One of the most well known and admired figures in Irish mythology, the beautiful Lugh is the many skilled god of the Tuatha Dé Danann. His talents encompass everything from the arts to the battlefield, and his reputed good looks, combined with his wit and charm make him a captivating and engaging figure throughout his many tales.
To this day, the Gaelic harvest festival of Lughnasadh is named after him, and celebrated in Ireland and abroad every year on the 1st of August. The modern Irish word Lúnasa, which means August, is also derived from his name.
A Child of Prophesy
Lugh was born to the Fomorian woman Eithne. The story goes that she had been imprisoned in a tower by her father Balor, as it had been prophesied that Balor would be killed by his grandson. Eithne became pregnant when Cian of the Tuatha Dé Danann broke into the tower with the help of Biróg the druidess. There he meets Eithne, and Lugh was conceived that night.
Eithne gave birth to triplets, but as soon as they were born they were cast into the sea by Balor. Lugh survived with the help of Biróg, and was raised in safety and secrecy away from Balor, spending his boyhood learning many skills.
King Nuada’s Court
Growing up, Lugh became a member of King Nuada’s court at Tara. He had a way with words and was talented in many disciplines, which won him his place in the King’s house. After his victory at the second Battle of Moytura, Lugh became the new King of the Tuatha de Danann, after slaying Balor and thus fulfilling the prophesy.
He went on to do many famous things, including fathering Cúchulainn, starting the Tailteann Games, inventing Fidchell and starting Lughnasadh festivals around the country.