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Author Topic: Celtic Underworld/Otherworld Narratives?  (Read 3811 times)
catja6
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« Topic Start: January 12, 2008, 03:26:53 pm »

A colleague of mine is looking for stories, for a university class, of voyages to the underworld in Celtic myth and folklore.  It's been AGES since I read Celtic material that wasn't fairy-related, and I figured y'all would know this stuff off the tops of your heads, so I thought I'd ask.  Cheesy  I'm coming up with the "Pwyll" segement of the Mabinogian (where he swaps kingdoms with Arawn), the Voyage of Bran (visits to otherworldly islands), and a metric ton of fairy narratives (of the "visits/abductions to fairyland" type), but I know there's more.  Any suggestions?  Thanks!

(I'm also having a hell of a time remembering where the story of Arthur and the cauldron of Annwfn shows up -- anyone know what text it's in?)
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« Reply #1: January 12, 2008, 04:18:17 pm »

A colleague of mine is looking for stories, for a university class, of voyages to the underworld in Celtic myth and folklore.  It's been AGES since I read Celtic material that wasn't fairy-related, and I figured y'all would know this stuff off the tops of your heads, so I thought I'd ask.  Cheesy  I'm coming up with the "Pwyll" segement of the Mabinogian (where he swaps kingdoms with Arawn), the Voyage of Bran (visits to otherworldly islands), and a metric ton of fairy narratives (of the "visits/abductions to fairyland" type), but I know there's more.  Any suggestions?  Thanks!

(I'm also having a hell of a time remembering where the story of Arthur and the cauldron of Annwfn shows up -- anyone know what text it's in?)

Well, there are two kind of "journey" stories in Irish: echtrai--which are "adventure" stories, usually on land, into the Otherworlds, and imramma (ie. Voyage of Bran) which are Christian "voyages" to the Otherworld.

Here's a link to some imramma (voyage) stories: http://www.maryjones.us/ctexts/index_irish.html#imramma. Check out "The Voyage of Maildun" especially. This is a great resource for many of the other stories too.

One example of an echtra story is "Cuchulainn's Wasting Sickness," in which Cuchulainn travels to Fand, the wife of Manannan's, court.

A good story is "Cormac's Adventures in the Land of Promise," part of the "Tale of the Ordeals": http://www.ancienttexts.org/library/celtic/ctexts/cormac4.html. Scroll down to Cormac's Cup for the tale of how he got it.


As for the voyage to Annwfn: http://www.maryjones.us/ctexts/t30.html: "The Raid on the Otherworld." I'm sure there are a lot of Welsh and Arthurian voyage stories as well to be found there on that site. I just gave the Irish since it's freshest on my mind.


Hope this helps!
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catja6
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« Reply #2: January 13, 2008, 02:48:29 pm »

Well, there are two kind of "journey" stories in Irish: echtrai--which are "adventure" stories, usually on land, into the Otherworlds, and imramma (ie. Voyage of Bran) which are Christian "voyages" to the Otherworld.

Here's a link to some imramma (voyage) stories: http://www.maryjones.us/ctexts/index_irish.html#imramma. Check out "The Voyage of Maildun" especially. This is a great resource for many of the other stories too.

One example of an echtra story is "Cuchulainn's Wasting Sickness," in which Cuchulainn travels to Fand, the wife of Manannan's, court.

A good story is "Cormac's Adventures in the Land of Promise," part of the "Tale of the Ordeals": http://www.ancienttexts.org/library/celtic/ctexts/cormac4.html. Scroll down to Cormac's Cup for the tale of how he got it.


As for the voyage to Annwfn: http://www.maryjones.us/ctexts/t30.html: "The Raid on the Otherworld." I'm sure there are a lot of Welsh and Arthurian voyage stories as well to be found there on that site. I just gave the Irish since it's freshest on my mind.


Hope this helps!


Thank you so much!  I'll pass these on to him ASAP.
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« Reply #3: January 22, 2008, 04:10:21 pm »

A colleague of mine is looking for stories, for a university class, of voyages to the underworld in Celtic myth and folklore.  It's been AGES since I read Celtic material that wasn't fairy-related, and I figured y'all would know this stuff off the tops of your heads, so I thought I'd ask. 

Lol most of the "mab/ancient books of wales" have an underworld component, I would also suggest "The Lady of the fountain" and "How Culhwch won Olwen" as good example and of course the wonderful "Preiddeu Annwn"
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