Other Spellings: Griann, Grían
Associations: sun, winter
Known and Suspected Family: sister Áine
Etymology: “The word grian, with a fade over the i, means sun, bright, radiant, sunny-faced, sunny, and meeting place; the word grian without the fada means sand, sea, river, base, foundation, earth, and land” (Morgan Daimler, page 34).
Notable Myths: n/a
There is very little known about Grian. She is thought to be a sun goddess, sister to Áine. While Áine has the summer sun, Grian therefore has the winter sun, and the two of them take turns ruling the year (Daimler, page 34.) Since Áine is celebrated at Midsummer, it is believed that Grian would have had celebrations during Midwinter–though what those celebrations were are lost to us, if they existed.
In one tale, Macha is referred to as Grian. Morgan Daimler writes,
“In the Metrical Dindshenchas it is said that Macha’s other name is Grian […] Some suggest that Grian was used at times as an epithet and that this may be the case with Macha being called the sun of womankind (Monaghan, 2004). Unfortunately there is nothing else referencing this connection in other sources outside the Dinshenchas that I am aware of, but taken with Áine’s possible connection to the Morrigan it would not be unreasonable to accept.” (page 34-35)
Daimler, Morgan. The Morrigan: Meeting the Great Queens. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.