Articles by Segomâros Widugeni

Segomâros Widugeni

Segomâros Widugeni is a well-­known leader in Gaulish Polytheism, having been practicing for almost two decades, and in other related communities for more than 30 years. He is a co­moderator of the Gaulish Polytheism Community on Facebook, as well. He has been active in the Celtic Reconstructionist group Imbas, and the Druid group Ar nDraiocht Fein. He is also the author, under the name Aedh Rua, of the book Celtic Flame, on Irish Polytheism. He hold two Master’s Degrees, in 20th Century German History and Library Science, and speaks two Celtic languages, one of them very rusty. He lives with his wife, who has her own careers, in the woods of rural Central Florida.


1. Meaning of Name: Olmsted gives us “The High One” or “The Exalted One”. Kondratiev gives us the more complex but essentially similar “She who raises herself on high, who is exalted”. Mackillop gives us “High One”.1
2. Pronunciation: Brig-UN-tyaa, with the “u” sound like in “Gus”.
3. Other Names and Epithets: Briginidona, Brigintona, Brigana, Brigia, Brigana, Briginti.2
4. Interpretatio Romana: She is identified with Victoria in one inscription.3
5. Irish Equivalent: Brigid.4
6. Indo-European Equivalent: Wéstyā, the Indo-European Hearth Goddess.5
7. Realm: Ueronadâ/Upper World Goddess
8. Iconography: Brigantiâ is depicted as a typical Romano-Celtic Minerva, with shield, spear, and helmet.6
9. Significance: The key to understanding Brigantiâ are her identification with the Indo-European hearth Goddess, and with the later Irish Brigid. Brigantiâ is in origin the hearth Goddess, but becomes identified with fire itself. In Ireland, she is the Goddess of Poetry, Smithcraft, and Healing, all of which are associated with spiritual fire or heat. These attributions all apply to her earlier Gaulish form to some extent. She is the Goddess of the Hearth Fire, but also of heat, energy, warmth, purity, and protection. Her patronage of the hearth gives her a role as a patron of the household, as well. Noémi Beck, in Goddesses in Celtic Religion: Cult and Mythology: A comparative study of Ancient Ireland, Britain, and Gaul, points out that Brig- names are very often associated with highlands and highland sanctuaries, thus definitely proving her to be a Goddess of high places, including mountains and hills. My own personal gnosis suggests that she is the daughter of Taranis, which would help explain her patronage of fire and high places alike.7


1. Meaning of Name: Olmsted gives us “God of Hot Springs”, but has trouble justifying it. Green is not so optimistic, merely wanting to note that it, “probably derives from the name of Grand in the Vosges”.1
2. Pronunciation: GRAN-us, with the “a” like the “u” in “Gus”, and the “u” like the “u” in “put”.
3. Other Names and Epithets: Very many. Olmsted gives us: Amarcolitanos, Anextlomaros, Atepomaros, Belinus, Belisamaros, Bormo/Borvo, Cermillos, Glanis, Matuicis, Mogounis/Mogonts, Nerios, Siannos, Toutorix, Veletudo, Vindonnus, Vindoridios, Vindovroicos, Virotutis, and Vroicos. He may also be related to Olmstead’s reconstructed proto-Celtic divinity Nectonios.2
4. Interpretatio Romana: Apollo.3
5. Irish Equivalent: None. The Dian Cecht performs a similar function, but is a radically different deity.
6. Indo-European Equivalent: If the association with Olmsted’s Nectonios can be believed, then he equates to Xákwōm Népōt, the “Nephew of the Waters”, and the “God of Fiery Water”.4
7. Realm: Ueronados/Upper World Deity, but, in role of God of Hot Springs, has Andernados aspects.
8. Icongraphy: Grannus was worshipped in typical Gallo-Roman healing shrines, often associated with healing springs. He is depicted with horses, a sun-chariot, and on one occasion, the “head of a radiate sun-deity”.5
9. Significance: Reasoning from the above, we can see that Grannus is a solar deity, possibly God of the Sun, certainly God of Light. Even more, he is a healing deity, called on to cure injury and illness. He was also called on for health and protection. As a deity at once solar and watery, hot springs are especially sacred to him.


1. Meaning of Name: There are two main schools of thought. Green argues that the name is “etymologically related to ‘star’”. In this she is supported by Mackillop, who translates the name as “divine star”. Olmsted, on the other hand, argues for the meaning “the heifer”.1
4. Interpretatio Romana: Diana in at least one inscription. Eoghain mac Cuaig, an internet scholar, notes a resemblance of her iconography to that of Hygeia. Olmsted and Green both note that she is in a divine couple with the Celtic Apollo, usually by the name Grannus, or Apollo Grannus.2
5. Irish Equivalent: Boann.3
6. Indo-European Equivalent: Gwouwinda, the Indo-European Cattle and Motherhood Goddess.4
7. Realm: Mostly Andernadâ, Underworld Goddess, as the moon, she is Ueronadâ in that aspect.
8. Iconography: Olmsted describes her iconography as cow or cattle, serpent, and patera. Green describes it slightly differently: diadem, eggs, serpent, and springs. Some authorities also mention a star symbol in one inscription.5
9. Significance: Sironâ is the Goddess of the night sky, wells, serpents, and healing. If we can reason from her identification with Diana and from Daragh Smyth’s association of the Irish Boann with the moon, then she is also the Moon Goddess, with associations with time, tides, and the calendar.6


1. Meaning of Name: Ceisiwr Serith and Kondratiev both give us “The God with Antlers”. Green disagrees slightly, translating the name as “Horned One”, or “Peaked One”.1
2. Pronunciation: Kayr-NUN-awss, with the “u” like in “put”.
3. Other Names and Epithets: The name can also be spelled Kernunnos, Karnonos, Carnonos, and in various other ways.2
Interpretatio Romana: Ceisiwr Serith suggests Mercury, Hercules, Apollo, and Pluto. Mackillop suggests Dis Pater, as does Phyllis Fray Bober.3
4. Irish Equivalent: Mackillop suggests the hero Conall Cernach, but this is disputed by Serith.4
5. Indo-European Equivalent: Páxusōn, the Indo-European God of herds, wealth, merchants, and bi-directionality.5
6. Realm: Neither ueronados nor andernados, Cernunnos mediates between the worlds.
7. Iconography: Green describes his iconography as antlers, stags, the ram-horned snake, torcs, a sack of grain and/or money, and a rat. Serith disputes this to some degree, arguing that the context of the horned serpent may suggest that it is a generic monster. Serith further suggests that sitting between the serpent and the torc may represent Cernunnos as a mediator between opposites. Likewise, he suggests that the depiction of Cernunnos on the Rheims altar, showing him between a stag and a bull, may represent his mediation between the wild and the civilized.6
8. Significance: Serith, in his extensively documented and closely reasoned article, sees Cernunnos as the a mediator between opposites, a God of bi-directionality and exchange, reciprocity and ambiguity. In this view, Cernunnos mediates between Upper World and Underworld, Samos and Giamos, wild and civilized, good and evil, light and darkness. As such, he is a God of agreements, contracts, merchants, and travelers. I also see him as a God of communication, an Opener of the Way, who can be invoked to bear prayers to the other Gods, as well as a psychopomp, a Guide of the Dead. He may be able to function as a spiritual initiator, as well. Kondratiev, in The Apple Branch, adds to this an elaborate seasonal mythology, in which Cernunnos stands for the giamos principle. Phyllis Fray Bober, in her 1951 article Cernunnos: Origin and Transformation of A Celtic Divinity, argues that Cernunnos is in fact Dis Pater, the Celtic lord of the Underworld and the Dead. Certainly, this would be in keeping with Cernuunos’ role as a psychopomp.7


1. Meaning of Name: Olmsted gives us “She Who Prolongs”, or “She Who is Prolonged”, however, this etymology is not generally accepted by other scholars.1 Bernard Mees, however, states that Her name “does not have an obvious Celtic etymology – instead it looks rather Classical”.2 Green attempts to derive it from Hecate.3
2. Pronunciation: Er-UH-cu-rah, with the “u” like in “Put”..
3. Other Names and Epithets: There are numerous variant spelling of Her name, including Aericura, Ericura, Eraecura, Erecura, Herecura, Herequra, Hericura, Aecurna, Aecorna, and Aeqorna.4
4. Interpretatio Romana: Two inscription differ in their identifications. One, from Brenztal suggests Persephone, but another, from the Roman province of Numidia, outside the Celtic sphere, suggests Terra Mater and the Phrygian Goddess Cybele.5
5. Irish Equivalent: None of which I am aware.
6. Indo-European Equivalent: None given by scholars, but the Interpretatio Romana would suggest Kolyo, Goddess of Death and the Underworld, and Dhéghōm Mātr, the Earth Goddess.6
7. Realm: Andernadâ, Underworld Goddess par excellence.
8. Iconography: Olmsted described her usual appearance as seated, holding a basket of fruit.7 Green describes Her similarly, but does say that her companion, Dis Pater, is depicted with a three headed dog, while She is shown with a key, both clear Underworld symbolism.8
9. Significance: Heracurâ is pretty clearly a Goddess of the Underworld and of death. She is a part of a couple with the Romano-Gaulish Dis Pater, and invoked in funerary inscriptions. She also combines a fertility/prosperity aspect, which Mees does not find surprising in view of the fertility aspects of Persephone.9 Green compares Heracurâ to the Greco-Roman Hecate, and even wonders if the names are related.10 Olmsted notes that dedications to Dispater and Heracurâ are geographically complementary to those of Sucellus and Nantosueltâ. Each occupy distinct regions where the others are not found, suggesting that the two divine couples may be regional variants of one another.11


1. Meaning of Name: All major authorities are agreed on “Good Striker”.1
2. Pronunciation: Su-KELL-us, with the “u” like in “put”.
3. Other Names and Epithets: None.
4. Interpretatio Romana: Dis Pater.2
5. Irish Equivalent: The Dahgda.3
6. Indo-European Equivalent: None suggested by scholars. .
7. Realm: Andernados/Underworld God par excellence.
8. Iconography: The long-shafted mallet and pot, wine and barrels, an olla, and a dog. Olmsted has noticed the striking resemblance of Sucellus’ iconography to that of the Etruscan underworld deity Charun. This resemblance forms one key to understanding Sucellus.4
9. Significance: Sucellus is the God of the Underworld, though not necessarily Lord of the Dead. His iconography, modeled on the Etruscan Charun, confirms this, as does his association with Dis Pater. He is also a deity of wealth, fertility and plenty, as shown by his pot, olla, and wine symbolism. That wine symbolism makes him the deity of grapes, vine growing, and of wine itself. Although an Underworld deity he is, unlike Charun, a basically benevolent figure associated with the pleasures of life, and the afterworld paradise. He is paired with Nantosueltâ.5