> Date: Sat, 14 Jun 1997 15:22:06 -0400
> From: Susan Harris <[log in to unmask]>
> << some people even argue that the Picts and Irish never
> were Celtic, but always were a separate ethnicity >>
> What do you think about this?
I personally think that in case of the Irish this is definitly wrong,
given a definition of "Celtic" that takes as the determining element
a certain basic similarity in the construction principle of society,
beliefs, art, material culture, language and other central factors of
what is called "culture". So to say, if we accept a common "Celtic
culture" as having been existant in Europe, including a territory
that is larger than simply the one inhabited by the actual "Keltoi"
mentioned by Herodotus in the 6th century BC, if we accept a "Celtic
culture" of which not only those southern French 6th century BC
people, but also the "Celts" that sacked Rome and Delphi, that moved
into Asia Minor, the ones that Alexander met somewhere at the Danube,
and those that were conquered by Caesar in Gaul were part, then we
have also accept that the Irish were part of that culture.
Or, less winded, yes, the Irish were Celts (and probably, at least in
The matter becomes more complicated in case of the Picts. I think
that the Picts were a culture that was heavily influenced by the
Celts, even as sofar as that they spoke a Celtic language, but which
also was very heavily influenced by whichever culture that existed in
Scotland before the coming of the first Celts. So to say, I think
that the Pictish culture is a 50:50 micture between the local
preceltic and the Celtic culture, whereas the Irish, for instance, is
a mixture of 9 parts Celtic culture and 1 part of local influence.
RAY (Raimund Karl,University of Vienna,Dep.of Prehistory)
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