Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)


Religious Studies

First Advisor's Name

Christine Gudorf

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Lesley Northup

Third Advisor's Name

Erik Larson

Date of Defense



This work explores the transformation and eventual demotion of the goddess in ancient Ireland through the evolution of patriarchal mythos and as a consequence of economic factors, socio-political and religious manifestations, as well as agricultural developments. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between leading theories of social, cultural and religious change in prehistory and early history and the historical process of the demotion of the Irish goddess figure, the Mor-rioghan. The Mor-rioghan is the subject of exploration as her militarization and subsequent incarnation as a bean si have resulted in her near dissolution. The decline of the goddess's status will be explained as inevitable in the face of the evolving hierarchies of androcentric theologies.





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Religion Commons


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