The Celtic Eternity Knot: A Timeless Symbol of Eternity and Love?

You have probably heard of the Celtic eternity knot, but once you start looking for it online, you can’t seem to come up with anything concrete.

You might find information on the Celtic trinity knot, the Dara knot, or even the Celtic sailors knot, but nothing seems to have the specific name, eternity.

What does the Celtic eternity knot symbolize and does it even exist?

There is a good reason for this. The Celtic eternity knot is better known as the Celtic love knot, and unfortunately, it is not as ancient as you may have first thought. 

Although the enterally weaving knot design goes back to the very beginning of Celtic Knots as we know them, the Celtic eternity knot that features a heart design is more of a modern creation. 

How do we know this?

Well, the heart symbol we know and use these days did not appear in popular culture until sometime between the 5th and 15th centuries. By this time in history, Celtic culture had lost dominance and had long begun to blend in with newer, invading cultures.

But do not despair. This does not mean you can’t feel connected to the beauty of this symbol, even though only parts of its design are authentic. 

If you want to learn about this beautifully stylized Celtic knot design, keep reading.

Meaning And Symbolism Of The Celtic Eternity Knot

The symbolism of the popular Celtic eternity knot is pretty simple to decipher. It symbolizes the eternal love shared between two people. 

Meaning And Symbolism Of The Celtic Eternity Knot (2)

Celtic knot designs are famous for their never-ending woven styles, and this no-beginning and no-end design symbolizes a connection to the idea of eternal. This theme tends to run through almost every Celtic knot design there is, regardless of whether it is an authentic Celtic creation or a modern artist’s interpretation.

Common versions of the Celtic eternity knot feature a heart woven into its design, often due to the use of two trinity knots woven together. 

Because of the inclusion of the Celtic trinity knot, which is a real and ancient Celtic knot, the Celtic eternity knot could be seen as a symbol of more than just love. 

The Celts believed that the number three was divine. Whether it be in connection with the three stages of life, the three domains of the universe, or even the holy trinity as the Celtic religion began to waver towards more Christian beliefs. 

So, it is completely acceptable to see the Celtic eternity knot as a symbol of passion and love for these other reasons as well. It can symbolize a person’s love and dedication to their Christian god or their loyalty to the very earth itself. 

History And Origin

The heart symbol we recognize as one that stands for love and affection is actually a fairly modern creation – in terms of the length of the human populace on earth, that is. 

The heart symbol actually was not around until the medieval era, and it was not even used as a symbol of love until sometime around the 13th century. The very first known and recorded use of the heart symbol was in a decorative manuscript. It can be found within a small illustration that adorned a poem called the Roman de la poire.

History And Origin

By this time in history, the influence of the Celts had long been lost, and this is why we know that the modern version of the Celtic eternity knot, or love knot, is not an authentic Celtic design. 

However, the elements used to create this beautiful design are incredibly authentic.

In fact, the trinity knot that is used to give the Celtic eternity knot its heart-like imagery is one of the oldest and most meaningful Celtic Knots there are. 

Although we don’t know for sure when the eternity knot was first created. It has only been the last 50 years or so since it has become popular. 

How Is The Eternity Knot Used Today?

The most recent Celtic revival has seen Celtic culture, including the famous knotwork, become a memorable part of pop culture. 

The Celtic eternity knot, along with Celtic knot designs, can be found on homewares, like pottery, rugs, bed linen, and even tiles for your kitchens and bathrooms. 

How Is The Eternity Knot Used Today

For a more subtle Celtic vibe, people commonly wear Celtic-inspired jewelry such as necklaces, rings, earrings, and bracelets. 

However, if you want to give your connection to Celtic culture a bit of a more permanent edge, you can join the millions of people who have permanently tattooed their bodies with Celtic-inspired tattoo designs.

The Celtic eternity knot has become a popular Celtic Knot to give as gifts to family and friends, but you will also often find this image engraved on wedding or commitment rings. This Celtic Knot’s connection to the idea of eternal love and an unending connection has made it a popular Celtic Knot to include in a meaningful wedding.

Do Different Celtic Knots Have Different Meanings?

Yes, all Celtic Knots have different meanings, even if they share some symbolic elements. Even Celtic Knot designs that are modern creations have their own meanings that their creators or wearers have given them. 

Celtic Tree of Life Art
Celtic Tree Of Life Art Gong – Photo credit to Art Gongs used under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0

Some knots were designed to keep their wearers connected to loved ones they had to leave behind, such as the Sailors Celtic Knot. 

The Celtic tree of life, also known as the Crann Bethadh, depicted the highly respected Oak tree and symbolized wisdom, everlasting life, and fortitude. 

Then you have the Serch Bythol, which, although it has a hazy history, is more of an authentic Celtic Knot that depicts eternal love, familial connection and solidarity.

Should I Wear The Celtic Eternity Knot?

If you are looking for an authentic Celtic symbol for love, then you might want to give the Celtic eternity knot a miss. 

Should I Wear The Celtic Eternity Knot

However, as long as you are aware that this symbol was created by our Celtic ancestors, you can still enjoy it as a beautiful artistic design that draws significant inspiration from Celtic knotwork and has become a modern symbol of everlasting love and eternal commitment. 

If you are interested in symbolism, Check out 20 Celtic symbols and their meaning

Natasha Peters

I am a British-born copywriter who moved to Ireland over a decade ago and have been captivated by Irish culture, landscape and folklore. I enjoy sharing my passion for Ireland through my writing as a freelancer.

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