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If the Celtic people had known about Macguyver, they would have loved the man. Lugh, also known as Lug, was a god of many skills at once, a jack-of-all-trades who was also a master-of-all-trades. As the Celtic people placed great importance on personal ability, a deity possessing extensive skill in many fields of endeavour would be a truly epic being.

Like many Celtic gods and goddesses, he had an aspect of the all-purpose type to him, being a combination of warrior, craftsman and intellectual: "His mighty spear testifies to his qualities as a fighting hero while his magic incantations ... point to his role as divine magician; other Irish and Welsh references support his association with commerce and crafts of all kinds." Lugh was known as sam ildanach, or "skilled in many arts simultaneously."

Also known as the lord of light (note the connection between Lugh's name and the word "light"), legend has it that he brought an end to an age of darkness and chaos by slaying his grandfather Balor with a sling or slingshot in a great battle. He was also entrusted to guard and use the magical spear of Gorias. His reputation with these long-ranged weapons gave him the name "Lugh Lamhfhada" or "Lugh of the Long Arm."

Many remnants of Lugh and his worship survive to this day. Even today, many people still observe the holiday of Lughnasadh, often with celebration and games of skill (many of which Lugh is said to have created, such as fidchell or the Celtic equivalent to chess). Lugh's themes - particularly his many skills - show up in the character of Lancelot, and many towns bear aspects of his name to the present day, such as Lyons, Leiden, and Carlisle.


Stewart, R.J. Celtic Gods, Celtic Goddesses. London: Blandford 1990.