The Decline of Contemporary Celtic Paganism in the Czech Republic: Factors in the Growth and Erosion of Czech Celtophilia

Authors

  • Jan Reichstäter Masaryk University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/pome.33534

Keywords:

Ancient Celts, Contemporary Celtic Paganism, Contemporary Paganism in the Czech Republic, religion in the Czech Republic

Abstract

In the ancient reports that mention the ethnic situation in the present day Czech Republic region, the Celtic tribe of the Boii appears as the first known inhabitants. This information, together with specific political circumstances in the post-war period, has given rise to a cultural trend of modern Czech Celtophilia. This phenomenon, meaning "love of things Celtic" and concerning usually Celtic cultures or peoples (either historical or modern), can be also considered as a basis for modern Celtic Paganism, which seeks to revive and adapt old Celtic religiosity for contemporary use. The following text will address the phenomenon of Celtophilia within the framework of Czech identity and history. The discussion will deal with two main issues: (1) the historical development of Czech Celtophilia, in its both non-religious and religious forms, and (2) the dynamics of its present-day decline. Though the reasons for Czech enthusiasm for Celtic history and identity, as well as skepticism about Czech Celticity, were always diverse and variable, the purpose here will be to arrive at a general explanation of these issues and their contributing factors. This brief study will mainly engage with the most evident aspects of the whole phenomenon.

Author Biography

Jan Reichstäter, Masaryk University

Jan Reichstäter is a PhD student at the Department for the Study of Religionsin Masaryk University (Brno, Czech Republic). He works and lectures in the fields of religions in the pre-Christian Europe, mainly in the religiosity of northern Indo-Europeans. This text is a revised contribution to the conference "Paganism and Politics: Neo-Pagan & Native Faith Movements in Central & Eastern Europe," 3-4 June 2016, Brno, Czech Republic.

References

Blažek, Václav. “Keltové—Germáni—Slované: Lingvistické sv?dectví o kontinuit? a diskontinuit? osídlení st?ední Evropy.” In ?eština—univerzália a specifika 2, edited by Zde?ka Hladká and Petr Karlík, 9–29. Brno: Masarykova Univerzita, 2000.

Bobadilla, Joseph L., Milan Macek Jr., Jason P. Fine and Phillip M. Farrell. “Cystic Fibrosis: A Worldwide Analysis of CFTR Mutations—Correlation with Incidence Data and Application to Screening.” Human Mutation 19, no. 6 (2002): 575–606. https://doi.org/10.1002/humu.10041.

Bouzek, Jan. Keltové našich zemí v evropském kontextu. Krom??íž: Triton, 2007.

Caesar, Commentarii de bello Gallico. In Caesar, Vále?né pam?ti: O válce gallské, o válce ob?anské, alexandrijské, africké a hispánské, edited by Ivan Bureš et al., 31–295. Prague: Svoboda, 1972.

Dietler, Michael. “Our Ancestors the Gauls: Archaeology, Ethnic Nationalism, and Manipulation of Celtic Identity in Modern Europe.” American Anthropologist 96, no. 3 (1994): 584–605. https://doi.org/10.1525/aa.1994.96.3.02a00090.

Diodoros Siculus, Bibliothéké historiké 5.27–32. In The Celtic Heroic Age: Literary Sources for Ancient Celtic Europe & Early Ireland & Wales, edited by John T. Koch, 12–15. Aberystwyth: Celtic Studies Publications, 2003.

Drda, Petr, and Alena Rybová. Keltové a ?echy. Prague: Academia, 1998.

Hutton, Ronald. “The Religion of the Celts.” In Introduction to World Religions, (2nd ed.), edited by Christopher Partridge, 117–19. Oxford: Lion Hudson, 2013.

Koch, John T. and Barry Cunliffe. Celtic from the West. Vol 1, Alternative Perspectives from Archaeology, Genetics, Language and Literature. Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2010.

——. Celtic from the West. Vol. 2, Rethinking the Bronze Age and the Arrival of Indo-European in Atlantic Europe. Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2013. Lucan, Pharsalia. In Lucaus, Farsálské pole, edited by Jana Nechutová, Praha: Svoboda, 1976.

Lucotte, Gérard. “The Major Y-Chromosome Haplogroup R1b-M269 in West-Europe, Subdivided by the Three SNPs S21/U106, S145/L21 and S28/U152, Shows a Clear Pattern of Geographic Differentiation.” Advances in Anthropology 5 (2015): 22–30. https://doi.org/10.4236/aa.2015.51003.

Macek, Milan, Milan Macek,Jr., Alice Krebsová and V?ra Vávrová. “Keltský p?vod v ?esku: Sv?dectví mutace p?sobící cystickou fibrózu.” Vesmír 79, no. 5 (2000): 285.

Rieckhoff, Sabine. “Böhmische Dörfer“: Zur Ethnizität der Oppida-Bewohner in Böhmen.” In Alpen, Kult und Eisenzeit: Festschrift für Amei Lang zum 65. Geburtstag, edited by Jennifer Bagley, 361–76. Rahden: Marie Leidorf, 2009.

Schwarz, Aljoscha A., Ronald P. Schweppe. and Wolfgang M. Pfau. Lé?ivá síla druid?. Prague: Alternativa, 1994.

Schwarz, Aljoscha A., Ronald P. Schweppe, and Wolfgang M. Pfau. Wyda—die Kraft der Druiden: Ein ganzheitlicher Weg zu Gesundheit und Spiritualität. Freiburg im Breisgau: Hermann Bauer, 1989.

Strabo, Geógrafiká. In Strabo, The Geography of Strabo I-VIII, edited by Horace L. Jones and John R. S. Sterrett, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1917–1932.

Sykes, Bryan. Saxons, Vikings and Celts: The Genetic Roots of Britain and Ireland. New York: Norton, 2007.

Šef?ík, Ond?ej. P?edslovanská toponymie ?eských zemí. Master’s thesis, Brno: Masaryk University, 1997.

Tacitus, Agricola (De vita et moribus Iulii Agricolae). In Tacitus Z d?jin císa?ského ?íma, edited by Antonín Mina?ík, Antonín Hartmann, and Václav Bahník, 291–328. Prague: Svoboda, 1976.

Tacitus, Germania (De origine, situ, moribus ac populis Germanorum). In Tacitus, Z d?jin císa?ského ?íma, edited by Antonín Mina?ík, Antonín Hartmann, and Václav Bahník, 329–64. Prague: Svoboda, 1976.

Vl?ek, Radomír. “Slovanství, panslavismus a rusofilství p?i formování moderního ?eského národa.” Slovanské historické studie 30, (2005): 59–109.

Zastera, Jan, Lutz Roewer, Sascha Willuweit, Patrik Sekerka, Lucie Benesova, and Marek Minarik. “Assembly of a large Y-STR haplotype database for the Czech population and investigation of its substructure.” Forensic Science International: Genetics 4, no. 3 (2010): 75–78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fsigen.2009.06.005.

Downloads

Published

2018-08-23

How to Cite

Reichstäter, J. (2018). The Decline of Contemporary Celtic Paganism in the Czech Republic: Factors in the Growth and Erosion of Czech Celtophilia. Pomegranate, 20(1), 71–91. https://doi.org/10.1558/pome.33534

Section

Special Section: Paganism and Politics