In Ancient Europe, the Gauls, AKA the Celts, Barbarians, Lost to the Romans. But Maybe They Were More Civilized?

When I was forced by my parents to take Latin in ninth grade, I perhaps would have been less bored and done better if I had been told that I was descended from the Gauls, aka the Celts, who were frequently referred to in the Roman literature we read in Latin, especially in relation to the Gallic wars with the Romans. About the only thing I remember from ninth grade Latin is “puella est pulchra” (the girl is beautiful) and “Estne in provincia puella(“is there a girl in the country?”), which may say more about my distracted hormones at that age than about my ability to learn Latin. Indeed, when the Romans referred to threats from barbarians, they were probably referring to my ancestors!

“In the debut episode of this BBC series, the program looks at how 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. For 800 years, a proud, vibrant, richly imaginative warrior people swept ruthlessly across Europe. The ancient Greeks called them “Keltoi” and honored them as one of the great barbarian races. Follow their fascinating story from their earliest roots 2,500 years ago through the flowering of their unique culture and their enduring heritage today, enhanced with stunning reconstructions of iron-age villages, dramatizations of major historical events and visits to modern Celtic lands. 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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