Wall Hanging Celtic Cross
Intricate Wall Hanging Christian Cross
Our wall hanging Celtic Cross is a stunning homage to the earliest practitioners
of Christianity in Europe. The elaborate Celtic knots are embossed over
a reddish tumbled stone facade. The wonderful aged look of this wall
hanging Celtic Cross makes it a stunning presentation piece that can be
proudly displayed in your home or office. Just like the original
Celtic crosses that were carved from large slabs of rock, this wonderful
reproduction is sure to draw the attention of passers by. Crafted from
bonded stone, our wall hanging Celtic Cross weighs
approximately 3 lbs and measures 12" high.
History Of The Celtic Cross
The Celtic Cross has long been the most recognized symbol of Celtic
Christianity, representing in its many stone faces a long tradition of
Celtic art and design, as well as the change from an ancient Pagan
tradition to an era of Christian conversion and practices. The Celtic
Cross is essentially a traditional Christian cross with a circle
overlying the point where the lines meet.
The Celtic Cross had it's evolution in the British Isles, with it's earliest form dating to approximately the ninth century and appearing mostly in Ireland. This early version is called a recumbent cross-slab, and they lied flat rather than standing upright. Eventually these Celtic Crosses made their way into an upright position (now called erect cross-slabs), and acquired a slightly rounded top. Both versions were often decorated with key patterns, interlaced knot work, and spirals. Tenth-century Celtic crosses were sometimes capped with a pitched roof. Celtic crosses were often decorated with interlaced knot work, spirals, key patterns, animal figures, foliage designs, and Biblical stories. Some crosses were memorials, inscribed with names of individuals.
The Celtic Cross then underwent another change. Extraneous rock was carved away from the head of the slab, leaving the rock with the outlined shape of a tall cross, usually on a wider base. Because the cross form was in effect "freed" from the rock now, these types of Celtic crosses were commonly called erect free-standing crosses. From these, the arms of the cross eventually became extended beyond the ring of the cross, and the inner quadrants between the rings and the arms were cut away or recessed from the rest of the cross design. The free-standing Celtic crosses were elaborately made, and often composed of several pieces of stone. A large cross could have been made of up to four pieces of stone (the base, the shaft, the head, and the upper cross arm), held together by mortise and tenon joints carved into the stone. This type of Celtic cross is most commonly seen in the form of gravestones in Irish churchyards or as war memorials all over Britain.
Some suggest that parts of the Celtic cross are similar to the Chi-Rho emblem, which may have arguably been the first Christian cross. The Roman Emperor Constantine (272-337), the first emperor to legalize the practice of Christianity, took the Greek letters “Chi” and “Rho,” which are the first two Greek letters in the word “Christ,” for his battle standard after having a dream before the Battle of the Milivian Bridge in 312, telling him that if he used the symbol, his armies would win. Although there are different versions in existence about Constantine’s dreams on the subject, Constantine and his army did win this critical battle. Despite this, his general acceptance of Christianity, and his involvement in the First Council of Nicaea which sought to resolve the schisms in doctrine in the early Church, Constantine was not baptized until he was on his deathbed. The symbols that came to Constantine in his dreams may have led to the early architecture of the Celtic Cross.
There are legends about St. Patrick and the Celtic cross. One has it that he created the Celtic cross himself by drawing a circle around the pagan symbol of the cross to demonstrate how God’s love would last for an eternity, or the reverse, that he drew a cross inside of a pagan circle symbol. Regardless of the veracity of these stories, the Celtic cross survived the introduction of Christianity, a testament to St. Patrick’s ability to assimilate pagan beliefs into Christian theology.
But no one is certain about where the distinctive circle of the Celtic cross came from or what it means. Among some ancient peoples, a circle was used to represent the moon, and a circle with a cross symbolized the sun. Thus, the circle in the Celtic cross could have been a pagan moon or sun that was appropriated by early Christians to help convert the Celtic population.