Dennis King wrote:
>> I'll just say that I find this story, like many others in the OI canon,
> especially those in the Ulster Cycle, to be profoundly alien in outlook.
> I'm not easily charmed into their world.
I'm a little puzzled as to why you say this story is so alien, though
granted, perhaps you are simply trying to provoke reaction and discussion.
The theme of this story -- trouncing a troublesome neighbour, destroying
their fortress and carrying off their women, was hoary with age when a
young Homer first began to sing of it, and for an example closer to your
own time and geography, let me recommend Huckleberry Finn, chapter eighteen
'Why Harney Rode Away for His Hat'. Mark Twain was an acute observer and
noted that the troubles ultimately stemmed from competition for the
As for satire, sure that's not lacking in this story, either, with the
heroes being wounded and derided for falling so easily, then rising up in
wrath stark naked and scattering the foe.
Indeed, it seems to me that this story is far more straightforward and
understandable than, say, Cuchullain's boyhood feats or the Fianna stories
of wierd adventures out hunting.
Curious and puzzled,