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Modron
alias the Mother-Goddess

Celtic Goddess of Motherhood

Modron's name is alluded to in the Arthurian Tale of Culhwch & Olwen, where she appears as the mother of the Celtic God of Youth, Maponos (or Mabon). She is probably depicted with him as the double-goddess on a stone carving from the Roman fort at Ribchester in Lancashire. Confusion with later mortal characters indicate that her father was probably Afallach, God of the Underworld. Little else is known of her directly, but her name, meaning 'Divine Mother,' shows she is almost certainly the ubiquitous Mother-Goddess to be found throughout the Celtic World.

She is usually a triple-aspect goddess, referred to, by the Romans, as Deae Matres or the Matronae, and depicted as three seated ladies often holding their associated attributes. In Britain, these tend to be babies, fruit and loaves emphasising her role a Goddess of Fertility in both the human and agricultural world. There was a cult centre in the Cotswolds, probably at Cirencester, and another somewhere in the Hadrian's Wall region of the North.

In later times, sites associated with Modron may have been transferred to other semi-historical figures of similar name. For example, Carn Fadrun on the Lleyn Peninsula, which is said to have been the sometime home of Queen Madrun of Gwent; or Madron around Penzance, supposedly settled by Madern, a male saint reverred on 17th May. Most famous, however, is her link with Morgan Le Fay of Arthurian romance. In these chivalric tales, this lady is described as a healer who lived on the mystical Isle of Avalon with her nine sisters, like the Greek Muses. She had a triple aspect with the Queens of Northgalis (North Wales) and the Wastelands. Her epithet clearly shows her immortal origins, though she later had dark overtones attached to her through deliberate confusion with the Irish War-Goddess, the Morrigan.

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