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Nodens
alias Lludd Llaw Ereint

Celtic God of Health & Healing

Nodens - later known in Wales as Nudd or Lludd Llaw Ereint (the Silver-Handed) and in Ireland as Nuadu - was the Celtic God of Healing, and the son of Belenos, the Sun God, and Anu, his wife. He had a large shrine at Lydney (Lludd's Island) in Gloucestershire, where the devoted made offerings of small bronze representations of their diseased limbs. He was sometimes identified with the protective Mars or the regenerative Silvanus and his companion and symbol was the dog: a deerhound whose lick could cure the afflicted. An old story explains his connection with amputees. At one time, Nodens was the leader of the gods, but he was wounded in battle and lost his hand. Gofannon, the divine-smith, made him a new one out of Silver - hence his Welsh epithet - though he was still forced to abdicate in favour of his nephew, Lleu Llaw Gyffes (the Skilful-Handed). Later, Nodens was troubled by a constant scream that was heard the eve of every Beltane. He travelled to Gaul, where his brother, Llefelys, was particularly worshipped, to ask his advice. He explained that the cry was made by two fighting dragons. Nodens managed to capture the creatures and imprisoned them deep below Dinas Emrys in Gwynedd. Nodens may have been particularly worshipped in London which, as 'Lludd's town' was said to have been named after him.

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