Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Gallia Cisalpina II: Pagan Celtic Nation

Gallia Cisalpina II: Pagan Celtic Nation

In memory of the earth-based and gender-equal pagan culture of the Celto-Ligurian tribes in the southern Alpine and Po river valley region called Gallia Cisalpina (Cisalpine Gaul; "Gaul south of the Alps") by the Romans who eventually destroyed their world, took their land, and subjugated them under the Roman Empire.


Viator Catholicus said...

The Celto-Ligurian tribes practiced gender equality? It seems a bit of a stretch and wishful thinking to suggest this. And in fact, since the Celts of Northern Italy left no written records there seems no way to prove this.
Meanwhile, let us not forget that Gallia Cisalpina is precisely a Roman notion. Cisalpina is Latin for "this side of the Alps". The Celts consisted of disparate tribes, some friendly to Rome and some hostile. There was never such a thing as "A Pagan Celtic Nation" in Northern Italy.
Finally, Rome was forced to march north in its own defense. It was the Celts who sacked Rome in 390. And it was a large number of Celts who sided with the Cartthaginians agau=inst Rome in the Second Punic War.
Roman rule, unlike modern Italian rule from Rome, was beneficial to the peoples of Northern Italy. The Romans were very tolerant of local customs and practices and quickly granted privileges of citizenship to the people of Gallia Cisalpina. It should be no surprise that the greatest Roman writes Livy, Virgil, and Catullus were from northern Italy.
Despite the fact that the modern Italian state oppresses the North from Rome, we should be proud of our Roman heritage which is in fact our most predominant cultural heritage.

Brixia Fidelis said...

Women had power as they were often the spiritual leaders, which Christianity later deconstructed for that very reason (among others).

"Gaul South of the Alps." Very clear and concise I think.

The Celto-Ligurian tribes became a nation via their federation, which was formed to protect their sovereignty against Rome.

Rome was a dictatorial empire to regions outside of their sphere of influence. Somehow any move of self-defense is lost upon me, comparatively, in comparison to their universalist aspirations

The Celto-Ligurians worked with the Carthaginians much for the same reason that they were allied with the Etruscans against Rome. Common interests.

The Etruscan culture was the Romans first victim, as they destroyed everything Etruscan. Either a people accept Roman rule, along with its benefits, or face annihilation.

I think that you can make a very strong case to be proud of Etruscan heritage.

Viator Catholicus said...

Your word "destroyed" is dramatic.
There was a gradual process of Romanization in northern Italy as the Romans established municipia and the surrounding peoples of Italy gradually adopted the benefits of Rome, especially the more widespread Roman language and elements of it's culture. (Let's also not forget they were both Indo-European peoples.)
With friendly peoples, the Romans made alliances by treaties. [Nt all the Celts fought against Rome. The Cenomanni (and Insubres if I remember correctly) were allied with Rome during the Punic War.] The Romans eventually extended citizenship to Cisalpina and incorporated it into Italy by the 1st century. The new regions created by Augustus even acknowledged the unique peoples predominant in each with a clear separation of Veneti, Galli, and Ligures.
My ultimate point is that northern Italy, aka Padania, cannot deny that its culture is primarily of Roman origin. The substratum of Celtic influence remains in the languages (and blood) of Lombardy and Piedmont. But, there is also quite a bit of Roman blood.
In the Middle Ages, the city-states of the north looked back to Rome as a model of civic independence not a "Celtic" past.
I commend your interest in your roots. By all means study about the ancient Celts and other peoples of northern Italy. But, you can't wipe away 2000 years of history. And it helps no one to create a past about a supposed idyllic "Pagan Celtic Nation" which never existed. The only unified Gallia Cisalpina that ever existed was the province created by Rome (or perhaps by Napoleon, too).

Brixia Fidelis said...

Every advance that came from Rome, would have eventually come out of Etruria, had it not been totally deconstructed by the agressive new political movement. The Etruscans had long influenced the northern peninsula by peaceful means. Why did the Etruscans side with the Celts against Rome, if they did not see Rome as a significant threat? The Romans practically eliminated the Etrucans from historical memory. For example, demolishing virtually all of their architecture. The Runestones were Etruscan, but lived on elsewhere (where it spread via the trade routes in northern Europe) after the Romans erased that too from memory.

Roman-Etruscan Wars

After the invading Langobards took control of the countryside, historians referred to the culturally-Romanized subject population as "Roman" only for easy reference, merely because they, or their forefathers, had been Roman citizens. They inconsistantly do not refer to other former-Roman subject populations as "Roman" though (France or Egypt).

You say that we cannot erase 2,000 of history. We also cannot erase the previous 40,000 years of history either. For examle, forms of Asatru or Cernunnos, which I think should be honored in the same fashion that the Christian Ordodox Greeks honor their pagan past. In fact, the native Etruscans, Euganeans, and Celts, were all deeply spiritual people.

Viator Catholicus said...

Were not the last 3 kings of Rome Etruscan? At least 2 Roman tribes were of Etruscan origin. And Rome learned much from the Etruscans, but Etruscan civilization eventually stagnated and its people willingly adopted Roman culture.

Until the Frankish conquest, the people of ancient Gaul are usually referred to as Gallo-Romans. Romanization was clearly less intense than in the Italian peninsula. But, in the end, Roman culture had been adopted by the natives and then by the Germanic conquerors. [Egypt is totally different as it was so far outside of Roman influence. However, a large portion of Egypt was Hellenized.]

40,000 years? The last ice age ended 12,000 years ago in Europe. Indo-Europeans only came into the Italian peninsula around 3000 years ago.

Were the Euganei a "spiritual people?" I've been having a hard time locating reputable sources which can tell more than a page of their history.

Brixia Fidelis said...

There are always those social-climbers who will abandon their own people for monetary or political gain. It's the same old story with the universalist-Romans. Conquer by might, then politicize the populace with Romanization. Turn them into taxpayers.

The Camunians go back about 10,000 years, and their spirituality is very remarkable. Even as late as four centuries ago, Catholicism was weak in the Val Camonica. Then the Neo-Rome, in the form of the Vatican, had to send in the army and start killing people. The Camunni were Euganei-Alpines.

I think that all "historically northern" religious and spiritual traditions should be honored under the guise of what we're trying to do.