Celtic mythology and folklore

Fachan (athach) To Fergus (Feargus) (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Fachan (athach) Scottish folkloric figure. This one-legged, one-eyed monster haunted the wilder districts of Scotland. In its one hand, which grew from its chest, it held a flail covered with iron apples, with which it struck out at passersby while hopping about on its single leg. One form of the fachan was called the athach; […]

Fer (Fer Fi) To Fynnodderee (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Fer (Fer Fi) Irish hero. Possibly originally a god, this magical harper of munster played so beautifully that no one who heard him could resist responding; if he played a sad song, all wept; a happy song, and all would laugh with joy; a lullaby, and everyone would fall sound asleep. He unwittingly caused the […]

Gabhair (Gavra, Gowra) To Glass-ben (Glass) (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Gabhair (Gavra, Gowra) Irish mythological site. The great legion of warriors known as the fianna, followers of the epic hero fionn mac cumhaill, were almost invariably successful in battle. Even such warriors, however, finally meet their match, and so it was that the Fianna was finally routed at a great battle at Gabhair, said to […]

Glastig (glaistig, glaistic, glaisein, glaishrig) To Gwythyr fab (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Glastig (glaistig, glaistic, glaisein, glaishrig) Scottish and Welsh folkloric figure. A fairy of Scotland and Wales, "the gray-handed one" was a gray thin woman (sometimes, a giant) whose long yellow hair hit the ground behind her; like others of her race, she wore the preferred fairy color, green, from which she was sometimes known as […]

Habetrot (Habitrot, Gyre-Carling, Gy-Carlin) To Hywel Dda (Howel Dda) (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Habetrot (Habitrot, Gyre-Carling, Gy-Carlin) British folkloric figure. A spinner goddess diminished after Christianization to a fairy spirit, Habetrot was a healing spirit. Those who could induce her to weave them a garment never suffered from illness. She appeared in some areas of Britain as a fairy queen (Gyre-Carling or Gy-Carlin) who stole any flax left […]

Ialonus To Jupiter (Iupiter, Jupiter, Jove) (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Ialonus Continental Celtic god. This obscure divinity who ruled cultivated fields was identified by the Romans with mars, now conventionally described as a war god but originally a divinity of fertility. Iarbanel Irish hero. In the legendary history of Ireland, the book of invasions, the hero nemed was the father of Iarbanel, who was in […]

Kay (Kai, Cai, Cei, Sir Kay) To Kyteler, Alice (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Kay (Kai, Cai, Cei, Sir Kay) Arthurian hero. The kindly and sometimes buffoonish Kay appears in a number of Arthurian stories as arthur’s companion, foster brother, and seneschal (steward). He may have originally been a Welsh god of war, for the Welsh tale of kulhwch and olwen describes Kay as being able to go without […]

Labhraidh Luathlam ar Cleb (Labriad) To Lyonesse (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Labhraidh Luathlam ar Cleb (Labriad) Irish hero or god. Ruler of mag mell, the "plain of honey" where the trees were always loaded down with magical fruit and vats of mead could never be emptied, Labhraidh arranged for the hero cuchulainn to spend time with Labhraidh’s wife’s sister, the lovely fairy queen fand. In return […]

Mab (Mabb) To Menhir (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Mab (Mabb) Welsh folkloric figure. In Ireland the great goddess medb was diminished over time into a quasi-historical queen of the same name. In Wales the same process resulted in this fairy queen who offers only a hint of earlier divinity. Queen Mab is best known from the reference in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, where […]

Mercury To Mythology (Celtic mythology and folklore)

Mercury British and Continental Celtic god. With the arrival of the Roman legions, scores of Celtic gods who were radically localized—found only in one place or among one tribal group— were renamed after Roman gods. Whether the many gods renamed "Mercury" were originally similar, and what the god’s original powers were, is difficult to determine. […]