Celtic Ireland

I don't know if any of you have had the misfortune of watching the totally abysmal BBC production, Blueprint.

In the programme they suggest that we are not really a Celtic country as the Irish never referred to themselves as Celtic.

Mon dieu!

The word "Celt" comes from the Greeks, who called the tribes to their north the "Keltoi", but there is no evidence that the Celts ever referred to themselves by that name. The Irish preferred the word Gael and it relates to the original Gaul in France.

I mean according to BBC if it walks like a duck, talks like a duck and looks like a duck it must be a rabbit.

The medieval "Book of Invasions" talks about Milesians and Fír Bolg arriving in Ireland. These have been identified with displaced Celts from Spain and Belgium. We also have DNA evidence which shows extreme similarities between Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Cornish and Breton people.

Then again, what's science to the BBC when there are Irish people to annoy?

In the 4th century AD the Roman Avienus called Ireland "Insula Sacra" or Holy Island and its inhabitants "gens hiernorum", a Latinisation of the Greek word for Ireland, Ierne.

This is a modification of the word Ériu, which was an original Celtic word for Ireland and a root of the later Irish word Eire.

You see linguistics offer a much more stable and correct form of tracing history.

In the 2nd century Ptolemy drew up a map of Ireland, published in Geographia, and in it he listed the Irish tribes.

The Ulaid tribe was found in my own part of the country and Usdia in the south. The Monaig tribe was on the East coast and this tribe were also found in Gaul.

No matter how insecure some people are at their lack of identity that does not give them the right to deny others theirs.

Ireland has a long history of Celtic/Gaelic influence

1. Celtic Laws

Brehon Law was the law of the Celts and lasted for many hundreds of years. It was mostly oral and was first brought together under St Patrick in "Senchas Már". At that time laws which contradicted church law were replaced. It was a civil law as any notion of a state sponsored criminal system was foreign in Ireland. It's here that we find Hunger Strike used as a tool to bring shame on the person who owed a debt or a wrong which needed corrected.

The Synod of Birr enacted “Cáin Adomnáin”-the law of the innocents-in 697. It was enacted to guarantee the safety and immunity of various types of non-combatant in warfare.

Irish society under the Brehon Laws was male-dominated but women had greater freedom, independence and rights to property than in other European societies of the time.

Brehon law shunned capital punishment and was unique; fines were the order of the day

2. Celtic Language

Irish is the 3rd oldest written language in Europe, behind Greek and Latin. This is the one area which there is irrefutable evidence of a Celtic Ireland.

When you look at Scots Gaelic today it must be remembered that it is merely a variation of Irish and this relates to the way in which Scotland was established.

Dál Riata was a Gaelic kingdom in the glens of Antrim, the people of Dál Riata were referred to as Scotti (Latin for those who resided in Ireland).Their most successful colony was that of the Dál Riata in western Scotland .In the ninth century they took control of Pictland, to the east, and founded the united kingdom of Scotland.

3. Celtic Church

The difference between the Celtic Church and the Roman Church came to a head at the Synod of Whitby in 664.

In relation to Private confessional many Catholics may be unaware of the fact that it was the Celtic Church in Ireland which first introduced this. At that time the Roman Church favoured public confessionals with sackcloth and ashes but the Celtic Church shunned this.

I’m sure that Blueprint may convince some flath-eathers that Ireland is a not a Celtic/Gaelic country, the rest of us will laugh at the length that revisionists will go to in order to insult.

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