t find this: http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2012/jun/30/shetland-independence-vote-scotland

Which came out just after I had got back from holiday up there, where London seems a long, long way away. I said that to someone who’s response was "and Edinburgh"

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Great Britain is the largest island in Europe. "Great Britain" is the collective name for the three countries of England, Scotland and Wales. It also includes the small adjacent islands but it does not include the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man."

Yeah, Mix. I wasn’t relying on Wikipedia. But the website you linked to, and this definition, are wrong. It seems to be a misunderstanding of the phrase "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland", which is a single phrase with its own definition, and encompasses more than the sum of "Great Britain" and "Northern Ireland".

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

… and yet Ordnance Survey seems to think it does include some islands (but not all, judging by their picture). I can’t find anywhere that refers to a proper definition in law. Some sites say they do, but they don’t, when you drill down through what they’re saying.

Hmmm …

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

X-Posted! The "associated islands" do not of course include the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I don’t think geographic terms are defined by law. The Ordnance Survey, as a public body with the term in its name, may not be the most reliable source of its use as a geographic term.

For example, Sheet 95 of the current 1:50 000 series is of the Isle of Man

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Not immediately obvious if it’s still in the name, but it describes itself as "Great Britain’s national mapping authority".

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

The mapping of Northern Ireland is carried out by a separate agency called "the Ordnance Survey of Northern Ireland."

That’s why the OS describes itself as "Great Britain’s national mapping authority" and not the "UK’s national mapping authority".

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

The Isle of Man is not part of Great Britain so the OS has no obligation to map it (although they have produced some maps) .

The Isle of Man has its own mapping agncy - see note on OS website:

"Unfortunately, at this time Ordnance Survey have no plans to increase our range of OS Explorer Maps with coverage of the Isle of Man. The Isle of Man has its own mapping agency. If you would like to purchase an Isle of Man map at a different scale than the OS Landranger Map, you should contact the individual mapping agencies"

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

HMRC seems clear on the issue, and agrees with me. That’s because I’m right. :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

…which is making me wonder which OS Landranger map gives the least land and most sea. No 39 looks like a contender. It’s friday afternoon. I’m going home.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Ben: HMRC? Meaning Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs". I sure that they know that the Isle of Wight is is part of Great Britain - so you can’t avoid paying your tax by moving there … :-(

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

No. they know that "Great Britain" doesn’t include anything except the big island. Which is why, in their various guidance notes, they specifically define what *they* mean as "Great Britain" as including the islands. If it already included it, they wouldn’t have to define it as such. I’ll get you the wording (assuming I can find it) later. You’ll see what I mean.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Wait but what about the snakes?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Ben: HMRC may be the authority on taxation, but the’re not the authority on mapping*.

That’s down to Ordnance Survey …

*As was my geography teacher, when I was at school, come to that !

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

deltasalmon: "Wait but what about the snakes?"

They all work for HMRC.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"they specifically define what *they* mean as "Great Britain" as including the islands. If it already included it, they wouldn’t have to define it as such" No. They may define it as such for the benefit of (or more likely to avoid hassle from) people who are sure in their own minds that it doesn’t include the islands.

Even, I suppose, those tiny little fly-speck-on-the-map islets 50m offshore.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

That’s true, David. These officials like to cover their own backsides.

I recall a list of rules on a board in one of our local parks.

One of the rules stated that you "must not throw stones or any other missiles".

When I read it, it conjured up in my mind a picture of someone launching an ICBM … :-(

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Must not throw stones or any other objects, including, but not limited to, …

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Ordnance Survey are interested in maps, not the meaning of the term. Great Britain is still just the big island. ‘S what it means.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Ben: I’ve just found a wikipedia article on “Great Britain”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Britain

Here’s what it says:

Great Britain is the largest island of the United Kingdom. Politically, Great Britain refers to England, Scotland and Wales in combination,[13] but not Northern Ireland; it includes islands such as the Isle of Wight, Anglesey, the Isles of Scilly, the Hebrides and the island groups of Orkney and Shetland. It does not include the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, which are self-governing dependent territories.

Why is this the case? Here’s the answer:

The Act of Union (1707) joined the Kingdom of England with Kingdom of Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, That’s when the term: “Great Britain” was first used. The Kingdom of England included islands such as the Isle of Wight and the Kingdom of Scotland included the Scottish isles.

It follows that the term “Great Britain” includes those above islands.

QED

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I know: "politically". You’re selectively quoting. Read the rest. Geographically, AND WHAT IT ACTUALLY MEANS, is the big island. Just the big island. Great Britain.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Geographical labels are political.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Political labels are not necessarily geographical.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

What about those fly-speck-on-the-map islets 50m offshore ?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Geographical labels are political." Not sure. I think "Africa" is primarily a spatial designation.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

[*For Gaelic or Christian mythology you really need to ditch the net and go find some books!*]

er … what’s Christian mythology? Dragons, demons and all kinds of monsters? … or does it include talking snakes and talking donkeys, too?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

As a Yank living out in the far-flung diaspora, I will let y’all sort out what to call your collection of islands just north of France and such. My vote would be for "The Cold and Rainy Isles"

As for yer man and the snakes, Patrick - I believe the "snakes" are simply a metaphor for driving out paganism; a story clearly concocted by the marketing department of early Christendom in the Cold and Rainy Isles.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Hmnmm seems like most of the exchange has been about the meaning of "Britain". Well FWIW I always thought that the word came from a European mainland word ‘Pritani’, which is what they called folks who came from the windy islands and it did not have anything to do with which tribe the person belonged to.

Now please don’t stomp all over me because the Romans or somebody else changed that to mean something else. I don’t care! I will continue believing what I was taught.

Back to the Irish snake thing; I have my own theory, no less whacky than any other.

I believe the earliest civilized inhabitants of the Island were Danites, later calling them selves D’Danan. That would explain the prominent symbol of the coil in their culture, and later societies, in the Island. For example the Sun symbol found carved on stones all over the Island. It is a coil design. Some primitive dance forms still exhibit it today, indeed far eastern European communities employ the very same patterns and still use the old type bagpipe and drum for their ‘coil/snake’ dance music.

Having then admitted that these symbols are of a coil and not the sun, you may disagree with me, I then link that idea with the mark of the Danite tribes, not only in Britian ( here I mean the old pre Roman definition here not the new ) but all over the Continent as well. You may investigate that for yourself. I merely wish to offer it here.

So the snakes that Patrick is reputed to have gotten rid of isn’t an animal at all, but a society and its customs.

In further support of my theory I offer the modern interference of the Christian Church in Ireland and ELSEWHERE designed to kill off and neutralize the real music, the ‘draiocht’, the beating heart of that which the Gaels called the music of the Sidhe. That which they claimed to have taken by driving its owners, the D’Danan, into the hills!

Never happened. What really happened is far less colorful and scarcely dramatic. The populations then, as now, simply melded together, so the same roots exist allover Ireland, as well as all over the rest of the Islands, and W Europe.

So that today the Danite ‘snake’, and its music, is still around for us all to be entranced by, and some ever captured in its reverie, Pipers, Fiddlers and the rest.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Ben: The geographical designation for the large island of the west coast of Europe is "The Mainland of Great Britain"

It’s not just "Great Britain".

But I’m not going to argue about it with you any more. Arguments about semantics are pointless.

It’s rather like telling someone that you are going on a European holiday when you’re actually taking a week in a boarding house in Bognor Regis. Sure, Bognor Regis is in England and England is part of Europe. Nonetheless, the statement is intended to be misleading.

British Isles, Atlantic Archipelago - call it what you will - we can turn up at a a session pub in any country within that region and sit down and play tunes with people that we’ve never met before.

That’s what’s important. :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Sorefingers wrote: "I have my own theory, no less wacky than any other."
Um, nope! That is crazier than any other theory.

The actual history of Ireland has been studied in great detail, so there’s no need to argue against the main thrust of this fictionalised account of Ireland before the Christians and during the Patrick period. However, some comments (on other matters mentioned) are in order:

1. There was no need for the hagiographers to make up allegories about Patrick crushing the old religion; these same guys wrote about Patrick actually killing Druids in battles of their respective magic (Celtic vs. Middle Eastern), (just as St. Peter, in Acts of the Apostles, killed people who disagreed with him views by miracle.) The modern alegorical interpretations (apart from having no evidence at all in their favour) miss the point that the legend was trying to explain and play on the fact that Ireland doesn’t have any actual snakes (actual snakes, not figurative ones), and put it down to Patrick’s superior middle eastern magic!

2. The opposition of the modern Church to music is the result of two influences. First, the fact that when the penal laws ended in the 18th century and Catholicism was again made legal, the replacement Catholic Church was fiercely pro-occupation, pro-English, anti-Gaelic culture. (Divide and conquer again, as elsewhere in the british empire): “We’ll allow your church power provided you support us 100%!” Witness the collaboration of the church (all of them actually) with state during the Famine! (Interestingly enough, priests from Liverpool and elsewhere in England tended to victims of the Famine even when Irish bishops were saying it was never right to default on rent owed, even though the "rent" was life-saving food.)

In line with English policy, the church establishment opposed the Gaelic language as well at Gaelic music (a marked change from the clerics who fled Ireland in 1607). They effectively enacted the policy of Sir Edmund Spencer, who wrote in 1596 : “For it has ever been the use of the conqueror to despise the language of the conquered and to force him by all means to learn his.”

The new Catholic church in Ireland effectively became a branch of the brutal London government. Douglas Hyde wrote of parish priests expelling hedge-school masters from towns and burning their Gaelic books (At the time Gaelic was banned from being taught and the Catholic church famously collaborated, and this at a time when many Protestants were trying to learn, preserve and revive Irish Gaelic.)

The second reason the modern church opposed music (as well as traditional peasant beliefs, fairies, charms, legends, dancing, laughing, drinking, and anything sensual) was that the priests who came from Europe to educate new young Irish priests after the end of the Penal Laws were puritanical Augustinians, devoted to Saint Augustine who thought music gravely sinful and hated anything enjoyable or sensual.

(All the more reason to learn Gaelic, I’d say!)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Also, it’s not "D’Danan" (no idea where that came from);
it’s "Dé Danann". "Dé" meaning ‘gods’ and "Danann" meaning ‘of Danu’ (who was an Irish goddess). ["Dé" is pronounced "Jay", in case you’re interested, not ‘de’ as with the band. And the "D" of "Danann" is soft.]

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

and "Danite?", where does this term come from? Isn’t it an American sect?
(It’s worth remembering that it was the Irish Christian monks who wrote down and preserved our pagan mythology; & they were doing this up to the 17th century.)
But seriously, made-up history sucks! Go research the real history, it’s much more interesting and rewarding!

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Go research the real history"….
There’s no such thing as ‘real’ history. There is only actuality and we can never know actuality or ligitimately present it in words..

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Charles C.
Shook up your world eh?

When it comes to making up history I see you are an expert.

Catholic church 100 % behind British rule …whatever…. There are things in the Island called ‘Mass Rocks’ where the natives worshiped in hiding and where sometimes the unfortunate preachers were shot by the British army of the day.

Anyone that would write the rubbish about it that you just did has to be a nasty piece of work.

While my observations are based on scientific fact.

Yours ? a demented mind? No profile to your name, http://thesession.org/members/67058

You are a troll.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"There’s no such thing as ‘real’ history. There is only actuality and we can never know actuality or ligitimately present it in words.."

Oh that’s that then! Shut the books, the universities and lay off the teachers. And as for you sorefingers I’d stick to murdering whatever instrument it is you are attempting as you are well out of line and your depth when it comes to any kind of historical analysis or cogent argument.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Charles C is not "a troll", sorefingers, and he isn’t trolling here. I thought his long post above was a good summary of the history. And I’m afraid the role of the official Catholic Church at the time was pretty much as Charles describes, in my understanding. One could argue that he’s spun it a little towards the bitter end of things, but it’s still pretty much what happened. Again, as I understand it. You could also argue that they did this because they thought it was the best for their people - power for catholics where there had previously been none (exaggerating towards the other end of the spin cycle from Charles C). But even there, the best you could say is that they were mistaken.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

By the way, does anybody know why De Dannan, the band, changed the spelling? (To something which seems wrong to me.)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

[*By the way, does anybody know why De Dannan, the band, changed the spelling?*]

From memory, in an article in an old Folks Roots mag, it was said that they changed it by band consensus. Apparently the name was being mis-spelled in printed media, so they changed it to match.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

What an odd thing to do. :-/

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

There are no jobs for historians anyway.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"and "Danite?", where does this term come from? Isn’t it an American sect? "

דָּן יָדִין עַמּוֹ כְּאַחַד שִׁבְטֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל

I think sorefingers is referring to this:

יְהִי-דָן נָחָשׁ עֲלֵי-דֶרֶךְ, שְׁפִיפֹן עֲלֵי-אֹרַח–הַנֹּשֵׁךְ, עִקְּבֵי-סוּס, וַיִּפֹּל רֹכְבוֹ, אָחוֹר

Either that, or Desmond Dekker.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Before Christanity came to Ireland the story was that the snakes were driven out by one of those giants that made islands by throwing rocks into lakes. The incoming churchmen appropriated the story in the same way they did many other pre-christian tales and customs.

I made that up but , unlike sorefingers, I gave consideration to Occam’s Razor.

Britannia Maior et Britannia Minor….

" Geographically, AND WHAT IT ACTUALLY MEANS, is the big island. Just the big island. Great Britain."

"Britannicae Insulae in quibus Albion, Sive Britannia Maior; Iurenia, Sive Britannia Minor, tum et Orcades, Ebudes, Cassiterides… 1694"

The naming of Ireland as "Britannia Minor" might upset a few….

"Rare map of the British Isles, depicting Britain at the time of the Roman Empire."

https://www.raremaps.com/gallery/detail/18819/Britannicae_Insulae_in_quibus_Albion_Sive_Britannia_Maior_Iurenia_Sive/Bertin.html

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

People who get upset by the use of ‘minor’, ’ major’, ‘great/greater’, ‘less/lesser’ etc, are not on my Christmas list.
The lesser spotted woodpecker is not in any way inferior to the greater spotted woodpecker, Greater Manchester is in no way superior to Manchester, and Great Britain is in no way superlative, apart from in the size of the island to which it refers.

Posted by .

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

It wasn’t so much the "minor" aspect that I was referring to!

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Sorefingers, you didn’t read what I wrote. (and you’re rather rude too) You can see I never said "Catholic church 100 % behind British rule". I said the new, replacement Catholic church in Ireland "after the end of the penal laws" collaborated with the occupation (this is widely documented, so look at what I actually said), as you said, during the penal laws the church was replaced. The disgraceful behaviour of the church hierarchy during the Famine is also well documented. (and let’s not forget that Ireland was given to the English king Henry II as a gift of the only English Pope, Adrian IV)

You wrote: "While my observations are based on scientific fact." Are you having a laugh? It’s just made up and that’s no way at all to do history. All I did was present some historical facts (not any widely disputed ones at that) and a reason to think any modern figurative interpretation of the snakes story ought to be viewed with deep suspicion.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"was replaced?", blimey, I meant: "repressed".

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Weejie - I always understood that the Roman word for Ireland was "Hibernia" (with Scotland being Caledonia and Wales being Cambria).

However, the map in the link that you posted is not contemporary with the Roman occupation.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

!

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I thought "Great" Britain referred to the island which we commonly refer to as Great Britain, ie the main island of England, Scotland and Wales. "Great" to distinguish it from "Little" Britain, nowadays more commonly known as Britanny, which had previously been known as Armorica, before Britons fleeing from the invading Angles, Saxons and Jutes arrived there? First time I’ve ever heard of Ireland being referred to as Brittania Minor. The indigenous inhabitants there were never Britons, they spoke (and still do) a different form of Celtic language. My tuppence worth.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"@Weejie - I always understood that the Roman word for Ireland was "Hibernia" (with Scotland being Caledonia and Wales being Cambria)."


Read up on Ptolemy et al -"Ἰουερνία". Latin wasn’t the only language involved. The names "Albion" for "Britannia Major" and "Ierne" for Ireland also appear.

"However, the map in the link that you posted is not contemporary with the Roman occupation."
The map is based on descriptions at the time of the ***Roman Empire***.
I’ve linked to this before, but it might help:

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus:text:1999.04.0064:entry=britannicae-insulae-geo
What is also of note, is that "Britannia Maior" appears before the 1707 union - even the date of that map precedes it.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"First time I’ve ever heard of Ireland being referred to as Brittania Minor. The indigenous inhabitants there were never Britons, they spoke (and still do) a different form of Celtic language. My tuppence worth."

Well, you’ve learned something then! "Britannia Minor" has been used for Ireland as well as Britanny.

"CHAP. I. The Name of Ireland, with its Bounds and Extent.

IRELAND is called by the Latins, Hibernia; by Orpheus, Aristotle, Strabo, and others, Ierna; by Mela, Iuvenal and Solinus, Iuverna; by Ptolemy, Iuernia, and sometimes Britannia Minor; Martian names it, Vernia; by others calld Bernia; and Plutarch gives it the Name of Ogygia. The Irish Bards or Poets have mentiond the Names of Tivolas, Totidanan and Banno, as the most ancient. In latter Times it went by the Name of Scotia, and Scotia Major, to distinguish it from Scotia Minor, the Northwest Part of Britain, where the Scots, that is the Irish, first went to settle. It is calld by the Inhabitants Erin, by the Welsh, Ywrdon, and the People they call Gwydbelon; and by the Germans, Irlandt; by the Italians, Irlanda; and by the French, lrlande. The Name probably came from Erin, which in Irish signifies Western; this is Camden’s Opinion: And Bochart derives it from lbernae, a Phenician Word signifying the farthest Habitation; this being the farthest Land they traded to. "

The Present State of Great Britain and Ireland, being a Complete Treatise of their several inhabitants
Guy Miege , Published by J. Brotherton, G. Strachan, London, 1754 p.430

http://books.google.co.uk/books/about/The_Present_State_of_Great_Britain_and_I.html?id=wdxDAAAAYAAJ&redir_esc=y

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"and sometimes Britannia Minor"
…Oh well, there you go. Doesn’t seem too convincing but what the hell I’m not going to argue.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

" The indigenous inhabitants there were never Britons, "

Now, did these "Britons" refer to themselves as "Britons"?
This is down to using later nomenclature to describe a people.
It is applied more as a linguistic term in this context.

It is believed that "Briton" stemmed from "Pretani" or "Pritani".
When it comes to people, you’ll find this term has a wider usage than "Brythonic".
Apparently, Pytheas applied it to people in Ireland.
All this stuff predates modern linguistic nomenclature.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Pytheas was unsurpassed in his ignorance of Ireland, what is written out of ignorance has no authority.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I wouldn’t have thought we’d know enough, now, about Pytheas’ time to be able to say one way or the other.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Pytheas was unsurpassed in his ignorance of Ireland, what is written out of ignorance has no authority."

So "Brythonic" existed at the time of Pytheas, and he got it wrong?

It gets more ridiculous.

I suppose Tomás Proinsias Ó Rathaile was "ignorant" too?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Back to the music! :-)

Spencer the Rover (in this version, at any rate) doesn’t consider Wales to be part of "Great Britain":

"These words were compos-ed by Spencer the Rover
Who travelled Great Britain and most parts of Wales"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ir5b1e6ULpw


Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

No, he applied a term to an Island he knew nothing of, never visited, he didn’t know its size, language. Anything he said about Ireland is unreliable, why use him as an authority for believing that Ireland is British? He was not knowledgeable about Ireland.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

T. F. O’Rahilly? Haven’t read him for 20 years or so (they made us!), but apart from being a first rate linguist he’s regarded in academia as rather a crank when it comes to ancient history and his rather simplistic reading of Irish legends as a simplistic solar mythology, with ancient man being rather confused by the elements and the weather (views that ought to have died with the Victorians). So yea, he was a bit of a wally, but a decent linguist all the same.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"No, he applied a term to an Island he knew nothing of, never visited, he didn’t know its size, language."

And, pray tell, what do you know of the language spoken in Ireland c 350BC?

Do you have anything to counter the Crutheni - Qriteni - Priteni theory?

"but apart from being a first rate linguist "

It was his linguistic knowlege that was pertinent.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Spencer the Rover (in this version, at any rate) doesn’t consider Wales to be part of "Great Britain""

Maybe he went to the same school as Pytheas.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

O’Rahilly’s Indo-European speculation has been totally debunked, there’s a very good school of linguistic thought that has reconstructed pre-written-word Irish Gaelic, Welsh etc., as well as Gaulish, and older European Celtic, and can tell where and when different mutations of words and syntax emerged. Also archaeology has not been kind to O’Rahilly’s theories; I don’t know a single archaeologist who views O’Rahilly’s work as anything other than a quaint set of systematically wrong speculations. It’s as debunked as any historical hypothesis can be.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"O’Rahilly’s Indo-European speculation has been totally debunked"

You are avoiding the issue. It is now generally accepted that "Crutheni" stems from "Qriteni" and is an equivalent of "Priteni".
So, instead of trying to ad hominem O’Rahilly, do you have anything to counter the theory?
Do you really think that the Irish people just appeared from nowhere and there is not a common link with other people in neighbouring islands?

"I don’t know a single archaeologist…."

That is not an argument.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Ireland has been inhabited well over 6000 years. The fact that Welsh ‘P’ and Irish ‘C’ get swapped over in words with common ancestry, in this case a Greek borrowed term from thousands of years later, shows nothing at all. It certainly doesn’t show that O’Rahilly’s hypothesis has any merit at all. And what is the presence of the term "Crutheni" in Irish writings meant to show? The evidence is that Irish Gaelic is derived from Gaulish.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

" in this case a Greek borrowed term from thousands of years later, shows nothing at all"

What? I think you are somewhat off the path.

Are you Irish?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Keep it coming. This is fun.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Snakes driven out of Ireland, hey? I wonder where they ended up?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I’m surprised a scan of this question didn’t include any mention of the management of CCE. It used to get quite a virulent press at one time, for implied corruption and favouritism.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Greater Manchester is in no way superior to Manchester, and Great Britain is in no way superlative, apart from in the size of the island to which it refers." Have we decided if Great Britain is great as in Great Cumbrae (there also is a Little Cumbrae) or great as in Greater Manchester (the is no little one) ?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Have we decided…" There is no deciding to do. Great does not mean good, it means gross. And there doesn’t have to be a little one for there to be a ‘greater’ — there is Manchester, which is quite gross, and Greater Manchester, which is even more gross.

Posted by .

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

The topic is about Snakes not Britain.

The era is BC to early middle ages, nothing at all relevant to be found thereafter.

The names of the island in those early eras is best gotten from British sources not Roman, or Greek. And I have to add that such reports are accurate and consistent with all the other evidence which reports the presence of Danite tribes in Britain long ever before the arrival of the Gaelic clans.

New Grange isn’t a Gaelic tribal monument, nor the scroll and spiral carvings there, and elsewhere in Britain.

Have a nice day :0)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

That’s the point gam. Manchester is only a part of Greater Manchester. If Great Britain is great in that sense Britain need only have been part of Great Britain (sort of, "Britain and the associated lands") and the smaller islands may have been included (back the to the debate between Mix and Ben). If it was Great Britain to distinguish it from a smaller part of the archipelago the we are probably left with Ireland as "Brittania Minor".

I am not clear from discussion so far if the Great is to extend beyond a ‘core’ Britain or limit to part (the big part) of a larger Britain.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

The spirals at Newgrange don’t look like snakes.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"The names of the island in those early eras is best gotten from British sources not Roman, or Greek. And I have to add that such reports are accurate and consistent with all the other evidence which reports the presence of Danite tribes in Britain long ever before the arrival of the Gaelic clans."

At least it is more far out than the assertion that Scotland is presently under occupation.

Read this for a bit of amusement:

http://www.hope-of-israel.org/i000035a.htm

It gets hilarious when it plays at linguistics. Highlights such as - "Denmark", "Duns-more, which means "more Dans" and "Danny Boy".

Pig ignorance at its best.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@David, nobody is saying that they do. You might enjoy studying old Welsh as well as the Classics - Hebrew, Greek, Tamazir etc; where you will find a gold mine of information about Gwirddn.

Have a nice day.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@weejie
If you must believe what you find in Google why not this
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tribe_of_Dan
instead of the rubbish you linked to?

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Since the original question is "What kind of snakes were they?" there is no answer, except that they didn’t exist. That has already been stated, and now we are just having some fun before the yellow curtain descends.

As for the notion that spirals are some sort of evidence for the existence of snakes, I’ve never seen any snakes that adopt that particular pose.

Posted by .

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I thought the idea (sorefingers’ idea) was something to do with them being evidence for people who associated themselves with snakes and who were then driven out. Anyhow, many of the photos show two interlinked spirals, which often does not come through on the schematic line drawings, so it’s not only the pose that is unlikely.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"If you must believe what you find in Google why not this"

Who said I believed the crap? I was mocking it. It is, however, more consistent with what you are spouting than the Wiki article. I don’t see any claim in the Wiki piece that there were Danite people in Ireland, or that there is any connection with Tuatha Dé Danann. These claims are made on that crank site.

You are defeating your own argument, Sorefingers.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Since the original question is "What kind of snakes were they?" there is no answer, except that they didn’t exist. That has already been stated, and now we are just having some fun before the yellow curtain descends."

You mean before Jeremy shows up with his bottle of this stuff? http://i666.photobucket.com/albums/vv30/uilleannpiper/IMAG0640_zpseaa65621.jpg

Keeps the screws on and the snakes out.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@Weejie
Why do you think that it defeats *any* argument? even if there is one, which there isn’t!

Your position is that ‘quote’ " …Danite…connection with …. Tuatha Dé Danann"
is not true.

Please assert it outright instead of shoveling everything else in as well.
And assuming you have the scholarship to back it up, go for it!

Then, tell us why you think that this ‘Tuatha De Danannnnnnn" existed, where did they exist? Where did they come from before the time you claim they inhabited the island? Did they inhabit any other place besides the island you say that they inhabited? And what happened to them after that time? Where did they go to? What has this race got to do with snakes in the island? Where did the snakes go to? Did the imagined race bring the snakes for where they dwelt in their prior location? etc etc etc etc. Why did Patrick publish that he had gotten rid of snakes? What was he on about?

But for the record I completely disagree with you and believe the opposite.

Have a nice evening.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I have so thoroughly enjoyed this discussion I just could resist no longer a small contribution to the "snake" controversy:
Two old women discussing their aging husbands: "The doctor told me Bren had a-reptile disfunction but blimey, I dinna even know he hadda lizard"!

Sorry.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

@ Steve T…re my, "There’s no such thing as ‘real’ history. There is only actuality and we can never know actuality or legitimately present it in words..", and your…."Oh that’s that then! Shut the books, the universities and lay off the teachers".
Well I gained that opinion from university, partly from the history department and partly from the philosophy of science. Like it or not there’s no way round it. As for books and teachers, well this whole debate started out from the premise of, "From my reading". It always amazes me that some people think that if they read something in a book (or on wikipedia) that it must be a fact. Somebody on here even claimed that their research was scientific. But science itself doesn’t claim to deal in so-called ‘fact’s. Let’s remember the motto of the Royal Society of London, i.e., Nothing in word alone". So I repeat that we can never know the actuality of history through words. It’s just that some claims are logically credible and can legitmately point towards actuality while others are almost ridiculous. Take for instance soerfingers final question, "Where did the snakes go to? Well my guess is that they went to the same place as the unicorns. And then, "Why did Patrick publish that he had gotten rid of snakes? What was he on about?". Well it seems nobody but sorefingers (have anice day) has a fecking clue what he was on about. But anyway tomorrow is St Paddy’s day, so I don’t care and I’ll be having a Guinness while I try to figure out who the feck drove all the aardvarks out of Australia. (thinks…. what’s the REAL meaning of St Patrick’s day?)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

the poor aardvarks — they never did anybody any harm…

Posted by .

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Why do you think that it defeats *any* argument? even if there is one, which there isn’t!"

Because you call the assertions in that "hope of Israel" website "rubbish", and direct me to a Wiki article.
The Wiki article doesn’t suggest that the "Tribe of Dan" got any further than Ethiopia, and the website you, yourself, regard as "rubbish" suggests that the "Tribe of Dan" inhabited Ireland - and comes up with the same notions you are continuing to espouse. In other words, you agree with what you call "rubbish" and the article you directed me to does not support the "hope of Israel" theories (these theories are consistent with a movement known as "British Israelism" BTW, a movement which goes back to the 18th century- there are Scandinavian counterparts forby -, but, despite being discredited, still has its followers - especially on your side of the pond). You are, in effect, calling your own hypothesis "rubbish".

"Please assert it outright instead of shoveling everything else in as well."
I’m not "shovelling in" anything. I’m pointing out that you are following the same misconceptions as the "rubbish" website.

"And assuming you have the scholarship to back it up, go for it! "

I don’t see what "scholarship" has to do with owt - if you are not providing "scholarship" on your part.

"Then, tell us why you think that this ‘Tuatha De Danannnnnnn" existed, where did they exist?… "

What relevance has this? Why should I have to answer your rhetorical questions? You are assuming that I believe in the existence of mythological people (or that any snakes existed in Ireland). "Charles C" has already debunked the linguistic theory. I would add that דָּן, in Hebrew (see the Hebrew quotations above) translates as "judge". the "Danann" in "Tuatha Dé Danann" translates (as Charles C has pointed) out as "of Danu" (the goddess who won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1970). Other than the the first three letters being the same, there does not seem to be any correlation (there is the gender aspect, for a start).
Moreover, it is suggested that the "Danann" was an appendage applied by monks to avoid confusion with "Israelites" (the "people of God" the monks wanted the populus to follow) rather than the aforementioned ESC winner.

You say your observations are based on "scientific fact". Perhaps you could present those "facts" instead of asking people to back up assertions that they haven’t even made. All I can see is opinions.
Sure, I have opinions too. I’m not going to present them as fact. All I’ve done here is present some evidence, whether it is solid or not, to counter any opinions which might be considered dogma.

There is one person who seems hell bent on denying any direct anthropological connection between the two largest islands in this archipelago, and another who seems to suggest that St Patrick was all about scaring away the Israelite bogeymen.

The problem is, that very little is known about the period in Irish prehistory. It’s always open to suggestion, nay fantasy even. Whether the "invisible people" were as dogmatically "anti-British" as some would like them to have been, or comprised a bunch of Israelites who had missed the last ferry home and decided to stay is all open to suggestion.
Recent findings in Orkney are turning theories tapsalteerie concerning the Neolithic people in Britain. Upsetting a few "south centered" individuals, and suggesting that way back then people would travel considerable distances for a "session" (well, an overgrown shindig involving much slaughtering of beasts).
The current research into later people in Ireland and their connection with Roman Britain might upset a few people too.

Jock Tamson’s bairns indeed.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Just in case nobody else say, gam, I noticed your joke there. :-)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"who the feck drove all the aardvarks out of Australia"

Joan of Arc, of course. It’s in the name.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

I agree with what Gobby says about written words. However, I would tend to use "from my reading" as a caveat rather to indicate a factual source.

In doing that I wouldn’t make a huge distinction between Wikipedia and a peer-reviewed article.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

… rather than to indicate a factual source …

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

if Rudyard Kipling, Disney Studios and YouTube don’t represent a scientific consensus I don’t know what does.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

Too much Google makes ya Wiki!

Now look here Weejie, as I said before there is nothing that you could say, because you simply don’t know, that would change my opinion.

As for your chum, Charles C, well that one AFAIK is a dead blank, and your twisting of the word into some French Goddess’ ; plain bunkum!

But for the benefit of those whose curiosity has been aroused, I will share this much.

That the word minus a few vowels - can’t be bothered to put them in, as originally there were none at all - ’ D’ ?????? ’ is a compound expression containing the article ’ in Hebrew it was ‘Ha’ but in other ancient speak, it was probably ‘D (a) h’ So it is just an article like it would be in ‘*T*h*e* Hobbits’ or more colloquially, modern Irish of a drunk or junkie ’ Yer man is gawn ta da dogs’.

Next cometh the ending of the label, again I use my own home made approximation to what it probably was - less several vowels which over the centuries were added by various gentlemen with political motives -
D???n???n.

It just so happens that in Hebrew the plural of some words is gotten by adding ’ ????M’ to them, and in sister dialects it is also ‘?????N.

Are we comfortable?

Now Weejie don’t go welding your Google to your Wiki in an attempt to out gun this sort of stuff because it ain’t on either website, ya need ta get a library with some books in it and read a pile to get a clue, and none of it was composed in a cow bire in Co Meath Ireland either!

So what we are coming around to is this, the word on its own is "D?????n" the plural is "D????n????n, and the definite article is ’ D????’.

So the name has nothing at all to do with a bodhrawn molesters syndicate from Ireland called ‘Danu’, nor does it derive from the name of a naked blue French Goddess.

It is the name of the people who populated the Island before the arrival of the Gaels, as reported by them to us in their oral history.

As for the snakes; already explained. Where-ever they went these folks left a trail behind them. We here, are still blindly wandering upon it, hypnotized by these Danites happily playing music, singing and reciting poetry, today among the people, in various parts of the Islands of the Pritani, and around the world.

Have a nice day :0)

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"That the word minus a few vowels - can’t be bothered to put them in, as originally there were none at all - ’ D’ ?????? ’ is a compound expression containing the article ’ in Hebrew it was ‘Ha’ but in other ancient speak, it was probably ‘D (a) h’ So it is just an article like it would be in ‘*T*h*e* Hobbits’ or more colloquially, modern Irish of a drunk or junkie ’ Yer man is gawn ta da dogs’. "

I see that Hebrew isn’t your forté.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"and your twisting of the word into some French Goddess’"

France didn’t win the Eurovision Song Contest in 1970.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

So this idea is based on the shared use of a word recorded as two consontants, one of which needs to be substituted with another to get that word. I don’t have any books on linguistics, but I do have one on probability theory.

Re: Saint Patrick Drove Out The Snakes From Ireland. What Kind Of Snakes Were They?

"Oh well, there you go. Doesn’t seem too convincing but what the hell I’m not going to argue."

Perhaps you will be convinced by Ptolemy’s nomenclature in the Almagest:
Μέγαλη Βρεττανία (Great Britain) and Μικρα Βρεττανία (Little Britain - Ireland).
Hence the conversion into Latin.

http://www.wilbourhall.org/pdfs/HeibergAlmagestComplete.pdf

Somewhere around page 112 (the actual page, not the pdf page).
Different script, which won’t reproduce here.