Of Myths and Science: The Giants Causeway of Ireland



The Giant’s Causeway in Ireland never fails to impress anyone. It is a magnificent and magical site which may be one of the best in the world. Mind boggling rock formations and inaccessible bays which have influenced how plants, animals, and locals have survived through the ages.

How the Giant’s Causeway came to be is a mix of legends and science. Stories tickle the imagination and leave a certain wondering and smile when one becomes witness to the beauty of the giant causeway.

The myths play around the battles of Ireland with Scotland, Wales, and England. Legend has it that the Giant’s Causeway was built by a giant Finn McCool so he can cross between Northern Ireland and Scotland so he can fight his foes.

According to stories, the fight did not go well for Finn McCool. He was on the losing end and he needed to retreat. The giant was holding on to dear life and he stepped and tore the Giant ’s Causeway. What is left of it is the portion that we can see today.

Men of science have their own version of why the Giant’s Causeway ended up the way it looks today. They trace the formation of during the Paleogene period. The lava cooled down and formed the cliffs of the causeway.

It is just rare that in this part of Ireland, the lava started to cool from the bottom going up giving it the cracks and appearing as if they were manmade. It is a rare phenomenon but lava cooling from the bottom up can also be seen in some parts of the world like some spots along the coast of California.

Which side will you believe in, myth or science? Finn McCool definitely makes a thrilling impression to anyone’s imagination. A giant building the Giant ’s Causeway and destroying it by accident while he was retreating. On the other hand, science gives credit to how nature comes up with beautiful creations like the hexagonal pattern of the rocks.

The Giant’s Causeway is piece of nature’s art work and to some a chunk of folklore passed on until today through the merriments in the pubs overlooking the coast.

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