great Celtic oath calls the very elements to witness.
Celts held a
primal holistic concept
powerful manifestations of gods,
not to be trifled with.
This great Celtic oath is
a most solemn pledge to the
elements to destroy those who do not keep their word and repay their debts.
The state of the
land is always a reflection of the kingly rule.
Omens in the sky,
the soil no longer
growing crops, the
rains coming at the wrong times, unseasonable cold and hot waves,
all pointed to poor stewardship
on the part of the king who directed the activities of the people.
Or did these omens point
to bad advice ?
"Good is his reign. Since he assumed the kingship,
no cloud has veiled the sun for the
space of a day from the middle of spring to the middle of autumn. Not a
dewdrop has fallen from grass till midday."
The word druid (Irish
drui, Welsh derwydd) is derived from the
Sanskrit: veda - to see
or know, combined with the word for oak: Gaulish dervo, Irish
dour, Welsh derw.
The words for wood and wisdom are very
close: Irish fid and fios mean tree and knowledge; Welsh
gwydd and gwyddon mean tree and
This close connection suggests a druid is 'a knower of the tree' or
'tree-sage', give a closer feel of what the druid really was -
a seer of great
knowledge, whose closeness to the natural world put him or her in the
position as a Walker
of the Thinspace between the
subconscious of mankind and
the unseen collective consciousness of
The druids, sons and daughters of the Oak, were distinct by
reason of the gift of reading
The gathering place for Galatian druids was called
Drunemeton, literally "Oak Sanctuary".
Male and female druids
were gifted people who exhibited excellence in various arts (talents or skills) while
maintaining shamanic roles.
Druids were the repositories of
Druids, who searched for
deeper understanding in the
patterns revealed throughout Nature, used that wisdom/knowledge to note the
right time for spring
sowing, autumn harvest or
the prognosis of an
Some druids specialized in
Branches of Nature,
becoming seers or
battle strategists as
well as advisers to
A druid is a
person with natural wisdom whose advice is sought on matters of daily life;
one who perhaps also practices a
craft; one who married and had
a family; one who
brought people together for common celebrations.
In the druid we see
the earliest form of tribal leadership - which
was spiritual rather than
Distinctions between king and druid are blurred in Celtic
Although the king is the assumed leader, the druid rules
Rome banned the Druidic arts after sacking Anglesey in AD
The function of the seer or fáithi, to divine the
course of human affairs through
a close observation of human
nature, is still associated with people of Celtic extraction, many of whom
possess 'the second
4000 BC The ancient Celts are a branch of
the Indo-Europeans, an ethnico-linguistic group that includes Germanic, Slavic,
Greek and Indo-Iranian people.
From the the Pontic-Caspian Steppes, the
Proto-Indo-Europeans conquer most of Europe, Central Asia and South Asia thanks
to the advent of the Bronze Age in the North Caucasus.
2500 Proto-Celtic people enter Europe from the Balkans
equipped with horses and superior bronze weapons quickly conquering Western
Europe, from Iberia to the British Isles.
Classical Celtic culture emerges in central Europe around modern Austria,
Bavaria and Switzerland as found in Hallstatt, Upper Austria.
600 to 400 BC La Tène culture spreads from the Alps to
most of Western and Central Europe.
People in these areas speak a
similar language, share the same religion, have similar traditions and beliefs
and engage in the same arts and techniques.
Celts are more advanced
than the Romans in science, law and
Pre-Roman Celtic calendars are much more accurate than the
Each Galatian tribe was organized in four septs (clans), each
ruled by a tetrach (chief), assisted by a judge, a general and two deputy
Each sept sent 25 senators to a central shrine called Drunemeton.
Celtic society gave much more freedom and power to women than
the Greeks and Romans did.
Greco-Roman housewives were prohibited to do
business and mostly sequestrated in their home under the supervision of male
Celtic women could become powerful tribe leaders and go
BC Celts plunder Rome.
Oaks are of primordial importance in
Druids ritually cut mistletoe off oak trees.
Celts believed in recycling - automatic reincarnation of the Eternal
The Celts practised ritual human sacrifice to the gods, typically
near water (lake, river, spring) and/or in forest groves.
appear to be war prisoners or criminals.
Druids, being both judges and
priests, combining judicial executions with the honouring of the
Romans crucified political opponents and had prisoners killed or
eaten alive by wild beasts in arenas.
Celtic religious sacrifices were
less barbaric than Romans executions.
Many ancient Celtic tribes gave
their names to modern places.
Bohemia was named after the Boii,
and Belgium after the Belgae.
The ancient name of Switzerland was
Helvetia, from the Celtic Helvetii tribe.
In France, Paris is
named after the Parisi tribe, and Lyon is a corruption of Celtic name
Lugdunon, meaning the "hill fort of Lugh" (one of the most important Celtic
A Cisalpine branch of the Veneti
tribe gave their name to Venice and the Veneto region in Italy.
Italian cities of Belluno, Bergamo, Bologna, Brescia, Brianza, Genova and
Milano all have Celtic roots.
300 BC Celts invent
chainmail and the helmets later used by Roman legionaries.
swords and shields are at least as good as the Roman's.
of the Celtic weapons, chariots and artifacts was in many ways superior to
those of many Mediterranean cultures.
58 BC The
Celts are immensely rich and prosperous.
They have a built a road
network across the European continent.
The Celts active trade with the
Mediterranean world, exchanging notably their iron tools and weapons for wine
They import amber from the Baltic to resell to the Romans
Gauls are described as wearing shiny, gold-like armours and
Julius Caesar, an opportunist, makes his move.
Celtic gold mines are found in France alone.
The Romans have little
gold on the Apennine Peninsula so the conquest of Gaul will be a tremendous
boost to their Mediterranean power.
Julius Caesar, Patrician, decimates
the Celts slaughtering 10% and enslaving another 10% to be marched back to Rome
Jerome of Stridon
notes that the language of the Anatolian Galatians in his day is still very
similar to the language of the Treveri (from the region of Trier on the border
of Germany and Luxembourg).
Celtic languages progressively disappear
during the Middle Ages.
They only survive in Brittany, Corwall, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, and
for a time also in Galacia (north-western Spain).
Only a minority of
people still speak Celtic/Gaelic languages, and they are
confined to Wales, Brittany
and western Ireland.
2001 The Basque language
is considered to be a language isolate; a language which is not known to be
related to any other in the world.
The Basques are thought to be the
closest descendants of the Palaeolithic people who established the first
settlements in Britain more than 10,000 years ago.
Welsh and Irishmen
are genetic blood-brothers of the Basque people.
The evidence of a link
is in a study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy
of Sciences by James Wilson and Prof David Goldstein of University
College London, with colleagues at Oxford University and the
University of California, Davis.
findings provide the first direct evidence of a close relationship between the
people thought of as Celts and the Basques.
The team looked for
similarities between the Y chromosomes - only carried by men - of 88 "Celtic
fringe" individuals from Anglesey, North Wales, 146 from Ireland with Irish
Gaelic surnames, and 50 Basques, revealing "remarkable" similarities.
The Celts carry the early Y chromosome, said the study, which provides
the first clear evidence of a close relationship in the paternal heritage of
Basque and Celtic speaking populations.
"They were statistically
indistinguishable," said Prof Goldstein.
Study Shows Ties Long Veiled In Europe
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