“The stories of Finn Mac Cool belong…not to Epic, but to Folklore and Fairytale” |Rosemary Sutcliff on retelling the story of Finn MacCool

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Illustration from From The Author's Note to The High Deeds of Finn MacCool by Rosemary Sutcliff

The stories of Finn Mac Cool belong…not to Epic, but to Folklore and Fairytale; and only here and there … something of the Hero Tale remains.

… The stories of the Fianna are full of loose ends and contradictions, and unexplained wisps of strangeness that seem to have drifted in for no especial reason except that they are curious or beautiful and happened to be floating by.

They are stories made simply for the delight of story-making, and I have retold them in the same spirit – even adding a flicker or a flourish of my own from time to time – as everyone who has retold them in the past thousand years or so has done before me.

Source: Author’s Note to The High Deeds of Finn MacCool

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