School: Rockfield (roll number 15378)

Rockfield, Co. Sligo
Caoimhín Ó Duibhín

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The King's Secret

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0174, Page 282

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When Labra was king of Ireland, it was his custom to have his hair cut but once a year. The barber was chosen by lot, and when he had had cut the royal hair, he was put to death without delay. The reason for this was that the kings ears were very large and shaped like those of a horse, and Labra was anxious to hide such a blemish.
Once it happened, however, that the barber chosen was the only son of a poor widow. This widow came to Labra and begged him to spare her son. The mothers tears softened the King's heart, and he agreed to spare her son, provided that he made a solemn promise never to tell what he saw when he cut the kings hair. The young man gave his word that he would be silent. No sooner had the man cut the hair than he fell dead.