There is a fort in a field adjoining our land. One night long ago the man of the house went out looking for a calf that did not come with the rest of the cattle. he passed by the fort and he thought he heard his name called. He listened again, it was called plainer but he could not see anyone. Then an old wizened looking man with a big beard stood before him and asked in a very friendly way how he was. Pat Dowling – for this was the man’s name who was looking for the calf, answered and said, you have an advantage of me, you seem to know me well and I don’t think I ever saw you before. The fairy said, I see you every day and I will be a thousand years old tomorrow and I am thinking about getting married tomorrow. You will do me a favour if you meet me here tomorrow night said the fairy. Pat promised and kept his word. The next night he came to the place where the fairy was waiting with a bottle of whiskey and a glass. They drank every second glass until the bottle was emptied. Then the fairy began to get ready for the journey and to give Pat his instructions which he promised to carry out. The fairy told him that in a very far off place there was a marriage about to take place. The fairy told Pat that the young lady would sneeze and if no one would say “God Bless us” that she would be his wife. They went to the marriage house and sat on the cross-beams of the roof. The priest was there to marry the young couple when all was over. In the height of the merry-making the bride sneezed and no one seemed to notice it ’till she sneezed thrice and then Pat said “God Bless us.” The fairy hit him and threw him down among the company who were much frightened. When Pat related all he had seen and heard he was well treated. He lived to be a very old man. My grand-parents knew him well.
Collector: Kitty Egan, Ahaun, Co. Galway
Place: Kilkerrin, Co. Galway
Footnote: Duchas, ‘http://www.duchas.ie