The symbols and history of Ireland have been around for thousands of years. Celtic designs are rich in history and folklore. The designs you see on Claire’s Christening gowns have their roots in the Book of Kells. Knot work, animals and nature were used to bring mystery and art to the lives of the Celts so that Irish Culture would never be forgotten.
The Celts did not record the meanings behind the designs they recreated but scholarly speculation is that the symbols represented basic tenants of life, mankind and spirituality. The continual looping of the designs suggests themes of eternity and interconnectedness. Interwoven figures of people and animals may have represented the interdependent nature of life. Two or more knots laced together symbolized lovers, God and man, and so on.
Square Knotted Cross
The Celtic knot symbol, is also referred to as the endless knot. The spiritual meaning of this symbol eludes to beginnings and endings. In viewing these beautiful knots, we cannot see a beginning or and end, and therefore we are reminded of the timeless nature of our spirit. Christianity has embraced much of the ancient Celtic symbolism and had adapted many Celtic Knots into high crosses and illuminated manuscripts. Square knots are shield knots, symbols of protection.
The simplest of Celtic Knots symbolizing a triune God. The Celts were very familiar with the idea of the trinity, everything came in threes; the three stages of womanhood: maid, mother, crone, and the three elements: earth, fire, water and Christianity embraced this knot to symbolize God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. It is associated with eternity and eternal love.
The Celtic cross is a Latin straight cross with a circle around the centre of the cross. The circle represents no beginning and no end, eternal life and infinite love, specifically, the endlessness of God’s love. The centre ring may also represent a halo emanating from Christ, the sun or the cycle of life, death and rebirth. The Celtic Cross has become a large representation of Irish culture and history. It is worn by many as a symbol of their culture and their faith.
Legend suggests that St. Patrick plucked a shamrock from Irish soil to demonstrate the meaning of the Holy Trinity, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, not unlike the trinity knot. The shamrock remains Ireland’s most famous symbol. The shamrock is also commonly associated with the symbol of luck. In studying Celtic history, scholars have discovered that the shamrock was a charm to ward away evil. The beauty of an Irish Christening gown is the history and tradition that lies behind it. Start your own tradition with an heirloom that can be passed down for many years to come.