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Diarmuid Johnson

Diarmuid Johnson was born in Cardiff, Wales in 1965. He was brought up in Ireland and received his education there through the medium of Irish. He holds B.A., M.A. and doctoral degrees in Celtic Studies. Since 1989, he has worked as a university lecturer and visiting professor in Ireland, Wales, Brittany, Germany and Poland. He has five years experience as journalistic and editor.

Author and co-author of many books, he is also an accomplished musician, and his flute-playing features on various recordings. In 2014, he held the position of bard in residence in Rhos-y-Gilwen Mansion, Pembrokeshire, Wales. In 2015, his first solo exhibition of graphic art, Feuer und Schatten, was held in Bonn, Germany in 2014. Since 2016, he has been broadcasting with Raidió na Gaeltachta as foreign correspondant, and teaching Irish on summer courses in Donegal and Conamara. Rún na mBradán is the latest collection of poetry by the author.

Conaire Mór is a novel based on the old Irish tale Togail Bruidne Da Derga. It is the first novel in a trilogy, creatively exploring old Irish literature. The forthcoming titles are Tuatha Dé Danann and Éadaoin.

A video of the author reading an excerpt from Tuatha Dé Danann.

The story of Éadaoin is our finest Old Irish love story, a story that survived in fragments found in The Book of the Dun Cow and in The Yellow Book of Leacan. Diarmuid Johnson has combined all these various fragments and knitted them into a whole — filling the gaps and adding meat to the bones — to create a new old epic comparable to Helen of Troy or the story of Tristan and Isold.

Conaire Mór is a lively and highly-readable retelling of the Old-Irish epic Togail Bruidne Da Derga — a story that begins with the crowning of Conaire and ends with his brutal slaying on the banks of the Dodder. All the wonders of ancient literature are found in this book, from Conaire’s  warrior feats to his ascension to the throne and to the prophesy of doom that cannot be evaded. This is a story that hasn’t been told in a thousand years, but now, Conaire Mór reigns again. The author, Diarmuid Johnson, is a poet.

Shortlisted for IRISH BOOK AWARDS
Tuatha Dé Danann is a lively and highly-readable retelling of the Old-Irish epic Cath Maighe Tuiredh — or the Battle of Moytura — an account of the invasion and conquest of Ireland by the Tuatha Dé Danann by the popularly acclaimed prize-winning author of Conaire Mór. All the wonders of ancient literature are found in this book, from Lugh Lámhfhada's warrior feats to his vanquishing of the Fomorian invaders. This is a story that concerns with the 'Matter of Ireland', essential reading for all who cherish the past.