Cerridwen creates the potion of knowledge which brews for a year and a day in her magick cauldron. A few drops of the potion and one gains all wisdom including the ability to see into the past and the future. Legend says that Cerridwen asked her servant, Gwion, to watch over the cauldron. Some of the potion splashed on his fingers which he licked without thinking. He immediately possessed all knowledge and ran away. Cerridwen pursued him as he shapeshifted into many forms, lastly becoming a small grain. Cerridwen changed into a hen, consumed the grain and became pregnant, giving birth to the great bard, Taliesin.
The origin of the witch stirring her cauldron of brew is most likely the image of Cerridwen.
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