The horse in the mythology of the Celts, the Water horse
In various mythopoetic traditions animals appear sometimes as assistants to mythological characters, their attributes or symbols.
Among the Celts this animal was the horse. Among the cult objects that make up the heritage of the Celts is the original chariot, on which sits a goddess with a spear, pursuing a boar. Researchers believe that this goddess Epona, which is often depicted on horseback or standing at the horses.
Horse often featured in early Celtic literature. For example, Gilles de Care, appearing in one of the tales of the cycle of Finn – the legendary sage and seer, and sometimes warrior – meets the army of Finn, leading on the occasion of a miserable gray horse, and then throws the reins, and the animal attacks the cavalry conquerors and ruthlessly destroys it.
Horse this, of course, magic, for, in order to bridle it takes fourteen people. When people get on top of it, it is impossible to get off it, and it rushes with such speed that it takes your breath away.
Presented in the us the history of the horse brings poor people to the afterlife, the ruler of which is Gilles de Ker.
The magic horses are found in many Celtic legends: as a rule, is a “water horse”. It comes out of the water, in any way lures a person to sit on it, deprives him of the opportunity to dismount and carried away into the sea with the unfortunate victim.
Can be be noted and role horse in Irish onomastike. The urine of horses and gods is often the appearance in this place of lakes and springs. For example, the formation of Loch Nor is explained as follows: once the horse God of Agnus pissed, and this place appeared a source. The guardian, assigned to observe the divine source, once forgot to cover it with a lid. Divine fluid starts to flow rapidly, forming in the end of the Loch Nor.
Similar and provenance of the Loch Ri, but in this case, the urine gave a horse of God Midir soon in the lake drowned man by the name of Ri, in memory of him and was named the lake.
Perhaps the beginning of humor in the literature of the British Isles was a fragment of history about the Black Moro con Elidir Minataur who could carry on his back seven and a half people. Seven “real” people are listed, and then it is said: “…and Gelperin, their cook, who could swim, only holding both hands over the horse’s rump, if so he was only half a man.”
Theon likes to tell scary stories, and Robb pretends to like to listen to them.
“They say that in the long winters the Drowned God takes many souls with him,” Theon said mysteriously. His dark hair was tangled and silvery snowflakes were melting. – More than ever. You want to hear about it, stark? Or scared?
To be honest, Robb was never particularly afraid of scary stories about sea creatures. What’s so terrible about some distant dead God out of the water and his helpers? Even if they all exist, they’ll never get to Winterfell. But Theon was pleased to think of himself as a good storyteller, and Robb did not try to dissuade him.
– You’re not afraid to talk about such things?
Forgetting about time, they were aimlessly wandering in a light snowfall and imperceptibly came to a quiet deserted bogorodi. The snow under his feet creaked a little, the trees were darkening around, the sky seemed pitch black and it was surprisingly comfortable. At times like this, Robb liked to think that he and Theon were alone in the world. The thought pleased and shameful was growing warmer under her ribs.
“The drowned God takes all those who died in the water, he has a place for anyone,” Theon said softly, singing. “But sometimes, when the winter gets too harsh, he wants someone special, and he starts hunting. Long hunt. You know what tastes best to him is Royal blood, right?
He smiled rapaciously, flashing his white teeth, and Robb could hardly resist a condescending snort. Theon was awfully funny when he tried to scare, funny and sweet.
“He has no power in the North,” Robb said seriously, pretending to believe.
Red face on the heart tree was watching him closely and seemed to be sympathetic. From this the soul has become dull. It was probably not worth listening to the stories about the dead God from the Iron Islands among the Old gods: the father always said that they are fair in their own way, but vindictive and vindictive. They hardly liked what was being said in their presence. But if Robb had given up the story, Theon would have called him a coward and taunted him. Of course, Robb could always vindictive to remember who usually has the upper hand in their sparring, but still – give him at least something I didn’t like. Even if it was about silly fairy tales.
– Wherever water is, there is the Drowned God, the voice of Theon suddenly became unfamiliar, just cracked. He stared at the steam rising from the lake and fell silent.
The snow fell harder.
“When it gets really cold, this lake will be covered with ice. Pretty thin, though, ” Robb remarked. He suddenly felt that he was freezing, but not from the cold, but from the inner cold.
– You really think a Drowned God would be hurt? Theon smiled again, and this time really scary. His lips were pale, almost white, and his smile was frozen, like a jester’s mask.
Robb blinked. What was happening was like a dream: impenetrable snow haze, dead silence and sudden noise in the ears seemed unreal. Only the cold was real, but Theon didn’t seem to notice it, or anything else around him.
– I have one story you like, he skirted the lake, stopped at the heart of the tree and held reddened from the cold hand on the white bark. – About how a Drowned God always gets his.
Theon looked into the scarlet eyes of the carved face and chuckled.
“They say that once upon a time there were water horses in the lakes – huge, dark, with black manes,” he said faintly. “Deep down, at the bottom, where no one has seen them. When they got bored, they came out on land and caught people. Lured by their beauty, dragged down and drank all their blood, still warm. And then, if they liked the man, they turned him into their own kind. The best, especially those of noble blood, they gave to the Drowned God.
Theon’s words smelled unfamiliar: water, fresh wind, and something else indefinable. “It must smell like the sea,” Robb decided. If he wasn’t stark, he’d be scared now. But there was no fear, and even the agonizing cold was almost gone.
Perhaps, so felt people, enchanted water horses.
“Nonsense,” Robb said hoarsely. There was a taste of blood in his mouth; he seemed to have bitten his lip hard. – You’re lying. Is that Hodor dutifully trudge off to some Mare out of the water!
Water horse could become a people – continued Theon, not exactly hearing Robb. “So beautiful that mere mortals mistook them for princes and princesses. Eyes they glowed in the dark, just the stars, and the skin was velvet, but as cold as the dead. In wet hair they interweaved seaweed and water lilies, – he was silent. – No one could resist their charms. Whom they had received the beauty, take cunning.
Turning away from the distorted pain of the heart-tree, Theon stared at Robb.
“They just need to be touched once,” he whispered, reaching for his ear. “You touch them once , and you’re gone.”
“You sound like you’ve seen them,” Robb said with difficulty. Language accurately has grown to the sky, and every word was passed on painfully. “But they are long gone, they are dead, their time is gone.
“I saw it,” Theon repeated stupidly, pulling away. His eyes were glassy and dead. “No, I don’t think so.” he shook his head and added.:
– Except in the mirror.
It snowed more slowly, and time stopped. Robb felt his heart pounding fiercely and then cold, wet fingers closing on his wrist. From this terrible touch of childlike fear flooded his head, and Robb jerked to the side. The tree-heart looked blindly through it.
That was the moment it was over.
“Got you,” Theon purred with a nasty grin. You really believe that?
Robb looked at him in confusion, which caused a burst of loud, triumphant laughter.
– So you’re making this up, fool? he asked unbelievingly.
“Yeah,” Theon came like a whirlwind and pushed Robb into the snow under a heart tree.
“I will drag you to the bottom and make you feast with the mermaids, Robb stark,” he howled, generously pouring snow on Robb’s collar. – So deeply, that you not will find Northern gods, and you forever stay, will you with me. Is it scary?
You can’t wait! – Robb awkwardly rose to his feet and dragged him along. – If you’re an octopus with a sword you can’t beat me!
In fact, he thought in passing, it would not be the most nightmarish afterlife: what’s wrong with feasting under water with your best friend for eternity? And with water horses and mermaids – even with the Drowned God himself! – Robb would’ve made peace somehow.
Winter, the real winter, with snow and severe frosts, that year came in the fall, and many saw this as a bad sign, foreshadowing many troubles. But Robb was genuinely happy then.