Fergus mac Roich
FIR-gus mac ROYH
A major figure in the Ulster Cycle. Rightful king of Ulster, who was tricked into giving up the throne by his wife Nessa, who then gave it to her son (his stepson) Conchobor mac Nessa, who became king of Ulster. Fergus decided he liked being a bard better anyway, and so let Conchobhor have the kingship. He was foster-father to Cuchulainn, and a lover of Medb, but was put in exile by Conchobhor for supporting the Sons of Usnech.
Interestingly enough, the Lia Fail or Stone of Destiny at Temhair has also been called by locals "Fergus' Phallus," an idea backed up by the legend that, unless it was the TDD woman Flidais, it took seven women at one time to satisfy Fergus.
W. B. Yeats' poem "Fergus and the Druid" and "Who Goes with Fergus?" are based on this figure.
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Mary Jones © 2004