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Romans, though you’re guiltless, you’ll still expiate
your fathers’ sins, till you’ve restored the temples,
and the tumbling shrines of all the gods,
and their images, soiled with black smoke.
~Horace, Odes, III, 6; A. S. Kline trans.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rise of the Romano-Celts!

I spend a lot of time looking at cultus-related websites, and for some reason I've been running into Romano-Celtic sites quite a bit lately. Of course, interest in Romano-Celtic religion is nothing new; it has been studied for a long time. There is a lot of new activity, though, and I suppose that is part of the new look being taken recently at all of the pre-Christian religions of Eurasia. Just the other day, our friend Ursus posted on Romano-British deities. Here is more of the recent activity I've found:

I don't speak for any of these folks, but what I have found is that many Romano-Celtic pagans are in agreement with the "Basic Principles" statement (the one about religio, pietas and superstitio) and keep a household shrine. To my mind, this means that we are all part of the same community, the same cultural group.

Maybe someone will volunteer to write an article for the main site on Romano-Celtic religion.

Finally, I know that Celtic culture was not confined to the British Isles, but here are a couple of sites with that focus:


  1. Celtdom has been popular for the last 20 years or so in paganism. A lot of people in the West have Celtic blood and are just looking up their roots. Other people like myself might just get tired of looking to Greco-Roman philosophy for inspiration and may wish to explore how other cultures constructed ethics and cosmology.

    The other links were very interesting. Thanks for posting them.

    As far as writing something on Romano-Celtic syncretism, I am afraid my academic background on the Celts is not as good as my background on Rome. However, some other people on Templum Deorum might be able to contribute such a thing, I will ask them.

  2. I am indeed in agreement with the statement about religio, pietas and superstitio, and I do indeed keep a household shrine. It's not exactly a Lararium, but I do morning devotionals of the Lararium style nonetheless.

    As Ursus says, things Celtic have been popular in paganism for a while now. But for me, Celtic Eclectic Wicca, while charming, depended too much on romantic notions instead of real research.

    Recently it occurred to me that while I have Celtic ancestry, the myths and legends of my childhood are all Roman and Greek. I didn't dress up as Brigid for Halloween in 5th grade; I dressed up as Juno. These days I'd be more likely to dress up as Sulis Minerva. I'm very glad that the sycnretism has been done for me, long ago.

  3. I think the main problem with "Greco-Roman philosophy" is that it is Greco-Roman philosophy. What I mean is that Greeks and Romans were so different in outlook that putting them together is not an easy thing, and philosophy, as an abstract thing, just isn't that much fun. Now I don't mean to cut it down, on the contrary, but what people need and want in their daily lives is something more direct, something that we really can live. I think that this is what the Roman revival gives us, and I think that it compliments the interest in the Celtic world perfectly. Romans, after all, were nothing if not practical.

    It is nice to see your comment, tlryder. I bet what you have *is* a lararium, since as we know there was an awful lot of variation in what a lararium was. Of course, functionally a lararium is a shrine of your Lares, and maybe you mean that your shrine isn't that. In any event, welcome to the ever-widening circle of the Cultus Deorum. I've added your blog's feed to the main site, here: .