The Legends of Thoth: The connection between Ancient Egypt and Ireland

When a possible connection between Ancient Egypt and other civilizations thousands of miles away is mentioned, the Orthodox usually tear their clothes and do not hesitate to characterize such notions as pseudohistorical. 
However, recent archaeological finds in Ireland provide new evidence that validates the scene of an ancient and enigmatic connection between Ancient Egypt And Ireland.

The Legends Of Thoth: The Connection Between Ancient Egypt And Ireland

The Hill of Tara is a sacred place. 
It contains a large number of ancient monuments and is famous for being the seat of the  Árd Rí Éireann  (the High King of Ireland). 
For centuries, historians have tried to unravel its mysteries, and have suggested that from the Celtic invasion of the island to Richard de Clare’s invasion in 1169, the hill was the political and spiritual center of the island. 
Because the history and archeology of Ireland are not well-coordinated, archaeological theories, in terms of recent finds, suggest that the complete history of the Hill of Tara is far from being fully known.

And if all that was not enough to imbue the place with a mystical air, according to the folklore of the Emerald Isle, the mythical hill was where the Tuatha De Danann – “Gods” who arrived in Ireland in mysterious “boats” reigned.

Funeral rituals and bones in Ancient Egypt And Ireland

During recent controversial excavations near Tara, a story emerged about a strange skeleton found at Lismullin Henge. 
While some archaeologists thought it was simply the remains of a dog, others thought of something more surprising: the remains belonged, in fact, to a Barbary monkey or macaque! But what are the remains of a monkey, an animal not native to such northern latitudes, doing at an ancient Irish burial site?

Ancient Egypt And Ireland
Remains of a macaque found near Tara

One might also wonder if this case is isolated or if there are precedents for similar bones in other sacred places. 
For the latter, the answer is yes. 
In excavations at Eimhain Macha (Fort Navan), County Armagh, the skull of a macaque was found. 
Upon radiocarbon dating, it is estimated to be approximately 2,500 years old.

The question for archaeologists is to determine how did the mysterious remains came to Ireland and, perhaps more importantly, why.

The Ancient Egypt And Ireland connection

One of the most exciting theories for fans of “open history” is the possible connection between Ancient Egypt and Ancient Erin or Eiré (the Irish name for Ireland). 
Although there are some legends that connect Tara with Egyptian royalty, however, it has never been confirmed by scholars.

The Legends Of Thoth: The Connection Between Ancient Egypt And Ireland
Lia Fáil (Stone of Destiny) atop the Hill of Tara, Ireland

A clear example pointing in the direction of the Nile is the discovery of a skeleton of an adolescent at the Mound of Hostages, near Tara, by Dr. Sean O Riordan of Trinity College.
Radiocarbon dating showed the remains to be 3,800 years old. 
Also, a necklace found along with the bones was made of majolica beads that matched an Egyptian design and manufacture.

Scota, Egyptian royalty

There is also a famous legend of the Egyptian princess Scota, who is said to have arrived in Ireland in 1700 BC where she met her death at the hands of the Tuatha De Dannan in a great battle. 
Her supposed grave is marked by a giant inscribed rock in County Kerry, and its importance is such that local politicians always strive for its preservation.

Scota (left) and Goidel Glas traveling from Egypt, as shown in a 15th century manuscript of Walter Bower’s ‘Scotichronicon’, in this version Scota and Goidel Glas (latinized as Gaythelos) are husband and wife.

Another interesting story related to migration to the Emerald Isle is told in the Lebor Gabála Érenn (Book of Invasions), where Milesio, the great leader of the foreign invaders, lost two of his sons around 1400 BC when a storm caused by the God Tuatha De Dannan sank his ship.

No matter how colorful these legends are, until recent times they have remained such without any archaeological or merely historical support establishing a connection of Ireland to the lower Mediterranean.
However, this notion may radically change due to new research and DNA analysis published in December of 2015.

The connection between Impressive genetic and etymological evidence

Scientists from Trinity College Dublin and Queen’s University Belfast published their new findings in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 
It was found that the ancient Irish were not only related to the people of southern Europe, but also to the Middle East. 
This knowledge inevitably leads to a palatable explanation for the discovery of monkey remains in ancient Erin and further ignites a new unexplored link in the etymological chain of the God ‘Tuatha De Danann’.

Barbary monkey skull found at Fort Navan, Ireland.

Commonly, the accepted meaning for the name of these mysterious beings of divine origin is ‘The People of Danu (or Dana)’, the Mother Goddess in Irish mythology.
 A significant point for the etymology of this name is that the last word, Danann, not on the first records which mention these beings, which are simply called Tuatha De or Tuatha Di. 
In fact, it was only in the 19th century that exegetes agreed to include Dannan’s.

Perhaps it is time to review a certain basal part of the Irish myths in light of new information and, above all, who really were the Gods worshiped by the ancients.

The God Thoth represented as a baboon.

One of the most important Gods in Egyptian mythology is Thot, later known as Hermes by the grace of the Greek authors. 
Thoth was a lunar God who is credited with bestowing wisdom and writing on human civilization. 
He has often been depicted and symbolized as a monkey or baboon. 
Could this be the reason behind the mysterious bones found at ancient burial sites in Ireland? 
Also, if we pay attention to the name of God and its variants, such as Thoout or Thaut, then a curious coincidence occurs. 
Thoout Dai is translated as ‘The crossing of Thoth’, while Thoout Dat as ‘The voyage (by boat) of Thot’, and Thoout Da as ‘The storm of Thoth’ (according to the Lebor Gabála Érenn the Tuatha arrived in Ireland “in dark clouds”).

Another important factor is that Egyptian hieroglyphs were only deciphered in the 19th century after a certain Jean-François Champollion found the famous Rosetta Stone in 1820.
Thus, the Christian monks who first recorded Irish myths had no knowledge about these phonetic translations.

The Legends Of Thoth: The Connection Between Ancient Egypt And Ireland
Illustration showing ibis-headed Thot traveling in a boat with a baboon.

When we remove the bizarre elements from myth and popular wisdom, we find many unanswered questions or omitted for convenience prompted by the evidence gathered today. 
And while the controversial Egypt-Ireland connection has been battered in the past by the establishment, we now well know that there is more than one reason to clear the “dark clouds” bequeathed by the Gods.

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