By Kathryn Hinds
Ebook by means of Hinds, Kathryn
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Additional info for Ancient Celts (Barbarians!)
A statue of the goddess he had seen in his dream. . He congratulated the Massiliotes for being under the protection of the immortal gods, and he presented the goddess with a golden torque and made a treaty of perpetual friendship with the Massiliotes. The Celtic leader’s belief in signs from the gods and his respect for the divine will saved the day for Massilia. Other parts of the Greek world, however, did not get off so lightly. THE CITY OF APOLLO By 300 BCE many waves of Celtic immigrants had followed the Danube River eastward from the Celtic heartland and settled in the northern part of the Balkan Peninsula.
This island just off the coast was a place of refuge and worship and seems to have been a kind of headquarters for the druids, a powerful priesthood. The Roman historian Tacitus tells how Paulinus attacked the island: Flat-bottomed boats were built to take the infantry across the treacherous shallows. The cavalry used fords, some troopers swimming beside their mounts. The armed enemy crowded the opposite shore. Among them were women, robed in black, hair wild . . waving flaming firebrands. Nearby the Druid priests, with hands raised, called down terrible curses from heaven.
Irish and its close relation, Scottish Gaelic, are still in existence. In Ireland, Irish is taught in all schools, and all official documents and signs are printed in both Irish and English. Breton, the Celtic language of northwestern France, is holding on with about a quarter million speakers. More than 600,000 people speak Welsh, the direct descendant of the ancient Britons’ language, and the BBC has Welsh-language television and radio stations. There are singers who perform in most of the Celtic languages, and poets who write in them.