Math fab Mathonwy (branch)
Math fab Mathonwy, "Math, the son of Mathonwy" is a legendary tale from medieval Welsh literature and the final of the four branches of the Mabinogi. It tells of a vicious war between the north and the south, of the birth of Lleu Llaw Gyffes and Dylan ail Don, of the tyngedau of Arianrhod, of the creation of Blodeuwedd, a woman made of flowers; the chief characters of the tale are Math, king of Gwynedd, his nephew Gwydion, a magician and trickster, Gwydion's own nephew, cursed by his mother Arianrhod. Along with the other branches, the tale can be found the medieval Red Book of Hergest and White Book of Rhydderch. Allusions to the tale can be found in two old triads retained in the Trioedd Ynys Prydain Gilfaethwy, nephew to the Venedotian king, Math fab Mathonwy, falls in love with his uncle's virgin foot-holder, Goewin, his brother Gwydion conspires to start a war between the north and the south, so as give the brothers the opportunity to rape Goewin while Math is distracted. To this end, Gwydion employs his magic powers to steal a number of otherworldy pigs from the Demetian king, who retaliates by marching on Gwynedd.
Meanwhile and Gilfaethwy attack and rape Goewin. Pryderi and his men march north and fight a battle between Maenor Bennardd and Maenor Coed Alun, but are forced to retreat, he is pursued to Nant Call, where more of his men are slaughtered, to Dol Benmaen, where he suffers a third defeat. To avoid further bloodshed, it is agreed that the outcome of the battle should be decided by single combat between Gwydion and Pryderi; the two contenders meet at a place called Y Velen Rhyd in Ardudwy, "because of strength and valour and magic and enchantment", Gwydion triumphs and Pryderi is killed. The men of Dyfed retreat back to their own land; when Math hears of the assault on Goewin, he turns his nephews into a series of mated pairs of animals: Gwydion becomes a stag for a year a sow and a wolf. Gilfaethwy becomes a hind deer, a boar and a she-wolf; each year they produce an offspring, sent to Math: Hyddwn and Bleiddwn. After three years, Math releases his nephews from their punishment and begins the search for a new foot-holder.
Gwydion suggests his sister Arianrhod, magically tested for virginity by Math. During the test, she gives birth to a "sturdy boy with thick yellow hair" whom Math names Dylan and who takes on the nature of the seas until his death at his uncle Gofannon's hands. Ashamed, Arianrhod runs to the door, but on her way out something small drops from her, which Gwydion wraps up and places in a chest at the foot of his bed; some time he hears screams from within the chest, opens it to discover a baby boy. Some scholars have suggested that in an earlier form of the Fourth Branch, Gwydion was the father of Arianrhod's sons; some years Gwydion accompanies the boy to Caer Arianrhod, presents him to his mother. The furious Arianrhod, shamed by this reminder of her loss of virginity, places a tynged on the boy: that only she could give him a name. Gwydion however tricks his sister by disguising himself and the boy as cobblers and luring Arianrhod into going to them in person in order to have some shoes made for her.
The boy throws a stone and strikes a wren "between the tendon and the bone of its leg", causing Arianrhod to make the remark "it is with a skillful hand that the fair-haired one has hit it ". At that Gwydion reveals himself, saying Lleu Llaw Gyffes. Furious at this trickery, Arianrhod places another tynged on Lleu: he shall receive arms from no one but Arianrhod herself. Gwydion tricks his sister once again, she unwittingly arms Lleu herself, leading to her placing a third tynged on him: that he shall never have a human wife. So as to counteract Arianrhod's curse and Gwydion: While Lleu is away on business, Blodeuwedd has an affair with Gronw Pebr, the lord of Penllyn, the two conspire to murder Lleu. Blodeuwedd tricks Lleu into revealing how he may be killed, since he can not be killed during the day or night, nor indoors or outdoors, neither riding nor walking, not clothed and not naked, nor by any weapon lawfully made, he reveals to her that he can only be killed at dusk, wrapped in a net with one foot on a cauldron and one on a goat and with a spear forged for a year during the hours when everyone is at mass.
With this information she arranges his death. Struck by the spear thrown by Gronw's hand, Lleu flies away. Gwydion finds him perched high on an oak tree. Through the singing of an englyn he lures him down from the oak tree and switches him back to his human form. Gwydion and Math nurse Lleu back to health before mustering Gwynedd and reclaiming his lands from Gronw and Blodeuwedd. Gwydion overtakes a fleeing Blodeuwedd and turns her into an owl, the creature hated by all other birds, proclaiming: The narrative adds: Meanwhile, Gronw escapes to Penllyn and sends emissaries to Lleu to beg of his forgiveness. Lleu refuses, demanding that Gronw must stand on the bank of the River Cynfael and receive a blow from his spear. Gronw asks if anyone from his warband will take the spear in his place, but his men refuse his plea. Gronw agrees to receive the blow on the condition that he may place a large stone between himself and Lleu, who allows him to do so before throwing the spear with such strength that it pierces the stone, killing his rival.
A holed stone in Ardudwy is still known as Llech Ronw. The tale ends with Lleu ascending to the throne of Gwynedd
Branwen is the name of a character in some versions of Tristan and Iseult. Branwen, Daughter of Llŷr is a major character in the Second Branch of the Mabinogi, sometimes called the "Mabinogi of Branwen" after her. Branwen is a daughter of Penarddun, she is married to the King of Ireland. The story opens with Branwen's brother, Brân the Blessed and King of Britain, sitting on a rock by the sea at Harlech and seeing the vessels of Matholwch, king of Ireland, approaching. Matholwch has come to ask for the hand of Branwen in marriage. Brân agrees to this, a feast is held to celebrate the betrothal. While the feast is going on, Efnysien, a half-brother of Branwen and Brân, arrives and asks why there are celebrations. On being told, he is furious that his half sister has been given in marriage without his consent, vents his spleen by mutilating Matholwch's horses. Matholwch is offended, but conciliated by Brân, who gives him a magical cauldron which can bring the dead to life; when Matholwch returns to Ireland with his new bride, he consults with his nobles about the occurrences in the Isle of the Mighty.
They are outraged and believe that Matholwch was not compensated enough for the mutilation of his horses. In order to redeem his honor, Matholwch banishes Branwen to work in the kitchens. Branwen is treated cruelly by her husband Matholwch as punishment for Efnysien's mutilation of the horses, though not before she gives birth to an heir, Gwern, she tames a starling and sends it across the Irish Sea with a message to her brother and Brân brings a force from Wales to Ireland to rescue her. Some swineherds see the giant Brân wading the sea and report this to Matholwch, who retreats beyond a river and destroys the bridges. However, Brân lays himself down over the river to serve as a bridge for his men, he said. Matholwch, fearing war, tries to reconcile with Brân by building a house big enough for him to fit into in order to do him honour. Matholwch agrees to pacify Brân; the Irish lords do not like the idea, many hide themselves in flour bags tied to the pillars of the huge, newly-built house to attack the Welsh.
Efnysien, checking out the house prior to the arrival of Brân and his men, guesses what is happening and kills the hidden men by squeezing their heads. At the subsequent feast to celebrate Gwern's investiture as King of Ireland, Efnysien, in an unprovoked moment of rage, throws his nephew Gwern into the fire; this causes chaos between the two countries, they start fighting each other. Ireland keep throwing the dead soldiers into the magical cauldron, so that they have an infinite supply of warriors. However, Efnisien sees what he has done, regrets it, he jumps into the magical cauldron, pushes against its walls so that it explodes. The war is still bloody, leaves no survivors except for Branwen and seven Welsh soldiers, they sail home to Wales. Upon reaching Wales, they realize that Bran has been hit with a poisoned arrow on his leg, he dies. Branwen, overwhelmed with grief for everyone she has lost, dies of a broken heart. In the ensuing war, all the Irish are killed save for five pregnant women who lived in Wales who repopulate the island, while only seven of the Welsh survive to return home with Branwen, taking with them the severed head of Bendigeidfran.
On landing in Wales at Aber Alaw in Anglesey, Branwen dies of grief that so much destruction had been caused on her account, crying, Oi, a fab Duw! Gwae fi o'm genedigaeth. Da o ddwy ynys a ddiffeithwyd o'm hachos i!, "Oh Son of God, woe to me that I was born! Two fair islands have been laid waste because of me!" She was buried beside the Afon Alaw. Brân had commanded his men to cut off his head and to "bear it unto the White Mount, in London, bury it there, with the face towards France." And so for seven years, his men spent feasting in Harlech, accompanied by three singing birds and Brân's head. After the seven years they go to Gwales in Penfro, they go to London and bury the head of Brân in the White Mount. Legend said. At Llanddeusant, Anglesey on the banks of the Alaw can be found the cairn called Bedd Branwen, her supposed grave. Now in ruins, it still has one standing stone, it was dug up in 1800, again in the 1960s by Frances Lynch, who found several urns with human ashes. It is believed that if the story of Branwen is based on real events, these must have taken place during the Bedd Branwen Period of Bronze Age British history.
Mabinogion The Children of Llyr Medieval Welsh literature Christopher Williams painted three paintings from the Mabinogion. Brânwen can be viewed at Swansea. Branwen Ferch Lyr. Ed. Derick S. Thomson. Medieval and Modern Welsh Series Vol. II. Dublin: Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 1976. ISBN 1-85500-059-8 Ford, Patrick K. "Branwen: A Study of the Celtic Affinities," Studia Celtica 22/23: 29-35. In 1994 a feature film was released called Branwen. Branwen Uerch Lŷr: The Second Branch Of The Mabinogi Translated by Lady Charlotte Guest Branwen uerch Lyr The original Welsh text Goddess Branwen Who was Branwen
Cassivellaunus was a historical British tribal chief who led the defence against Julius Caesar's second expedition to Britain in 54 BC. He led an alliance of tribes against Roman forces, but surrendered after his location was revealed to Julius Caesar by defeated Britons. Cassivellaunus made an impact on the British consciousness, he appears in British legend as Cassibelanus, one of Geoffrey of Monmouth's kings of Britain, in the Mabinogion, the Brut y Brenhinedd and the Welsh Triads as Caswallawn, son of Beli Mawr. His name in Common Brittonic, *Cassiuellaunos, comes from Proto-Celtic *kassi- "passion, hate" + *uelna-mon- "leader, sovereign". Cassivellaunus appears in Julius Caesar's Commentarii de Bello Gallico, having been given command of the combined British forces opposing Caesar's second invasion of Britain. Caesar does not mention Cassivellaunus's tribe, but his territory, north of the River Thames, corresponds with that inhabited by the tribe named the Catuvellauni at the time of the invasion under Claudius.
Caesar tells us that Cassivellaunus had been in near-constant conflict with his neighbors, as was typical of the British tribes in this period, had brought down the king of the Trinovantes, the most powerful tribe in Britain at the time. The king's son, fled to Caesar in Gaul. Despite Cassivellaunus's harrying tactics, designed to prevent Caesar's army from foraging and plundering for food, Caesar advanced to the Thames; the only fordable point was defended and fortified with sharp stakes, but the Romans managed to cross it. Cassivellaunus dismissed most of his army and resorted to guerilla tactics, relying on his knowledge of the territory and the speed of his chariots. Five British tribes, the Cenimagni, the Segontiaci, the Ancalites, the Bibroci and the Cassi, surrendered to Caesar and revealed the location of Cassivellaunus's stronghold.. Caesar proceeded to put the stronghold under siege. Cassivellaunus managed to get a message to the four kings of Kent, Carvilius and Segovax, to gather their forces and attack the Roman camp on the coast, but the Romans defended themselves capturing a chieftain called Lugotorix.
On hearing of the defeat and the devastation of his territories, Cassivellaunus surrendered. The terms were mediated by Caesar's Gallic ally. Hostages were given and a tribute agreed. Mandubracius was restored to the kingship of the Trinovantes, Cassivellaunus undertook not to wage war against him. All this achieved, Caesar returned to Gaul; the Roman legions did not return to Britain for another 97 years. The Greek author Polyaenus relates an anecdote in his Stratagemata that Caesar overcame Cassivellaunus's defence of a river crossing by means of an armoured elephant; this claim may derive from a confusion with the Roman conquest of 43 AD, when Claudius is supposed to have brought elephants to Britain. Cassivellaunus appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's 12th century work Historia Regum Britanniae spelled Cassibelanus or Cassibelaunus; the younger son of the former king Heli, he becomes king of Britain upon the death of his elder brother Lud, whose own sons Androgeus and Tenvantius are not yet of age.
In recompense, Androgeus is made Duke of Kent and Trinovantum, Tenvantius is made Duke of Cornwall. After his conquest of Gaul, Julius Caesar sets his sights on Britain, sends a letter to Cassibelanus demanding tribute. Cassibelanus refuses, citing the Britons' and Romans' common Trojan descent, Caesar invades at the Thames Estuary. During the fighting, Cassibelanus's brother Nennius encounters Caesar and sustains a severe head wound. Caesar's sword gets stuck in Nennius's shield, when the two are separated in the mêlée, Nennius throws away his own sword and attacks the Romans with Caesar's, killing many, including the tribune Labienus; the Britons hold firm, that night Caesar flees back to Gaul. Cassibelanus's celebrations are muted by Nennius's death from his head wound, he is buried with the sword he took from Caesar, named Crocea Mors. Two years Caesar invades again with a larger force. Cassibelanus, had planted stakes beneath the waterline of the Thames which gut Caesar's ships, drowning thousands of men.
The Romans are once again put to flight. The leaders of the Britons gather in Trinovantum to thank the gods for their victory with many animal sacrifices and celebrate with sporting events. During a wrestling bout, Cassibelanus's nephew Hirelglas is killed by Androgeus's nephew Cuelinus. Cassibelanus demands that Androgeus turn his nephew over to him for trial, but Androgeus refuses, insisting he should be tried in his own court in Trinovantum. Cassibelanus threatens war, Androgeus appeals to Caesar for help, agreeing to accept him as liege and sending his son as a hostage. Caesar invades landing at Richborough; as Cassibelaunus's army meets Caesar's, Androgeus attacks Cassibelaunus from the rear with five thousand men. His line broken, Cassibelanus retreats to a nearby hilltop. After two days siege, Androgeus appeals to Caesar to offer terms. Cassibelanus agrees to pay tribute of three thousand pounds of silver, he and Caesar become friends. Six years Cassibelanus dies and is buried in York. Androgeus has gone to Rome with Caesar, so Tenvantius succeeds as king of Britain.
Cassivellaunus appears as Caswallawn, son of Beli Mawr, in the Welsh Triads, the Mabinogion, the Welsh versions of Geoffrey's Historia Regum Britanniae known as the Brut y Brenhinedd. In the Second Branch of the Mabinogi, he appears as a usurper, who
Blodeuwedd or Blodeuedd, is the wife of Lleu Llaw Gyffes in Welsh mythology. She was made from the flowers of broom and oak by the magicians Math and Gwydion, is a central figure in Math fab Mathonwy, the last of the Four Branches of the Mabinogi; the hero Lleu Llaw Gyffes has been placed under a tynged by his mother, that he may never have a human wife. To counteract this curse, the magicians Math and Gwydion: the flowers of the oak, the flowers of the broom, the flowers of the meadowsweet, from those they conjured up the fairest and most beautiful maiden anyone had seen, and they baptized her in the way that they did at that time, named her Blodeuwedd. Some time while Lleu is away on business, Blodeuwedd has an affair with Gronw Pebr, the lord of Penllyn, the two lovers conspire to murder Lleu. Blodeuwedd tricks Lleu into revealing how he may be killed, since he cannot be killed during the day or night, nor indoors or outdoors, neither riding nor walking, not clothed and not naked, nor by any weapon lawfully made.
He reveals to her that he can only be killed at dusk, wrapped in a net, with one foot on a bath and one on a black goat, by a riverbank and by a spear forged for a year during the hours when everyone is at Mass. With this information she arranges his death. Struck by the spear thrown by Gronw's hand, Lleu flies away. Gwydion finds him perched high on an oak tree. Through the singing of an englyn Gwydion lures Lleu down from the oak tree and switches him back to his human form. Gwydion and Math nurse Lleu back to health before mustering Gwynedd and reclaiming his lands from Gronw and Blodeuwedd. Gwydion overtakes the fleeing Blodeuwedd and turns her into an owl, the creature hated by all other birds, proclaiming: You will not dare to show your face again in the light of day again, that will be because of enmity between you and all other birds, it will be in their nature to despise you wherever they find you. And you will not lose your name - that will always be "Bloddeuwedd." The narrative adds: Blodeuwedd" means "owl" in the language of today.
And it is because of that there is hostility between birds and owls, the owl is still known as Blodeuwedd." Meanwhile, Gronw sends emissaries to Lleu, to beg his forgiveness. Lleu refuses, demanding that Gronw must stand on the bank of the River Cynfael and receive a blow from his spear. Gronw asks if anyone from his warband will take the spear in his place, but his men refuse his plea. Gronw agrees to receive the blow on the condition that he may place a large stone between himself and Lleu. Lleu allows Gronw to do so throws the spear with such strength that it pierces the stone, killing his rival. A holed stone in Ardudwy is still known as Llech Ronw. Robert Graves and others consider lines 142-153 of the poem "Cad Goddeu" to be a "Song of Blodeuwedd". John Steinbeck's Sweet Thursday mentions Blodeuwedd's story briefly. Doc tells Suzy of the story as he looks at the wild iris in her hand while they're on their arranged date. Alan Garner's novel, The Owl Service, makes the story of Blodeuwedd an eternal cycle played out each generation, in a Welsh valley.
The only way to break the cycle is for the Blodeuwedd character to realise she is supposed to be flowers, not an owl. The Blodeuwedd story is referenced in film Tylluan Wen. In the Welsh TV series Y Gwyll, season 1, episode 4: "The Girl in the Water", murder victim Alice Thomas left a journal indicating she saw herself as Blodeuwedd; when interviewing the professor who had broken off his and Alice's affair the night she was killed, DCI Tom Mathias read passages of the story and noted the story's multiple interpretations. In The Return: Shadow Souls, the sixth book of L. J. Smith's The Vampire Diaries series, Lady Blodeuwedd resides in the Dark Dimension and is an aristocrat; the story of Blodeuwedd is explained as an example of a story not ending as expected. Blodeuwedd's creation by Gwydion and Math is delicately described in the poem'The Wife of Llew' by Francis Ledwidge. Louise M Hewett explores the story of Blodeuwedd and Math Son of Mathonwy from a feminist perspective in the second and third books, Wind.
Within the novels, a discussion about the three significant females in the story of Math Son of Mathonwy - Goewin and Blodeuwedd - has taken place between Róisín and a group of the Pictish Spirit Braves. It culminates with Róisín's "re-vision" of the story in the closing chapter of Flowers, pages 810-814. Welsh mythology in popular culture
Edern ap Nudd
Edern ap Nudd was a knight of the Round Table in Arthur's court in early Arthurian tradition. As the son of Nudd, he is the brother of Gwyn and Owain ap Nudd. In French romances, he is sometimes made the king of a separate realm; as St Edern, he has two churches dedicated to him in Wales. The Welsh name Edern comes from a Brittonic borrowing of Latin Aeternus, meaning "eternal, immortal". In Culhwch ac Olwen, Edern is named as one of Arthur's knights in a list of his retinue, but plays no part in the narrative. Edern appears in The Dream of Rhonabwy in which he commands a "pure black troop" of Danish soldiers allied to Arthur against the Saxons, he is named one of Arthur's foremost counsellors during the battle. Edern plays a more important role in Geraint son of Erbin, in which he and two companions, a beautiful lady and a whip-brandishing dwarf, come across Gwenhwyfar, one of her handmaidens and the knight Geraint ab Erbin in a forest; the handmaiden is rebuked and struck by the dwarf. Geraint goes and suffers the same fate, but chooses to spare the dwarf's life and retreats.
Seeking his adversary, Geraint heads to a "walled town". Edern, champion of the tournament for two years running, challenges Geraint to joust. Edern has the upper hand but by the end of the duel, he suffers vicious wounds at Geraint's hand and begs for mercy. Geraint allows Edern to keep his life on the condition that he rides to Arthur's court to make amends for his insult. Edern accepts the condition, reveals his name to his rival. Edern rides to Arthur's court where his apology is accepted by Gwenhwyfar. Injured, he is treated by Morgan Tud, the chief physician of the court. Upon his recovery, he is chosen to accompany Geraint to the kingdom of Erbin. Outside Welsh-language writing, Edern is first seen in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae as Hiderus filius Nu, a knight of King Arthur's who fought in his Gallic campaign; the poet Wace, in his adaptation of the Historia Regum Britanniae called the Roman de Brut, renders the name as Yder fils Nu. There is an Anglo-Norman Romanz du reis Yder.
However, Yder's'fame was too small to inspire writers or visual artists. The only time he may have been immortalised is on the famous archivolt at Modena, which shows a knight called Idernus in a scene with King Arthur, the captive queen Guinloie or Guenevere and Durmart'. Edern is the patron saint of two churches in Wales: St Edern's Church, Bodedern, in Anglesey, the church in the village of Edern, Gwynedd
Celtic mythology is the mythology of Celtic polytheism, the religion of the Iron Age Celts. Like other Iron Age Europeans, the early Celts maintained a polytheistic mythology and religious structure. For Celts in close contact with Ancient Rome, such as the Gauls and Celtiberians, their mythology did not survive the Roman Empire, their subsequent conversion to Christianity and the loss of their Celtic languages, it is through contemporary Roman and Christian sources that their mythology has been preserved. The Celtic peoples who maintained either political or linguistic identities left vestigial remnants of their ancestral mythologies that were put into written form during the Middle Ages. Although the Celtic world at its height covered much of western and central Europe, it was not politically unified nor was there any substantial central source of cultural influence or homogeneity. Inscriptions of more than three hundred deities equated with their Roman counterparts, have survived, but of these most appear to have been genii locorum, local or tribal gods, few were worshiped.
However, from what has survived of Celtic mythology, it is possible to discern commonalities which hint at a more unified pantheon than is given credit. The nature and functions of these ancient gods can be deduced from their names, the location of their inscriptions, their iconography, the Roman gods they are equated with, similar figures from bodies of Celtic mythology. Celtic mythology is found in a number of distinct, if related, subgroups corresponding to the branches of the Celtic languages: Ancient Celtic religion mythology in Goidelic languages, represented chiefly by Irish mythology Mythological Cycle Ulster Cycle Fenian Cycle Cycles of the Kings mythology in Brittonic languages Welsh mythology Cornish mythology Breton mythology As a result of the scarcity of surviving materials bearing written Gaulish, it is surmised that the most of the Celtic writings were destroyed by the Romans, although a written form of Gaulish using Greek and North Italic alphabets was used. Julius Caesar attests to the literacy of the Gauls, but wrote that their priests, the druids, were forbidden to use writing to record certain verses of religious significance while noting that the Helvetii had a written census.
Rome introduced a more widespread habit of public inscriptions, broke the power of the druids in the areas it conquered. Although early Gaels in Ireland and parts of modern Wales used the Ogham script to record short inscriptions, more sophisticated literacy was not introduced to Celtic areas that had not been conquered by Rome until the advent of Christianity. Indeed, many Gaelic myths were first recorded by Christian monks, albeit without most of their original religious meanings; the oldest body of myths stemming from the Heroic Age is found only from the early medieval period of Ireland. As Christianity began to take over, the gods and goddesses were eliminated as such from the culture. What has survived includes material dealing with the Tuatha Dé Danann and the Fomorians, which forms the basis for the text Cath Maige Tuired "The Battle of Mag Tuireadh", as well as portions of the history-focused Lebor Gabála Érenn; the Tuatha Dé represent the functions of human society such as kingship and war, while the Fomorians represent chaos and wild nature.
The leader of the gods for the Irish pantheon appears to have been the Dagda. The Dagda was the figure on which male humans and other gods were based because he embodied ideal Irish traits. Celtic gods were considered to be a clan due to their lack of specialization and unknown origins; the particular character of the Dagda was as a figure of burlesque lampoonery in Irish mythology, some authors conclude that he was trusted to be benevolent enough to tolerate jokes at his own expense. Irish tales depict the Dagda as a figure of power, armed with a club. In Dorset there is a famous outline of an ithyphallic giant known as the Cerne Abbas Giant with a club cut into the chalky soil. While this was produced in modern times, it was long thought to be a representation of the Dagda; this has been called into question by recent studies which show that there may have been a representation of what looks like a large drapery hanging from the horizontal arm of the figure, leading to suspicion that this figure represents Hercules, with the skin of the Nemean lion over his arm and carrying the club he used to kill it.
In Gaul, it is speculated that the Dagda is associated with Sucellus, the striker, equipped with a hammer and cup. The Morrígan was a tripartite battle goddess of the Celts of Ancient Ireland, she was known as the Morrígan, but the different sections she was divided into were referred to as Nemain and Badb, with each representing different aspects of combat. She is most known for her involvement in the Táin Bó Cúailnge
Three Welsh Romances
The Three Welsh Romances are three Middle Welsh tales associated with the Mabinogion. They are versions of Arthurian tales that appear in the work of Chrétien de Troyes. Critics have debated whether the Welsh Romances are based on Chrétien's poems or if they derive from a shared original; the Romances survive in the White Book of Rhydderch and the Red Book of Hergest, both from the 14th century, though the material is at least as old as Chrétien. The Three Welsh Romances are: the Lady of the Fountain. Peredur, son of Efrawg, which corresponds to Chrétien's Perceval, the Story of the Grail Owain, or the Lady of the Fountain is analogous to Chrétien de Troyes' Old French poem Yvain, the Knight of the Lion, it survives both from the 14th century. The tale's hero, Yvain, is based on the historical figure Owain mab Urien; the romance consists of a hero marrying his love, the Lady of the Fountain, but losing her when he neglects her for knightly exploits. With the aid of a lion he saves from a serpent, he finds a balance between his marital and social duties and rejoins his wife.
It was once thought Owain and Yvain were derived from a common lost source, but it now seems more that Owain was directly or indirectly based on Chrétien's poem, with local literary touches added to appeal to a Welsh audience. It is still possible that Chrétien in turn had a Welsh source, evidence of which can be found in certain episodes in the Life of St. Mungo, where the saint's father Owain tries to woo his mother, Lot of Lothian's daughter, which exhibit parallels to the narrative of Yvain. Geraint and Enid known by the title Geraint, son of Erbin, is analogous to Chrétien de Troyes' 12th-century poem Erec and Enide, it survives both from the 14th century. The romance concerns the love of Geraint, one of King Arthur's men, the beautiful Enid. Geraint, son of King Erbin of Dumnonia, courts Enid; the couple marry and settle down together. Upset about this, Enid cries to herself that she is not a true wife for keeping her husband from his chivalric duties, but Geraint misunderstands her comment to mean she has been unfaithful to him.
He commands her not to speak to him. Enid disregards this command several times to warn her husband of danger. Several adventures follow that prove Geraint's fighting ability; the couple is reconciled in the end, Geraint inherits his father's kingdom. Enid does not appear in Welsh sources outside of this romance, but Geraint was a popular figure; some scholars hold that the Erec from Chrétien's poem is based on Geraint, but others think the Welsh author replaced an unfamiliar French name with one his audience would recognize and associate with heroism. Alfred, Lord Tennyson based two of his Idylls of the King on Geraint and Enid, they were published as a single poem called "Enid" in 1859. Peredur son of Efrawg is associated with Chrétien de Troyes' unfinished romance Perceval, the Story of the Grail, but it contains many striking differences from that work, most notably the absence of the French poem's central object, the grail. Versions of the text survive in four manuscripts from the 14th century.
The tale's protagonist Peredur travels to King Arthur's court to become a knight. The young Peredur embarks on a series of adventures, culminating in his battle against the nine sorceresses. Aronstein, Susan. "When Arthur Held Court in Caer Llion: Love and the Politics of Centralization in Gereint and Owein". Viator. 25: 215–28. Fulton, Helen. "Individual and Society in Owein/Yvain and Gereint/Erec". In Joseph Falaky Nagy. CSANA Yearbook 1: The Individual in Celtic Literatures. Dublin: Four Courts Press. Pp. 15–50. Thomson, R. L.. "Owain: Chwedl Iarlles y Ffynnon". In Rachel Bromwich, A. O. H. Jarman and Brynley F. Roberts; the Arthur of the Welsh: The Arthurian Legend in Medieval Welsh Literature. Cardiff: University of Wales Press. Pp. 159–69