There are many different accounts of the story of Deirdre of the Sorrows but in all versions, the essential element of the story remains the same. They tell of Deirdre being cursed even before birth with an astonishing beauty destined to lead kings to war over her.
The King of Ulster, Conchobar, saved her from an early death but locked her away in a tower with her nursemaid Leabharcham to keep her out of the sight of other men until she was old enough to become his queen.
One day Deirdre spied a handsome young hunter called Naoise who she greatly preferred and following a spirited and flirtatious exchange persuaded him much against his better judgement to rescue her.
Pursued by King Conchobar’s followers Deirdre and Naoise, and his brothers Ardan, Ainnle and their clan, fled through much of Ireland but finally in a bid for freedom, crossed the sea to Scotland.
There, Glen Etive in Argyll became their home for several years. King Conchobar’s spies eventually tracked them down and persuaded the brothers that they should accept his deceitful guarantees of safety and return to Ireland. Deirdre was convinced it was a trap but was ultimately obliged to leave...