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The Woman Behind the Man: Celtic Warrior Scathach, Teacher of Warriors

March 8, 2019 - General
Illustration of a Celtic warrior woman by RottenRagamuffin

Scáthach, meaning “The Shadowy One” in Gaelic, was a mythical Celtic warrior and martial arts trainer. Her school of warriors turned out some of the top Celtic heroes.

Her most famous student was Cú Chulainn, the most notorious warrior from Irish mythology and akin in many ways to the great Greek warrior Achilles. The intense tales of Cú Chulainn’s life and battles were really only possible because of one very important person—one very important woman. A woman whose only purpose in Irish mythology is to teach the best and strongest of Ireland’s warriors to harness their martial skills, but who is only recognized through the exploits of the men she trains. That woman is Scáthach of Alba.

"Cú Chulainn Riding His Chariot into Battle", illustration by J. C. Leyendecker in T. W. Rolleston's Myths & Legends of the Celtic Race, 1911.

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Source: origins

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