The World of Gwdihw, Bardd of Conwy

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Blodeuwedd

Etching of Blodeuwedd, by GwdihwBlodeuwedd

Blodeuwedd is originally created as a Flower Maiden bride from Meadowsweet, Broom and Oak by the magicians Math and Gwydion.  The Lady of Flowers is made for her bridegroom Lleu, the son of Arianrhod, and this is a tatal union.  their Beltaine betrothal is doomed.  One day, Lleu goes off to market with his pigs and leaves Blodeuwedd at home at Tomen y Mur.  Their neighbour Gronw is hunting and he arrives on the scene and woos Blodeuwedd so that she reveals the secret of Lleu's death.  Gronw learns that Lleu cannot be killed either in water or on dry land but by a combination of standing with one foot in a bath of water and the other foot on a goat.  Blodeuwedd request Lleu to demonstrate his death and Gronw hurls a spear, made in a year and a day, Lleu dies.  The magicians transform him into an eagle and he flies away to a distant tree, disappearing.  He is later discovered by his uncle Gwydion who finds Lleu's favourite sow below the tree eating his rotting flesh.  Gwydion changes Lleu back into a Lord and heals him.  Lleu returns to Tome y Mur to seek his vengeance.  Lleu challenges Gronw and allows the villain to hide behind a stone.  Then Lleu's spear pierces the stone and kills Gronw on the banks of the Cynfal River.  The stone with the hole remains there today.

Extract from the book "Ceridwen's Cauldron" by Gwydihw.