Editor’s Note: O’Donoghue was one of a number of Irish lords who were said to have gone and joined the fairies under the lakes of southern Ireland: in his case Lough Leane near Killarney. The best parallel is perhaps with King Arthur sleeping under the mountain as these lords are often said to be accompanied by knights. This account comes from a man who worked in the first decade of the nineteenth century after some works in the lake had made O’Donoghue angry.
I saw him, Sir, early in the morning, when the water broke into the mines, sweeping all before it like a raging sea and made the workmen fly for their lives. It was Just at daybreak that morning I saw him on the lake, followed by numbers of men mounted upon horseback like carvally (cavalry), and each having a drawn sword as bright as the day in his right hand, and a carbuncle (carbine) slung at the side of himself and his horse; a thing like a great tent came down from the sky, and covered them all over, and when it cleared away nothing more of O’Donoghue or his men was seen. Crofton-Croker, II,