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Author Topic: Finding Myrddin  (Read 10653 times)
elaoin
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« Topic Start: May 25, 2007, 07:54:15 pm »

I've begun research into Myrddin, and all I've really managed to find via my Googling is related to the myth of the man Myrddin, Merlin the sorcerer, and the naming conventions that say Myrddin is/was/was made up from a place's name, rather than being a real man.

What I'm looking for is the *god* Myrddin, and I know from past experience that unless I have a specific book I'm looking for, my library will be of no help (and even when I have a title, it's unlikely I can get it). And what little I *have* found online is a general listing of his 'associations', like forests, crystals, and all that. Which is fine and good, but I need more than a list of words! Undecided

So I'm at a loss - it seems Myrddin is rather an unknown god, or at least one who's not usually talked about. I have no idea where else I can find information on the actual god. Does anyone have a clue where I can start looking again?

Added: For reference, Myrddin is a Celtic god IIRC. I just realized I didn't say that! Embarrassed
« Last Edit: May 25, 2007, 07:57:22 pm by elaoin, Reason: Added note » Logged

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« Reply #1: May 25, 2007, 10:47:53 pm »

Added: For reference, Myrddin is a Celtic god IIRC. I just realized I didn't say that! Embarrassed

Which explains why I had no idea what you were talking about. LOL.  With any luck one of our Celtic Pagan members will be more helpful.
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« Reply #2: May 26, 2007, 12:15:51 am »

Does anyone have a clue where I can start looking again?

I found 3 references to Myrrdin in a quick scan of my library.  And I'm somewhat confused by them, since I'm not familiar with Myrrdin.  Here's what I've got:

Charles Squire, in Celtic Myth and Legend, refers to Myrrdin as "the Zeus of Arthur's cycle" and credits his wife, Elen with founding the town of Carmarthen (Caer Myrddin).  Squire also refers briefly to a 6th century bard named Myrddin.

Miles Dillon and Nora Chardwick, in The Celtic Realms, have a fair amount of detail about the 6th century bard, Myrddin, who was apparently a prophet.

RJ Stewart, in Celtic Gods and Celtic Goddessess, also includes quite a bit of info on Merlin and the prophecies of Merlin, whom he equates with Myrddin.

Sorry, that's all I could find.

~MI
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« Reply #3: May 26, 2007, 05:10:03 am »

I found 3 references to Myrrdin in a quick scan of my library.  And I'm somewhat confused by them, since I'm not familiar with Myrrdin.  Here's what I've got:

Charles Squire, in Celtic Myth and Legend, refers to Myrrdin as "the Zeus of Arthur's cycle" and credits his wife, Elen with founding the town of Carmarthen (Caer Myrddin).  Squire also refers briefly to a 6th century bard named Myrddin.

Miles Dillon and Nora Chardwick, in The Celtic Realms, have a fair amount of detail about the 6th century bard, Myrddin, who was apparently a prophet.

RJ Stewart, in Celtic Gods and Celtic Goddessess, also includes quite a bit of info on Merlin and the prophecies of Merlin, whom he equates with Myrddin.

Sorry, that's all I could find.

~MI

Triad 87 of Trioedd Yns Prydein -

Three skilled Bards of Arthurs Court: Myrddin Son of Morfen, Myrddin Emrys and Taliesin.

This would seem to infer that there are infact several Myrddin; and it might be worth exploring the possibility that the term "Myrddin" was actually a title or description given to multiple people. It is certainly an area that has been sitting on my "To Do" list for a while.

The triad can also be interpreted as the same person with different epithets. This is an area that I have been recently exploring and have written about, which I don't mind sharing a snippet of, but remember this is my own personal gnosis and your mileage may vary.

--------

If we assume that each Myrddin is in fact the same person with different names, then the one that is perhaps of greatest interest is the first, which gives him a parentage, Morfen.

Afagddu which has several possible meanings, it can be translated as "Utter Darkness" and also "Great Raven", depending upon which of the welsh books you read, he either has two epithets or a brother, Morfan, meaning "Big Crow". My gut feeling is that these are one and the same.  He/They are the son of Tegid Foel (this has been translated as Tacitus the bald), who appears to have some titanic lineage. Cronos for example ihas been described as the bald headed man. Interesting then that folklore till exists today around Llyn Tegid (lake Bala) regarding a "monster" who according to sightings is a serpent with 4 legs. A real welsh dragon perhaps, or maybe even Tegid Foel himself, a hippocamp perhaps, half horse half serpent or a Wyvern even?

As Lake Bala is in Gwynedd, what we have here is undoubtedly a representation of the house of Don, and Ceridwen with the bird symbology of her offspring which is one of the sacred birds of the "Rigan" or great queen, call her what you will, Epona, Rhinanon, Rigantonia. The "Mhor Rigan".  Seems to infer a lineage from Llyr, so we have here titanic guardians at the gate, the marriage of the house of Llyr and Don.

----------

If and Myrddin is the son of Morfan, then this "could" infer that he is the offspring of deity, if not a god himself. Folk lore around the world is abound with the sons of gods, who appear to be almost immortal and blessed with powers of wisdom, prophecy, unrivalled warrior skills (One of earliest possible references to Myrddin was Y Gododdin names him as a warrior).
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elaoin
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« Reply #4: May 29, 2007, 04:14:21 pm »

I found 3 references to Myrrdin in a quick scan of my library.  And I'm somewhat confused by them, since I'm not familiar with Myrrdin.  Here's what I've got:

Charles Squire, in Celtic Myth and Legend, refers to Myrrdin as "the Zeus of Arthur's cycle" and credits his wife, Elen with founding the town of Carmarthen (Caer Myrddin).  Squire also refers briefly to a 6th century bard named Myrddin.

Miles Dillon and Nora Chardwick, in The Celtic Realms, have a fair amount of detail about the 6th century bard, Myrddin, who was apparently a prophet.

RJ Stewart, in Celtic Gods and Celtic Goddessess, also includes quite a bit of info on Merlin and the prophecies of Merlin, whom he equates with Myrddin.

Sorry, that's all I could find.

~MI

That's a good deal more than I found! I'll try a library search on these titles later today to see if I can get them through the regional library. Thanks Moon Ivy!

Also, I was thinking over the weekend and had a 'duh!' moment. If (In a Gwyddon perspective) gods and goddesses were once living human beings, why would Myrddin-the-god *not* be Myrddin-the-prophet? I slapped myself pretty hard on that one! Cheesy

Back to Google with me, then...
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elaoin
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« Reply #5: May 29, 2007, 04:16:02 pm »

Triad 87 of Trioedd Yns Prydein -

Three skilled Bards of Arthurs Court: Myrddin Son of Morfen, Myrddin Emrys and Taliesin.

This would seem to infer that there are infact several Myrddin; and it might be worth exploring the possibility that the term "Myrddin" was actually a title or description given to multiple people. It is certainly an area that has been sitting on my "To Do" list for a while.

The triad can also be interpreted as the same person with different epithets. This is an area that I have been recently exploring and have written about, which I don't mind sharing a snippet of, but remember this is my own personal gnosis and your mileage may vary.

That was interesting, though I got pretty lost. I haven't yet delved into the actual Celtic myths yet, so I have no timeline to base things off of. I think that may need to be my #1 goal right now.

So when I have a frame of reference, I'll definitely have to come back and see if I get where you're going!
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Nevyn
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« Reply #6: May 29, 2007, 05:17:53 pm »

That was interesting, though I got pretty lost. I haven't yet delved into the actual Celtic myths yet, so I have no timeline to base things off of. I think that may need to be my #1 goal right now.

So when I have a frame of reference, I'll definitely have to come back and see if I get where you're going!

Time frame is always going to be difficult, the Myrrdin and Taliesin of bardic fame are early 6th century. But the early stories harp back to a much earlier era. I definitely recommend doing the research, start light though, anything by John or Caitlin Matthews is a fairly reliable and good place to start, those guys actually walk ther talk; but beware taking thier translations too literally, they do have a habit of "seeing" things in thier perspective a bit to much and not above a bit of doctoring of the tales to make it fit thier paradigm is necessary.

But they do give a good grounding in the basic stories, once your ready look at skene's "four ancient books" which is riddled with work attributed to the bard Myrddin rather than the Myrrdin of the Romances and Geoffrey of Monmouth. There are a couple of storming new translation of the mabinogi out at the moement, you lucky guys have got Will Parkers exisite work of mastery out very soon published by bardic press (and if anybody is willing to be bribed into shipping me a copy to the UK I will be forever indebted), and also Oxford university press has just released Sioned Davies new translation, which I am thoroughly loving, lol the SO is starting to think I am OCD I have so many translations.

On a side note I notice you say you are a seeker of Gwyddon, an interesting appelation, I will assume you mean the US version rather than that which stemmed from Ioan Enion from the region of Lake Tegid who founded the tradition?

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« Reply #7: May 29, 2007, 05:25:25 pm »

On a side note I notice you say you are a seeker of Gwyddon, an interesting appelation, I will assume you mean the US version rather than that which stemmed from Ioan Enion from the region of Lake Tegid who founded the tradition?

We actually have a former staff member here who is US Gwyddon. I've emailed her to be sure she sees this thread.
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« Reply #8: May 29, 2007, 05:32:40 pm »

On a side note I notice you say you are a seeker of Gwyddon, an interesting appellation, I will assume you mean the US version rather than that which stemmed from Ioan Enion from the region of Lake Tegid who founded the tradition?

That's "Gwyddoniad" here in the US, but yes, this is American Gwyddonics we're discussing here. Wink
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Nevyn
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« Reply #9: May 29, 2007, 05:38:35 pm »

That's "Gwyddoniad" here in the US, but yes, this is American Gwyddonics we're discussing here. Wink

I suspected as much, not that there is a problem, just of late in my own seeking I have stumbled across more than a few folks in the UK claiming to be something they aren't. I have actually read the US site, only recently and it makes a lot of sense shame we don't have something of a similar ilk over here in blighty, or I would be biting peoples hands off Cheesy
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elaoin
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« Reply #10: May 29, 2007, 05:40:37 pm »

Time frame is always going to be difficult, the Myrrdin and Taliesin of bardic fame are early 6th century. But the early stories harp back to a much earlier era. I definitely recommend doing the research, start light though, anything by John or Caitlin Matthews is a fairly reliable and good place to start, those guys actually walk ther talk; but beware taking thier translations too literally, they do have a habit of "seeing" things in thier perspective a bit to much and not above a bit of doctoring of the tales to make it fit thier paradigm is necessary.

But they do give a good grounding in the basic stories, once your ready look at skene's "four ancient books" which is riddled with work attributed to the bard Myrddin rather than the Myrrdin of the Romances and Geoffrey of Monmouth. There are a couple of storming new translation of the mabinogi out at the moement, you lucky guys have got Will Parkers exisite work of mastery out very soon published by bardic press (and if anybody is willing to be bribed into shipping me a copy to the UK I will be forever indebted), and also Oxford university press has just released Sioned Davies new translation, which I am thoroughly loving, lol the SO is starting to think I am OCD I have so many translations.

I'll keep that in mind. *scribbles down names, the librarians will love me tonight!* I feel two research projects coming on - one for Myrddin and one for a basic understanding of the myths and history. *sigh* I always find a way to make things more complicated, it seems. Wink

Quote
On a side note I notice you say you are a seeker of Gwyddon, an interesting appelation, I will assume you mean the US version rather than that which stemmed from Ioan Enion from the region of Lake Tegid who founded the tradition?



What Mari said. Cheesy
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Mari
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« Reply #11: May 29, 2007, 05:47:11 pm »

I suspected as much, not that there is a problem, just of late in my own seeking I have stumbled across more than a few folks in the UK claiming to be something they aren't. I have actually read the US site, only recently and it makes a lot of sense shame we don't have something of a similar ilk over here in blighty, or I would be biting peoples hands off Cheesy

Gwyddoniad.org? I need to overhaul that site. Poor thing. LOL
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Nevyn
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« Reply #12: May 29, 2007, 05:48:26 pm »

*sigh* I always find a way to make things more complicated, it seems. Wink


Lol most things are hidden in plain sight for those with eyes to see; hahah doesn't make it easy though, if it was easy then everybody would get it Cheesy
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« Reply #13: May 29, 2007, 05:49:50 pm »

Gwyddoniad.org? I need to overhaul that site. Poor thing. LOL

Aww it's not so bad, a little bit monochrome, but well written Cheesy
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« Reply #14: May 29, 2007, 05:51:30 pm »

Aww it's not so bad, a little bit monochrome, but well written Cheesy

Thanks for your kind words!
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