Úgaine Mór

Úgaine Mór ("the great"), son of Eochu Buadach, son of Dui Ladrach, was, according to medieval Irish legend and historical tradition, a High King of Ireland. He was the foster-son of Cimbáeth and Macha Mong Ruad, and took power by killing his predecessor, and his foster-mother's killer, Rechtaid Rígderg. The Lebor Gabála Érenn says that, as well as Ireland, he ruled "Alba to the Sea of Wight" – i.e. the whole of the island of Britain – and that "some say" he ruled all of Europe. He married Cessair Chrothach, daughter of the king of the Franks, who bore him twenty-two sons and three daughters. He is said to have divided Ireland into twenty-five shares, one for each of his children, which stood for three hundred years, until the establishment of the provinces under Eochu Feidlech. He ruled for thirty or forty years, until he was killed by his brother Bodbchad. According to the Lebor Gabála he was succeeded directly by his son Lóegaire Lorc, although the Annals of the Four Masters and Geoffrey Keating's Foras Feasa ar Éirinn say Bodbchad was king for a day and a half until Lóegaire killed him. The Lebor Gabála synchronises his reign to that of Ptolemy II Philadelphus (281-246 BC). The chronology of Keating's Foras Feasa ar Éirinn dates his reign to 441-411 BC, the Annals of the Four Masters to 634-594 BC.


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