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  2007 Philadelphia Flower Show: “Aoibheal of the Grey Rock”

1st Place, Miniature Settings
Theme: "Legends of Ireland"
Intent: "Faery queen and protectress of Clan O'Brien, Aoibheal (eh-vahl) was also a bain-sidhe (banshee).Notes of doom from her enchanted harp cried out over the Rock of Carraigh Liath. On the eve of the Battle of Clontarf, she appeared to High King Brian Boru, foretelling his death at the hands of the Vikings."


Being a harper myself, I've always been an admirer of the "Brian Boru" harp, an 15th century artifact in the collection of Trinity College museum in Dublin Ireland. it was also the inspiration for this scene. Although the harp probably didn't actually belong to the king, it bears his name. The Brian Boru harp has become the national symbol of Ireland. Aoibheal's tiny harp is based on this precious instrument. According to legend, the eerie song of her enchanted harp can only be heard by those about to perish.

 

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The Brian Boru Harp, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland

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