Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Badb is the Irish (Celtic) goddess of war. She often assumes the form of a raven or carrion-crow (her favorite disguise) and is then referred to as Badb Catha, meaning "battle raven". Not only did she take part in battles themselves, she also influenced their outcome by causing confusion among the warriors with her magic. The battle-field is often called 'land of Badb'. She formed part of a triad of war-goddesses with Macha (Nemain) and the Morrigan.

From: here
Badb, goddess of war, transformed herself into many shapes including the wolf and bear. She often takes the form of a raven and is called Badb Catha. She is the mother aspect of the triple goddess and symbolizes life (the ever-producing cauldron of life), wisdom, inspiration, blessings and enlightenment.

On the battlefield, Badb appeared in the form of a miniature woman with tiny, webbed feet, screeching of death and doom. The moment the battle ended, Badb quickly changed into the form of a gleaming raven, delighted to feast on the flesh of the dead.

Soldiers prayed to Badb, imagining her as a gigantic and beautiful young woman, imploring her to help them cross streams and overcome their enemies. When a soldier saw Badb washing his or her weapons in a stream, he or she knew death was near.

An Babd also appeared as one of the goddesses which made up the triple goddess known as An Mhorrigan. An Mhorrigan appeared as both a single goddess and as part of a trio. The third goddess in the trio was Nemain, sometimes Macha.

From: here
In Irish mythology, the Badb (/baðβ/ "crow" in Old Irish; modern Irish Badhbh /bəiv/ means "vulture") was a goddess of war who took the form of a crow, and was thus sometimes known as Badb Catha (battle crow). She often caused confusion among soldiers to move the tide of battle to her favored side. Boa Island is named for this goddess.

Battlefields were called the land of the Badb, and were often said to include the Badb taking part as a crow or as a wolf. The Badb is associated with the beansidhe, and is said to have been crucial in the battle against the Fomorians.

Badbs were also sacrificial victims. In The Destruction of Da Derga's Hostel, among the hostel's rooms and their inhabitants spied out by Lomna Druth son of Donn Desa, who reports to Fer rogain, after the rooms of Conaire Mor's equerries and judges and conjurors and lampoon-singers, came the Room of the Badbs:
"'I beheld a trio, naked, on the roof-tree of the house: their jets of blood coming through them, and the ropes of their slaughter on their necks.' 'Those I know,' saith he, 'three . . . of awful boding. Those are the three that are slaughtered at every time.' "
In the mythological account of the second battle of Mag Tuired, wherein the Tuatha De Danann defeated the Fomorians in battle, Badb is said to have recited the following prophecy of the end of the world:
Summer without flowers,
kine without milk,
women without modesty,
men without valour;
captives without a king,
woods without mast,
sea without produce
— (Ó Cuív 37)
With her sisters, Macha and the Morrígan, she was part of a trio of war goddesses who were the daughters of the mother goddess, Ernmas. According to Seathrún Céitinn Badb was worshipped by Ériu, with whom she may be seen as equivalent. She is sometimes the wife of Neit, and may be equivalent with Nemain, Neit's more usual wife. However, Nemain and Badb are said to have had different fathers which is an argument for their separateness as personages: Badb is described as one of the three daughters of Delbaeth son of Neid whereas Nemain is said to have been the daughter of Elcmar of the Brugh (Newgrange, near the Boyne), who was the son of Delbaeth, son of Ogma, son of Elatan.

Likely, she is related to the Gaulish deity Catubodua, known from an inscription in Haute Savoie in eastern France.

The Badb is not to be confused with Bodb, a male deity.

From: Wiki

Related Sites:

Cathubodua: a Gaulish goddess (Battle Raven)

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