The traditional view is that Britain was inhabited by Celtic tribes before the Romans invaded and were then subsequently exiled to the Western fringes. This Study day will examine Britain’s historical connections with the Celtic World, particularly its art and culture. It will consider what it means to be a Celt both from a historical perspective and in the present day; why the identity of being Celtic has significance and; how our views on whether all those who call themselves Celts have changed over time.
Before the Romans, Britain was inhabited by various Iron Age tribes, many of whom had connections with parts of the Celtic World on the Continent. The influence of Rome preceded its two invasions by Julius Caesar and had an effect of how Iron Age society was structured and this process continued after the Conquest of AD43. But what does this mean and what would have happened if the Romans had stayed home? Luckily Celtic life continued for an extra 500 years in Ireland and in large parts of Scotland, so we have a good idea. Furthermore, what does it mean to be Celtic? Is it the language spoken, where you are born or live, a state of mind and independent spirit? Or is it just a convenient name tag to highlight different traditions? This course will examine Britain’s connections with the Celtic World, particularly its art and culture. It will consider what it means to be a Celt in the present day, why the identity of being Celtic has significance and how our views on whether all those who call themselves Celtic have changed over time.
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