Celtic knots are still as popular as ever. There is something about that never ending line that continues to allure and fascinate people. The Celtic knot features heavily in Celtic jewelry and indeed many pieces of Celtic art. Celtic Knot patterns decorate the pages of the Book of Kells and Book of Durrow - two of the worlds greatest illuminated manuscripts.
The exact meaning of the Celtic Knot is unknown as there was no written history from that era. Interweaving patterns can be found on Roman artifacts however it is the Celts that are credited with the intricate designs that we know today. It is thought that Celtic patterns were used solely for decorative purposes but many interpretations have been associated with them since, including: endless love, infinite cycles and infinity.
There are many variations of Celtic knots, such as the Trinity knot which has a simple three cornered design. Different eras associated the design with different meanings. Christians believe it stands for The Father, Son and Holy Spirit where pagans believed that it represents: mother, chrone and maiden. Mind, body and spirit are also associated with the iconic symbol. No matter what the belief the pattern has long been associated with spirituality.
The Celtic cross also incorporates Celtic knots within the four beams and surrounding circle. The Celtic cross was used by Christians and Pagans alike. Pagans believe that it represents the four elements of nature. This was later adopted by Christians who used it as a symbol of the crucifix on which Christ died and the circle is for the eternal love he has. The Celtic cross had become very popular across the globe because of its complicated and exquisite design.
The Lovers Knot consists of entwining patterns with at least one of the patterns being heart shaped. The interweaving strands represent the love of two individuals that are inseparable. There are many beautiful variations of the love knot and it is often used in jewelry because of it's symbolic value.
Shied Knots got their name as they were frequently featured as a symbol of protection on shields. They are usually identified by having four sharp corners within the design.
Animals and nature are also very prominent within Celtic art and are often entwined with Celtic knots. Commonly depicted animals in Celtic art include: bird, stag, dog, boar and serpent.