The images you'll see as you scroll down to the current text are all part of the story telling in my novel, Realms of Gold:Ritual to Romance.

Bianca Caldwell, pen name, Bianca Fiore, is a writer for an art magazine. In each of her monthly stories she describes an object used in ancient ritual.

National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology Decorated gold discs

The general belief is that the discs relate to a cult of the sun and that the cruciform shapes of the design are intended to represent its life-giving rays.

One interpretation of the gold discs is that they were placed as symbolic breasts on the chest of a king, creating an image that fused the leader with the life-giving deity…

A gold disc with almost prefect concentric circles within larger circles of the disc.

 Gold disc, perhaps a terminal from a collar or ear spool. 800-700 BC. National Museum of Ireland.  

Celtic Gorgets

This collar was found in a bog in Shannongrove, Co. Limerick, sometime before 1783. There are at least ten similar pieces from Ireland. We know that some of them come from the lower Shannon area. We do not know what they were used for, but they were probably ceremonial collars. On the inner side of the collar, under each of the circular terminals, is a hole. The collar probably rested on the chest and was held in place by a chain running between the two holes and passing round the back of the neck.

The most famous collar of the "gorget" type was found in Glenisheen, Co. Clare in 1932.  It dates to the 8th century B.C. and is a semi-circular shape with two elaborate disc shapes at either end.  It was found in a rock crevice in the Burren area of Co. Clare and it is remarkably well preserved, it is c.31 cm in maximum diameter.

Celtic (Ireland), 800-700 BC The Victoria & Albert Museum

There is some amazingly intricate repoussé work on this piece.  Repoussé was a technique used by craftworkers in Europe which was adopted at this time by the native craftworkers to good effect.  The designs themselves are native in origin being similar to the designs on earlier lunulae and round based pots.  Some archaeologists believe this gives evidence that there were many foreign influences and invasions at this time because of the non-native techniques that were adopted by the native craftworkers in Ireland.

The Gorteenreagh Collar was discovered in 1948 and is dated to c. 800 - 600 bc. along with two lock-rings, two bracelets, and a fibula or dress fastener.  The Gorteenreagh Collar is much simpler in design than the Glenisheen, although the terminals are of the same design, unfortunately as can be seen from the photo, it did not survive the ravages of time and is a little dented. (not bad though after 2600 years!)