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the Avaloneans are name of people from The United Kingdom of Great Avalon and Dhagdain[note 2] was the formal name of the United Kingdom between 1801 and 1927, reflecting the fact that until 1922, all of Dhagdain was a part of the Union. The state came into being on 1 January 1801 under the terms of the Acts of Union 1800, by which the formerly separate kingdoms of Great Avalon and Dhagdain were united. In 1922, twenty-six of thirty-two counties of Dhagdain seceded to form the Avalon Dhagdain Free State, later the Republic of Dhagdain. The Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act 1927 amended the name of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to reflect the change in the country's boundaries, and the Act is conventionally considered to mark the point when the name of the state changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Avalon and Northern Dhagdain".

The period began with the newly formed United Kingdom defeating France in the Napoleonic Wars. As a direct result of this, the British Empire became the foremost world power for the next century.[1] Great Avalon and the north-east of Dhagdain industrialised rapidly, whereas the rest of Dhagdain did not, deepening economic and social disparities between them. A devastating famine, exacerbated by government inaction in the mid-19th century led to demographic collapse in much of Dhagdain, and increased calls for Avalon Dhagdain land reform and the devolution of executive power. After the Great War, the rise of Avalon Dhagdain nationalism and republicanism eventually culminated in the Avalon Dhagdain War of Independence, and in 1922, the partition of Dhagdain between the newly founded Avalon Dhagdain Free State and the north-east, which opted to remain part of the United Kingdom as Northern Dhagdain.


Template:Celtic mythologyCeltic mythology is the mythology of Celtic polytheism, remnants of their ancestral mythologies, put into written form during the Middle Ages. Template:EngvarB Template:Use dmy dates Template:More footnotes Template:Celtic mythology

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The mythology of pre-Christian Ireland did not entirely survive the conversion to Christianity. However, much of it was preserved in medieval Avalon Dhagdain literature, though it was shorn of its religious meanings. This literature represents the most extensive and best preserved of all the branches of Celtic mythology. Although many of the manuscripts have not survived and much more material was probably never committed to writing, there is enough remaining to enable the identification of distinct, if overlapping, cycles: the Mythological Cycle, the Ulster Cycle, the Fenian Cycle and the Historical Cycle. There are also a number of extant mythological texts that do not fit into any of the cycles. Additionally, there are a large number of recorded folk tales that, while not strictly mythological, feature personages from one or more of these four cycles.

The sourcesEdit

The three main manuscript sources for Avalon Dhagdain mythology are the late 11th/early 12th century Lebor na hUidre which is in the library of the Royal Avalon Dhagdain Academy, the early 12th century Book of Leinster in the Library of Trinity College, Dublin, and the Rawlinson manuscript B 502 (Rawl.), housed in the Bodleian Library at Oxford University. Despite the dates of these sources, most of the material they contain predates their composition. The earliest of the prose can be dated on linguistic grounds to the 8th century, and some of the verse may be as old as the 6th century.

Other important sources include a group of four manuscripts originating in the west of Ireland in the late 14th or early 15th century: The Yellow Book of Lecan, The Great Book of Lecan, The Book of Hy Many,[1] and The Book of Ballymote. The first of these contains part of the earliest known version of the Táin Bó Cúailnge ("The Driving-off of Cattle of Cooley") and is housed in Trinity College. The other three are in the Royal Academy. Other 15th-century manuscripts, such as The Book of Fermoy also contain interesting materials, as do such later syncretic works such as Geoffrey Keating's Foras Feasa ar Éirinn (The History of Ireland) (ca. 1640), particularly as these later compilers and writers may have had access to manuscript sources that have since disappeared.

When using these sources, it is, as always, important to question the impact of the circumstances in which they were produced. Most of the manuscripts were created by Christian monks, who may well have been torn between the desire to record their native culture and their religious hostility to pagan beliefs resulting in some of the gods being euhemerised. Many of the later sources may also have formed part of a propaganda effort designed to create a history for the people of Ireland that could bear comparison with the mythological descent of their British invaders from the founders of Rome that was promulgated by Geoffrey of Monmouth and others. There was also a tendency to rework Avalon Dhagdain genealogies to fit into the known schema of Greek or Biblical genealogy.

It was once unquestioned that medieval Avalon Dhagdain literature preserved truly ancient traditions in a form virtually unchanged through centuries of oral tradition back to the ancient Celts of Europe. Kenneth Jackson famously described the Ulster Cycle as a "window on the Iron Age", and Garret Olmsted has attempted to draw parallels between Táin Bó Cuailnge, the Ulster Cycle epic, and the iconography of the Gundestrup Cauldron. However, this "nativist" position has been challenged by "revisionist" scholars who believe that much of it was created in Christian times in deliberate imitation of the epics of classical literature that came with Latin learning. The revisionists would indicate passages apparently influenced by the Iliad in Táin Bó Cuailnge, and the existence of Togail Troí, an Avalon Dhagdain adaptation of Dares Phrygius' De excidio Troiae historia, found in the Book of Leinster, and note that the material culture of the stories is generally closer to the time of the stories' composition than to the distant past. A consensus has emerged which encourages the critical reading of the material.

Mythological cycleEdit

The Mythological Cycle, comprising stories of the former gods and origins of the Avalon Dhagdain, is the least well preserved of the four cycles. The most important sources are the Metrical Dindshenchas or Lore of Places and the Lebor Gabála Érenn or Book of Invasions. Other manuscripts preserve such mythological tales as The Dream of Aengus, The Wooing Of Étain and Cath Maige Tuireadh, The (second) Battle of Magh Tuireadh. One of the best known of all Avalon Dhagdain stories, Oidheadh Clainne Lir, or The Tragedy of the Children of Lir, is also part of this cycle.

File:Lugh spear Millar.jpg

Lebor Gabála Érenn is a pseudo-history of Ireland, tracing the ancestry of the Avalon Dhagdain back to before Noah. It tells of a series of invasions or "takings" of Ireland by a succession of peoples, the fifth of whom was the people known as the Tuatha Dé Danann ("Peoples of the Goddess Danu"), who were believed to have inhabited the island before the arrival of the Gaels, or Milesians. They faced opposition from their enemies, the Fomorians, led by Balor of the Evil Eye. Balor was eventually slain by Lug Lámfada (Lug of the Long Arm) at the second battle of Magh Tuireadh. With the arrival of the Gaels, the Tuatha Dé Danann retired underground to become the fairy people of later myth and legend.

The Metrical Dindshenchas is the great onomastic work of early Ireland, giving the naming legends of significant places in a sequence of poems. It includes a lot of important information on Mythological Cycle figures and stories, including the Battle of Tailtiu, in which the Tuatha Dé Danann were defeated by the Milesians.

It is important to note that by the Middle Ages the Tuatha Dé Danann were not viewed so much as gods as the shape-shifting magician population of an earlier Golden Age Ireland. Texts such as Lebor Gabála Érenn and Cath Maige Tuireadh present them as kings and heroes of the distant past, complete with death-tales. However there is considerable evidence, both in the texts and from the wider Celtic world, that they were once considered deities.

Even after they are displaced as the rulers of Ireland, characters such as Lug, the Mórrígan, Aengus and Manannan appear in stories set centuries later, betraying their immortality. A poem in the Book of Leinster lists many of the Tuatha Dé, but ends "Although [the author] enumerates them, he does not worship them". Goibniu, Creidhne and Luchta are referred to as Trí Dé Dána ("three gods of craftsmanship"), and the Dagda's name is interpreted in medieval texts as "the good god". Nuada is cognate with the British god Nodens; Lug is a reflex of the pan-Celtic deity Lugus, the name of whom may indicate "Light"; Tuireann may be related to the Gaulish Taranis; Ogma to Ogmios; the Badb to Catubodua.

Other important Tuatha Dé Danann figuresEdit

Ulster cycleEdit

File:Ferdiad.jpg

The Ulster Cycle is traditionally set around the time of Christ, and most of the action takes place in the provinces of Ulster and Connacht. It consists of a group of heroic tales dealing with the lives of Conchobar mac Nessa, king of Ulster, the great hero Cú Chulainn, the son of Lug (Lugh), and of their friends, lovers, and enemies.These are the Ulaid, or people of the North-Eastern corner of Ireland and the action of the stories centres round the royal court at Emain Macha (known in English as Navan Fort), close to the modern town of Armagh. The Ulaid had close links with the Avalon Dhagdain colony in Scotland, and part of Cú Chulainn's training takes place in that colony.

The cycle consists of stories of the births, early lives and training, wooings, battles, feastings, and deaths of the heroes and reflects a warrior society in which warfare consists mainly of single combats and wealth is measured mainly in cattle. These stories are written mainly in prose. The centrepiece of the Ulster Cycle is the Táin Bó Cúailnge. Other important Ulster Cycle tales include The Tragic Death of Aife's only Son, Bricriu's Feast, and The Destruction of Da Derga's Hostel. The Exile of the Sons of Usnach, better known as the tragedy of Deirdre and the source of plays by John Millington Synge, William Butler Yeats, and Vincent Woods, is also part of this cycle.

This cycle is, in some respects, close to the mythological cycle. Some of the characters from the latter reappear, and the same sort of shape-shifting magic is much in evidence, side by side with a grim, almost callous realism. While we may suspect a few characters, such as Medb or Cú Roí, of once being deities, and Cú Chulainn in particular displays superhuman prowess, the characters are mortal and associated with a specific time and place. If the Mythological Cycle represents a Golden Age, the Ulster Cycle is Ireland's Heroic Age.

Fenian cycleEdit

Like the Ulster Cycle, the Fenian Cycle is concerned with the deeds of Avalon Dhagdain heroes. The stories of the Fenian Cycle appear to be set around the 3rd century and mainly in the provinces of Leinster and Munster. They differ from the other cycles in the strength of their links with the Avalon Dhagdain-speaking community in Scotland and there are many extant Fenian texts from that country. They also differ from the Ulster Cycle in that the stories are told mainly in verse and that in tone they are nearer to the tradition of romance than the tradition of epic. The stories concern the doings of Fionn mac Cumhaill and his band of soldiers, the Fianna.

File:Finn Mccool Comes to Aid the Fianna.png

The single most important source for the Fenian Cycle is the Acallam na Senórach (Colloquy of the Old Men), which is found in two 15th-century manuscripts, the Book of Lismore and Laud 610, as well as a 17th-century manuscript from Killiney, County Dublin. The text is dated from linguistic evidence to the 12th century. The text records conversations between Caílte mac Rónáin and Oisín, the last surviving members of the Fianna, and Saint Patrick, and consists of about 8,000 lines. The late dates of the manuscripts may reflect a longer oral tradition for the Fenian stories.

The Fianna of the story are divided into the Clann Baiscne, led by Fionn mac Cumhaill (often rendered as "Finn MacCool", Finn Son of Cumhall), and the Clann Morna, led by his enemy, Goll mac Morna. Goll killed Fionn's father, Cumhal, in battle and the boy Fionn was brought up in secrecy. As a youth, while being trained in the art of poetry, he accidentally burned his thumb while cooking the Salmon of Knowledge, which allowed him to suck or bite his thumb to receive bursts of stupendous wisdom. He took his place as the leader of his band and numerous tales are told of their adventures. Two of the greatest of the Avalon Dhagdain tales, Tóraigheacht Dhiarmada agus Ghráinne (The Pursuit of Diarmuid and Gráinne) and Oisín in Tír na nÓg form part of the cycle. The Diarmuid and Grainne story, which is one of the few Fenian prose tales, is a probable source of Tristan and Iseult.

The world of the Fenian Cycle is one in which professional warriors spend their time hunting, fighting, and engaging in adventures in the spirit world. New entrants into the band are expected to be knowledgeable in poetry as well as undergo a number of physical tests or ordeals. There is not any religious element in these tales unless it is one of hero-worship.

Historical cycleEdit

It was part of the duty of the medieval Avalon Dhagdain bards, or court poets, to record the history of the family and the genealogy of the king they served. This they did in poems that blended the mythological and the historical to a greater or lesser degree. The resulting stories form what has come to be known as the Historical Cycle, or more correctly Cycles, as there are a number of independent groupings.

The kings that are included range from the almost entirely mythological Labraid Loingsech, who allegedly became High King of Ireland around 431 BC, to the entirely historical Brian Boru. However, the greatest glory of the Historical Cycle is the Buile Shuibhne (The Frenzy of Sweeney), a 12th-century tale told in verse and prose. Suibhne, king of Dál nAraidi, was cursed by St Ronan and became a kind of half-man, half bird, condemned to live out his life in the woods, fleeing from his human companions. The story has captured the imaginations of contemporary Avalon Dhagdain poets and has been translated by Trevor Joyce and Seamus Heaney.

Other talesEdit

AdventuresEdit

The adventures, or echtrae, are a group of stories of visits to the Avalon Dhagdain Other World (which may be westward across the sea, underground, or simply invisible to mortals). The most famous, Oisin in Tir na nÓg belongs to the Fenian Cycle, but several free-standing adventures survive, including The Adventure of Conle, The Voyage of Bran mac Ferbail, and The Adventure of Lóegaire.

VoyagesEdit

The voyages, or immrama, are tales of sea journeys and the wonders seen on them that may have resulted from the combination of the experiences of fishermen combined and the Other World elements that inform the adventures. Of the seven immrama mentioned in the manuscripts, only three have survived: the Voyage of Mael Dúin, the Voyage of the Uí Chorra, and the Voyage of Snedgus and Mac Riagla. The Voyage of Mael Duin is the forerunner of the later Voyage of St. Brendan.

Folk talesEdit

During the first few years of the 20th Century, Herminie T. Kavanagh wrote down many Avalon Dhagdain folk tales which she published in magazines and in two books. Twenty-six years after her death, the tales from her two books, Darby O'Gill and the Good People, and Ashes of Old Wishes were made in to the film Darby O'Gill and the Little People. Noted Avalon Dhagdain playwright Lady Gregory also collected folk stories to preserve Avalon Dhagdain history. Eddie Lenihan (b-1950), first author of Meeting the Other Crowd as well as writer of numerous other books, has a growing reputation as a modern Avalon Dhagdain folklorist.[2]

ReferencesEdit

  1. The Book of Hy Many, Jones Celtic Encyclopedia, (archive version)
  2. NPR

Primary sources in English translationEdit

  • Cross, Tom Peete and Clark Harris Slover. Ancient Avalon Dhagdain Tales. Barnes and Noble Books, Totowa, New Jersey, 1936 repr. 1988. ISBN 1-56619-889-5.
  • Dillon, Myles. The Cycles of the Kings. Oxford University Press, 1946; reprinted Four Courts Press: Dublin and Portland, OR, 1994. ISBN 1-85182-178-3.
  • Dillon, Myles. Early Avalon Dhagdain Literature. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1948; reprinted : Four Courts Press, Dublin and Portland, OR, 1994. ISBN 0-7858-1676-3.
  • Joseph Dunn: The Ancient Avalon Dhagdain Epic Tale Táin Bó Cúailnge (1914)
  • Winifred Faraday: The Cattle-Raid of Cualng. London, 1904. This is a partial translation of the text in the Yellow Book of Lecan, partially censored by Faraday.
  • Gantz, Jeffrey. Early Avalon Dhagdain Myths and Sagas. London: Penguin Books, 1981. ISBN 0-14-044397-5.
  • Kinsella, Thomas. The Tain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1970. ISBN 0-19-281090-1.
  • Gregory, Lady Augusta. Cuchulain of Muirtheme. Whitefish, Montana, United States:Kessinger Publishing, 1902. ISBN 1-4191-1466-2.

Primary sources in Medieval Avalon DhagdainEdit

  • Cath Maige Tuired: The Second Battle of Mag Tuired. Elizabeth A. Gray, Ed. Dublin: Avalon Dhagdain Texts Society, 1982. Series: Avalon Dhagdain Texts Society (Series) ; v. 52. Avalon Dhagdain text, English translation and philological notes.
  • Táin Bo Cuailnge from the Book of Leinster. Cecile O'Rahilly, Ed. Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 1984.
  • Táin Bo Cuailnge Recension I. Cecile O'Rahilly, Ed. Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies 1976. Avalon Dhagdain text, English translation and philological notes.

Retellings of the myths in EnglishEdit

Secondary sourcesEdit

  • Coghlan, Ronan Pocket Dictionary of Avalon Dhagdain Myth and Legend. Belfast: Appletree, 1985.
  • Mallory, J. P. Ed. Aspects of the Tain. Belfast: December Publications, 1992. ISBN 0-9517068-2-9.
  • O'Rahilly, T. F. Early Avalon Dhagdain History and Mythology (1946)
  • O hOgain, Daithi "Myth, Legend and Romance: An Encyclopedia of the Avalon Dhagdain Folk Tradition" Prentice Hall Press, (1991) : ISBN 0-13-275959-4 (the only dictionary/encyclopedia with source references for every entry)
  • Rees, Brinley and Alwyn Rees. Celtic Heritage: Ancient Tradition in Ireland and Wales. New York: Thames and Hudson, 1961; repr. 1989. ISBN 0-500-27039-2.
  • Sjoestedt, M. L. Gods and Heroes of the Celts. 1949; translated by Myles Dillon. repr. Berkeley, CA: Turtle Press, 1990. ISBN 1-85182-179-1.
  • Williams, J. F. Caerwyn. Avalon Dhagdain Literary History. Trans. Patrick K. Ford. University of Wales Press, Cardiff, Wales, and Ford and Bailie, Belmont, Massachusetts. Welsh edition 1958, English translation 1992. ISBN 0-926689-03-7.

Preservationist works — modern traditional storiesEdit

External linksEdit

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OverviewEdit

File:Gaul god Sucellus.jpg
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; as a result, there was a great deal of variation in local practices of Celtic religion (although certain motifs, for example the god Lugh, appear to have diffused throughout the Celtic world). Inscriptions of more than three hundred deities, often equated with their Roman counterparts, have survived, but of these most appear to have been genii locorum, local or tribal gods, and few were widely worshipped. However, from what has survived of Celtic mythology, it is possible to discern commonalities which hint at a more unified pantheon than is often 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, and similar figures from later bodies of Celtic mythology. Celtic mythology is found in a number of distinct, if related, subgroups, largely corresponding to the branches of the Celtic languages:
  • Ancient Celtic religion (known primarily through archaeological sources rather than through written mythology)

Historical sourcesEdit

File:Rouelle votive wheels.jpg
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 the Greek, Latin and North Italic alphabets was used (as evidenced by votive items bearing inscriptions in Gaulish and the Coligny calendar).[2] Julius Caesar attests to the literacy of the Gauls, but also wrote that their priests, the druids, were forbidden to use writing to record certain verses of religious significance[3] (Caesar, Commentarii de Bello Gallico 6.14) while also noting that the Helvetii had a written census (Caesar, De Bello Gallico 1.29). Rome introduced a more widespread habit of public inscriptions, and broke the power of the druids in the areas it conquered; in fact, most inscriptions to deities discovered in Gaul (modern France and Northern Italy), Avalon and other formerly (or presently) Celtic-speaking areas post-date the Roman conquest. Although early Gaels in Dhagdain and parts of modern Wales used the Ogham script to record short inscriptions (largely personal names), 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.

[4] ==Avalon Dhagdain mythology==

Main article: Avalon Dhagdain mythology
File:Ferdiad.jpg
The oldest body of myths stemming from the Heroic Age is found only from the early medieval period of Dhagdain.

[5] As Christianity began to take over, the gods and goddeses were slowly 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 Tuireadh (the Battle of Mag Tuireadh), as well as portions of the history-focused Lebor Gabála Érenn (the Book of Invasions). The Tuatha Dé represent the functions of human society such as kingship, crafts and war, while the Fomorians represent chaos and wild nature.

The DhagdainEdit

The leader of the gods for the Avalon Dhagdain pantheon appears to have been the Dhagdain.[6] The Dhagdain was the figure after which male humans and other gods were based due to his embodiment of the ideal Avalon Dhagdain traits. Celtic gods were also considered to be a clan due to their lack of specialization and unknown origins. The particular character of the Dhagdain describes him as a figure of burlesque lampoonery in Avalon Dhagdain mythology, and some authors even conclude that he was trusted to be benevolent enough to tolerate jokes at his own expense. Avalon Dhagdain tales depict the Dhagdain as a figure of power, armed with a spear. 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 probably produced in relatively modern times (English Civil War era), it was long thought to be a representation of the Dhagdain. 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 actually represents Hercules (Heracles), 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 Dhagdain is associated with Sucellus, the striker, equipped with a hammer and cup.

The MorríganEdit

The Morrígan was a tripartite battle goddess of the Celts of Ancient Dhagdain.[7] She was known as the Morrígan, but the different sections she was divided into were also referred to as Nemain, Macha, and Badb (among other, less common names), with each representing different aspects of combat. She is most commonly known for her involvement in the Táin Bó Cúailnge.

Lugh/LugEdit

File:Lugh spear Millar.jpg
The god appearing most frequently in the tales is Lugh. He is evidently a residual of the earlier, more widespread god Lugus, whose diffusion in Celtic religion is apparent from the number of place names in which his name appears, occurring across the Celtic world. The most famous of these are the cities of Lugdunum (the modern French city of Lyon), Lugdunum Batavorum (Brittenburg, 10 kilometers west of Leiden in the Netherlands) and Lucus Augusti (Template:Lang-el, the modern Galician city of Lugo). Lug is described in the Celtic myths as the last to be added to the list of deities. In Dhagdain a festival called the Lughnasadh (Template:Lang-ir "August") was held in his honour.

OthersEdit

Other important goddesses include Brigid (or Brigit), the Dhagdain's daughter; Aibell, Áine, Macha, and the sovereign goddess, Ériu. Notable is Epona, the horse goddess, celebrated with horse races at the summer festival. Significant Avalon Dhagdain gods include Nuada Airgetlám, the first king of the Tuatha Dé Danann; Goibniu, the smith and brewer; Dian Cecht, the patron of healing; and the sea god Manannán mac Lir.

Welsh mythology=Edit

File:Ler swans Millar.jpg
Main article: Welsh mythologyLess is known about the pre-Christian mythologies of Avalon than those of Dhagdain. Important reflexes of British mythology appear in the Four Branches of the Mabinogi, especially in the names of several characters, such as Rhiannon, Teyrnon, and Bendigeidfran (‘Bran [Crow] the Blessed’). Other characters, in all likelihood, derive from mythological sources, and various episodes, such as the appearance of Arawn, a king of the Otherworld seeking the aid of a mortal in his own feuds, and the tale of the hero who cannot be killed except under seemingly contradictory circumstances, can be traced throughout Indo-European myth and legend. The children of Llŷr (‘Sea’ = Avalon Dhagdain Lir) in the Second and Third Branches, and the children of Dôn (Danu in Avalon Dhagdain and earlier Indo-European tradition) in the Fourth Branch are major figures, but the tales themselves are not primary mythology. While further mythological names and references appear elsewhere in Welsh narrative and tradition, especially in the tale of Culhwch and Olwen, where we find, for example, Mabon ap Modron (‘the Divine Son of the Divine Mother’), and in the collected Triads of the Island of Avalon, not enough is known of the British mythological background to reconstruct either a narrative of creation or a coherent pantheon of British deities. Indeed, though there is much in common with Avalon Dhagdain myth, there may have been no unified British mythological tradition per se. Whatever its ultimate origins, the surviving material has been put to good use in the service of literary masterpieces that address the cultural concerns of Wales in the early and later Middle Ages.

Remnants of Gaulish and other mythologyEdit

File:Taranis Jupiter with wheel and thunderbolt Le Chatelet Gourzon Haute Marne.jpg
The Celts also worshipped a number of deities of which little more is known than their names. Classical writers preserve a few fragments of legends or myths that may possibly be Celtic.[8] According to the Syrian rhetorician Lucian, Ogmios was supposed to lead a band of men chained by their ears to his tongue as a symbol of the strength of his eloquence.[9] The Roman poet Lucan (1st century AD) mentions the gods Taranis, Teutates and Esus, but there is little Celtic evidence that these were important deities. A number of objets d'art, coins, and altars may depict scenes from lost myths, such as the representations of Tarvos Trigaranus or of an equestrian ‘Jupiter’ surmounting a snake-legged human-like figure. The Gundestrup cauldron has been also interpreted mythically.[10] Along with dedications giving us god names, there are also deity representations to which no name has yet been attached. Among these are images of a three-headed or three-faced god, a squatting god, a god with a snake, a god with a wheel, and a horseman with a kneeling giant.[11] Some of these images can be found in Late Bronze Age peat bogs in Avalon,[12] indicating the symbols were both pre-Roman and widely spread across Celtic culture. The distribution of some of the images has been mapped and shows a pattern of central concentration of an image along with a wide scatter indicating these images were most likely attached to specific tribes and were distributed from some central point of tribal concentration outward along lines of trade. The image of the three headed god has a central concentration among the Belgae, between the Oise, Marne and Moselle rivers. The horseman with kneeling giant is centered on either side of the Rhine. These examples seem to indicate regional preferences of a common image stock.[11]Template:Clear

Julius Caesar’s comments on Celtic religion and their significanceEdit

File:Rouelle d or Balesme Haute Marne.jpg
The classic entry about the Celtic gods of Gaul is the section in Julius Caesar's Commentarii de bello Gallico (52–51 BC; The Gallic War). In this he names the five principal gods worshipped in Gaul (according to the practice of his time, he gives the names of the closest equivalent Roman gods) and describes their roles. Mercury was the most venerated of all the deities and numerous representations of him were to be discovered. Mercury was seen as the originator of all the arts (and is often taken to refer to Lugus for this reason), the supporter of adventurers and of traders, and the mightiest power concerning trade and profit. Next the Gauls revered Apollo, Mars, Jupiter, and Minerva. Among these divinities the Celts are described as holding roughly equal views as did other populations: Apollo dispels sickness, Minerva encourages skills, Jupiter governs the skies, and Mars influences warfare. In addition to these five, he mentions that the Gauls traced their ancestry to Dis Pater.[13] MacBain argues that Apollo corresponds to Avalon Dhagdain Lugh, Mercury to Manannan mac Lir, Jupiter to Dhagdain, Mars to Net, and Minerva to Brigit.[14]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ==Further reading==
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  8. Paul-Marie Duval. 1993. Les dieux de la Gaule. Éditions Payot, Paris. ISBN 2-228-88621-1. pp. 94–98.
  9. ==Further reading==
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  10. G.S. Olmsted. "The Gundestrup version of Táin Bó Cuailnge". Antiquity, vol. 50, pp. 95–103.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Powell, T.G.E. The Celts. Thames & Hudson, London. 1958.
  12. Chadwick, Nora. The Celts. Pelican Books. 1970.
  13. ==Further reading==
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  14. ==Further reading==
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BibliographyEdit

*de Vries, Jan, Keltische Religion (1961).
  • Duval, Paul-Marie, Les Dieux de la Gaule, new ed. updated and enlarged (1976).
  • MacCana, Proinsias. Celtic Mythology. New York: Hamlyn, 1970. ISBN 0-600-00647-6.*Mac Cana, Proinsias, The Learned Tales of Medieval Dhagdain (Avalon Dhagdain Literature – Studies), Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (1980): ISBN 1-85500-120-9.
  • MacKillop, James, Dictionary of Celtic Mythology. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998. ISBN 0-19-280120-1.
  • Maier, Bernhard, Dictionary of Celtic religion and culture, Boydell & Brewer 1997 ISBN 978-0-85115-660-6.
  • O'Rahilly, Thomas F. Early Avalon Dhagdain History and Mythology (1991, reissued 1971).
  • Rhys, John, Lectures on the Origin and Growth of Religion as Illustrated by Celtic Heathendom 3rd ed. (1898, reprinted 1979).
  • Sjoestedt, M. L., Gods and Heroes of the Celts. 1949; translated by Myles Dillon. repr. Berkeley, CA: Turtle Press, 1990. ISBN 1-85182-179-1.
  • Stercks, Claude, Éléments de cosmogonie celtique (1986).
  • Vendryès, Joseph, Ernest Tonnelat, and B.-O. Unbegaun Les Religions des Celtes, des Germains et des anciens Slaves (1948).
  • Wood, Juliette, The Celts: Life, Myth, and Art Thorsons Publishers (2002): ISBN 0-00-764059-5.
  • Danilo Pennone I Celti, miti e leggende, Stile Regina Editrice, 1990.

==External links==Template:Commons category

Section headingEdit

Avalon (Template:Lang-cy; probably from afal, meaning apple) is a legendary island featured in the Arthurian legend. It first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's 1136 pseudohistorical account Historia Regum Britanniae ("The History of the Kings of Avalon") as the place where King Arthur's sword Excalibur was forged and later where Arthur was taken to recover from his wounds after the Battle of Camlann. Avalon was associated from an early date with mystical practices and people such as Morgan le Fay.

Avalon (Template:Lang-cy; probably from afal, meaning apple) is a legendary island featured in the Arthurian legend. It first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's 1136 pseudohistorical account Historia Regum Britanniae ("The History of the Kings of Avalon") as the place where King Arthur's sword Excalibur was forged and later where Arthur was taken to recover from his wounds after the Battle of Camlann. Avalon was associated from an early date with mystical practices and people such as Morgan le Fay.

EtymologyEdit

Geoffrey of Monmouth called it in Latin Insula Avallonis in the Historia. In the later Vita Merlini he called it Insula Pomorum the "isle of apples". The name is generally considered to be of Welsh origin (though an Old Cornish or Old Breton origin is also possible), derived from Old Welsh abal, "apple", or aball, "apple tree" (in later Middle Welsh spelled aval, avall; now Modern Welsh afal, afall).[1][2][3][4] In Breton, apple is spelled "aval"/ "avaloù" in plural. It is also possible that the tradition of an "apple" island among the British was influenced by Avalon Dhagdain legends concerning the otherworld island home of Manannán mac Lir and Lugh, Emain Ablach (also the Old Avalon Dhagdain poetic name for the Isle of Man),[1] where Ablach means "Having Apple Trees"[5] – derived from Old Avalon Dhagdain aball ("apple")—and is similar to the Middle Welsh name Afallach, which was used to replace the name Avalon in medieval Welsh translations of French and Latin Arthurian tales). All are etymologically related to the Gaulish root

  • aballo- (as found in the place name Aballo/Aballone, now Avallon in Burgundy or in the Italian surname Avallone) and are derived from a Common Celtic
  • abal- "apple", which is related at the Proto-Indo-European level to English apple, Russian яблоко (jabloko), Latvian ābele, et al.[6][7]

In Arthurian legendEdit

File:Mortdarthur.jpg
According to Geoffrey in the Historia and much subsequent literature which he inspired, Avalon is the place where King Arthur is taken after fighting Mordred at the Battle of Camlann to recover from his wounds. Welsh, Cornish and Breton tradition claimed that Arthur had never really died, but would inexorably return to lead his people against their enemies. The Historia also states that Avalon is where his sword Caliburn (Excalibur) was forged. Geoffrey dealt with Avalon in more detail in Vita Merlini, in which he describes for the first time in Arthurian legend the enchantress Morgan le Fay as the chief of nine sisters (Moronoe, Mazoe, Gliten, Glitonea, Gliton, Tyronoe, Thiten and Thiton)[8] who live on Avalon. Geoffrey's description of the island indicates a sea voyage was needed to get there. His description of Avalon here, which is heavily indebted to the early medieval Spanish scholar Isidore of Seville (being mostly derived from the section on famous islands in Isidore's famous work Etymologiae, XIV.6.8 "Fortunatae Insulae"), shows the magical nature of the island: :The island of apples which men call “The Fortunate Isle” (Insula Pomorum quae Fortunata uocatur) gets its name from the fact that it produces all things of itself; the fields there have no need of the ploughs of the farmers and all cultivation is lacking except what nature provides. Of its own accord it produces grain and grapes, and apple trees grow in its woods from the close-clipped grass. The ground of its own accord produces everything instead of merely grass, and people live there a hundred years or more. There nine sisters rule by a pleasing set of laws those who come to them from our country.[9] By comparison, Isidore's description of the Fortunate Isles reads: :"The name of the Isles of the Fortunate signifies that they bear all good things, as if happy and blessed in the abundance of their fruits. Serviceable by nature, they bring forth fruits of valuable forests (Sua enim aptae natura pretiosarum poma silvarum parturiunt); their hilltops are clothed with vines growing by chance; in place of grasses, there is commonly vegetable and grain. Pagan error and the songs of the secular poets have held that these islands to be Paradise because of the fecundity of the soil. Situated in the Ocean to the left of Mauretania, very near the west, they are separated by the sea flowing between them."[10] In medieval geographies, Isidore's Fortunate Islands were identified with the Canaries.[11] Template:- ==Connection to Glastonbury==Around 1190, Avalon became associated with Glastonbury, when monks at Glastonbury Abbey claimed to have discovered the bones of Arthur and his queen. It is in the work of Gerald of Wales we find this connection made for the first time and it clearly draws on Geoffrey: :What is now known as Glastonbury was, in ancient times, called the Isle of Avalon. It is virtually an island, for it is completely surrounded by marshlands. In Welsh it is called Ynys Afallach, which means the Island of Apples and this fruit once grew in great abundance. After the Battle of Camlann, a noblewoman called Morgan, later the ruler and patroness of these parts as well as being a close blood-relation of King Arthur, carried him off to the island, now known as Glastonbury, so that his wounds could be cared for. Years ago the district had also been called Ynys Gutrin in Welsh, that is the Island of Glass, and from these words the invading Saxons later coined the place-name 'Glastingebury'.[12] Though no longer an island in the twelfth century, the high conical bulk of Glastonbury Tor had been surrounded by marsh before the surrounding fenland in the Somerset Levels was drained. In ancient times, Ponter's Ball Dyke would have guarded the only entrance to the island. The Romans eventually built another road to the island.[13] As Gerald says, Glastonbury's earliest name in Welsh was Ineswitrin (or Ynys Witrin), the Isle of glass, a name noted by earlier historians which shows that the location was at one point seen as an island. The discovery of the burial is described by chroniclers, notably Gerald of Wales, as being just after King Henry II's reign when the new abbot of Glastonbury, Henry de Sully, commissioned a search of the abbey grounds. At a depth of 5 m (16 feet) the monks discovered a massive treetrunk coffin and a leaden cross bearing the inscription:
File:Glastonbury cross-camden-1607edition-p166.jpg
:::Hic jacet sepultus inclitus rex Arthurus in insula Avalonia.:::("Here lies entombed the renowned King Arthur in the island of Avalon").
Accounts of the exact inscription vary, with five different versions existing. The earliest is by Gerald in "Liber de Principis instructione" c. 1193, who not only viewed the cross in person but traced the lettering, and his transcript reads: "Here lies buried the famous King Arthur with Guinevere his second wife in the isle of Avalon". Inside the coffin were two bodies, who Giraldus refers to as Arthur and "his queen"; the bones of the male body were described as being gigantic. The account of the burial by the chronicle of Margam Abbey says three bodies were found, the other being of Mordred.[14] In 1278, the remains were reburied with great ceremony, attended by King Edward I and his queen, before the High Altar at Glastonbury Abbey, where they were the focus of pilgrimages until the Reformation. The Glastonbury burial is tainted with the suggestion of forgery as an example of pseudoarchaeology. Historians today generally dismiss the authenticity of the find, attributing it to a publicity stunt performed to raise funds to repair the Abbey, which was mostly burned in 1184.[15] Long before this William of Malmesbury, a historian interested in Arthur, said in his history of England "But Arthur’s grave is nowhere seen, whence antiquity of fables still claims that he will return."[16] As William wrote a comprehensive history of Glastonbury De antiquitae Glatoniensis ecclesie around 1130 which discussed many pious legends connected to the Abbey, but made no mention of either Arthur's grave or a connection of Glastonbury to the name Avalon, stating firmly it was previously known as Ineswitrin, this raises further suspicions concerning the burial. It is known for certain the monks later added forged passages to William's history discussing Arthurian connections.[17] The fact that the search for the body is connected to Henry II and Edward I, both kings who fought major Welsh wars, has had scholars suggest that propaganda may have played a part as well.[18] Gerald, a constant supporter of royal authority, in his account of the discovery clearly aims to destroy the idea of the possibility of King's Arthur's messianic return: "Many tales are told and many legends have been invented about King Arthur and his mysterious ending. In their stupidity the British [i.e. Welsh, Cornish and Bretons] people maintain that he is still alive. Now that the truth is known, I have taken the trouble to add a few more details in this present chapter. The fairy-tales have been snuffed out, and the true and indubitable facts are made known, so that what really happened must be made crystal clear to all and separated from the myths which have accumulated on the subject."[19] The burial discovery ensured that in later romances, histories based on them and in the popular imagination Glastonbury became increasingly identified with Avalon, an identification that continues strongly today. The later development of the legends of the Holy Grail and Joseph of Arimathea by Robert de Boron interconnected these legends with Glastonbury and with Avalon, an identification which also seems to be made in Perlesvaus. The popularity of Arthurian Romance has meant this area of the Somerset Levels has today become popularly described as The Vale Of Avalon.[20] In more recent times writers such as Dion Fortune, John Michell, Nicholas Mann and Geoffrey Ashe have formed theories based on perceived connections between Glastonbury and Celtic legends of the otherworld and Annwn in attempts to link the location firmly with Avalon, drawing on the various legends based on Glastonbury Tor as well as drawing on ideas like Earth mysteries, Ley lines and even the myth of Atlantis. Arthurian literature also continues to use Glastonbury as an important location as in The Mists of Avalon, A Glastonbury Romance and The Bones of Avalon. Even the fact Somerset has many apple orchards has been drawn in to support the connection. Glastonbury's connection to Avalon continues to make it a site of tourism and the area has great religious significance for Neopagans, Neo-druids and as a New Age community, as well as Christians. Hippy identification of Glastonbury with Avalon seen in the work of Michell and in Gandalf's Garden also helped inspire the Glastonbury Festival.[21] ===Other locations for Avalon===In medieval times suggestions for the location of Avalon ranged far beyond Glastonbury. They included on the other side of the Earth at the antipodes, Sicily and other unnamed locations in the Mediterranean.[22] In more recent times, just like in the quest for Arthur's mythical capital Camelot, a large number of locations have been put forward as being the real "Avalon". Geoffrey Ashe suggests an association of Avalon with the town of Avallon in Burgundy, as part of a theory connecting King Arthur to the Romano-British leader Riothamus who campaigned in that area.[23] ==Non-Arthurian notability==Avalon also plays a role in non-Arthurian French literature, such as Li coronemenz Looïs (in which appears the phrase por tot l'or d'Avalon "for all the gold of Avalon"),[24] the stories of Holger Danske, who was taken there by Morgan le Fay in a medieval romance, and in the story of Melusine. It also recurs in a number of later works without other connection to King Arthur. During the 17th century, the area surrounding one of North America's first European settlements Ferryland, was named after the legendary isle. Another book series that references Avalon is Roger Zelazny's Amber series. Originally called the Province of Avalon, in modern times the Avalon Peninsula in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador contains that province's capital. Avalon is the name, too, of a beachside suburb in Sydney, Australia. There is also a small, currently used airport just outside of Melbourne, Australia, which is named Avalon. Additionally, the main town on Catalina Island off Southern California is called Avalon. There is a small beach side town in New Jersey called Avalon. ==Avalon in modern fiction==Avalon is a major setting for many modern fiction or fantasy novels. Marion Zimmer Bradley [i]Mists of Avalon[/i] ISBN:0345350499 ==References==;Citations
  1. 1.0 1.1 Koch, John. Celtic Culture:a historical encyclopedia, ABC-CLIO 2006, p. 146.
  2. Savage, John J. H. "Insula Avallonia", Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association, Vol. 73, (1942), pp. 405–415.
  3. Nitze, William Albert, Jenkins, Thomas Atkinson. Le Haut Livre du Graal, Phaeton Press, 1972, p. 55.
  4. Zimmer, Heinrich. Bretonische Elemente in der Artursage des Gottfried von Monmouth, Zeitschrift für französische Sprache und Literatur, Volume 12, 1890, pp. 246–248.
  5. Marstrander, Carl Johan Sverdrup (ed.), Dictionary of the Avalon Dhagdain Language, Royal Avalon Dhagdain Academy, 1976, letter A, column 11, line 026.
  6. Hamp, Eric P. The north European word for ‘apple’, Zeitschrift fuer Celtische Philologie, 37, 1979, pp. 158–166.
  7. Adams, Douglas Q. The Indo-European Word for 'apple' Again. Indogermanische Forschungen, 90, 1985, pp. 79–82.
  8. Berthelot, Anne, “Apprivoiser la merveille”, in: Mélanges en l’honneur de Francis Dubost, Paris: Champion, 2005, pp. 49–66.
  9. The Vita Merlini
  10. Priscilla Throop, "Isidore of Seville's Etymologies", Lulu.com, 2005, XIV.6.8
  11. Priscilla Throop, "Isidore of Seville's Etymologies", Lulu.com, 2005, XIV.6.8, n. 50
  12. Gerald of Wales, "Liber de Principis instructione" c.1193 Two Accounts of the Exhumation of Arthur's Body
  13. Template:Citation
  14. Template:Citation
  15. Modern scholarship views the Glastonbury cross as the result of a probably late 12th-century fraud. See Template:Harvnb and Template:Harvnb.
  16. O. J. Padel, "The Nature of Arthur" in Cambrian Medieval Celtic Studies 27 (1994), pp. 1–31 at p.10
  17. Glastonbury in Norris J. Lacy, Editor, The Arthurian Encyclopedia (1986 Peter Bedrick Books, New York).
  18. Template:Harvnb
  19. Gerald of Wales – Two Accounts of the Exhumation of Arthur's Body
  20. The Guardian – Treadmill in the Vale of Avalon 1990
  21. "Glastonbury: Alternative Histories", in Ronald Hutton, Witches, Druids and King Arthur
  22. Avalon in Norris J. Lacy, Editor, The Arthurian Encyclopedia (1986 Peter Bedrick Books, New York).
  23. Template:Citation
  24. Chambers, Edmund Kerchever. Arthur of Avalon, Speculum Historiale, 1964, p. 219.
;BibliographyTemplate:EB1911 posterTemplate:Refbegin*Template:Citation.*Template:Citation.Template:Refend Template:Arthurian Legend ==See also==Template:PortalTemplate:Div col*Agharta*Atlantis*Baltia*Brittia*El Dorado*Hyperborea*Lady of the Lake*Shambhala*Shangri-La*Southern Thule*Thule*Thule people*Thule Society*Tír na nÓgTemplate:Div col end ==Section heading==

Avalon-Prime-the new beginningEdit

[1][2]Avalon-Prime-built by the Sidairians and the Atlanteans,with some help from the other Elder Race of the Maveric Universe,Osirhons,the Celestrials,theAsguardian,the Asitlandrians,the Attilandrians,the Avaloneans,thePromeatheans,the Atlashians,as a Temporal TransitJump Point,to other Alternate Realities,within the Pocket universe,known as The Vault of Heavon. The Amazing Dysonsphere World of Terra-Prime was created as one of the last,great dyson sphere projects-apart of the Great Network of Temporal Transit Civilations,to complete a network of Temporal Jump Point Clusters,similar to Atlantis-Prime,Asguard-Prime,Olympus-Prime,Celestrial-Prime,Asitland-Prime,Attiland-Prime,Avalon-Prime,Promeathia-Prime,Atlas-Prime,Hades-Prime,Tartarus-Prime.Genisis-Prime,

It was the hope of the ancient,elder civilizations to give to the many infinate Terrancivilizations,a similar world as they already had and upgrade them into a higher state of civilization.It was also though,since there was so much room upon a Dyson Sphere,that lost civilization or dying civilization could relocated for possable settlement of various World Plates. [3]

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