Session 6 - Folklore Part 1 - CURES


Eddie Lenihan has been collecting and telling Irish folktales for over 40 years.

He has spent that time listening, talking to, and recording older people as they tell their tales of old Ireland and the supernatural, especially fairies. He has shared these stories with us through his books, television shows, talks and now through his podcast – Tell Me A Story.

Click here to listen to an episode where Eddie tells us about Biddy Early – a lady famous for her healing powers in Co. Clare in the 1800s.

Eddie Lenihan – Tell Me A Story – Biddy Early

Bearded Man with glasses


Having listened to the podcast , think about the questions below.

You might like to write down the answers.

1. What age was Biddy Early when she died?

2. List 3 words Eddie Lenihan uses to describe Biddy.

3. How was she paid for her cures?

4. Name 2 groups that did not like Biddy. Explain why they did not like her.

5.What do you think of Biddy’s cures?

old ruined cotttage

Biddy Early’s cottage today


Do you know of an old cure for an illness that is not modern medicine?

Write down the details of the cure and where you heard about it.

Do you think it works?

Old kitchen with stove and bottles of herbs on shelves



Click on the link below or the picture to the right to visit a page in the Duchas archive. The Schools Collection in the archive is a collection of folklore compiled by schoolchildren in the 1930s.

Pages 459 and 460 were written by a pupil of Clonshough National School in 1938. He was from Belcamp and he wrote about weeds and their cures as told by his father to him.

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0792, Page 459 & 460 by Dúchas © National Folklore Collection, UCD is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0.

Old copybook