The Great Horned God
- The Great Horned God
- The consort of the Goddess and symbol of male energy in the
form of the divine, The Horned God reigns. He is the lord of
the woodlands, the hunt and animals. He provides for the tribe
through the hunt and is honored or rewarded for his deed by being
permitted to copulate with the Goddess through the Great Rite.
- The Horned God is is the lord of life, death and the underworld.
And is the Sun to the Goddess' Moon. He alternates with the Goddess
in ruling over the fertility cycle of birth, death and rebirth.
He is born at the winter solstice, unites with the Goddess in
marriage at Bealtaine, and dies at the summer solstice to bring
fertility to the land as the Sacred
- He is not just a Celtic representation of the God, nor does
he solely belong to Wicca, as he has been associated with many
deities throughout the world.
- Cernunnos, The Celtic God of fertility, animals and the underworld.
- Herne The Hunter, a specter of Britain.
- Pan the Greek god of the woodlands,
- Janus the Roman god of good beings.
- Tammuz and Damuzi, the son, lover and consorts to Ishtar
- Osiris, the Egyptian Lord of the underworld.
- Dionysus, the Greek god of vegetation and vine.
- The Green Man, the lord of vegetation and the woodlands.
- The History Of The Horned
- Paintings discovered
in the Caverne des Trois Freres at Ariege, France provides evidence
of the first views of the Horned One. Depicted as a stag standing
upright on hind legs with the upper body of a man, the figure
is celebrating what appears to be a hunt and wooing a woman.
- From some of the earliest myths come the union between the
fertile Goddess and the triumphant phallus hunter, the Horned
God. The more successful the tribal hunter in providing for his
people, the greater his stature became. The more likely he would
be the one chosen to impregnate the "Mother" of the
tribe. Often seen as the High Priestess or at least a tribal
woman who was touched by the goddess because of her prowess at
becoming pregnant and extending the life of the tribe. Something
that was needed during the days of ancient man, as life spans
were short and death by illness or disease was common.
- Many legends describe fertility celebrations occurring at
the spring gathering and again in late fall. Each of these coinciding
with a spring hunt to bring food to the tribe after a cold desolate
winter. And in the fall to provide meat for the tribe during
the winter months. The most successful hunter won the prize of
sleeping with the "Goddess", most often before the
Tribe watching. Something that is seen as repugnant today, in
ancient times, it was a spiritual event and is revitalized in
what we see as the Great Rite of
- During these rituals, the Hunter would appear dressed or
cloaked in the skin of his kill with the horns of the stag resting
victoriously upon his head. Some legends describe the blood of
the beast engulfing both the Horned Hunter and the Goddess, believing
the life taken from the animal is transferred to the womb of
the fertile Mother, thus providing life.
- To the Celts as Cernunnos, the Horned God was more than just
a fertile being. He is found throughout the Celtic lands and
folklore as the guardian of the portal leading to the Otherworld.
The name Cernunnos is known only through damaged carvings found
at Notre Dame. In these carvings, a deity with short horns carries
the incomplete inscription 'ERNUNNO'. In his earliest of days
he was probably the fertility god to the Gauls. But as time progressed
and his legends grew, he became associated with wealth and prosperity.
He was such an important deity to the pagan Celts, that his image
and prowess became a major target for the early Christian church.
It is his image that is believed to have been adopted for their
mythos of the Devil 'deo falsus' or the false god. His status
as the god of Hell would coincide with the view of the pagan
Celts as the guardian of the Otherworld.
- As Herne the Hunter, the British version of the Horned God;
he is seen as the leader of the Wild Hunt. As an antlered giant,
he is rumored to still survive and live in the forests of Windsor
Great Park. His longevity is owed to the cult of Cernunnos, who
have also linked his generosity to provide for the tribe to the
legend of Robin Hood. Some suggest that Herne was the father
to Robin of Loxley; which is probably more an association since
Herne is a much older figure in legend and myth. In this ability
to provide for the tribe as the great Hunter of the wood, he
is forever linked to the Horned God.
- As the Greek deity
of pastures, flocks and herds, Pan was half man and half goat.
With the legs and horns and beard of a goat. He is the offspring
of Hermes, but his mothers lineage is in question. Either he
is the result of Hermes and Dryope daughter of King Dropys, who's
flocks he tended. Or Hermes and Penelope. His cult is centered
around Arcadia where he is reported to haunt the woodlands, hills
and mountains. Sleeping at noon and then dancing through the
woods as he played the panpipes, which he is credited with inventing.
He is the lusty leader of the satyrs (woodland deities), and
continually chases the nymphs (the beautiful nature goddesses).
During rituals, his essence is invoked to for fertility of the
flocks or for an abundant hunt. Associating him with the legends
of the Horned God.
- As Osiris the Egyptian god of the lower world, he is seen
as the judge of the dead. Linking him to the concept of Cernunnos
as the guardian of the gate to the Other World. He is the brother
of Isis, but he is also her husband. Isis as the goddess of fertility
her status as the Mother is propagated by the services provided
her by Osiris. Once again linking his image with that of the
- As the Green Man he is the God of the woodlands and vegetation.
He is also known as 'Green Jack", "Jack in the Green"
and "Green George". He represents the spirits of the
trees, plants and foliage who has many powers over nature that
promote growth. He has the power to make it rain and foster the
livestock with lush meadows. As Green George he has been represented
as a young man cloaked head to foot in greenery. In early depictions,
the green vegetation emphasized his phallic symbol of fertility
as he lead processions through tribal lands. As the Green Man
he shares his woodland home with the forest fairies often called
"Greenies" or "Greencoaties". What today
we call Nature Sprites. The Green Man is depicted as a horned
man peering out from a mask of foliage, connecting him to the
image of Horned God.
- Sources: 1, o11,
- Created: 05/07/2002