Defending Ulster From Gaelic Attacks

“The Annals of the Four Masters record that in 665 AD, the Battle of Farset (Belfast) took place between the County Down Dal Fiatach, self styled Ulaid, and the Pretani or Cruthin where Cathasach, son of Laircine, was slain. This was an attempt by the Dal Fiatach to encroach on the Curtain territory of Trian Congail. The “third of Congal”, which encompassed territory on both sides of the Lagan, corresponding more to less to Uppers and Lower Clandeboye, including modern Belfast. Cathasach was Congal’s grandson. The battle was the first mention of Belfast in Irish history.”

The battle scene shown is Jim Fitzpatrick’s vision of the battle of Moira (in 637), rather than “Bellum Fertsi”. The salience of this description of intra-Ulster fighting is that there is a contention that the Cruthin were Scots (Picts) thus allowing for the idea (employed especially by the UDA – see Ulster’s Defenders and Defender Of Ulster From Irish Attacks) that present-day northern Protestants have a heritage, and a history of fighting for what is roughly Co. Antrim, that pre-dates the plantations. For more information and a similar board, featuring the tower blocks of Rathcoole rather than Cuchulainn and the Battle of Moira, see Kingdom Of The Pretani. For the debate over a connection to the Picts, see WP.

The Annals date back to the 1630s though they mostly comprise a variety of earlier sources.

For the celebration of Rangers and the NI team, see Respect, Heritage, Culture. For the Crusaders FC mural, see The Northern Crusades.

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