In this third part of the series, Tom Hirons and myself talk through his poem ‘Sometimes a Wild God’ and some of it’s connections to the Green Knight. The following discussion explores Sir Gawain’s relationship with Lady Bertilak and what this can tell us about medieval and modern ideas of sexuality. You can also listenContinue reading “Sir Gawain, Woman and Wild God”
Category Archives: Celtic Studies
Sir Gawain, Desire and Death
In this second part of the conversation between the poet Tom Hirons and myself we explore the different tensions in Sir Gawain, initially between desire and death, and then between the different types of morality that can be read in the poem. Listen to the podcast episode here.
The Story of the Story
The Mabinogi contain many influences and draw on many sources. In this last talk on Rhiannon’s Mabinogi, we look at W.J. Gruffydd’s conclusions about how the Mabinogi evolved, and take a brief look at later scholars who disagree with his basic premise. You can also listen to this talk as a podcast here.
The Goddess’ Stolen Child
There are several stories in the Welsh tradition and beyond about stolen children and their mothers, but what do they mean? Part 6 of Rhiannon’s Mabinogi. Listen as a podcast here: https://anchor.fm/celtic-source/episodes/45–The-Goddess-Stolen-Child-e1umrqv
Who is Manawydan?
Manawydan in Welsh myth and Manannán in Irish myth are often considered variations on the same mythological figure. But is this true? And if so what connects them? Part 6 of Rhiannon’s Mabinogi. You can also listen to this episode as a podcast: https://anchor.fm/celtic-source/episodes/43–Who-is-Manawydan-e1u73u0
A Queen Betrayed
Both Rhiannon’s and Branwen’s stories in the Mabinogi express some of the most tragic themes in Celtic myth. They are also very similar to later folktales from other traditions. In comparing all of these stories we find some very interesting ideas and beliefs common to many of them. You can also listen to the podcastContinue reading “A Queen Betrayed”
The Celtic Wonder-child Myth
Myths about immortal fathers and miraculous births are found in many cultures across the world, including the stories of the Welsh and the Irish. What does this widespread myth tell us about mythology itself? Rhiannon’s Mabinogi part 3. You can also listen to this episode as a podcast here: https://spotifyanchor-web.app.link/e/8cvTIARTAvb
How can we understand the Mabinogi?
In this second video on W.J.Gruffydd’s classic of Celtic scholarship, Rhiannon we explore his comparison of the Irish story the Conception of Mongán with the Welsh story of Pwyll in Annwfn. What can this tell us about Celtic myth? You can also listen to this episode as a podcast. https://anchor.fm/celtic-source/embed/episodes/40–How-can-we-understand-the-Mabinogi–Rhiannons-Mabinogi-part-2-e1rhvp7
Rhiannon’s Mabinogi part 1
The story of Rhiannon is found in the first and third branches of the Mabinogi. One of the most important books written on the subject is Rhiannon by W.J. Gruffydd, one of Wales’ most prominent poets and scholars of the 20th century. But why is his work so ingenious and contentious? This talk is theContinue reading “Rhiannon’s Mabinogi part 1”
The Dark Side of the Hero Myth pt 2
In this second video on Canu Llywarch Hen, the 9th century Welsh poems that tell the story of Llywarch the Old and his 24 sons, we talk through Llywarch’s lament for his son, the fallen warrior Gwên. This second poem confirm’s much of what was suggested in the previous episode, especially the notion that theContinue reading “The Dark Side of the Hero Myth pt 2”