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    Celtic Wedding and love symbols in jewelry.

    Although ancient, Celtic tradition is still preserved in Ireland. You'll notice this culture in the artwork and in jewelry.

    Celtic artwork was often based on nature using images of birds and animals and fish. The Celtic Knots, which are interlaced patterns with no beginning and no end, are derived from their belief in life being intertwined with all. Thus, Celtic designs remain increasingly popular in our modern world.

    Since the Claddagh's design consists of a heart as a symbol of love, a crown as a symbol of loyalty and the hands as a symbol of friendship, it stands for a traditional symbol of love, loyalty and friendship. A claddagh ring can be given as a friendship ring, an engagement ring, a wedding ring and purely as a symbol of love.

    The Celtic crosses, symbolize earth wind and fire and are often worn as jewelry.

    In addition to crosses, the Celts prided themselves on their geometric designs, featuring spirals, chevrons, scrolls and knot work. Many of the Celtic designs are popular today, thus are used in decor and in jewelry design including pendants, earrings, and brooches, and are very common as engagement and Wedding rings.

    Celtic Love Symbols

    Courtesy of
    celtic-art   logo
    © Original designs copyright Stephen Walker, All rights reserved.

    A modern addition to the various Celtic symbols is the use of the Claddagh, Luckenbooth, Hex signs, etc. These symbols are unquestionably non-Celtic. Please use these decorative symbols if they appeal to your sense of beauty but do not confuse them with real 'Celtic Art'.

    Claddagh symbol           Claddagh ring

    The Claddagh - an Irish symbol of love.

    Claddagh (pronounced CLAW - DA) refers to a tiny village of fishermen near Galway city and the Claddagh ring originated here. The Claddagh is a heart being held by a pair of hands with a crown above. A symbol of love and friendship. The two hands represent friendship, the crown - loyalty, the heart - love.
    The Claddagh ring was developed by Richard Joyce, native of Galway. While being transported to the plantations of the Moorish West Indies as a slave, he was captured by pirates in the Mediterranean and trained in his craft by a goldsmith who bought him. He was set free in 1689 and he returned to Galway to set up shop in the Claddagh.

    Another legend: the town designed a sigil to place on the sails of ships, and worn by the Sailors of Claddagh. When these sailors ran into other fishermen on their waters, they would look for a Claddagh sigil and if they did not find it, they would chase them away.

    A Dublin version of this Ring appeared about 100 years ago with two Hearts and two hands and No Crown. This is the Fenian Claddagh.

    Today, the ring is worn extensively in Ireland, either upon the right hand with the heart pointed outwards showing that the wearer is "free" or with the heart turned inwards to denote that he or she is "married". The best of place is on the left hand, with the heart, showing that the wearer is married happily.
    The original expression which accompanied the passage of the "Claddagh" was: "With these hands I give you my heart and I crown it with my love."

    The Luckenbooth- a Scottish symbol of love.

               Luckenbooth           Luckenbooth

    The Luckenbooth (two intertwined hearts with a crown) is a Scottish symbol of love, dating back to the 17th century and often given as a token of betrothal, affection and friendship. It is usually of engraved silver in the shape of a heart or two hearts entwined with a crown ususally topping the heart(s).

    The heart (love) and crown (loyalty) both appear on the claddagh ring too.

    Sometimes a couple pinned a Luckenbooth to their firstborn's blanket as a good luck charm. Luckenbooths are usually worn by women.

    The Welsh Lovespoon

    Lovespoon


    A lovespoon is a decorated wooden spoon.
    The custom of giving lovespoons carved by a young man and presented to his sweetheart as a token of his affection and/or betrothal originated in Wales during the 17th century.

    The earliest known lovespoon dates from 1667 and is part of a collection at the Museum of Welsh Life in St. Fagans near Cardiff. Today, the custom has expanded to also be a gift of friendship.

    It is sometimes thought that the lovespoon represented an early type of engagement ring, or perhaps that the presentation and subsequent acceptance of the carved spoon at least confirmed the beginning of a serious courtship.

    The spoon may be plain or intricately decorated with various symbols - birds, hearts, wheels, balls - each representing good luck, the blessing of children, wealth, health, etc.

    Even the most elaborate lovespoon is carved from one piece of wood, thus demonstrating the skill of the carver. Almost always it is the handle of the spoon which was decorated. Although in some examples the handle was enlarged to become a panel giving greater scope for decoration, with common forms being, piercing the panel, relief carving, fretwork, or a combination of all three.

    While there is much uncertainty about the exact history of the lovespoon legend, it is generally widely accepted that certain designs incorporate specific meanings.

    Lovespoon Symbols & Meanings

    The Welsh Lovespoon Anchor: Steadfastness, My love is safe with you, Home to stay.
    Ball in Cage: Love held safe, Years Together or Number of Children.
    Barley Sugar Twist Derived from the rope theme carved by sailors.
    Bell: Weddings, Anniversaries.
    Chain Links: Linking of Lives, No. of children , Years together.
    Comma Shapes: Soul Signs.
    Cross Faith, Marriage.
    Diamond: Wealth, Good Fortune.
    Dragon: Symbol of Wales, Protection.
    Flowers: Affection or Courtship, Friendship.
    Heart: My Heart is Yours, Love.
    Heart: Two We feel the same about each other.
    Heart Shaped Bowl: Full and Bountiful Life.
    Horseshoe Good Luck and Happiness.
    Key & Keyhole: Home & Security, My house is yours.
    Knot: Everlasting, together forever.
    Leaves: Love Grows.
    Ship: Smooth passage through life.
    Vine: Love Grows.
    Wheel: Willingness to work for a loved one.
    Double Spoons: The Couple Together Forever.
    Triple Spoons: Family.

    Celtic Crosses

    Celtic cross
    ar-farr Celtic cross           Celtic cross

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