Goddess Ragnelle

Dan Goodfellow

Glastonbury, United Kingdom

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Artist's Description

Ragnelle – The story of Ragnelle, or Gawain and the Loathly Lady has deeper roots than the Chaucer version. Briefly it concerns Gawain entering into a bargain to save the kings life with Ragnelle, a hag so hideous no one can stand to see her. Gawain agrees to marry her, and in doing so without shirking from her sight and treating her with all courtly devotion, she is released from a curse that keeps her in loathly form. She becomes the most beautiful woman in the land, but informs Gawain that she will return to her loathly form for half of the day. Gawain is given the power to decide whether she should be beautiful by day and a hag by night or the other way around, and he chooses honourably, freeing her to spend her days in the court as a maiden, and denying himself the pleasure of his wife at night,. This final choice ends the curse for good, and Ragnelle is fully restored from her hideous form to her true visage. Stripping aside all traces of medeival misogeny, we find a pretty obvious myth of the sun god and the renewal of the land . Ragnelle is the dark becoming light, the rebirth of the land from the death of winter, the flourishing of beauty anew.

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goddess celtic pagan

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