All Things Celtic

celticknto2First things first, it is Celtic pronounced Celtic with a ‘ka’ sound.  You are talking about a group of people and not a basketball team by the same name.

The Celts were an ancient people that called the British Isles and for a time during the height of their expansion called the majority of mainland Europe home.  Now this means that the term Celtic is not just one for the people that lived in Scotland and Ireland but, for the purposes of this site we are going to focus on the Celts that inhabited Scotland and Ireland.  So assume that when we mention Celtic Games and Celtic Festivals that we are going to be focusing on those two sects of people and the popular usage of the word Celtic.

tartanicWhen you hear about Celtic music, it is easy to hear the strains of a bag pipe wailing in the background.  You can hear the pipes droning and visually you are taken to scenes from the movies Highlander and Braveheart.  Celtic music, whether you are listening to a jig or a reel, has a definite sound and feel.  Bagpipes, flutes, fiddles, drums, all these items can be used to make Celtic music.  The music of the Celtic people evolved taking in aspects of where they lived and also the fact that the nations that tried to rule over them attempted to control how these people could make music and even at times banned some of the instruments they could use.  Nowadays, through mainstream groups like the Cheiftains and up and coming bands like Cutthroat Shamrock and Tartanic, Celtic music is having new life breathed into its soul.

There are some very iconic images for the Celtic people.

  • Celtic Knots – Firstly, you have the various Celtic knots.  These knots have been used in Celtic society since the dawn of time, since pre-Christian times.
  • Celtic Cross – The Celtic people were sun-worshipers.  When the Christians came as missionaries to transform the Celtic society, they brought their own icons.  The Celtic cross that is so familiar is a Christian cross with the sun as a halo on the cross itself, thus combining the two traditions.
  • Irish Hounds – The Irish Hound is a very popular symbol in Celtic writing and art.  They are also hard to find, so if this becomes your design of choice be prepared for the hunt.

Highland Games, Scottish Festivals and Celtic Festivals
smoky_mountain_highland_games logoThe Celtic people (both the Irish and Scottish sides) like to show off their heritage.  They like to promote their ancestors, the crafts of the Celtic people and the games of skill that they played.  There are Highland Games in almost every state.  They bring in pipe-bands, athletes and people that are there just to get a glimpse at a different way of life or the way that some of their ancestors might have lived.

Highland Games Heavy Events:

  • Haggis Toss
  • Caber Toss
  • Stone Put
  • Scottish Hammer Throw
  • Weight Throw
  • Weight Over the Bar
  • Sheaf Toss
  • Maide Lesig

This is juts a brief outline of the idea of Celtic heritage and the reason why the people that are descended from the Celts celebrate and are passionate about their heritage and their ancestry.  I promise to flesh some of these notions out as we go along.