The ancient Celts

Los antiguos celtas. Un poquito de historia.

Around 600 BC, small bands of warriors and traders from mainland Europe began to settle in part of the British Isles.

Many of them belong to a people called Celts. Those people already living in the British Isles slowly took on the Celtic way of life. They began to speak Celtic languages, too.

The Celts gradually brought their way of live to many parts of Europe. The three main groups in the Northwest of Europe were the Gauls of France, the Gaels of Ireland and the Britons of Great Britain.

The ancient Celts were famous for being show-offs.

Celtic warriors sometimes wore their hair in spikes, tattooed their skin and wore heavy gold jewellery. Unlike most men in Europe at that time, they wore trousers beneath a short tunic. Women wore long dresses of wool or linen and used mirrors of polish bronze.

The Celts made beautiful fold bracelets, rings and brooches.

The safest place to be when war broke out was on the top of a hill or a on a headland by the cost.

These places could easily be defended from attack with ditches and high wooden fences. Ancient Celts often used hill forts. The Celts were great fighters and cattle raiders. They used chariots and fought with long swords.

The Celts were first-rate metal.

They knew all about iron. In fact iron was such a hard, useful metal that people who had not seen it before thought it must be magic. Some people still nail iron horseshoes onto doors for good luck.

Many British Celts lived in villages, in large round houses.

The walls were made of timber and clay, or stone. Inside each house was a fire. The smoke rose though a hole in the thatched roof. The Celts were farmers and blacksmiths and enjoyed hunting too. Their priests and lawmakers were called druids.

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