In 55 BC, Caesar decided to invade Britain. It was not really an invasion but rather an incursion. Then he kept this idea and finally he returned in Britain and he spent few days and weeks there. During this time, he discovered the druidism so it is interested to know what were the relations between the druids and the Roman. Moreover, we said that Britain was a land of mystery, fullof legends and the druidism seems to be an obscure religion, not really well-known.
So we can wonder what was really this religion and also what were the relations between the druids and the Romans. So first we can study the druidism with for example the origin. Then we can interest in the druids, their place, their role. To finish, we can see the relations between the druids and the Romans,and the representation of the druids.
First of all we can specify what was the origin of the druidism. It is enough vague, the testimonies aren’t numerous, we haven’t a lot of source about this religion. Indeed, the druidism took part of the Celt religion. For Jean-Louis Brunaux who made and wrote some books about the druidism, the druids appeared in the Vcentury BC. The druids believed in the immortality of soul. Some historians think that they hoped reincarnation after death what it is probably the explanation of the legendary boldness of the Celt warriors.
On his side, Caesar thought that they were descended from a supreme being. This is the idea of Posidonius, a philosopher and historian of these times.
Description of this religion
Thedruidism wasn’t a religion of writing, everything was oral. They didn’t use writing especially to keep the secret of their knowledge. But there was no writing also because they thought that it was a source of intellectual laziness. The druids used only a sort of writing, the ogam ; in fact, it was a system of signs.
Then we can interest in the feast of the druidism. Four feasts were very important:
-the first is the feast of Lugnasad for the god called Lug. This feast was celebrated the first of august.
-the second is the feast of Samain. It was the feast of death, celebrated the first of November.
-the third is the feast of Imbolc. It was the feast of the purification, celebrated the first of February.
-the fourth is the feast of beltene. It was the feast for the god Belenos,celebrated the first of May. We made pass the cattle between two fires to protect him against bad spirits.
The druidism was composed of three parts : the bard (he was specialized in poetry, he did praises (louanges), satires (satire)), the diviner and the druid.
Their place in the society
So now we can study the druids. They were considered as the priest of the religion. They hadto have the virtues of the Celts :
The word druid means “dru- wid” = very scholarly. The druids had dominant position in the society. The druids formed a developed and organized hierarchy. There was one chief, a meeting once a year and a very long formation, sometimes twenty years of training. It was called the noviciate.
Thesociety was divided in three parts :
-at the top, there were the druids
-under them there were the warriors and to finish there were the farmers and the craftsmen.
Their powers and roles
The druids had a lot of powers and roles.
-there were priest, so they administrated the religion in temples, in sacred wood or simply outside. They did sacrifices. They interpreted signs of gods or magicsigns. For example, they interpreted the flight of birds, the dreams. They were mediators between the men and the supernatural world, the world of gods.
-they were lawyer. They could arbitrate and did politic or religious interdictions.
-they were the memory of people, they had the historical and mythological memories.
-they were responsible of the education of children.
-they were doctors....