Druid dating

In this he probably draws on earlier writers; by the time of Caesar, Gaulish inscriptions had moved from the Greek script to the Latin script.

An 18th century illustration of a wicker man, the form of execution that Caesar alleged the druids used for human sacrifice.

Very little is currently known about the ancient druids because they left no written accounts about themselves, and the only evidence of them is a few descriptions left by Greek and Roman authors, and stories created by later medieval Irish writers.

Later Greco-Roman writers also described the druids, including Cicero, Following the invasion of Gaul by the Roman Empire, druidism was suppressed by the Roman government under the 1st-century emperors Tiberius and Claudius, and it disappeared from the written record by the 2nd century, although there were likely later survivals in the British Isles.

In the wake of the Celtic revival during the 18th and 19th centuries, fraternal and Neopagan groups were founded based upon the ideas about the ancient druids, a movement which is known as Neo-Druidism.

A military general who was intent on conquering Gaul and Britain, Caesar described the druids as being concerned with "divine worship, the due performance of sacrifices, private or public, and the interpretation of ritual questions." He claimed that they played an important part in Gaulish society, being one of the two respected classes along with the equites (a term meaning 'horsemen' which has been usually interpreted as referring to warriors) and that they performed the function of judges.

He claimed that they recognised the authority of a single leader, who would rule till their death, when a successor would be chosen by vote or through conflict.

He also remarked that they met annually at a sacred place in the region owned by the Carnute tribe in Gaul, while they viewed Britain as the centre of druidic study, and that they were not found amongst the German tribes to the east of the Rhine.

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Druid dating

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