What is a Celtic Cross?


What is a Celtic Cross? What does the circle symbolize? Can we Christians wear it as a sign of our faith? Its it pagan/satanic in origin?


I seem to remember reading that the circle represents the sun. The idea is that the sun provides light and Christ is the light of the world. So go ahead and wear it.



Many Celtic Crosses have the story of Man carved in relief in them, or it is the story of our Redemption, instead. The ones that are most recognizable, however, are the knotted crosses.

It was, originally, devoted to to a sun god, but the Christianization of Ireland changed the meaning of the Cross. However, the circle still symbolizes the Son/sun that rose in our darkness. The circle can also represent the endless love God has for His people.

Durrow High Cross
This magnificent 8th century Celtic cross from County Offaly, Ireland, depicts Christ in Majesty flanked by trumpeting and adoring angels and the Lamb of God, with additional Biblical scenes of Daniel and the Lion, David the Harpist, Abraham and Isaac and a scene which seems to depict the Trinity with the Word of God. In addition, there are four Celtic knots and four spiralling [sic] bosses, perhaps symbolizing the four Gospels.

St. Patrick and Columba Cross
This impressive 9th c. Celtic cross from Kells Monastery, Cty. Meath, is dedicated to the patron saints of Ireland, and depicts the crucified and risen Christ, surrounded by the four Evangelists. It is the only surviving cross to feature all four Evangelistic symbols: the man for Matthew (the humanity of Christ), the lion for Mark (Christ’s resurrection), the ox for Luke (Christ’s sacrifice), and the eagle for John (Christ’s divinity).

Clonmacnois Cross
The famous 9th century Celtic cross of King Flann, High King of Ireland, depicts St. Columba between two angels, the Last Judgement, Christ with Peter and Paul and the founding of the monastery with St. Ciaran and King Dermot.

Celtic Cross Wiki



The Celtic cross is a cross that comes from the Catholics of Ireland. No, it is not satanic or pagan, and you certainly may wear it.


Thank-you all for your answers. God Bless!


It was a sign of those of celtic origin, it was also used in Great Britain. I have seen some Episcopalians/Anglicans wear them.


Something most do not fully realize is that the Celtic crosses represent another piece of evidence that the Iconography portraying God and humans used by the West before the 13th century was identical to the Iconography used in the East at the same period. Flat wooden panel Icons as such may have been unusual to be venerated in Northwestern europe compared to Southern Europe, but the style still existed and was particularly prevalent on crosses, reliquaries and frescoes, many of which survive to be seen, admired or venerated today. Not to mention illuminated manuscripts, although when it comes to Ireland the human portrayal in surviving manuscripts is noticeably different than human protrayal on the crosses.

In what would seem to otherwise be somewhat simple, basic churches with little decoration the celtic cross is evidence to prove that the Irish were fine artisans and could conceivably have had very beautiful sacred art that portraying human figures rather than only detailed geometric patterns


Ugh! Why do people always clump pagan and satanic together?! Please don’t do it in the future.


If the Celtic Cross was a pagan symbol then half of Irelands graves would need a new gravestone. You might hear a lot of pagans reference it but rest assured, it’s as Christian as St Patrick.


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