In many Irish stories the crone goddess, often under the name of the Badb (bao, or raven), ordains or foreshadows the warrior’s death. She is seen washing at the ford, and the clothing belongs to one about to die in battle.
Celtic traditions contained a rich lode of myths about a divine Old Woman. In Gaelic (both Irish and Scottish)she is called the Cailleach (from caille, mantle or veil, thus veiled one.) [The Q-Celtic word cailleach is related to the Latin pallium, which survived as the name for a priestly stole. MacKenzie thinks cailleach originally signified a nun, but the ancient traditions predate christianity. 137] This is not a veil of modesty—the cailleachan are wild—but of mystery.