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v1.03 preface
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The Celtic Art Coracle Volume 1 Issue 3 Preface

the Celtic Art Coracle Magazine V1.03 Cover design
Cover Artwork
by Annie Wildwood, who also helped with the layout and printing. Annie also contributed an article to this issue, Celtic Art - a Living Tradition  in which she reflects on the nature of the primordial tradition as expressed in earth-centred cultures such as that of many early, migrational peoples such as the Celts, and proposes that Celtic art may be considered as an expression of that wholistic view of the world. 

In the previous issue of the Coracle, in the article  America BC Revisited,  I wrote about Professor Barry Fell's theory of "Celts" in the New World, supported by instances of Ogham script seemingly found all over North America. About the same time that the Coracle came out, the Vancouver Sun ran a feature on ogham (Moira Farrow wrote about the work of John Corner in her feature,  "The Ogham Clue", in  the Vancouver Sun March 18, 1983), so I could not resist returnnig to the subject in this issue, B.C. Celts in BC? Aidan Meehan.   

In 1983, I was intrigued by the mystery posed by such puzzling reports, and they seem to dovetail with other seeming correspondences between Old European and Old American arts and cultures. The question whether such correspondences are coincidence, or evidence of diffusion, or even of some collective pool of unconsciousness, was unresloved in my mind. As time goes by, I realise increasingly how ill equipped I am to resolve such a thorny issue, and I find that as my scepticism increases,  I find myself tending towards concidence as the most likely explanation. 

In retrospect, I began to wonder how anyone could ever verify such a report. How can we tell if such stones are genuine, and not a hoax? It must be impossible to say for certain, either way, and the argument against similar claims for ogham stones in North America,  that they could easily have been caused by scratches from a plough,  or  by natural means - must apply equally to the ones reported here.  Scratches in rocks like this must be impossible to date. Ogham inscriptions occurs within a narrow time scale, long after the Bronze age, and in a very limited geographical range. There is no evidence that there was the kind of sustained contact such as would have been required to establish Ogham as a common language of trade throughout North America. 

The highlight of this issue is Gabriole Sinclair's Zoomorphic Art: the Development of Intertwining Zoomorphic Art from Mesopotamia to the Golden Age of Irish Art, which stands as a useful introduction to the background and development of animal pattenrs in Celtic art. 

Aidan Meehan, Vancouver 2001.

content: copyright The Coracle Press 1983 

The Celtic Art Coracle Vol 1
Contents Coracle Press 1983
ISSN 0828-8321 
All Rights Reserved

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