The British Iron Age 600BC-200AD 

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  • The British Iron Age 600BC-200AD
    • Iron age and a changing world
      • Any recordings about times likely either garbled due to emergence of literature, or from Roman invasion. Then passed down in sagas. If Roman though how truly representative is it going to be?
    • What is associated with the Iron Age?
      • Celts
      • Hoards
        • Broighter hoard
          • Ireland
          • Most probably an offering rather than a hoard
            • Located in area that during Iron Age would have flooded a lot
              • Salt marsh-River Roe into Loch Foyle.
                • Ideal site for tribute to water deity. Placed beyond reach of humans.
            • Tubular collar-continental influence as traditional Irish design is twisted.
            • Two twisted bar torcs-produced locally
            • Two necklaces-probably made in Egypt.
            • Model boat-offering for safe voyage as looks sea worthy.
              • 7.5inches by 3 inches
              • Benches, rows, paddles, paddle rudder, miniature spear, 3 forks, grappling tool and yardarm
                • Meticulous detail-support idea of votive offering?
            • Model cauldron-indicate largesse of the gods-not accurate representation of Iron Age cauldrons-gods have better cauldrons?
            • All gold aritficats-very valuable
          • All gold aritficats-very valuable
      • Water deposits
        • Harder to interpret
        • Ireland-lots of swords, scabbards, spears. Also horse gear.
          • Bog deposits and river deposits
            • Harder to interpret
            • Often on boundaries of presumed barons lands. (Based on assumptions about archaeological nature of Irish parishes)
      • Bog bodies
      • Druids
        • Druid means 'knowledge of the oak'
          • Often gained knowledge through trances (eating bull flesh) to induce 'bull dream'.
          • Strabo-brutal druidical sacrifice
            • Lindow man
              • Bog body
              • Water gods-sacrifice?
              • See Bog bodies mind map for more detail
              • Llyn du-Welsh for black site-Liminal boundary?
              • Similar sites known as Borth and Tregannon in Wales.
          • Celebrated natural forces-tended not to build ritual sites
            • Some druidical sites might be nothing more than Roman sites with La Tene objects.
              • Heathrow
          • Few burials-prefer cremations and scattering?
            • Exceptions include:Devon and Cornwall where inhumation continues and Yorkshire which is having chariot burials
      • Land deposits
        • Tend to be votive-models of chariots, animals figurines etc. Ceremonial 'spoons' and obscure bronze discs-unsure of purpose.
    • 'Celtic peoples'
      • Now seen as La Tene style rather than a 'people'
      • Southern Britain probably occupied Celtic people, but not Ireland or Northern Britain.
        • Continental influence still felt though
          • Arras culture of N.France influence Yorkshire Arras.
            • Wetwang
            • 17 have chariots (leaders?)
            • Presence of chainmail at Kirkburn and swords at Wetwang-presumed to be war chariots.
              • 17 have chariots (leaders?)
              • Could be funeral hearses though?
              • Sometimes high quality, other times made up of broken and old bits.
                • King's barrow, Arras
                  • Mound 8m diameter covering circular grave 3.5m in diameter and 45cm deep. Man's body, north-south orientation, above remains of two wheeled cart. Wheels placed above skull of horse. Metal remains of the cart survived.
                • Holme Pierrepoint
            • Female graves have bronze, La Tene decorated mirrors rather than swords.
            • Male often ceremonially pierced with javelins
            • Local practice can vary within 20-30 miles. Arras culture looks like a likely import
          • Art of Ireland
    • Druids and water
      • Places of worship
        • Groves
          • evidence mainly from classical Roman sources-Lucan.
          • Destruction of a grove in Anglesey is included in Tacitus and also Bouddica's troops sacrifcing in Cassius Dio.
        • Sacred enclosures
        • Shrines
          • Heathrow
          • Hayling island
            • Circular shrine dating to 1st century BC. Large quantities of votive offerings. Animal sacrifice may have occurred nearby.
          • Square double-ditched. Often underlie Roman temples
            • Intentionally built either t continue or subdue the native religion
          • Hill of Tara
            • Ireland
            • Iron age hill top fort (fort of kings)
              • Mound of Hostages (Neolithic passage tomb) nearby
            • Standing stone-Stone of Destiny
              • High kings crowned here-would be kings perform challenges, touch stone, if worthy stone screams and can be heard all over Ireland.
          • Feast and inauguration rights.
        • Hill figures
          • Cerne Abbas giant
            • Dorset
            • Turf outline infilled with chalk
            • Large naked man wielding a club with substantial erect penis
              • Fun fact-legend that his penis can increase fertility-some people sped the night on it.
            • Thought might show Roman influence or conversion
              • Evidence that once he had a cloak draped over left arm and stood over a head-Nemean lion skin?
                • Perhaps was originally Celtic god who was turned into Hercules when Romans came
                  • Cape and head were allowed to be eroded out so didn't care for them that much?
          • Uffington white horse
            • Oxfordhsire
            • Stylised hill figure of a 'horse'
            • 110m long made from deep trenches infilled with crushed chalk.
              • Deposits of silt in 'beak' allowing dating to late Bronze age/Iron Age
              • Thought it might represent celtic tribe lands-horse tribe?
              • Popularty of horse image on Trinovantes coins
                • Horse worship
                  • Deity?
            • Iron age hill fort nearby
    • Celtic year
      • Samain festival-New Year festival. Connected to Dagda (main god). Could be him at Cerne Abbas?
      • Imbolc-lactation of ewes-1st Feb
      • Beltain-start of warm season-May 1st
      • Lugnasad-festival of Lug-Aug 1st

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