Deriv; Ancient Celtic dolmen from Poulnabrone, Ireland and carved Egyptian deity Thoth

Thoth’s Storm: New Evidence for Ancient Egyptians in Ireland?

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When ancient Egypt and Ireland are spoken about in the same breath it usually results in the rolling of eyes, polite exits and the sound of murmurs citing pseudo-history and new age babble.
At least, that used to be the case.

Recent discoveries in DNA research have added to already verified archaeological finds to present a scenario that is now more difficult to dismiss.  

The Lia Fáil (Stone of Destiny) atop the Hill of Tara, County Meath, Ireland.

The Lia Fáil (Stone of Destiny) atop the Hill of Tara, County Meath, Ireland. ( CC BY 2.0 )

The Hill of Tara is one of Ireland’s most ancient sacred sites. It is surrounded by many other Neolithic earthworks and tombs and although commonly associated with the Celts, the site pre-dates their arrival in Ireland by thousands of years.

In legend it is the place where the Tuatha De Danann reigned. These were a God-like people who were said to have arrived in Ireland in mysterious ships and had magical powers.

A plate of The Dagda, representing the legendary members of the Tuatha Dé Danann.

A plate of The Dagda, representing the legendary members of the Tuatha Dé Danann. ( Public Domain )

Ritual Burials and Mysterious Bones

During recent and very controversial excavations near Tara a story emerged about a strange skeleton that had been found by workers digging at Lismullin Henge. Some thought it was the remains of a dog, others a badger. But, most curious of all was the claim of some witnesses that the remains were, in fact, those of an ape.

As Con Connor, Arch Druid of Ireland’s Celtic Druid Temple writes, “Why was such a ritual burial in a royal site not cause for focused investigation?”

In her work, A Course of Severe and Arduous Trials , author Lynn Brunet writes that, “Furthermore, the Irish Masonic author, J. A. Penny notes that a skeleton of a Barbary ape had been found at Tara, the mythical center of Ireland and seat of the High King.”

But why would there have been such strange bones buried at this site? These primates are not indigenous to Ireland and the archaeological complex surrounding Tara dates back thousands of years. If bones of an ape had been found at any point, do we have a precedent for such a burial at any other of Ireland’s most ancient sacred places?

In fact we do. During excavations at Eimhain Macha (Navan Fort) in County Armagh, the skull of a Barbary ape was found. When it was carbon dated it was discovered to be roughly 2,500 years old. The question for many archaeologists was how it got to Ireland in the first place, but perhaps a more intriguing enquiry would investigate why.

The Irish-Egyptian Connection

One of the more controversial theories when it comes to the origins of the Irish people is a connection to ancient Egypt. Although there are many Irish legends connecting Tara and Egyptian royalty, these have been impossible to prove.

One of the most intriguing examples of these proposals was the discovery of the skeleton of a 15-year-old boy at The Mound of the Hostages, near Tara, by Dr. Sean O Riordan of Trinity College. Carbon dating showed that the remains were roughly 3,800 years old. A necklace found with the skeleton was made of faience beads and matched similar Egyptian manufacture and design.

The Hill of Tara is an archaeological complex featuring many ancient monuments, such as the ‘Mound of Hostages’, seen above. In tradition Hill of Tara is known as the seat of the High Kings of Ireland.

The Hill of Tara is an archaeological complex featuring many ancient monuments, such as the ‘Mound of Hostages’, seen above. In tradition Hill of Tara is known as the seat of the High Kings of Ireland.  (CC BY-SA 4.0 )

Scotia, Egyptian Royalty

There is also the famous legend of Queen Scotia, an Egyptian princess or queen, depending on which version of the legend you read, who was said to have arrived in Ireland in 1700 BC and was killed by the Tuatha De Danann in a great battle.

Her supposed grave is marked by a giant inscribed stone in County Kerry and its importance has led to local politicians calling for its preservation.

A 15th century depiction of Scota’s voyage from Egypt.

A 15th century depiction of Scota’s voyage from Egypt. ( Public Domain )

An interesting aside is that Scotia’s grave is not far from the island of Skellig Michael, the site of a pre-Christian settlement and a later monastery.

According to the 11th-century  Lebor Gabála É renn (Book of Invasions), Milesius, a great leader of one of Ireland’s invaders lost two of his sons nearby in 1400 BC when a magical storm caused by the Tuatha De Danann submerged their ship. 


Very interesting article and serves as confirmation of what I read in Haberman's book - Tracing our White Ancestors - or White Roots. I see every day more and more confirmation about the accuracy of this book that I read more than 20 years ago.

Early in article DNA evidence was mentioned but I don't see that it was presented in the article.

David Halpin's picture

Hi Marym. Thanks for reading. The article references include two links to the recent peer reviewed paper by Trinity College and Queens University.
Here is another link which I hope you find helpful.


David Halpin

Shall I recommend the book "Ireland, Land of the Pharoes"

Many thanks often difficult to find related books Though sad to read some of Lorraine Evans' experiences in her book "Kingdom of the Ark" good to know others researching and writing as well.

I am interested in subject material.

I am interested in subject material.

Naaaw, that doesn't look at all like a Shiva linga.

<a href=";rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=w... rel="nofollow">Celtic and Vedic Culture</a>

Indeed this painting of Scota at Tara is in Cheryl Yambrach Rose's award winning 'Art Through the Starstream' Oracle.


Native's picture

“One of the more controversial theories when it comes to the origins of the Irish people is a connection to ancient Egypt. Although there are many Irish legends connecting Tara and Egyptian royalty, these have been impossible to prove”.

Regardless of the origin of the Irish people, there is a connection between the Egyptian and the Irish myths of creation – as there is between all cultural myths of creation since these of course all deals with the same common story.

Also regardless of all human migrations, all cultures in all continents have develloped their own Story of Creation, so this should be taken in consideration when comparing different cultural tellings and legends.


When we read the work of the range of historical disciplines, and fit it together, we find the broader picture.
During the Bronze Age and before, the only civilization which knew the secrets of astral navigation, ocean currents and winds, trade routes, and sea worthy ship building; was the Phoenicians. They guarded these secrets jealously. They mined tin for bronze in in the British Isles, among many other places. Both Celts and Phoenicians are descended from an earlier Black Sea region culture.
All nations protected them, because they were so important to trade and technology transfer.
They controlled open sea transport until The Iron Age. The transport of Celtic and Egyptian passengers and goods would have been aboard Phoenician ships.

Dear David Halpin and Ancient Origin writers!

I find this topic very interesting, the link between Ireland and Egypt. It is especially an exciting topic for me as I study ancient Egypt and the pyramids. During my research I have discovered a connection between Egypt and New Zealand, as the new year in New Zealand is called 'Matariki' in which the first part, 'Maat' is an Egyptian phrase which translates to order and Egyptians used it when referring to the 'order of the earth'. Thus, it is quite possible that there was some sort of connection between the maori - the native tribe of New Zealand - and the Egyptians.

David Halpin's picture

Thanks, Andras. You might find David Mathisens book The Undying Stars interesting as it contains quite a lot of information about this connection.



David Halpin

That's interesting. The book Heaven's Mirror by Graham Hancock and Santha Faiia is a good compilation of clues like that linking Egypt to Central and South America, Easter Island, and Angkor Wat.

While this information is intriguing, there is evidence that Ancient Egyptians sailed most of the world and interacted it many cultures.

I thought that it was well known that tin and other trade goods from the British Isles and from the Mediterranean were exchanged long before the time of Christ. And seamen have been known to keep girls in multiple ports for thousands of years. :) And many times, it's the women who spread religion to the native men.


Felt this information should be considered as well….from Michael Tsarion, scholar, ...please let me know your opinions of this researchers’ findings...I truly indulge his position that when the Egyptians came to Ireland, they were returning home…




David Halpin's picture

Thanks. I will try to make time to watch the video.


David Halpin

Once upon a time … any ancient connection between Ireland and Egypt was once thought far-fetched and outside of the accepted scholarly realm. So what else?

But today’s findings report ancient Egypt’s connection to the Cherokee nation.  (their nation is located mainly within the regions of the state of Georgia, USA).

New information analysing DNA from members of the Cherokee nation have shown a remarkable connection to a Mediterranean culture.

Don’t believe it’s true?

From their website of the Central Band of Cherokee, “Cherokee DNA exhibits female lines from the East Mediterranean and Mideast that are NOT the result of recent admixture but come from their ancient roots and origins.”

How about this revelation.

Without scientific data, conclusions remain conjecture.

Cannanite perhaps?

Very interesting, hope they can get dna or at least use his teeth to see where he had been. Alas, the presence of such a necklace does not an Egyptian make, without additional hard evidence. There were quite extensive trade routes even back then. It does not mean that one group of traders went from Egypt to Eire, albeit this is possible. It is very likely that a Kritian ship took the boy and/or his necklace to Greece. Or even to Spain, and then the boy and/or the necklace traveled to Eire via normal trade routes for the area.

One aspect the article got wrong or at least obscured is that the legends did not link the Tautha de Danaan to Egypt as implied.Whether made up or dimnly recalled fact it was the succeeding Milesians who reputedly dwelled in Egypt for a lengthy period.The Milesians were believed to be the ancestral Gaels.The Scotta slain by the Tautha de Danaan was ostensibly a Pharoah's daughter who wed the eponymous leader of the Milesians, either Milidh or Geythalos [eponymous Gael].He died before his people migrated to Ireland but she and her sons lead the 'invasion', which ultimately defeated the Tautha.Hence, if the traditions support a connection between Ireland and Egypt it was via the Gaels. NONE of the other mythic groups were even claimed to have visited Egypt.

David Halpin's picture

Thanks for the comment, Kenneth.

It is often difficult to separate the various groups when looking back upon mythic tradition, especially without a written source. As you correctly write, there are various versions of Scotta, Scotia and a Pharoh’s daughter fleeing from Egypt into Ireland or The British Isles.
In this article the fact that this tradition has been preserved is valuable in that it bridges what was once considered outlandish to very recent DNA findings which may well hint at the story being an even older memory or event.

From my perspective the phonetic connections to the Tuatha De are both interesting and telling. Bear in mind that the DNA findings are less than four weeks old so this is new territory, not just in relation to migratory patterns but also in how we must now look to mythic chronology.
The Milesians being ancestral Gaels (If this is the case) does not exclude an earlier visitation and potential colonial religious influence previous to their arrival. Indeed, the DNA evidence points to this directly.


David Halpin

Your link to your source article claims that some of the ancestral DNA comes from stone age migrants from what would eventually be the Fertile Crescent (which would be modern day Turkey/Iraq not Egypt) and that the rest appeared to have come from the Pontic Steppes in modern day Russia (again not Egypt.) Your barbary ape skull (the only one that is actually proven to have been an ape skull) only dates to approximately 300 bce at the oldest which easily puts it during a time when trade was going back and forth and when the Irish were already well established. And you decided that Thoth and Tuath are somehow related to each other even though Thoth is spelled completely differently in Egyptian than it is in English. In other words, your article is complete supposition without any actual evidence to back it up.

We all assume the “ancient” status of the Egyptians, because we learned it in school.

But as Anatoly Fomenko points out in his series of books challed History Fiction or Science, we have no actual data to back that up and the Catholic Church assigned the ancient dates to Egypt with the Gregorian calendar in the 16th century.

Many of our "ancient” cultures and people may have existed in the Middle Ages, not 2000 or more years ago.  

Fomenko has many examples of works of “ancient" Egyptian art with Christian scenes.

This of course puts in doubt the antiquity of a lot of other cultures, including the Irish.

Despite our belief in our calendar, it remains mostly a religous document, not a scientific one.  And a Catholic one at that.  The Catholic Church in the 16th century had no motives for political power or controlling events, past or future.  A bunch of monks praying in the wildernness, not preying on us.


Tom Carberry

Never mind that we have actual carbon dating of objects that shows when they were made.

Leprechaun and Tuatha De Dunaan are must be members of Anunnaki Jinns

From much study and observation I have come to the conclusion that Acadia National Park and the coast of Maine are the ancient legendary Atlantis Avalon and Eden. the obvious remanence of the ancient mining for gold and other mineralsit matches Plato's description perfectly and it matches Avalon the land of birds in Perpetual Gardenthis is the truth namaste

The Tea-Tephi myth, or daughter of some egyptian royal going to Ireland has been fully debunked by irish scientists. Together with this claim went the claim about jewishness and thus irish being ancient jews/descending from jews. Of the Tuatha de Danann some stories claim they came with flying ships. Which could indicate that they could travel worldwide. In Khazarian history there is talk about redhaired jews, tall, beautiful, with blond or red hair and blue or grey eyes. That to me sounds similar to what i have read the Tuatha de Danann described. Are these the same as the redhaired giants in America, of which many skeletons were found and destroyed/made lost by the Smithsonian Institute. Of Thor it is said he came from another dimension, that at one time shared the same space as our planet Earth. If there was such an advanced species, possibly not of this earth, then to speak of jewish, egyptian etc. could be totally false, putting us on the wrong leg.

The egyptian term sahu, made it into english as Soul. Sahu means soul, in the Egyptian book of the great awakening...


No, sorry, you're wrong about that.

The etymology of “soul” (as per the online etymology dictionary, and other sources) is as follows:

Old English sáwol from Proto-Germanic *saiwalo (source also of Old Saxon seola, Old Norse sala, Old Frisian sele, Middle Dutch siele, Dutch ziel, Old High German seula, German Seele, Gothic saiwala), of uncertain origin.

Sometimes said to mean originally "coming from or belonging to the sea," because that was supposed to be the stopping place of the soul before birth or after death [Barnhart]; if so, it would be from Proto-Germanic *saiwaz (see sea).

So it's from Proto-Germanic, which is in turn from Proto-Indo-European, which is a different language family from Egyptian. So that comparison is invalid.

I understand your points...completely. Its just that I am going beyond them into new ground.
There are so many lost meanings that etymology loses the game many times...but you still follow
it around. Its the Greek - Egyptian contact that is also important...but the usual indo-european
scholars rarely step outside of their bounds. SO, I agree to disagree with your context, in going
beyond indo-euro-germanic considerations...they are quite often wrong...and they know it.

I like your proposed etymology. Etymonline's sounds like a later folk etymology, but perhaps one that is indicative of the term's source... "from the sea." I also agree about IE academics rarely straying much away from PIE or its direct descendants, but I don't think it's purposeful. The burden of proof is high, and evidence of ancient lexical exchanges is often scant, especially in areas of the world that don't have many surviving ancient texts. I suspect it's simply easier and less risky for them to reconstruct a hypothetical proto-word than to try to prove cultural contact. As more discoveries are made, and new finds analyzed, proposed etymologies such as yours for soul may become more accepted by the mainstream.

“The sun cult in the Nordic bronze age has resemblance to the Egyptian religion," concludes Varberg. "And yes, I see clear evidence of ideas travelling along the same exchange routes as amber and glass."
read more:

I would even venture to claim that the Chasing of the Sun lead the Turks to travel Via Scandinavia to reach Egypt first. There were two different Neolithic migrations and the Northern one chased Polar Bears, Whales, Reindeer, and the Sun around the World and touched every Continent in the Process.... The other went west to Egypt...

The more I look at your comment, its apparent that soul is a botched translation...they really don't know what it means..."coming from the Sea" is you believe that?

I'm not certain that derivations from sahu and sea are mutually exclusive. It's not obvious on the surface, but a comprehensive study of various European myths does show a connection between souls and the sea and the underworld and even kingship. I suspect sahu is closer to the original source, but not the original. I could be wrong, of course.

Tuatha De another possible explanation:

Old Albanian language

Tu a tha = the saying
De = God (ancient Greek DEA) = wisdom/knowledge

Thot = says (second person)

Okay, first of all – “Thoth” is the Greek name for that particular deity. The Egyptian name – which, since we’re looking at an Egyptian connection to Ireland – is ḏḥwty, possibly pronounced something like Djhuty (*ḏiḥautī). So the word “Thoth” can’t really be used to link Egypt and Ireland, unless you’re saying it was Greeks importing Egyptian culture in.

Secondly, the Celtic myths that survived were very heavily influenced by both the Romans and the monks who recorded them. I’ve read one book – “A Brief Guide to Celtic Myths & Legends” by Martyn Whittock (ISBN13: 978-1-78033-892-7) that claims that a great deal of the links to Egypt portrayed in the stories of the Tuatha De (Danann) are based on biblical stories – the monks trying to link Celtic myths to biblical ones. This makes a certain amount of sense, especially if you look at the actual dates of when the myths were written down. They’re all around the times of 11th to 12th centuries CE. That’s centuries after Christianity came to the British Isles, and even before that, the Romans had heavily affected the native Celtic myths and legends.

Third, as I believe someone else pointed out, the ancients had elaborate trade routes all throughout Europe, the Mediterranean, and the Near and Middle East. Admittedly, 3.8K years ago is before the Phoenicians (who were not exactly a single people, so far as we know, but a conglomeration of city states) took control of maritime trade, but overland trade did exist. (How else could Baltic amber get down to the Mediterranean to be discovered in the wreck of a ship dating to around 1305-1300 CE or thereabouts – which was, FYI, also before the Phoenicians came to prominence. Check out the info about the Uluburun shipwreck.)

And fourth – reading through the paper on the genetic discoveries you reference… where is the connection to Egypt? Yes, it mentions that the Neolithic subject was descended from peoples from the Middle East – referring to the Fertile Crescent – and there might have been some Egyptian there… but she wasn’t descended primarily from Egyptians. As for the Bronze Age genomes, they were linked to the Pontic-Caspian Steppes, which is the likely origin of the Proto-Indo-Europeans. Again, not Egyptian.

David Halpin's picture

Hi Tagoold,

Thanks for the comment and I’m sorry to have taken so long to reply. This article has over 30’000 shares from this site alone and I have also tried to answer questions on other forums and Facebook pages so I have obviously missed many conversations, unfortunately.

I’ll take your points one by one, if that’s okay. The name Thoth is the Greek for Dhwty but the name in hieroglyphs remains the same. There are actually many variants of both ‘Dhwty’ and ‘Thoth’ in terms of spelling although it is difficult to know how the phonetic changes applied both geographically and culturally. Certainly, in terms of the article and Thoth’s relationship to Tuatha, the symbolic links stand up.
Bear in mind too that Thoth/ Dhwty is the Egyptian interpretation of a much earlier God/ Wisdom-giver dating further back into antiquity. For my hieroglyph interpretations, I used Budge’s translations which are not above criticism but have still to be bettered. He breaks down the symbols which Thoth/ Dhwty is represented by and translates those symbols into English equivalents. Each glyph has a number of meanings so the article tries to find the explanations that best represent the descriptions of the Tuatha De’s arrival in Ireland. Again, I think my translation is as strong as the 19th-century version which was decided by people without access to the information and context we have today. Until we invent a time-machine or discover some irrefutable proof, this will always be a matter of opinion.  

The second point you make is one that I agree with and try to demonstrate in the article. Believe me, I have been a long time trying to demonstrate the Christian influence on Irish pagan and mythological tales. In fact, another point of contention is that even the Celtic influence is appropriation in many ways. Our stone circles and megaliths here in Ireland are thousands of years older than the Celts. A recent example of this misinformation was when a well-known American Pagan wrote about visiting a famous Irish monument and she poured honey and milk all over it because in Celtic stories this place was sacred to a particular Celtic Goddess! Trying to point out to this person that the monument has nothing to do with the Celts was a futile exercise.

Taking your third and fourth points together, trade is definitely a perfect reason for people from the Fertile Crescent to move up through Europe. The article doesn’t dispute that at all, in fact in the case of the beads found at Tara I would say this is a very likely explanation. That said, with trade comes mixing, both culturally and in terms of belief. DNA evidence leaves no argument that people from Africa, the Fertile Crescent and Eastern Europe were in Ireland around 3’500 BCE.
From my perspective and in light of the newest evidence, the Egyptians themselves came out of Anatolia at some point as evidenced by the Hathor connections so the Fertile crescent region was definitely one of the stages for Indo-European origins. I would be an advocate of the out of Africa hypothesis, personally, so if we go back roughly 60’000 years the movement from eastern Africa up through Europe and Asia would be the origin point, long-term.

I hope this helps clarify my thinking.  



David Halpin

Those pesky Greeks gave their names to so many ancient Egyptian words and they have become so common that we tend to think they were the Egyptian words. Some examples:

Pyramid “meaning wheat cake” replaced the Egyptian “"Mr” usually written as Mer meaning unknown. In Arabic, pyramid means “ultimate age or size”

Pharaoh replaced the Egyptian “pero or per-a-a” meaning “Great House” and referred to the royal residence

Sphinx replaced the Egyptian “Ssp Ankh" meaning “the living image”

Obelisk meaning "needle” replaced the Egyptian “tekhenu” meaning "to pierce"

Isis replaced the Egyptian “Aset,  Eset or Iset” meaning “throne”

Even the land itself if Greek (originally Aigýptios or Aegyptios). The Egyptians called their land kmt Usually written “Kemet” meaning “Black Land” named for the black silt left behind after the annual flood of the Nile. Later, the country was called by the Arabic word “Msir” meaning “country”

There are others but I think I made my point. Also, Osiris is the Latinized form of the Egyptian Usir which is interpreted as "powerful" or "might”


By the way, it should be noted that vowels were not ed in ancient times so the addition of them is arbitrary.


The ancient alphabet of Ogham has fascinated and intrigued for many centuries.
Has it any connection with any other ancient alphabet?

Bobby E I too am fascinated by Ogham writing. If you look up Jankovich Cave, Tatarlaska Disk , Moros River disks and finally have a look at Vinca Writing/Script, you may see some similarities to the basic ogham script.
Following up on Davids article above, my thoughts are that the Pontic peoples who emigrated to Ireland had the original Pontic script that never developed past the Ogham stage, due to an Oral culture taking precedence ie the Druids. Vinca eventually morphed into Sumerian is a possible theory, but when I have seen Ogham in situ it is incredible to think that it is a language at all!!
Cheers Bobby!!

David Halpin's picture

Hi. Thanks for the comments. You both might be interested in this lecture by Lucy Wyatt which touches upon many of the subjects in my research.


David Halpin

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