Druids: The Mystery of Celtic Priests


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Druids have existed far longer than hitherto assumed, since the 4th century BC. Their traces are found all over middle Europe: from the northern Balkans to Ireland. Their cultural achievements were equal in almost every way to those of the Romans and Greeks: They could read and write and spoke Greek and Latin - for centuries, they were the powerful elite of their culture. Only one single Druid is known by name to history: Diviciacos - an aristocrat of the Aedui and personal friend of Julius Caesar. Diviciacos was a politician, a judge and a diplomat, but he lived at a time when the Celtic lands of Gaul were conquered by the Romans. Greek and Roman contemporaries distrusted the actions of this forbear of the famous comic book druid Getafix: They imagined him in bloody rituals in somber woods. For a long time, scholars thought the tales of human sacrifices were Roman propaganda. Archaeologists were all the more surprised when actually finding a Celtic ritual site in the Swabian Jura that contained traces of human sacrifices. Today, the druids' spirituality still serves as an example for many people. For the past 300 years, there has been a Neo-Druidry.

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