When most people think about the triquetra design, they instantly think of the TV show “Charmed”. If not, they at least think about magick, witches, and Wiccans, and spells. But really, the triquetra was created by the Celts a long time ago and is now being used as a symbol by many. More on “Charmed”, magick, and Wiccans in a minute.
Hold your ponies; I can only spew words through my fingers so quickly, you know.
The Celts have a few different knots which resemble the triquetra. They have some intersecting meanings but each has its own purpose; its own base symbolism. For now, I’m strictly giving you information on the triquetra. Not anything that resembles it.
In Latin, triquetra means “three cornered”.
This symbol is also called the Trinity Knot or Celtic Triangle.
Three interlocked loops, creating the intersection of three circles. There is no beginning and no end to the knotwork. Sometimes a circle around the three loops is added.
WITH A CIRCLE
This is where the protection, infinite, and eternity theory comes into play. A circle is drawn around the triquetra to signify spiritual unity. This is a protection circle; something that cannot be broken.
There is certainly more than one meaning of the triquetra. Sometimes people believe it to mean more than one thing, others use it for only one purpose at a time, and some believe it to always and forever mean only one thing. It depends on the person and the purpose(s).
The Celts worshiped a moon goddess who was a trio goddess. She was associated with the lunar phases; when the moon was waxing, waning, and full.
Another trio goddess associated with the triquetra is the Celtic goddess Morrighan (who I can’t wait to write a novel based on!).
Symbol of Odin (a Celtic god).
Another possibility is a connection to the three Fates, of Greek Mythology.
- mind, body, soul (spirit)
- maiden, mother, crone
- past, present, future
- thought, feeling, emotion
- Father, Son, Holy Ghost
- creation, preservation, destruction
- earth, air, water – three forces of nature
- life, death, rebirth
- infinite and eternity
- divine femininity
In the TV show, the triquetra represented the “Power of Three”. It was shown on the Halliwell’s Book of Shadows, the collar of their familiar cat, and their spirit board (Ouija board).
In the show, they used a triquetra with a circle around it. It was a pretty big part of the show’s symbolism, I do believe.
ORIGINS OF THE TRIQUETRA
The simple fact is this: no one can 100% know who created the triquetra, when, or for what purpose. We can’t even know for a surety what it meant to them.
Some Christian faiths claim that their monks created the triquetra to try and convert the Celts to Christianity.
The Celts claim to have created it themselves, for their own purposes. They also claim that the Christians of that time used it to their advantage, to try and make them see things their way.
Archeological digs are adding more insight into this mystery. Like the ones in Europe where the triquetra was carved into stones that dated back to 1,000 AD. The triquetra has been found carved onto rune stones in Europe and on German currency. Also, the triquetra is mentioned in the “Book of Kell”, created by the Scotts around 800 AD.
Here again, let it be known that I have nothing against Wiccans, Christians, or Pagans, I simply want to clarify something.
I have a triquetra pendant. When I wear it, people most often assume this means I’m Wiccan. I’m not. The triquetra is not a wiccan symbol. It is a symbol created by the Celts.
Used by first the Celts; then the Pagans, then the Christians, then the Wiccans, and now a whole slew of people.
Wiccans, Pagans, Christians, and all others use the triquetra as a symbol. I think that’s pretty cool, myself. But just because someone is wearing a triquetra pendant, doesn’t mean they’re Wiccan, doesn’t mean they’re Pagan, doesn’t mean they’re Christian. It doesn’t mean they’re going to go home and brew up a spell in a black cauldron or sacrifice your cat to the Goddess of Evilness (yes, I just made that up). It doesn’t mean they’re even Celtic. It doesn’t really mean anything really, they could have bought it because they liked the knotwork.
Never assume. You never know what meaning and/or purpose an object has for a person.
Some conspiracy theorists have deemed the triquetra the physical manifestation of “666”, the symbol for the devil, also known as the number of the beasts’ brand. They claim those wearing the triquetra or those who like it are then Satanists, and they are bringing to life what is written in the Book of Revelations, in the Bible.
To this I say, for the love of all that is good, stop trying to look for evil and negativity so you can brand people minding their own business as evil.
The triquetra reminds me heavily of yin and yang. Balance. Eternity.
I often think of my stages of writing a manuscript as stages the triquetra represents: the beginning , the middle, and the end. When plotting, writing, and the experience as a whole.
I’ve always loved the triquetra as a symbol and hope its reputation doesn’t get tarnished just as the pentagram’s has. That particular issue really irks me.
But I digress…
Druid symbols often have translations about finding balance within oneself. Maybe you’re drawn to the triquetra for a reason.
Is there just one part to you? No.
Maybe there’s three parts to you that are at war and you need to find the balance between them to make peace with who you are. From there, you can find balance in the world you live in and hopefully in nature as well.
Really, no one knows for sure what the triquetra means. But you have the chance to take a Celtic knot and take it for what it’s worth; a symbol of something positive. I can’t give you all the answers. But what I can give you is the information I’ve found. And it’s some pretty cool information if you ask me. I love the triquetra and its symbolism; I’ve always been fascinated by Celtic knotwork and lore and that’s enough for me.
Find what it means to you. Personal translation and usage is what’s most important when concerned with symbols of every kind.
Do you like the triquetra?
Know of any meanings/symbols/purposes I left out?
*** I’ve run across SO many differences among all things Celtic. There are so many opposing facts and opinions and findings that it’s enough to make my head spin. I simply blogged on it because I find it interesting. I am by NO means an expert.