Real Name: Morrighan (original spelling)
Occupation: Queen of the Celtic Gods, goddess of war, death and procreation
Legal Status: Citizen of Avalon
Identity: The general populace of Earth is unaware of the existence of Morrigan except as a mythological character.
Other Aliases: Morrigu (alternate spelling), Morríghan ("Phantom Queen"), Mor-Ríoghain, Mor Righ Anu, The Morrigna ("Great Queens"), the Badhbh Chatha, ("Raven of the Battle"), "Washer at the Ford," "The Red," Great Queen, Phantom Queen, Mórrígan ("great queen"), Queen of Daemons, Great Queen, Phantom Queen, Black Raven of Death, Old Veiled One, "The Mare-Queen," Badhb/Bav ("raven"), Nemain ("frenzy"), Breng ("lie"), Meng ("guile"), Meabel ("disgrace") (avatars), Uar-gaeth-sceo Luachair-sceo, Faebor-beg-Beoil Cuimdiuir folt, Scenbgairit sceo Uath,
Place of Birth: Unknown, possibly somewhere in ancient Connacht in modern Ireland
Marital Status: Married
Known Relatives: Labraidh (possible father), Condatis (possible mother), The Dagda (husband), Mider, Bodb, Oghma (sons), Oenghus (step-son), Badb, Brigid, Epona (daughters), Llyr, Gwydion, Amaethon (brothers-in-law), Arianrhod, Penardun (deceased) (sisters-in-law), Manannan (son-in-law),
Group Affiliations: The Celtic Gods, The Morrighan, member of an unnamed cabal of underworld-gods
Base of Operations: Avalon and the Unius River in South West Ireland
First Appearance: (unidentified) Thor I #301, (actual) Doctor Strange III Annual 3,
History: Morrigan is a member of the Tuatha de Danaan, an
extra-dimensional race of beings who were worshipped as gods by the ancient
Celtis and Gaels. The Danaans were eternal enemies of the Fomore, the primeval
spirits of Ancient Eire. Not much is known about her origins which are often
speculatory and contradictory. In one account, she was the
mortal daughter of Ernmas, an ancient Irish king, the grandson of King Nuadhu,
the son of the Dagda. Ernmas had three mortal daughters named Macha, Badb and
Nemain who were known as the Morrighan, but it is uncertain if one of these
figures is Morrighan or if they took her name from her. Due to her original
status as a water-goddess, it is possible
Morrigan is the daughter of the primeval Celtic water-gods Labraidh and Condatis,
but this is uncertain. In several myths, she was worshipped as a triad of
goddesses known as Meng, Meabel and Nemain, but these could be the original
names of the daughters of Ernmas or aspects for one goddess or actually a triad of goddesses.
It is known that Morrigan is one of the most powerful
gods of the Ancient Celts, and was often worshipped as both a mother-goddess and
the goddess of war and death.
According to myths, Morrigan was approached as a mate by the Dagda, a chieftain of the Tuatha de Danaan, and seduced on the night of Samhain (November 1). Likely sought as an ally against the Fomore, Morrigan sired him gods who would help the Danaans rise up and overthrow the Fomore from Eire. She is said to have cast the spells which allowed the Danaans to slay King Indech of the Fomore.
After the Fomore were driven from Eire, Morrigan and the Tuatha de Danaan replaced the Fomore as Gods of Ireland. Morrigan is reported to have lured away the bull of a mortal woman named Odras. Odras then followed Morrígan back to Otherworld, the realm of the Celtic Gods, through a extra-dimensional link between worlds in the Cave of Cruachan. When Odras eventually fell asleep, Morrígan transformed her into a pool of water that dispensed prophecies to those who could find it.
In ancient times, Morrigan often appeared as a giantess on Earth, straddling the river Unius as she washed the armor of soldiers she predicted would die in war. She had a number of guises in her role as the triple-goddess. As Badhb, she surveyed the spoils of war in the form of a raven, but as Nemain, she was the terrifying incarnation of the bloodthirsty side of war. She glorified the defeat of the Fomore, and in the First Millennium BC, she appeared as a would-be mate to the demigod warrior Cu Chulainn, appearing to him from behind a number of aliases trying to get him to guess her true identity, but when he refused her, she cursed him to die very shortly after meeting her.
Worship of the Celtic Gods departed from Western Europe in the Fifth Century AD with the introduction of Christianity, and Morrigan departed from earth for the other-dimensional realm of Avalon. During the Third Host of the Celestial, the Dagda met with the god-kings of the Earth's other pantheons of gods to discuss the threat of the Celestials who demanded that the gods stop trafficking with mortals. The Celestials also revealed that they would return in a thousand years to judge over mankind's worthiness to survive. While this was occurring, Morrigan met with the wives of the god-kings, such as Frigga, wife of Odin, and Hera, wife of Zeus, to locate genetically pure examples of humanity to represent the potential of human beings. In Twelfth Century Ireland, Morrigan finally located a young girl named Bridget O'Hare and placed her in suspended animation watched over by several other goddesses until the Fourth Host of the Celestial occurred. As the Sea Witch, Bridget became a member of the Young Gods, and when the time came, Gaea, the divine ancestor of the gods of earth, presented the Young Gods to the Celestial as examples of the potential of human beings. Voting in favor of mankind, the Celestials departed earth with the Young Gods in company.
Morrigan and the Dagda later consented with Cernunnos, the stag-god, to grant the mortal Kyllian the power to serve as a representative of the Celtic God's power on Earth after they had been exiled from trafficking with mortals. Unable to truly understand what was happening to him, Kyllian sought help from Sorcerer Supreme Dr. Strange to understand what was happening to him. With a spell, Strange forced Morrigan, Cernunnos and the Dagda in the role as Taranis the Thunderer to appear on earth to explain their roles in persecuting Kyllian. (In ancient myths, Taranis was actually the name the Celts had for Zeus, the god of the invading Romans. It is believed the Dagda used this name to appear in a role familiar to Kyllian.) Cernunnos explained that they had linked with Kyllian to preserve their link to earth and Ireland in particular so that Kyllian could continue their will on Earth. However, since then, Kyllian has fallen sway under the thrall of Mordred the Mystic, a druidic mystic. How this bodes for the rest of the Celtic gods is unrevealed.
In keeping with her more bloodthirsty attributes as a goddess
of war and death, Morrigan later allowed herself to ally with certain underworld
gods such as Baal,
order to tempt Superman into serving
as their vessel of power on earth. In doing so, they bestowed godhood upon his
wife, Lois Lane-Kent, in the form of a goddess of truth and integrity. With her
godly powers, Lois saw through their lies and guises and unexpectedly revealed their true
forms. Morrigan was once more forced to retreat from earth. Her current
activities and whereabouts are unknown.
Height: Various, usually around 6' 5"
Strength Level: Morrigan possesses superhuman strength enabling her to lift (press) at least 85 tons under optimal conditions.
Known Superhuman Powers: Morrigan possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Celtic gods. Like all Danaans, she is extremely long-lived. She is not immortal like the Olympian gods, but she uses mystical means to retain the look and appearance of a young woman. She cannot die by any conventional means; she is immune to all Earthly diseases and is resistant to conventional injury. If she were somehow wounded, her godly life force would enable her to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of her bodily molecules to cause her a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for a god of significant power, such as the Dagda, Llyr or for a number of Celtic gods of equal power working together to revive her.
Morrigan also possesses superhuman strength and her Danaan metabolism provides her with far greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (Danaan flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to the superhuman strength and weight of the Celtic gods.)
Morrigan possibly has more mystical powers than any other Celtic goddess, with the possible exception of the Dagda. She is possible equal in power to other gods such as Odin and Zeus. Her prophetic and clairvoyant senses allow her to perceive and predict the deaths of warriors about to go into war. She can also sense the glow of death around a person about to die. She can appear as a giantess on earth, anywhere between fifty to a hundred feet in height and command the forces of storm. She can create clouds of solid particles to stand upon in the Earth's atmosphere. She can also take on an immaterial form composed of clouds and astral matter to project her image on earth and create hand and arm-shaped matter to impose her will. She can summon and create ravens of various size at will. She can also cast spells and hexes, erect and propel blasts of energy and concussive force.
As the triple-goddess, Morrigan has a host of other forms and guises, each of which with its own powers and attributes. As Badhb, she can fly through the air with two massive black feathered wings from her back and project a loud shrill cry capable of stirring fear in her opponents. As Nemain, she is in her most bloodthirsty form and virtually unstoppable. In this form, she is virtually inexhaustible and her godly attributes render her immune to all forms of injury. One of her major forms is as a caillech (an old woman) wrapped in a cape of black raven feathers. Another role of the Morrigan is associated with the hunting falcon, which is a rare and special role for her. Instead of a raven who guides the soul at birth or death, she becomes that falcon that guides the healer or mage in initiation. She can also take on a variety of animal forms, each representing an attribute of her worship, such as a crow, an eel, a wolf or a cow.
It has also been suggested that Morrigan sometimes feasts on the
astral energies ("souls") of persons slain in combat. It is unknown if
she requires these energies to survive or whether she uses them in the precision
of her spells. As a true god, she would not be as powerful in the modern age as
she was in the past while she had active worshippers.
Pets: Morrigan is often surrounded by a flurry of ravens.
Comments: This bio includes Morrigan as she has appeared in the Marvel and DC Universes.
In "Hercules: the Legendary Journeys," Morrigan was played by
Tamara Gorski, but this character was more of a demigoddess rather than an
all-powerful triple goddess.
Clarifications: Morrigan is not to be confused with:
Last updated: 08/28/13
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