Celtic Britain

The Podcast’s title Celtic Britain is a little misleading for the main portion of the podcast dealt with the Celts in general and how they differ or are similar to the Celtic British. One of the main problems that arises when researching the Celts is that almost all written sources come from outside the culture, such as Julius Caesar’s writings or Greek writings. The other main problem that comes from looking at the Celts is the actual term Celt. Who do we call Celts? Are Britains Celts? While the Greeks used the catch all term Celts for the northern barbarians, those that weren’t Greek, the Romans were more political. Caesar said that there were tribes in Gaul known as Celts. But no ancient sources name those in the Britain Celts; Caesar calls the inhabitants Brittanni. So the question comes down to: is it ok to call the Brittanni Celts. Those speaking in the podcast lay down two problems that comes from calling them British Celts. First the term may erase the differences between the Britains and the Celts of Europe, and of the various different tribes. Secondly, the term may force a link to the Celts of today that many believe share a direct line to the ancient Celts, but those in the podcast say that while the language is similar, they are not in fact directly descended. However, these tribes in Britain and Europe do share a similar language, as evident by commonalities in place names, and a very similar culture, so the term Celt may be both a bad and good term.

The Celtic culture is at times underestimated. The podcast describes the bronze work and their difficult wrought iron techniques. Their religion led by druids was vast and their rituals were large, such as burning the tops of hills. Their culture was one passed down orally. Most sources about the Celts were written about their fighting prowess, because that is the capacity in which the Celts interacted with the romans. While the Greeks and Romans referred to them as barbarians they admired them for their courage, and their unique style of fighting, each warrior was his own fighting machine, with his own style.

In all the Celts were a sophisticated society that different between different tribes and differed from the British Celts, but they shared a similar language and a similar culture.

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