The principal hero of the southern or later cycle of Irish legends, also called the Fenian or Ossianic cycle. Finn Mac‐Coul has been thought a historical personage by some modern authorities; others regard him as mythical. He was the son of Cumal (Comhal) and father of Ossian, and is supposed to have lived in the 3rd cent. ad, a contemporary of King Cormac. The king appointed him chief of the Fianna (pron. Fēna) or Fenians, of whose heroic or romantic deeds there are endless tales. Finn was chosen their leader for his wisdom and generosity. He is said to have perished in an affray with mutinous Fenians in ad 283.