Irish storyteller Jack Dinan shares the tale of his wife who was replaced by a fairy.

In an episode of the RTÉ show ‘Newsbeat’ broadcast in 1970, storyteller Jack Dinan from Fahy’s Hill in County Clare tells the tale of his "disappearing wife". 

The story goes that his wife went to bed but when Jack went looking for her, he found a fairy in the bed instead. For the next seven years, he shared the bed with the intruder.

One May evening, Jack was up late with a foaling mare when his wife appeared. He asked her to come home but she replied she couldn't until the fairy left the bed. 

After some effort, he managed to make the fairy leave forever. Jack Dinan and his wife lived together for a further forty years and were never parted again.

The Seanchaí

Irish storytellers were the definition of entertainment in ancient Ireland, holding the key to all of Irish folklore, myth, and legend. 

Seanchaí (shan-a-key) were traditional Irish storytellers and the custodians of history for centuries in Ireland. They could recite ancient lore and tales of wisdom whenever it was needed. 

Ireland has one of the richest folklore traditions in the world. This is primarily due to the fact that the Celtic culture has been maintained for more than 2,000 years and the tradition of oral composition and performance has been strong throughout Irish history.

The Irish hold a great appreciation for the "spoken word" and the use of language and have created unique and beautifully poetic oral literature.

Bards evolved into storytellers called "seanchaí" who wandered from town to town. In this informal way, an ancient oral literary tradition continued into modern times. 

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