Celtic Studies


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Celtic Studies

 

a group of sciences dealing with the culture, history, and language of the Celts. The founder of Celtic studies is considered to be the Welsh scholar E. Llwyd, whose Archaeologia Britannica appeared in 1707. Among 19th-century investigators of Celtic antiquities, particularly the La Tène culture, were the French historians J. Déchelette and C. Jullian; prominent 20th-century researchers include the Frenchmen H. Hubert and A. Grenier and the Czech J. Filip.

In 1853 the German scholar J. C. Zeuss published The Celtic Grammar. The comparative-historical approach to the study of the Celtic languages is best represented in the work of the Danish scholar H. Pedersen (1909–13) and the German R. Thurneysen (1909). Old Irish texts were published and studied by Thurneysen and by the Irish scholars O. Bergin and D. Binchy. A revised edition of Thurneysen’s grammar of Old Irish appeared in 1946. Material on contemporary Irish dialects is being collected, and synthesizing works are being published by such scholars as H. Wagner in Switzerland. The languages of the Brythonic branch have been thoroughly studied by the English scholar K. Jackson in his work on historical phonetics and morphology and by the French scholar L. Floriot in his dictionary and grammar of Old Breton.

Comprehensive dictionaries of the Irish language to the 19th century and of modern Welsh have also been published. The comprehensive work on Gaulish by the French scholar G. Dottin (1920) was followed by the studies of J. Vendryès in France, J. Whatmough in the USA, and E. Evans in Great Britain. In Celtic philology linguistic research is inseparable from the study of literature, history, and religion, as shown in the work of K. Jackson, the Irish scholars T. F. O’Rahilly and J. Carney, and the Norwegian researcher M.-L. Sjoestedt.

REFERENCES

Filip, J. Kel’tskaia tsivilizatsiia i ee nasledie. Prague, 1961.
Pokorny, J. Keltologie. Bern, 1953.
Rees, A., and B. Rees. Celtic Heritage. London, 1961.
Sjoestedt, M.-L. Gods and Heroes of the Celts. London, 1949.
Thurneysen, R. Keltischen Sprachen: Geschichte der indo-germanischen Sprachwissenschaft, vol. 1. Strasbourg, 1916.

A. A. KOROLEV

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