“A Sea Queen’s Sailing” was originally published in 1906, by a writer who clearly reveled in writing about the various cultures in early medieval Britain.
The story is set at a time when both Christianity and pagan belief were actively practiced. Norse mythology is a constant presence within the story, demonstrating the mythical beliefs of half of the cast of characters.
Whistler writes about the Norse in both their Scandinavian homelands and also their British settlements. In this book, both the Irish and the Scots are featured. Last but not least, Whistler does not leave out my personal favorite, the Anglo-Saxons.
Characters from all three cultures feature prominently in “A Sea Queen,” with none portrayed as superior or inferior to another. This is an author who clearly has a love for all of the cultures that had a strong presence in the British Isles.
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Editor's note: This blog post is excerpted from Ms. Hopman's book, which she generously volunteered to share with readers of Mythology Magazine.
Holly is a Chieftain Tree of the Celts associated with Taranis, the Gaulish Thunder God. Other Holly Gods include Tina, the EtruscanThunder God, Taran, the Pictish Thunder God, and the Scandinavian God Thor.
Holly was planted near homes to protect them from lightning, storm, fire, and hexes. Its wood was used in door sills to repelsorcery. With its blood-red berries and its spiny leaves, Holly was understood to have a warrior's Spirit. War clubs and chariot wheels were made from its wood.
A fixture of Northern, Western, and Central European mythology, the Wild Hunt transcends several pantheons. Its leaders include the Anglo-Saxon god Woden, the Gaulish deity Cernunnos, Arawn and Gwyn ap Nudd who were written about above, Irish folk hero Fionn mac Cumhaill, and the French Hellequin who was an emissary of the Christian devil, and many more.