I don't know if there is much left in the way of evidence for a "star God" or goddess per se, but if you expand your "star" theme to include the sun and sky, then yes, there are several Gods/Goddesses with solar attributes and sky/God symbolism
in both Continental Celtic and Insular sources. My info below is very synoptic and brief as one could write much on the topic, but I just throw some ideas here. I know it's not specifically what you're looking for, if focusing on "stars" as opposed to "sun" "sky" but perhaps it fits if you expand your paradigm seeing the sun as a star and more generally, looking for sky Gods/Goddesses, which is in sync with the Celtic cosmology of Earth, Sea, Sky as realms bounding the world and which would be transgressed at "end times".Continental sources:
From continental sources (Gaul) the ones that most readily spring to mind are:
- Belenus - who was likened by the Romans to Apollo, in his association with healing, sun and thermal springs and healing wells.
- Taranis - with solar wheel and epithet as "The Thunderer", equated with Jupiter by the Romans and strong "sky God" imagery
actually just in comment to Arianrhod above, her name literally translates as "Silver wheel" doesn't it? so that would seem a suitable insular analogy to the continental sun/sky gods with solar wheel representation.
- Apollo Granus & Sirona
I note in Prof Prionsias MacCana's "Celtic Mythology
", that another name for the Gallo-Roman Apollo was "Grannus". I sought out info on the etymology of Granus and found a reference paper in ZCP 53 (Zeitschrif fur Celtische Philologie)by J Zeidler on the Etymology of Grannus
, which highlights 3 associations in its introduction: (IE here meaning IndoEuropean root word)[Unfortunately I only have the beginning of the paper and not the full piece, but if you can access ZCP you can get it]
(1) from IE *gher/ghré meaning to "stand out", "project", and associated with "beard" "eyebrow"
(2) from IE *gwher- meaning "warm" "hot"
(3) from IE *gher- meaning "to shine" "gleam"
So again the light/warm/sun connection seems to be evident here as something related to a solar deity. That and the equivocation by the Romans of certain Gaulish Gods to theirs or to Greek Gods, such as Apollo and Jupiter, points to a sky/solar cult. By chance I happened across a note in MacCana on Apollo Granus saying he was often paired with the goddess Sirona, whose title derives from "Star" - so perhaps some searching there may lead to more information, both are associated with healing and healing wells. In one instance of her statutary, Sirona is depicted as wearing a tiara of stars.
This link from Wickipedia to the areas of her workship in east-central Gaul. I don't usually cite wickipedia but as it's dealing here with facts on depictions of the Goddess from temple sites and inscriptions extant - and on etymology of the name, it might be of interest.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sirona
....The richly furnished spring sanctuary of Hochscheid (Cueppers 1990; Weisgerber 1975) was decorated with statues of Sirona and Apollo, again confirmed by an inscription (AE 1941, 00089 = AE 1945, 00121) Deo Apolli/ni et sanc/t(a)e Siron(a)e ... (to Apollo and holy Sirona ...). The statue of Sirona shows her carrying a bowl of eggs (Green 1986 p.162) and holding a long snake coiled around her lower arm (a link to the iconography of the Greek healing goddess Hygeia, daughter of Asklepios). She wears a long gown and has a star-shaped diadem on her head (a link with the meaning of the name Sirona).
Ancient Celtic Religon & SymbolismJ.A. MacCulloch's book: Religion of the Ancient Celts
The root is Gaulish *ster- (*h2ster) meaning a star (Markey 2001). The same root is found in Old Irish as ser, Welsh seren, Middle Cornish sterenn and Breton steren(n) (Delamarre 2003:282). The name Đirona combines the root *ster- with the -on- frequently, but not exclusively, found in theonyms (for example Epona, Matrona) and the usual Gaulish feminine singular -a (Hamp 1994).
, also gives info on the "Celtic Apollo" and cites Diodorus, one of the classical writers (I presume Diodorus Siculus?) as stating that he had a circular temple in the "island of the hyperboreans" decorated with votive offerings and that every 19th year the God appeared in the sky dancing at the Spring Equinox.
Reference: http://books.google.ie/books?id=ZuxGB6A ... 9#PPA31,M1
For more detailed info on Gaulish deities and solar/sky associations, see Miranda Green "Symbol and religion in Celtic Art"
. There's a link to sample chapters from her book here in which you may find some interesting reading (and for free!). I was googling for reference info on Camulus, for whom I think some sky-associations may also be found and this came up:http://books.google.ie/books?id=km66Nu4 ... #PPA126,M1
She also comments on the "Sky Horseman" symbolism - because many portrayals in both Celtic and Roman sources of a sky God or some great father God, are represented through the association with the horse. I think this probably has strong parallels or common themes with ancient Hindu Horse lore and horse-sacrifice was practiced there to the Gods. For more info on that I think Dumézil would have some good info but also books on the Upanishads and contemporay practices of sacrifice and religious belief.Irish sources
In Irish sources there's not a lot of info on a particular "sun God" or "sky God" really, moreso that solar imagery is associated with various Gods/Goddesses and the mothers of various Saints - their names and epithets invoking images of fire, radiance, sacred flame, etc.
- Irish/continental Brigit
- Irish Goddess Áine
- the name of one of the Gods of the Túatha Dé Danann - Mac Gréine "son of the sun"
- Lassair (names of many females supposed to have been mothers of Irish saints, name come from "flame", or "to light,burn" - an epithet for sanctity and gloriousness perhaps)
- I think St Gobnait may also have stemmed from a solar Goddess, her feast is also Imbolc in southwest Ireland and there are holy wells associated with her, for the cure of eyes, if memory serves.
Also - and here I note a comment from MacCana, p.32, that refers to St Patrick's Confessio, where he (St P) contrasts 'worship of the sun' as being inclined to damnation, with "worship of the true sun - Christ" (God who causes the sun to rise), which leads to eternal life. MacCana makes the point that although this piece from the Confessio seems to point towards sun worship as having been practiced, it does not necessarily make the case for it and may simply have been a theological analogy by Patrick through his training.
However one can look to the above Brigit, Áine, mac Gréine, and indeed to other local deities or early saints which have clear solar motifs and associations to see that the sun whether literally or metaphorically symbolizing greatness, power, brilliance, knowledge, radiance, glory, is present to a high degree in mythic and hagiographical sources. It appears in
(a) the legends and associations of gods/godesses - the obvious onces cited above but also consider "Balor of the evil eye" - his eye likened to a giant searing sun which burned all who stood before it promotes this idea (Rosc and suil in Old Irish used for both "eye" and "sun" in different pieces) and his place of death - Carn uí Néit - Mizen Head in south-west Ireland; and also possibly the Dagda - usually seen as an "earth God" but see below for a note on that.
(b) in the battles fought between the Formor and the TDD and Fir Bolg in the west of Ireland (at Moytura - Mag Tuired "the plain of towers") - west and southwest being the place of the setting sun - and the timepoints of occurrence of those battles perhaps having underlying solar significance - Bealtaine (Start of the summer half of the year) and a midsummer, according to some versions of tales.
(c) In legends of saints and their family - the use of Lassair to denote the mother of saints in early Ireland - a meaning taken from "flame", in the recognition of the saint at an early age by imagery of fire - great light, radiance projecting from their forehead or columns of flames rising over the houses in which they stayed.
(d) The Túatha Dé Danann, according to myth, held three things of great importance "The Plough, the Sun and the Hazel" and it is from these things that three of their great kings are named: mac Cecht "Son of the plough", mac Gréine "son of the Sun" and mac Coill "Son of the Hazel. Their wives were the queenly personfications of Ireland: Banba, Eire and Fotla.
(e) Recalling the sun-god "horseman" above mentioned for Gallo/Roman sources, it could be also borne out in Irish lore where one of the names for In Dagda mor (The Great Good God) is Eochaid Ollathair which would translate something like "Horseman All-Father" and great kings like Eochaid Airem, "Horseman-Ploughman" or "horseman of the plough" which also seem to evoke "father God"/horseman imagery, but maybe I am pushing a tenuous link here?
(f) I did read somewhere, many years ago, source long forgotten of a possible link between the father of Fionn mac Cumhaill ("Cumal") and continental "Camulus" who himself was associated with both Mars and Jupiter by the Romans. However the C of Cumhal may have been prefixed to the name Umhal by transfer from the preceding word mac (ie. Mac Umhaill, phonetically mac Cumhaill) so I don't know etymologically or mythologically whether such an association could be made. But in the sense that both were "Champions", associated with the military, then perhaps that is the link through analogy?
Hopefully some of the above is of use, I know it isn't directly connected to "stars" as opposed to "sun", "sky" except perhaps in the case of Sirona if you find more info linking her to stars on your searches. I think the solar symbolism is a better category to look in for sky/sun associations.
best regards (and if you turn up anything in your searches, please let us know!)