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Celtic Goddess Names - M

(Morrigan)("field, plain") Macha is the Powerful Woman who outran the King's Horses. This goddess of Ulster was borne in a wicker chariot, in the company of her battle-raven and her cauldron of prophecy. Irish. As one of the three Valkyrie-aspects of the Morrigan, Macha feeds on the heads of slain enemies. She often dominates her male lovers through cunning or simple brute strength.

The Celtic mother goddess of Gaul.

A Celtic goddess after whom the river Marne is named.

The Celtic Triple Mother. Images showing the mothers holding a baby were deeply revered by the peasantry throughout Celtic Gaul, Spain, and Britain. Each of the mothers personifyied nurturance, with bared right breast prepared to suckle.

("drunk woman") A goddess of war, not one of the Morrigan. Where the Morrigan use magic, Medb wields a weapon herself. The sight of Medb blinds enemies, and she runs faster than the fastest horse. A bawdy girl, Medb needs thirty men a day to satisfy her sexual appetite.

("divine mother") A Welsh goddess, daughter of Avalloc, derived from the Celtic goddess Matrona. She is regarded as a prototype of Morgan (from Arthurian Legend).

A Scottish goddess of the hills.

An Irish Celtic goddess of the sea and sun. She is identified particularly with the setting sun, and is depicted as sitting on a throne.

(Morgen, Morgana, Morrigan, Mara, Fata) A death goddess to whom wells were sacred. The raven is her bird, the shamrock is her plant. A goddess of the sea, fate, death and rebirth, a great healer and shapeshifter.

As the final incarnation of the Irish Valkyrie Morrigan, Morgan plays a critical but ambiguous role in the Arthurian cycle. Portrayed as a mortal female deeply learned in Magick and Arthur's maternal half-sister, she is always at odds with Arthur, and is responsible for any of a number of attempts to drag him down. When Arthur is mortally wounded though, and his cause seems to an ultimately futile victory, it is Morgan who appears at his side, nursing him and bringing him to the Isle of Avalon, to rest until his presence is needed once more. She was one of the the greatest contributors in the rise of Arthur to the status of hero, to create an Eternal Champion of Britain.

This notion is supported somewhat by the earlier Morrigan's ambiguous relationship with CuChulainn, in which she took him up on his desire for a short but glorious life, and violently opposed him until, at his doom, she used his blood to nourish the soil of Eire. (Sea-sprites in Brittany are still called "morgans").

She was vilified as Morgan Le Fay, an evil sorceress, in later versions of the King Arthur legend.

Mór Muman
(The Great One of Munster) A tutulary divinity among a people known as the Érainn, a Celtic folk inhabiting some parts of Ireland before the arrival the Goidelic Celts who form the basis for the Classic-age population, and who may be the basis for tales of the Fomorians and Fir Bolg. She has solar connections and sovereignty associations, and seems also to be one basis for the Morrigan triplicity. Mysterious and not well understood, most tales of her are late accretions from the Middle Ages.

Morrigan is the Irish Celtic goddess of destruction and creation. Oral tradition says the dying Celtic god Cu Chulainn was met by a beautiful chariot-mounted goddess, whose eyes and cloak were red. She cursed him to death, that his blood might fertilize the earth, then transformed herself into Badb Catha, the Raven of Battle who induces panic in warriors. Morrigan evolved into Morgana Le Fay, sorceress of Arthurian legend.

A triplicity of Valkyries (see Badb, Macha, and Nemain) who exalted in battle frenzy, chaos, and the gore of slaughter. She and they have a particular role in being the Choosers of the Slain; selecting the spirits of fallen warriors, severing them from the body, and guiding them to the afterworld . She has many aspects and functions, including water in general, and rivers in particular. She seems in this latter aspect to be a chooser of the slain as well, in that she is seen by those whose fate it is to die in an upcoming battle as a crone, washing their clothing beside a river.

Goddess of Battle. She sometimes takes the shape of a woman washing a bloodied piece of clothing at the edge of a ford. The warrior who beholds her knows that he will soon die. A form of Morrigan.

A minor Irish lake goddess, probably another form of the Morrigan.

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