Episode 14

Niall of the Nine Hostages, A Story by Mari Kennedy | S3 Ep14

Published on: 3rd May, 2023

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Niall of the Nine Hostages was an Irish king and the first sovereign of the powerful Uí Néill dynasty. Mari Kennedy’s telling of the story begins with the birth of Niall, son of a king and an enslaved woman. In the story’s most powerful, enduring element, we meet the Hag the Well, and witness her transformation into the shining Sovereignty Goddess.


Mari Kennedy is a global gatherer of Celtic women, a yoga, breathwork, and embodiment teacher and Sovereign Woman's coach and Mentor.  Six years ago she founded The Celtic Wheel, a global online journey of ritual, myth and practice for women who want to do the sacred work of the feminine. 

Her work weaves ancient esoteric indigenous wisdom with evolutionary modern science in service to the new more beautiful world she believes is emerging. Her passion across all her work is in uniting the opposites and playing the polarities of being human. 

Find Mari at www.marikennedy.com,   www.thecelticwheel.com, and on Instagram: @marikennedywisdom

  • The marriage of the king to the goddess is at the core of the indigenous Irish tradition’s concept of Sovereignty. The marriage of the feminine and masculine in the individual works on the individual as well as the collective cultural level.
  • Mari looks to Carol Gilligan’s definition of patriarchy: it is a way of living that privileges some men over other men and all men over women. Feminism has always been intended to support all people because patriarchy affects everyone in the society.
  • Mari’s story stands in contrast to Marisa’s version of this story (Ireland’s Forgotten Goddess Witch Queen, S1 Ep2) which places Mongfind at the center of the story. Marisa was inspired by Gearóid Ó Crualoich’s Book of the Cailleach 
  • The marriage of the scholarship, the silences, and the intuitive knowing -  and making room for the modern retellings.

Work with Marisa

Marisa is a writing coach for wellness professionals, entrepreneurs, and aspiring authors. Learn more about her services and book a complementary consultation: www.writingcoachmarisa.com

Find more of Marisa's writing and get a copy of her book, The Sovereignty Knot www.marisagoudy.com

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About the Podcast

KnotWork Storytelling
Myths Retold, from Ireland and Beyond
In each KnotWork Storytelling episode, we'll explore a different story from mythology, folklore, or history, particularly from Ireland and the Celtic World. Then, my guest and I dive deep into why these ideas and characters still resonate today.

Your host is Marisa Goudy, author of The Sovereignty Knot: A Woman’s Way to Freedom, Power, Love, and Magic. She is a Myth Worker, a Story Healer, a Writing Coach, and a has an MA in Irish literature from University College Dublin.

Join us as we wander through these ancient storylines as we set out on a quest to learn from the past, better understand the present, and craft a sustainable future.

Every episode reminds us that age-old stories are medicine for this modern moment.

About your host

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Marisa Goudy

Marisa Goudy is a story healer, a writing coach, and a word witch. Her book, The Sovereignty Knot: A Woman’s Way to Freedom, Power, Love, and Magic, was released in 2020.
Marisa nurtures writers and storytellers in her long-running online writing community, the Sovereign Writers’ Knot.
On this show, Marisa combines her passion for story with her love of Irish literature, culture, and folklore and her fascination with the Celtic world. She has a particular love of stories of heroines, goddess, and women whose tales were forgotten by history.