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Various Traditions # 2 by Yair Davidiy


Fomorians and Nemedians

The Immigrating Tribes to Ireland according to Tradition, came in waves. Irish records speak of the Fomorians, Nemedians, Dana, and Milesian Hiberii.

The Fomorians

         Among the first settlers of Ireland were the Fomorians. One version says that they were Scandinavians but most accounts claim that they arrived from North Africa. There was always a connection between Ireland, North Africa, and the Middle East.  This is reflected in linguistic factors.
         The goddess of the Fomorians was Domnu and their leader was Balar.

[Domnu is the name of a demon known from the folklore of Israel and the Middle East.
Balar is recognized as another form of the name "Baal".]

The Fomorians were sea-orientated, dominated by females, and piratical.
Bres and his son Elatha were Fomorians.
Tory Island of the coast of Donegal in Northwest Ireland was a Fomorian base.
Later Irish literature  speaks of the Fomorians in a negative fashion and associates them with the Irish landworking class.
The Tuatha De Danann (Tribe of Dana) defeated the Fomorians and intermarried with them.

Nemedians: The Fir Bolg -Belgae

        After the Fomorians and Dana arrived the Nemedians. The name NEMED means sanctified or separated and is synonymous with the Hebrew "Peresh" which name was given to the son of Gilead from the Tribe of Menasseh (1-Chronicles 7:16). The Nemedians were said to be descendants of Sru, Sera, and Isru. "Sera-(li)" is how the Assyrians rendered the name Israel in at least one inscription. These names and "ISRU" especially are all forms of the name ISRAEL. 

  The Nemedians split into three groups:

1. Britan  who went to Britain:
2. Semion who fathered the Fir Bolg; and
3. Bethac who left Ireland and fathered the Tribe of Dana who later returned.

         According to some versions Semion had never been in Ireland only his descendants were. The name Semion equates the Hebrew Simeon son of Israel. Ptolemy recalled the Tribe of Semoni on the southeast coast of Britain. They adjoined the Iceni (Ikeni) whose name may be understood to be a Phoenician (or North Israelite) form of the appellation Jachin son of Simeon (Genesis 46;10). The Welsh in their own and in Irish Literature were referred to as Semoni.

         The Fir Bolg (descendants of Semion) in turn divided into three:


         "Fir" means men and Bolg derived from the Hebrew Bela(g)h son of Benjamin (Genesis 46;21). Bela(g)h was also a family head in the Tribe of Reuben (1-Chronicles 5;8).
         The Fir Bolg are identified by researchers with the Belgae who in the 100s BCE sent colonists from their base in North Gaul into southern Britain where they were reported by Ptolemy.
T.F. O' Rahilly idenfitied the Belgae in Ireland with the Erain (Iverni in the southwest), Ulaid (Ulster), and other groups.

The Belgae gave their name to Belgium.
         Aspects of Belgae culture in Gaul reveal Phoenician traits.
The Gesta Treverorum (Deeds of the Treveri, an ongoing chronicle began in the 1100s CE) says the Belgae descended from Trebeta son of Ninus King of Assyria. "Ninus" in folklore is often taken to represent the Assyrians at the time they exiled the Ten Tribes of Israel.

         Within the Land of Israel the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half Menasseh at an early stage had formerly expanded their territories up to and perhaps even beyond the Euphrates River. Sections of other Israelite tribes, including Benjamin, were also to be found in the Israelite areas between the Jordan and Euphrates Rivers. Ptolemy in his map of "Arabia" records the existence of Israelite clan and territorial names in areas adjoining the Euphrates. Amongst these names are BALAGEA and BELGINAEA WHICH APPELLATIONS RELATE TO THE BELGAE DESCENDANTS OF BELA(g)H FROM BENJAMIN (GENESIS 46:21) and/or REUBEN OF ISRAEL (1-Chronicles 5:8).


         The Galioin  were another section of the Fir Bolg and their name is considered as cognate to that of the Gaels and Galli (Gauls).
These names in Hebrew connote both "Exile" ("Goli", "Gali") and Galilee.


         The people of Domnu are somehow also connected with the Fomorians who were sometimes referred to as "gods of Domnu". Domnu was the Fomorian goddess.
According to Ptolemy, the Dumnonii were to be found in Devon, Cornwall, and Scotland and in those areas ethnic names recall DAN.

We may assume that the Fomorians, Dana, and Nemedians all contained elements of Dan.
Other Israelite Tribal contingents were also present including Simeon and Reuben.

1. The Irish Story.


Various Celtic Traditions
List of Contents.

See also:
A list of Articles on similar themes:
Western Hebrew-Celtic Culture.