13 terms

Celtic mythology in the Harry Potter books

EL_ST 2240 - Harry Potter, Magic, and Religion final exam study guide part 3
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Druids
(ancient Celtic priests) divined by means of yew rods inscribed with symbols (wands)
Celtic Zodiac
Old Celtic lunar calendar. 13 months of 28 days each, plus one leap day. Each month named after a letter of the ancient Ogham alphabet. Each letter named after a tree.
Holly
Holly is a symbol of resurrection. Harry's birthday July 31 (Celtic zodiac: sign of the holly). Protects against evil. Helps a person dream about the future
Yew
Voldemort's wand is made from yew. Long-lived tree. Symbolizes eternal life. Sometimes also a death symbol. Often planted on graves. Regarded as sinister. Yew berries similar to holly.
Mahogany
(Jame's wand): Said to be good for transfiguration. Type of mahogany called "stag mahogany".
Willow
(Lily's wand) Graceful. Medicinal properties: Salicylic acid (Aspirin) used to be made from its bark.
Folklore: Protects from evil.
Ash
Ron's wand is made from ash. Unicorn hair core.
Ash: The tree that symbolizes Ron's month of birth according to Celtic Zodiac (February/March).
Ash: Protective tree in Irish folklore.
Vine Wood in Celtic Folklore
Represents wisdom, knowledge, and the ability to speak the truth.
Supportive, "weaves" others together.
(Hermione's wand )
Hawthorn in the Celtic zodiac
Self-confidence, but volatile temper
(Draco's wand)
The Dagda
In Irish mythology: powerful male father-god. Long hair and beard.
Associated with a cauldron.
The proto-type of wizards in later folklore?
Often portrayed as a rough giant with poor manners (Hagrid?)
The Cauldron of Cerridwen
Celtic goddess . Brews drink of wisdom in her cauldron. The origin of the association between cauldrons and witches?
King Nuada
lost one arm in battle. His lost arm replaced by a silver one (cp. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire).
Called Airgetlam - "he of the silver hand"
The Hallows of Ireland
The Tuatha Dé Danann (A race of semi-divine people in Irish mythology Previous gods reinterpreted as kings and warriors with magical powers) brought with them when they came to Ireland.

our treasures:
1) The Stone of Fál: The Stone of Destiny. When a true king of Ireland stepped on it, it would cry out. Cp. the Sorting hat & the sword in the stone.
2) The Spear of Destiny: The spear of Lugh, one of the Tuatha Dé Danann Could not be beaten in battle. Parallel in book 7? (Sword, Deluminator, snitch)
3) The Sword of Nuada: Could not be beaten in battle. "The Sword of Light".Cp. Arthur's Excalibur and the sword of Gryffindor.
4) ) Dagda's Cauldron: Magical cauldron that could provide endless amounts of food.