Name – Brigit, Brigid, Brid, Brig or Brighid
Name Meaning – The Bright One or The Exalted One
Pantheon – Celtic
Animals – Cow, Boar, Sheep, Wolf, Snake, Swan and Fish
Symbols – Forges, Anvils, Wells, Harps, Brigit’s Cross, Cauldrons, and Bells
Colors – White, yellow, red and dark blue
Sacred plant/tree – Oak, Hawthorn, Grain, Rosemary, Dill, and Red Clover
Moon – Vine
Goddess of – Fertility, Hearth, Home, Wells, Forge, Creative Inspiration, Poetry, Music, Warriors, Protectors, Healing, Children, Agriculture, Midwifery, Light Fire.
Brigid, a triple goddess, born of Dagda, the god of the earth and wife of Bres. Some debate if she is three goddess, each named Brigit, or one goddess with three faces. In the aspect of three separate goddesses; one sister was considered to be in charge of poetry, prophecy, music and inspiration, one was in charge of healing, herb craft, fertility and midwifery and the third was in charge of the metalworking, smithies, war and justice. Not only is she considered to be a triple goddess, she is also duel faced as both a healer and a warrior, a protector of water and in some cases she is depicted as having one half of her face as beautiful and the other side as rotten.
She is also credited with inventing the Irish mourning wail called caoiune, keening, when she mourned for her son Ruadan who was killed in battle. Keening was, until most recently, something that still occurred in Ireland. In fact, women were hired to keep by gravesides.
Brigid was such a popular Goddess with the Irish people, that when Christianity swooped in they took Brigid and made her a saint of of farm work and cattle and protector of the household from fire and calamity in 453. She was even made the foster mother of Jesus. This was important because within the Celtic household, foster parents were ranked higher than natural parents and the bond between foster parents and children were considered to be sacred.
Brigid play such an important role in both the Pagan and Christian community that her sacred shrine at Kildare, where 19 virgins constantly maintained a sacred fire was adopted by the Christian church and became a convent. The fire was then continually tended by 19 nuns until it was extinguished in 1220 by an annoyed Bishop who wanted a man to live at the convent but was denied by the nuns. It was lit again by Henry the Eighth and then extinguished again in the 1500. The fire was once again relit in 1993 and continues to burn bright today by the Daughters of the Flame.
Imbolc, celebrated on February 2, is the Sabbat that corresponds with her. Some things that are celebrated on Imbolc that are represented of Brigid are; the Brigid’s cross, an ancient solar symbol, is woven at this time from reeds. Women also gather and make an image of the Goddess as Maiden. They will dress her in white and place a crystal over her heart and place her in a cradle-like basket. There is also the tradition of leaving a loaf of bread, a pitcher of milk and a candle out for Brigid.
Brigid is really your all purpose Goddess. There is virtually nothing that you can not call on her for assistance with.