A major exhibition narrating the vast and beautifully decorated culture of the Celts is currently showing at the British Museum, in association with National Museums Scotland. Beautifully crafted and presented in the new Salisbury wing of the museum, the exhibition seeks to identify the culture shared by many people of Welsh, Scottish and Irish origins.
More commonly known through the famous warrior Queen Boudicca who burnt Roman London to the ground in approximately 60AD, the term Celt refers to different tribes within northern Europe who shared a culture, rather than a particular group of people. The Celts left no written records, which means we largely rely on our interpretation of them from sources of those who encountered them, which is often a picture similar to Boudicca, of rouge-looking warriors.
The artefacts within the exhibition give a fuller picture, showing the styles and craftsmanship that went into Celtic armours, body ornaments and even cooking equipment. A particular key feature of the exhibition is the collection of Torcs, golden neck ornaments that differed stylistically between different groups of Celts.
The exhibition also shows the influence of the Celts globally, ranging from the patronage of the British Royal family of Celtic designs by Queen Victoria, and also the adoption of Celtic designs by communities living overseas, complete with three beautiful towering re-constructions of Celtic crosses, showing the mix between Christian ideologies and Celtic designs.
Celts is currently exhibiting at the British Museum until 31st of January 2016. Before visiting the exhibition, why not take a 2 hour highlights tour of the museum’s other collections with a private tour guide?