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The Celts

Where to Watch The Celts

A Dead Song?
This program examines the emergence, history, meaning and threats to the Celtic identity. Today the struggle to define an identity continues.

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Legend and Reality
From the 8th century onwards the Celts were hammered by invasions by the Vikings and then the Normans. Following the Reformation in the 16th century, Celtic communities were marginalized in the push for political and religious unity in England and France.

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From Camelot to Christ
The slow collapse of the Roman empire saw the arrival of new cultures which threatened the Celts. The program claims that the British king, Vortigern, invited the Anglo Saxons into Britain to help fight the Picts but that they betrayed his trust.

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The Sacred Groves
This program looks at the pagan religion, Druidism, which underpinned early Celtic society and is still practiced today.

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Heroes in Defeat
The heyday of the Celts was the La Tene era. It was tribal, and women were often the leaders: warriors, bards, druids, artists and craftsmen.

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In the Beginning
The Celts were the first European people north of the Alps to rise from anonymity. This program looks at who the Celts were, where they came from and what made their culture so distinctive.

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The Celts is an in-depth historical documentary originally aired on Britain's Channel 4 in 1987. The series, produced by Frank Delaney and directed by David Richardson, aimed to present an all-encompassing analysis of the ancient European civilization known as the Celts. This broad look into the world of the Celts is presented in six episodes, each diving deeply into a different aspect of Celtic culture, history, and mythology.

The series commences with an exploration of the general cultural, linguistic, and artistic commonalities that would define the Celts, and from there ventures on to tackle the complex, often mythologized narratives that have grown up around this ancient people, offering a well-researched, fact-based understanding of who they really were.

Employing archaeological investigations, historical accounts, expert interviews, and dramatized re-enactments, the show paints a vivid portrait of a culture that is all too often shrouded in mystery and misconceptions. The series benefits greatly from the evocative and atmospheric original score, composed by multi-instrumentalist Enya, that accompanies the visuals, immersing viewers in the world of the Celts.

The first episode, titled "The Man with the Golden Shoes," provides a broad overview of Celtic culture, charting a timeline from their earliest appearances in Europe as traders through their dispersion across the continent. It dispels many prevalent misconceptions held about the seeming savagery of the tribe, emphasizing their sophisticated artistry and engineering abilities, including the formidable hill-forts they erected, besides their well-documented warrior tradition.

Subsequent episodes deal with various aspects of Celtic society and heritage, including mythology, rituals, and the war-based and tribal structure of their societies. One episode divulges about the Celtic gods and the importance of spiritual connectivity and supernatural beliefs to Celtic society. The pervasiveness of the Druid theology and their importance to the Celtic way of life is also explored.

Another installment places particular emphasis on the tumultuous encounters between the Celts and the Romans. The show delivers a comprehensive historical account of the breakdown of Celt-Roman relations, highlighting key battles, the Celtic approach to warfare, and the eventual Roman subjugation of Celtic lands.

The Celts is not merely a study of a civilization that has been; it delves into how the Celtic influence permeates the present day. By exploring Celtic linguistic remnants and detailing traces of Celtic law, the series highlights the enduring impact of this ancient society on modern-day European civilizations, particularly in British and Irish society. It reveals how modern festivals are rooted in ancient Celtic traditions and how laws and societal structures can be traced back to Celtic principles.

The series has been highly praised for its thorough research and attention to detail. The producers made a substantial effort to consult with leading Celtic historians, archaeologists, and anthropologists to present the most accurate portrayal of the Celts. The careful and thoughtful composition of each episode is designed to engage and inform the audience, making the complicated history and culture of the Celts more accessible to a broader public. The vivid re-enactments, the atmospheric music, and the stunningly high-quality historical exhibits and locations all work together to provide an immersive viewing experience.

The Celts expertly confronts and explores the multilayered, complex history of this ancient European civilization. It endeavors not only to educate but to challenge deeply ingrained misconceptions about this era and its people. By doing so, the series reveals the vast untapped richness of the Celtic world, something that is often marginalized in the broader narrative of European history. This series is an ideal choice for history enthusiasts interested in deepening their understanding of the past and the roots of contemporary culture.

In conclusion, The Celts, first aired on Channel 4 in 1987, is a rich, comprehensive exploration of the Celtic civilization woven with reverence to the past and a deep commitment to revealing the true essence of the Celts. The series, threaded with beautiful cinematography and music, makes for a viewing experience that is both educational and immersive. The Celts continues to remain a standard-bearer for historical documentaries, setting the bar for meticulous research and encyclopedic, unbiased representation.

The Celts is a series categorized as a canceled. Spanning 1 seasons with a total of 7 episodes, the show debuted on 1987. The series has earned a mostly positive reviews from both critics and viewers. The IMDb score stands at 8.0.

How to Watch The Celts

How can I watch The Celts online? The Celts is available on Channel 4 with seasons and full episodes. You can also watch The Celts on demand at Amazon Prime, Tubi TV, Amazon online.

Channel 4
Frank Delaney, Proinsias Mac Cana, Gwyn A. Williams
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