The Tylwyth Teg (Welsh Fair Folk) have many attributes that connect them to the earlier supernatural beings of the Mabinogi, attributes that also persisted into the modern era.
The modern folklore regarding Gwyn ap Nudd depicts him as a wild psychopomp, hunting the souls of the dead with his magical hounds on Calan Gaeaf. But how old is this aspect of Gwyn’s myth?
This is the first in a series of talks on Welsh folklore. Gwyn ap Nudd is one of the clearest examples of a Welsh folk character who has remained largely unchanged during the last millennia. We begin with his exploits as a mischievous spirit bothering travellers out in the wilds.
Following on from a question about patriarchy and The Three Romances of the Mabinogi, here’s an outline of an old problem that most of us will fall into at some point or another.
In this last talk on Peredur and the Three Romances of The Mabinogion, we take a look at one of the more overlooked elements in the famous Grail procession scene, and find that the Bleeding Lance is best understood in the context of Celtic myth, where its meaning becomes clear.
The Mabinogion tale of Peredur contains a version of the famous grail scene that so fascinated medieval audiences across Europe. But in a Welsh context, this scene has several other meanings, just as profound and just as pertinent to the study of Celtic storytelling.
In this first video on the Mabinogion romance of Peredur we see how symbolic colours and martial arts witches give the hero a brief respite from his constant fighting.
In this third video on the Mabinogion story of Geraint, we delve into the many enchanted mists contained in this old Welsh story, and trying to discern what the mists mean . . .
In this second video on the story of Geraint from the Mabinogion, we look at how medieval Welsh storytellers wove repeating patterns and symmetry into their stories. In Geraint, this technique is used to deepen the theme of the hero’s journey.
A question that often arises on courses is whether or not the medieval Welsh bards — those that gave us the Taliesin myth as we understand it today — were shamans in any way? As always, the answer is more complex than a simple yes or no.