Symbols played an important role in the Celtic daily life. The Celts used them in their rituals, religious and cultural practices amongst other things.
Today, it would be impossible for anyone to travel around Great Britain and not see the artworks left behind by the Celts featuring their symbols.
Celtic knots were a big part of the symbolism that went on to inspire the civilizations established on the island after the Celts. From Church walls to tombstones, various versions of Celtic knots could be seen in Christian artworks.
That said, not all Celtic knots are the same and different knots have different meanings. In this post, we will be examining the Celtic shield knot, its meaning and origin.
What Does a Celtic Shield Knot Look Like?
The Celtic shield knots have four corners and this is the reason why they might sometimes also be called ‘quaternary Celtic knots’ or ‘four-cornered Celtic knots’.
It might be placed within a circle or a square but the actual knot symbol always has four corners.
The Celtic Shield Knot Meaning Explained: What Does The Celtic Shield Knot Mean?
Although the Celtic variations of the shield knots carried unique features of their culture, it is important to note that the shield knots were actually universal symbols and they did not exclusively belong to the Celts.
They have been around since long before the Celtic civilization and could be observed in the artworks of many ancient civilizations spread across the world.
It is believed that some of those civilizations used the shield knot symbol to invoke gods.
In our case, we should take a look at what the shield knot meant specifically for the Celtic people and how they used the symbol.
The Celtic shield knot was mainly used as a symbol of protection, both physical and spiritual protection, that is.
The Celts drew and/or carried the symbol to protect themselves against physical harm from their enemies.
Being the spiritual people they were, the Celts also believed the symbol provided spiritual protection against evil spirits. That is why it was placed near the people who were sick.
The secondary meaning behind the Celtic shield knot symbol is related to the generic interpretation of Celtic knots.
Like many other Celtic knot variations, since the Celtic shield knot is a closed one and does not have any open ends, it can be said to represent unity as well eternity. Some sources say that it can also be considered a symbol for love according to some modern interpretations.
The shield knot is one of many interesting symbols used by the Celts. If you liked reading about it, you will probably want to check out our other articles on Celtic symbols here.
Celtic Shield Knot, Its Meaning and Symbolism
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