Who were the Celts, what was their reputation and was it justified?

Essay by cheat_05High School, 11th gradeA-, June 2005

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The Celts; to some of us these words conjure up thoughts of the Irish people and maybe even your favourite football team, but to those of you reading this who wish to be better educated, the ancient Celts were a culture; a group if you wish , of people who inhabited a vast area of ancient Europe. They spread from as far east as Galatia (modern-day turkey), to the western point of the British Isles. The Celts originated in central Europe and were believed to have spread out from there. The Celts were not an empire, or even a civilisation, no the Celts were a way of life, a culture. To be a Celt meant living the Celtic way of life but could these people ever give themselves a nationality could they ever be Celtic? That was the question and to people at the time this would've been very easy to answer, for it was yes and the Celtic people knew that.

The Romans or Greeks never accepted the Celts as a formidable people or for that matter even to be a nation and they made sure that people would know about it. As a result of this the Romans especially wrote much on the subject of the Celts and as you would expect these writings were extremely biased. Unfortunately for those who have attempted study of the Celts of the ancient world it is these texts written by the 'observers' which are the main source of Celtic history. As I explained earlier the Celts were not a unified empire and therefore had no central language but instead had dialects which led to the lack of sources written by Celtic peoples. Regardless there have been several archaeological discoveries which together with the witness accounts of the Greeks and Romans helped...