Cover image for The Celts : a history
The Celts : a history
Ellis, Peter Berresford.
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
Ancient world of the Celts
Revised paperback edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Carroll & Graf, [2004]

Physical Description:
xx, 235 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, map ; 20 cm
General Note:
"First published in the UK as The Ancient world of the Celts, by Constable... 1998"-- T.P. verso.
Origins of the Celts -- Illiterate society? -- Celtic kings and chieftains -- Druids -- Celtic warriors -- Celtic women -- Celtic farmers -- Celtic physicians -- Celtic cosmology -- Celtic road builders -- Celtic artists and craftsmen -- Celtic architecture -- Celtic religion -- Celtic myth and legend -- Early Celtic history.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
D70 .E44 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



By the third century B.C., at the height of their greatest expansion, the Celts had spread from their Rhineland home as far west as Ireland and east to Turkey's central plain, as far north as Belgium and south to Cadiz in Spain. They had crossed the Alps and defeated the armies of the Etruscan empire and had occupied Rome and invaded the Greek peninsula. Formidable warriors armed with iron weapons, they would find their way to Egypt and into Queen Cleopatra's elite bodyguard. Tracking the progress of the Celts through the ancient world, this compelling history celebrates more than their warfare, for the Celts also developed agricultural techniques that even the Romans adopted. They cut the first roads through impenetrable European forests, displayed exuberant genius in their metalwork, monumental stone carvings, glassware, and jewelry, exerted influence on Greek philosophers and Roman surgeons, and made Irish the third literary language of Europe, after Latin and Greek. Bringing new material from anthropology and archaeology to this engaging illustrated survey, Ellis explores the remarkable achievements of a people who have survived three millennia, their heritors the Irish, Manx, Scots, Welsh, Cornish, and Bretons who speak a Celtic tongue to this day.

Author Notes

Peter Berresford Ellis was born in Coventry, Warwickshire, England on March 10, 1943. Even though he received a BA and an MA in Celtic Studies, he decided to become a journalist and worked at numerous weekly newspapers throughout England and Ireland. In 1968, he published is first book, Wales: A Nation Again, about the Welsh struggle for political independence. He became a full-time writer in 1975 and has published over 90 books under his own name and the pseudonyms Peter Tremayne and Peter MacAlan. One of his best known works under his real name is The Cornish Language and its Literature, which is considered the definitive history of the language. In 1988, he received an Irish Post Award in recognition of his services to Irish historical studies. Under the pseudonym Peter Tremayne, he writes the Sister Fidelma Mystery series. He received the French Prix Historia for the best historical mystery novel of 2010 for Le Concile des Maudits (The Council of the Cursed).

(Bowker Author Biography)