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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Medb of Connacht

Legendary, Celtic Ireland, exact dates uncertain

Medb was the legendary Queen of Connacht, a western Irish province, and daughter of the High King of Ireland, who placed her on the throne. Throughout her life, she had many husbands and lovers, several of whom died while battling over her. One of the more famous legends about Medb is recounted in the epic tale Táin Bó Cuailnge (Cattle Raid of Cooley), involving a dispute over a white-horned bull. Medb insisted that she and her husband be equal in wealth, so when she discovered that one of them, Ailill, was richer by just one bull, she launched a war against Ulster, his province, to steal the animal. Medb’s colorful life came to an end when she was murdered while bathing in a lake.

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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