The Legendary Welsh Goddess Blodeewedd

Blodeuwedd was the wife of Lleu Llaw Gyffes, one of the principal figures in Welsh mythology and literature. While she may have been modeled after goddesses from other cultures, there are few details about her life available in the stories told by the ancient Welsh people. Blodeuwedds story begins when she was created by the wizard Gwydion as an exact copy of his sister Arianrhod, who had stolen another womans newborn child to raise herself as its mother.

1) Who was she?
Most versions of her tale are similar, but they differ slightly in specific details. Most versions follow a general format: Blodeuwedd is created by two brothers, Gwydion and Gilfaethwy for Math ap Mathonwy, Lord of Gwynedd. She was made from flowers, given life by Gwydion (though some versions say it was Merlin), then tricked into marrying her cousin Gilfaethwy (or Lleu) who she had previously rejected.

2) What is her story?
Long ago, a woman named Blodeuwedd was made from flowers by two gods, Lleu and Gronw. The two brothers desired her, but she never loved them. Instead, she turned to another man for love. In revenge for her betrayal, Lleu and Gronw conspired against her, tricking her into asking them to build an enormous palace in a single day.

3) How did she appear?
According to legend, Blodeuwedd (or Blodwen) was created by Gwydion to be Lleus wife. By giving her a name and a purpose, Gwydion hoped to prevent his nephew from being killed by Gronw Pebr, an evil lord of Penllyn. He gave her life from flowers and clothed her in dazzling clothes so that she would be irresistible to Lleu. She was the goddess of spring and owls.

4) How does her story end?
According to legend, Lleu was jealous of Gronw Pebr, another man who had married a woman named Blodeuwedd. He got his uncle, Gwydion to create a wife for him out of flowers, but she turned out to loathe him. He took her hunting one day and while he slept she transformed into an owl and killed him.

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Linda Green

Linda Green

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