Arawn

Associations

Animal: Hounds

Family & Other Connections

Arawn is great friends with Pwyll, Prince of Dyfed.

Information & Stories

Arawn is Lord of the Welsh Otherworld – Annwn. In Autumn, Winter and early Spring the baying of the hounds of Annwn, or the Cŵn Annwn, can be heard, as they ride through the sky, chasing wandering souls to Annwn.

One day while out hunting he meets Pwyll, who has been in pursuit of the same quarry. To pay for this misdeed, Pwyll agrees to switch bodies with Arawn for a year and a day. He rules Annwn in Arawn’s place and defeats Hafgan, Arawn’s enemy.

When the two switch back their friendship is cemented as Arawn ruled well over Dyfed, while Pwyll respected Arawn, and had not made love to his wife, as was his right while wearing Arawn’s body.

Arawn was involved in the Cad Goddeu, or Battle of the Trees, when Amaethon stole a dog, a lapwing and a white roebuck from him. On Arawn’s side was a man who could not be defeated unless his name was guessed, and on Amaethon’s side a woman who could only be defeated in the same manner. Arawn lost the battle when Gwydion, Amaethon’s brother, guessed the name of the man.

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