Animals In Celtic Life And Myth

Miranda Green

London and New York

First published 1992 by Routledge 11 New Fetter Lane, London EC4P 4EE This edition published in the Taylor & Francis e-Library, 2002.

Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge 29 West 35th Street, New York, NY 10001 First published in paperback 1998

© 1992 Miranda Green

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilized in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data Green, Miranda J. Animals in Celtic Life and Myth I. Title 398.24

Library of Congress Cataloguing in Publication Data Green, Miranda J. Animals in Celtic life and myth / Miranda Green. p. cm.

Includes bibliographical references and index. 1. Celts - Domestic animals. 2. Celts - Hunting. 3. Celts - Folklore. 4. Animals, Mythical. 5. Animals, Mythical, in art. 6. Mythology, Celtic. I. Title. GN549.C3G74 1992 398.24'5-dc20 92-2724

ISBN 0-203-02356-0 Master e-book ISBN

ISBN 0-203-27272-2 (OEB Format)

For Antigone and Oedipus

(two superb examples of the affinity between animals and people)

I and Pangur Ban, my cat, 'Tis a like task we are at: Hunting mice is his delight, Hunting words I sit all night. Better far than praise of men 'Tis to sit with book and pen; Pangur bears me no ill-will, He too plies his simple skill.


(Probably written by an Irish scholar in the ninth century AD translated from the Gaelic by Robin


Handle-mount in the form of a cat's face, on an early first-century AD bronze bowl from Snowdon, Gwynedd. By courtesy of the National Museum of Wales.

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