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PostSubject: Celtic knots    Thu Aug 25, 2016 12:31 am

Celtic Knots






Celtic knots or Celtic interlace are ornamental patterns primarily used to decorate Bible manuscripts, monuments *notably Celtic crosses and cross slabs* and jewelry. Celtic knots are complete loops with no end or beginning. Interwoven figures of people and animals may have represented the interdependent nature of life-two or more knots laced together symbolize lovers, hunters and their prey, God and man, etc. Some knots were used as magical talismans for protection. Other relatively modern designs include linked hearts and other *love knots,* Christian crosses, harps, shamrocks, and other folk symbols, and so on.




The Celts who have been known to inhabit most of Europe North Africa and Persia in the 1st Millennia BC, had no written language but managed to express an enormous amount about how they saw their world through their art and craftwork. The Celts were Druids, nature worshipers, who were convinced that all things in Nature are connected and interdependent; the plants, the animals, the earth and its forces, and themselves. Their visual expression of this belief often featured stylized animals intertwined like vines. As Christianity spread throughout Britain, it absorbed much of the Celtic culture and style. Because religious artwork featuring animals was considered pagan by the early missionaries, Celtic interweavings gradually became simplified into the exquisite knotted-ribbon designs you see today, without animal heads or feet.

Many people wonder about the significance of Celtic patterns and geometric designs. They constitutes a vocabulary, of elements which when arranged creates the grammar, in their stories told without written words. A classic is the Wolfhounds known to symbolise loyalty, faithfulness, unconditional love courage, and strength. Celtic Knots were illustrations and visual reminders, of stories regarding their history.

From what remains today of Celtic culture, and from indirect accounts in ancient Greek and Roman chronicles, a picture has emerged, and there is a general agreement on many points.

It is believed that Celtic art expresses love of life, love of organic beauty, and a sensitivity to natural form. Avoidance of sterile symmetry and repetition, and instead encouragement of originality and variation in their arts and crafts. Predictability seemed very boring to the Celtic mind.  Women were on more or less equal footing as men, being accomplished warriors, merchants and rulers.  Individuality was highly valued, it is rare to find Celtic artifacts that look identical to one another.

Part of the reason that Celtic art draws you in is that is springs from a view of life that is the complete opposite of alienation. They felt intrigued, not alienated, and though human lives come to an end, they saw death as part of the process, and were enthusiastic, confident, and secure in their belief that they would be reborn again, endlessly. Their feeling of being a part of life, and belief in reincarnation was so strong, that their lack of fear of death became legendary, as even Julius Caesar had to admit.

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