The Iron Age and The Celts (CELTIC SOCIETY (The commoners were farmers who…
The Iron Age and The Celts
The commoners were farmers who produced food for the tribe and the lowest group in the Celtic Society were the labourers and the slaves who were captured in raids on other tribes.
Within the Aos Dána there were judges, druids (priests), filí (poets) and craftsmen.
Below the king were nobles, commoners and slaves and within the nobles there were the warriors and Aos Dána (highly respected people for their special skills). The warriors fought for their tribe and rented land to the farmers.
Ireland was divided into about 150 kingdoms (tuath) and each tuath had a king (rí). The king was elected from the royal family (derbhfine).
The Celts had important ceremonies throughout the year: Imbolc ( February 1st), Bealtaine (May 1st), Lughnasa (August 1st) and Samhain (October 31st).
:Most women in Celtic Society spent their time cooking, spinning, weaving cloth and bringing up children.
these were fortified lake dwellings. Timber piles were driven into the lake bed in a circle and earth, sods, stones and timber were thrown in to create an artificial island. A timber platform was built on top of this, with a timber or wattle fence around the platform. Archaeologists believed that richer families lived in these because they were so difficult to make.
these were built on a prominent site on a hill. They were similar in shape to ring forts but much larger. Archaeologists believe that they were used for religious ceremonies.
these were areas enclosed by one or more earthen banks or ditches and were round in shape. These were built by digging a ditch and using earth and stone to form a circular bank (wall). A timber or wattle fence was built onto the bank and inside the ring one or two houses were built containing timber frames, wattle and daub walls, a thatched roof and a hearth in the centre of the room. Smaller buildings in the ring fort were used for animal shelter and storage. Souterrains were also built underground and were used for storing food, hiding places or escape passages.
these were built on headlands or cliffs. They were surrounded by stone walls on three sides. Around the stone walls there were large blocks of stone to deter attackers. Archaeologists believe that these were used for religious ceremonies.
Cattle were killed in the autumn and their meat was salted so that it could be eaten in winter and cattle also provided milk, butter and cheese.
Wheat, oats and barely were grown and barely was used to make ale which was drunken at feasts while wheat and barely was used to make bread and porridge.
The grain was grounded in a rotary quern which replaced the saddle stone.
Meat was cooked on spits and in fulachta fiadhs and the bread was cooked in the stone oven.
Feasts were also held to celebrate victory in battle and the bravest warrior was entitled to the best part of the meat which was called the hero's portion.
TOOLS, ART & OGHAM
Iron gradually replaced bronze but bronze was still used for ornaments and bracelets.
Iron was smelted in furnaces and poured into moulds to make weapons which were used for battles and farming.
A new style of art developed called La Tene after a town in Switzerland.The celts used spirals, curved lines and florals.
The celts still used cist graves and placed grave goods with them because they believed in the after life.They built a mount over these graves.
Later the celts erect ogham which was the first form of writing which included a series of notches on the side of a tall stone.