The Parish Church of St George the Martyr, Waterlooville


Of all the images associated with religious devotion, none is more eminent than the Cross. Indeed, this icon is profoundly associated with Christianity. In addition to the cross depicting Christ’s suffering, there are many other types, devised and used not only for religious contemplation but also in art, heraldry, a fashion accessory and also political persuasion.

One such variation is called the Celtic Cross. Essentially this consists of two motifs - a cross with equal arms with a circle surrounding its centre. The derivation is uncertain, it being alleged to have been found at Hallstadt in an early Celtic civilisation. Other claims to its origin occur in other parts of the world, such as in Spain, the Middle East and India.

It is said that St Patrick took and adapted the design from Wales to Ireland. One myth is that it was a druidic design - the cross with a disc representing the sun, which he changed. Certainly the adapted version (with a long support arm) proliferates in Ireland, Pictland and Dalriada. The Christian Celts decorated it with their ethnic symbols and used it in many situations such as monuments, grave markers and landmarks. The Christian version (called by many names, including the Anglican Cross) is still very much in evidence in these islands.

Rod has decorated and designed his version of the Celtic Christian Cross. In it, the close examiner will find:

King Solomon’s Knot

The Triquetra

The Vesica Piscis

The Fish outline

The four-line plait

The Roman Rope Mosaic design

- and is displayed with reflection and investigation in mind.

Rod Dawson

Autumn Edition 2011

The Celtic Cross