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Celtic Knot Symbols

No one is absolutely certain what Celtic knot symbols represent. However, you can glean general ideas about them, like broad topics about life and the universe. Read on to look at some of these Celtic knot symbols and their meanings.

Celtic Knot Symbols

About Celtic Knot Symbols

It is clear that ancient Celtic knot work definitely had spiritual meanings. Many knots take a single strand and loop it around and through itself, finishing with merging the two ends together. With this, there is a continuous line that can represent eternity, everlasting love, the circle of life, the infinity of the universe, or an eternal bond between people.

When a Celtic knot has two strands woven together or two knots intertwined, that can symbolize two lovers or the spiritual union between God and man. If there are three parts to the knot, that can represent earth, wind, and water; body, mind, and soul; or the Holy Trinity.

Some people believe that the interweaving of the knots was meant to ward off evil spirits. As the weave of the Celtic knot becomes more intricate, the protection is stronger. It relates to the adage that there is safety in numbers.

To better understand Celtic knot symbols, it is also helpful to look at some specific knots.

Shield Knot

This knot is also called the Four Corners. These four corners can stand for the four corners of the earth, the four seasons, four gods, or the four elements: earth, wind, fire, and water. A shield knot can be any knot with four distinct corners.

These knots have been used by many cultures for protection and to ward off evil spirits. They are used to summon the gods from the four corners of the earth. Sometimes a Celtic shield knot will have a square-shaped emblem within a circle with no beginning and no end.

Trinity Knot

This is also called the Triquetra and has three oblong circular shapes that interconnect. The three parts have multiple meanings. They can stand for the Holy Trinity of God -- the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Sometimes the circles are replaced with fish. Of course, this meaning was added after Christianity came to the Celts.

Other meanings are things that have three parts: the three parts of man which are mind, body, and soul; regions of the earth that are earth, sky, and water; and the triple goddess with the aspects of maiden, mother, and crone.

Serch Bythol

This Celtic knot symbol is composed of two triskeles, which look like three cornered knots. Each triskele is symbolic of one person and his or her mind, body, and spirit.

When the two triskeles are joined together, they form a circle that represents eternity. So the Serch Bythol is a symbol of two people coming together in mind, body, and spirit. Overall, it symbolizes everlasting love between these two people.

Sailor's Knot

This is also called the Celtic lover's knot. It was made by sailors at sea who were longing for their sweethearts. Sailors would weave two ropes together in an intricate pattern and join the loose ends together. As with all Celtic knots, this represented something unending.

Later on, this became the symbol of a perfect union between two people. It is sometimes called the eternity knot because of this. This symbol is used on wedding rings as the strands appear to be bound together for eternity.

Eternity Knot

Any Celtic knot that has a closed path can be called an eternity knot. Many think the inherent meaning is the eternal cycle of life. It can also represent the everlasting aspect of love.

This knot is sometimes referred to as the mystic knot because it can show life has no beginnings and no end. Many prefer to think that when we look at these knots, we are reminded of the timeless nature of our soul.