Poppies

Watercolour; Erbistock north Wales


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In the Celtic calender Beltane or May Eve marked the beginning of Summer. On the first day of May people would gather flowers and branches to decorate their homes, and women would braid flowers into their hair.

In Welsh legend Lleu was cursed by his mother Arianrhod to never have a name or a wife.
However
with the help of the sorcerer Math Mathonwy, his father Gwydion makes him a wife out of flowers: the beautiful Blodeuwedd.
But Blodeuwedd betrays Lleu by persuading him to tell her the secret of how he can be killed, and then asking her lover to murder him.
As a punishment for this terrible treachery Blodeuwedd is turned into an owl by the gods.