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Celtic Symbols: Meaning & History

celtic cross, celtic jewelry, celtic knots, triquetra, triskel -

Celtic Symbols: Meaning & History


Introduction to Celtic Symbols

They can be found on many monuments and works from the pagan and Christian periods.

Celtic culture, especially from the 8th century A.D. onwards, is characterised by magnificent interlacing such as those in the Book of Kells, but when studying archaeological finds, one must face the facts, the interlacing is not only the work of the Celts.

Many runic stones and other Nordic Mythological works of art also feature splendid interlacing. And also Among the Slavs.

The Main Celtic Symbols

  • The Celtic Cross 
  • The Celtic Knot 
  • The Triskel


What are the Origins of Celtic Knots?

It would seem that none of these 3 cultures is at the origin of interlacing, neither Celtic, nor Nordic nor Slavic Mythology. And yet it was the Celts and the Nordics who made the interlacing famous.

Although not everyone agrees on the subject, everything seems to indicate that the origin is Roman. Indeed, many mosaics from the Roman period have a very high number of intertwining layers, and they are historically the first to be known.

Despite this Roman origin, it can be seen that from the beginning the culture of Nordic Mythology developed its own style after being influenced by the Roman example.

In Celtic culture, the appearance of interlacing occurs slightly later than in the German and Nordic cultures.
Celtic art inherited from the Bronze Age is originally presented as follows

But here too, the fantastic artistic fibre of the Celts meant that a specific style of interlacing developed very quickly to reach heights like the one represented in the book of Kells. 

To learn more about the Book of Kells, you can consult Wikipedia by following this link:  http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Kells

It is the symbol of the endless movement of evolution and involution. It is the cyclical principle that regenerates itself and in itself.

No single centre exists because the interlacing is based on the principle of infinity in constant expansion and contraction.

They are thus a metaphor of destiny without beginning or end, an energy developed by the Norns of destiny that is generated in the infinity of space and time.

A parallel can be drawn with the yarns of destiny woven by the Norns. The interlacing forms a unit of the cyclic movement that invites us to immerse ourselves in it, an immersion in the entanglement of the interlacing so deep that we thought that evil spirits were lost in it.

By uniting with this entanglement of intertwining, one becomes an integral part of this cyclical destiny and establishes an indestructible bond.

With this notion opens up another dimension of symbolism linked to interlacing, that of links.

The latter represent a very important value in European polytheistic traditions, because these links symbolize what unites the members of a clan among themselves, it is the links that connect the members of the same community.  


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