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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Macha

Mythic, worshipped in Celtic Ireland, beginning circa 600 B.C.E.

Macha is the Celtic goddess of war, thought to be one aspect of the tripartite goddess of war and death, Morrigan. Many characters in Celtic mythology carry the name Macha, but they are likely all aspects of the same goddess as they generally share similar traits. One of the most famous of these was Macha, wife of Cruinniuc, who, due to her husband’s bragging, was forced to race against the king of Ulster’s chariot when she was pregnant. She won the race, gave birth to twins, and cursed the men of Ulster with labor pains during their time of greatest need for many generations so that they would feel what she had been forced to endure.

Judy Chicago (American, b. 1939). <em>The Dinner Party</em> (Heritage Floor; detail), 1974–79. Porcelain with rainbow and gold luster, 48 x 48 x 48 ft. (14.6 x 14.6 x 14.6 m). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation, 2002.10. © Judy Chicago. Photograph by Jook Leung Photography
Judy Chicago (American, b. 1939). The Dinner Party (Heritage Floor; detail), 1974–79. Porcelain with rainbow and gold luster, 48 x 48 x 48 ft. (14.6 x 14.6 x 14.6 m). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation, 2002.10. © Judy Chicago. Photograph by Jook Leung Photography

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