Celtic Gods and Goddesses


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(Pan-Celtic) A Goddess queen whom no mortal man could satisfy, she took a giant from the faery realm as her mate. Legend says that she took great pleasure combing his long, fair hair.
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(Welsh) Also spelled Affanc. Flood/deluge myths are almost a universal phenomenon in world mythology, with the best known in the west being the one concerning Noah in the Judeo-Christian tradition. Addanc is part of the Celtic flood myth, a primordial giant/God/faery (some accounts call him a dragon or demon) who created and rode the crest of the flood near his home on the Lake of Waves

The God/Hero Dwyvan, and his wife, the Goddess/Heroine Dwyvach, escaped the flood in an ark. Depending on your version of the myth, Addanc was slain either by oxen belong to Hu the Mighty, or by Peredur, and the waters receded.

Though his has been reduced to faery of evil Demi-God by recent mythological scholarship, he was probably once a deity worshipped by the people of the lake region. Today Addanc is a word used to describe any evil fresh water-dwelling faery of Wales. .

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(British) A Goddess of hot springs who came to Brittany from Celtic Gaul. She is the origin of the Anglo-Celtic sun Goddess Sul, and was most likely a minor sun Goddess in her own right before the time when the Celts relegated the majority of their sun images to male deities, and moon images to female ones.

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(Cornish, Anglo-Celtic, Welsh) Also spelled Aerfen, or Aeron. A Goddess of fate who presided over the outcome of war between several Celtic clans. She had a shrine at Glyndyfrdwy on the banks of the River Dee, where legend says that three human sacrifices had to be made every three years to ensure success in future battles.

A Goddess of fate who presided over the outcome of a series of wars fought between rival clans.

She is often equated with the Three Fates of Greco-Roman mythology.

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(Welsh, Anglo-Celtic) Goddess of slaughter and war often equated with the Morrigan. Though her name bears the root of the modern English word 'agronomy', the name for the scientific study of land cultivation, no evidence of her as a harvest/fertility Goddess can be found today.

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(Irish, Scottish) Also spelled Aoife. Aife was a Goddess and queen of the Isle of Shadow, an honor she shared with her rival and sister Scathach. Scathach operated a school on the Isle where she trained fighters, including the nearly invincible Red Branch warriors. Aife also ran a school for warriors, but was much less successful than her sister.

Aife was not vulnerable to magick, and commanded a legion of fierce horsewomen. She had a son by Cuchulain whom she kept from Cuchulain until the boy was of age to join the Red Branch.

Other sources place her as a consort of the sea God Manannan or one of his sons, and say she stole an Alphabet of Knowledge from the deities to give to humankind. For this transgression, and her general meanness, she was transformed into a crane by the elder deities. Some legends say she haunts the countryside in this form to this day, others that she was accidentally killed by hunters.

Call on Aife for protection, for general knowledge, or for aid in teaching.

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(Irish, Scottish) A minor Celtic sun Goddess who was said to be the daughter of the king of the region known as Corco Loidhe.

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(Anglo-Celtic) A giant fathered by a forgotten Celtic Sea God who may have been part of a lost creation myth. He once was said to rule the Celtic world, and his name became the poetic name for Britain.

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(Welsh) God of Agriculture. A son of Don and brother of Gwydion, he is known from a limited number of Welsh texts and was engaged in a mythical battle against the Arawn. Associated with plowing and husbandry. The modern Welsh name for a farmer is amaethwr and the Welsh word for plowman is amaeth.

He was a master magician, the son of the Goddess Don and brother of Govannon and Gwyddion, the latter to whom he taught the art of magick. Amaethon was one of the few beings, deity or mortal, permitted to venture into Annwn, the Land of the Dead, and return to the earth plane again without being harmed or greatly changed. However, while he was there, he stole away a sacred dog and a stag. This act was the indirect cause of one of the most famous events in Welsh mythology, the Battle of the Trees (Cad Goddeu).

His other famous fight was against Bran, another agricultural God, and this may have been another case of the elder God trying to slay his successor.

Amaethon was encouraged to try to earn the hand of Olwen, for many of his fellow Gods believed only he was capable of performing the forty monumental tasks required to win her. He refused the offer.

Also Amaethaon

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(Breton) This deity was originally from Gaul, where his Celtic identity was lost during the Roman takeover. Instead, Ambisagrus took on all the characteristics of the Roman GOd Jupiter. Jupiter's name (Jove in Latin) means "supreme God." He was a deity who was seen presiding over the city/state matters of Rome and of the realm of the deities.

Other than his Jovian associations, Ambisagrus was primarily a weather deity who controlled the functions of rain, wind, hail, and fog.

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(Gallic) Fertility Goddess and patron Goddess of the Vocontii tribe. Her name seems to have derived either from artos (bear) or ar (plowed land). See also Andraste

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(Romano-Celtic; British; Anglo-Celtic; Continental Europe) The patron Goddess of the Iceni tribe.

This war Goddess' name means "the invincible one". Her presence was evoked on the eve of battle to curry favor, and possible ritual sacrifices were given to her. Queen Boadiccea of the Iceni offered sacrifices to Andraste in a sacred grove before fighting the Romans on her many campaigns against them.

Also: Andrasta, Andarta

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(Welsh)He was the King of the Underworld. His name means "silver-tongued". "King of Hell", "God of Annwn"

He fought in the Battle of the Trees (Cad Goddeu) with Bran against Amathaon and Gwyddion. Arawn, like most Otherworld Gods, was a master hunter who rode a pale horse and rode with a pack of white hounds with red ears. The archetypal purpose of the hunt was to gather souls for the Otherworld if the quarry was not smart enough to evade the chase.

Arawn possessed a magickal cauldron of regeneration, later captured by King Arthur. He bestowed on Pwyll the title Penn Annwn for his assistance and loyalty in time of need.

Also: Arawn; Arawyn; Arrawn

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(Irish, Scottish) His name means "high power" or "High sun". He is the father of the famed warrioress sisters Aife and Scathach, and probably once a sun God in his own right.

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GoddessARDWINNA (Romano-Celtic, Cont. European) Goddess of forests and hunting. Known from inscription and figurines in the Ardennes region. Depicted riding on the back of a wild boar and presumed to be a guardian deity of boars. Identified by the Romans with the Goddess Diana.

This woodland Goddess hunted the forests of Ardennes riding on a wild boar. She demanded a fine for any animal killed on her land, yet asked for animal sacrifices on her feast day. Though we no longer know her exact function in the Celtic pantheon, we can surmise that she was a Continental version of Ireland's Flidais, a woodland and animal Goddess. Her Gaulish name is Dea Arduinna.

Also Ardunna, Arduinna.

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(Continental European) This Goddess of ancient Crete is the only Greek deity known to have been worshipped in Celtic Gaul. Her name is derived from the genus name for the spider, arachnid. In one of the few threads of extant Celtic creation myths, Ariadne spins the universe from the primordial darkness like a spider spins her web, a theme with echoes in the creation myths of many other cultures. Therefore this particular myth strikes many scholars and Pagans as being very un-Celtic, and it may have been a remnant of Indian mythology brought with the Celts on their long journey across the European Continent.

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(Welsh) "Silver Wheel", "High Fruitful Mother", "Star Goddess", Sky Goddess; Virgin Goddess of reincarnation; Full Moon Goddess. Her palace was called Caer Arianrhod (Aurora Borealis) Keeper of the circling Silver Wheel of Stars; a symbol of time or karma. This wheel was also know as the Oar Wheel, a ship which carried dead warriors to the Moon land (Emania). Mother of Lleu Llaw Gyffes and Dylan by her brother Gwydion. Her original consort was Nwyvre (Sky or Firmament). Mother aspect of the Triple Goddess in Wales. Honored at the Full Moon. Beauty, fertility, reincarnation.

Arianrhod's name means 'silver circle'. This major Welsh Goddess is the Goddess of reincarnation, the Wheel of the Year, the full moon, fertility, an da primal figure of female power. Some Celtic scholars believe her story represents the shift from woman-centered clans to patriarchal power.

Her heavenly star/island, Caer Arianrhod in the Corona Borealis, is believed in some Welsh traditions to be the place where dead souls go to await reincarnation. There she lives with her female attendants presiding over the fates of the departed.

She is sometimes depicted as a weaver, which links her to lost creation myths and to magickal practice, sometimes called 'weaving a spell'.

Arianrhod mated freely with whomever she chose and was not questioned until the magician Math claimed she had conceived two children that she had not borne. By jumping a staff she gave birth to Llew and Dylan. Dylan left immediately to go to the sea. Arianrhod denied the remaining son, Llew, the right to bear a name or arms, as was a Welsh mother's right to bestow. She was later tricked into bestowing both.

She married her brother Gwyddion, and she is the daughter of the great Welsh Goddess, Don.

Arianrhod can be invoked to help females find their own feminine power. She can also assist you with spirit contact, sex and fertility magick, and past-life knowledge. Because her myths are linked with jumping the broom, an event which is part of Pagan marriage, she can be called upon to bless Handfasting rites.

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(Anglo-Celtic, Romano-Celtic, British) Water Goddess known only from inscriptions.

Goddess of spring waters, healing and purification. Probably once a minor Sun deity.

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(Welsh, Cornish)The search for the truth behind the persistent legends of King Arthur and his Camelot have consumed humankind since the Middle Ages. The stories we know today as Arthurian are largely Christianizations of older Celtic myths, and we are familiar with them through he medieval writings of Tennyson, Mallory, and Geoffrey of Monouth. Arthur is probably based on a seventh-century king named Artorius who led the fight to drive the Saxons from Britain, and later his myth and imagery was merged with that of a now-forgotten Father/Sacrificial God. Because of the pervasiveness of these legends, more strong archetypal associations have been placed on him, and the character who people the myths surrounding him, than any other single mythic figure. He is at once a God, a father figure, a warrior, a leader, a sacrificial king, a protector, and the gallant defender of justice and mercy.

Arthur was the son of King Uther Pendragon and Igraine, the Duchess of Cornwall. He was taught and protected by the magician/Druid Merlin, married Guinevere, a Triple Goddess/May Queen figure, and was mortally wounded in battle by his son Mordred (by Morgan LaFay). Arthur's body was carried to Avalon to sleep and await the time when he is needed. Therefore he is a sacrificial God/king in the purest sense.

Other stories say he was changed into a raven upon his death, and Celtic folklore often sees dead figures turned into birds, an archetypal symbol of the transition to the spirit world.

Writing at the end of the nineteenth century, Celtic mythologist Sir John Rhys believed the Arthurian stories parallel that of Fionn MacCumhal of Irish lore (i.e. the Round Table compares with the Fenian warriors), and also parallels most of the old tales of Gwyddion. Of all the major Welsh folk heroes, only Gwyddion is conspicuously absent from the Arthurian legends. Rhys also asserted that "Knights of the Round Table" are barely disguised Welsh deities made acceptable to a medieval audience.

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(Continental, Anglo-Celtic) A bear Goddess of abundance, strength and the harvest. This bear Goddess was the consort of Essus. A shrine to her once stood in what is now Berne, Switzerland. Like Eostre, she was probably once a Teutonic deity. She is depicted as being surrounded by full baskets and animals, therefore it can be surmised that she was a fertility and harvest Goddess, and a Goddess of wildlife.

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(Welsh) Also spelled Afagddu, he was the son of Cerridwen and Tegid, brother of Movron and dubbed the ugliest child in the world while his sister, Creirwy, was most beautiful. He made up for his shortcomings when his mother brewed him a great cauldron of inspiration and knowledge so that he would be the most learned man in the world. Unfortunately, there are many twists and turns in this tale, and Avagdu never did get his gift of wisdom, though the story makes clear that much of the gift he wanted was within him all the time.

The moral to this myth is straightforward enough - there is more to everyone than can be told by mere physical appearance. Always look deeply into yourself and into others. Work with him to discover the hidden wisdom inside yourself.

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(Romano-Celtic Gallic) Goddess of birth and midwifery. Known mainly from clay figurines found at Toulon-Sur-Allier, France. The models show the goddess with infants at her breast and apparently she is concerned especially with nursing mothers. The figurine is often accompanied by a small lapdog.

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