C is for Corylus Avellana

"Calm After The Storm" by Sarah Arbogast

“Calm After The Storm” by Sarah Arbogast

C is for Corylus Avellana: ‘Coll’ or Hazel is one of the thirteen trees in the Ogham Tree Calendar. Hazel, Corylus avellana, is the Tree of Wisdom and Knowledge, and one of the ‘chieftain’ trees of the Irish Celtic tradition.  In my A to Z journey through the World of Gossamer Steel, Coryll and her sister Avellana are key characters in a novella set in the fictional world. As a shaman, Coryll has a deep bond with nature, which through her blood-mark ties her to a reed elemental, Ngetal – the 13th letter of the alphabet. Much of my initial inspiration for the novella and the world came from Teresa Moorey’s Magic And Mystery Of Trees.

Trees hold a powerful place in folklore in many cultures, as diverse as Native Americans, the Qabalah, Druids, as well as Celtic. Many traditions have trees at their heart, from Yggdrasil, the World Tree of Norse Myth, to the Christmas tree.  Further reading on Spirit, Folklore and Trees here.

Most scholars believe that Ogham primarily “served as an alphabet for one of the ancient Celtic languages. Its origin is uncertain: it may have been adapted from a sign language. Current understanding is that the names of the main twenty letters are also the names of 20 trees sacred to the druids. Some authors have suggested the existence of a 13 month calendar which shared some of these names.”

Two central characters in the novel ‘Wyrm Bait’ choose avatars in the MMORPG of Gossamer Steel with the names Coryll and Avellana.

C is also for other short story protagonists Charles Stern and Chamona, for The Country, as well as for CME or Coronal Mass Ejection.


The brainchild of Arlee Bird, at Tossing it Out, the A to Z Challenge is posting every day in April except Sundays (we get those off for good behavior.) And since there are 26 days, that matches the 26 letters of the alphabet. On April 1, blog about something that begins with the letter “A.” April 2 is “B,” April 3 is “C,” and so on. Please visit other challenge writers.

My theme is ‘The World of Gossamer Steel’, the SF-fantasy setting for a series of short stories and novellas that portray the tales behind the MMORPG that is central to my crime novel , Wyrm Bait’.

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