Arianrhod’s uncle Math fab Mathonwy would die if he did not keep his feet in the lap of a virgin when he was not at war. Gilfaethwy falls in love with his original footholder, Goewin, and he and his brother Gwydion engineer a war with King Pryderi of Dyfed, forcing Math to leave his court. In his absence Gilfaethwy rapes Goewin, but is punished severely when Math returns (Math turns him and Gwydion into a series of mated pairs of animals). Math marries Goewin to alleviate her shame, but must find a new virgin to hold his feet.
Gwydion suggests his sister, Arianrhod. To test her virginity, Math tells her to step over his magician’s rod. On doing this, however, she immediately gives birth to a young boy, Dylan Eil Don, and an entity which becomes Lleu Llaw Gyffes. Dylan is a sea spirit, who flees to the ocean immediately ; Gwydion grabs the entity before anyone else sees it and places it in a chest. Before long it becomes a boy who grows at twice the normal rate; when he is four he is as big as an eight-year-old. Gwydion takes him to see his mother at her home, Caer Arianrhod.
However, Arianrhod is still angry about her humiliation at Math’s court. She places a curse on the boy that he will never have a name unless she gives it to him. Gwydion disguises the boy as a shoemaker and returns to Caer Arianrhod; while Arianrhod is being fitted, she sees the boy killing a wren with a single stone and remarks that the fair-haired one (“lleu”) has a skillful hand (“llaw gyffes”). Gwydion reveals the disguise, and says she has just given her son a name · Lleu Llaw Gyffes. Arianrhod then places a second tynged on Lleu, that he would never take arms unless she armed him. A few years later Gwydion and Lleu return to Caer Arianrhod, this time disguised as bards. Gwydion is an accomplished storyteller and entertains her court. That night, while everyone sleeps, he conjures a fleet of warships. Arianrhod gives them weapons and armor to help her fight, thereby dispelling her second curse. When Gwydion reveals the trickery, Arianrhod places a final tynged on Lleu: he would never have a wife from any race that is on this earth now. Gwydion and Math eventually break this curse by creating a woman out of oak blossom, broom, and meadowsweet; she is named Blodeuwedd (“flower face”). With her curses, Arianrhod denied Lleu the three aspects of masculinity: a name, arms, and a wife.
Originally written by
Celtic Druids and the Tuatha de Dannan
By Dominique Crouzet
Full netbook can be found on the followng website
Moon-goddess and deity of love, Arianrod’s name means “The Mysterious Silver Wheel”. As the goddess of (romantic) love, Arianrod is the weaver of mortal destinies. She unites and separates men and women on a whim, so the lovers of one day may become enemies the next. Hence, Arianrod is seen as a fickle goddess who may be as much benevolent and kind as she can be malevolent and evil. For example, she once gave birth to twin children; but as much she cherished the first, she wholly rejected the second. Arianrod is thus not only a weaver of destinies, but she also represents the unpredictable and mysterious nature of femininity. Then, Arianrod is somewhat involved with magic for having been the underling of Math Mathonwy.
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral.
Symbol: Spiral inside a silver wheel. (Filidh of the goddess wear her Holy symbol in the form of silver earrings).
Favored Weapon: Dagger.
Area of control: Romantic love and femininity.
Typical worshippers: Lovers traditionally call upon Arianrod to get her blessings. Otherwise, sorceresses and witches also often pay homage to her.
Duties of priesthood: Filidh of Arianrod must be females. They arrange (or disable) marriage and love affairs as suit the need of their clan, unless they follow a secret agenda of their order.
Special Benefit: Priestesses of Arianrod have access to a special feat of their own: Seductress, that gives them a +2 bonus to all Charisma checks when trying to seduce or influence / manipulate others for love or hate purposes.
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