Wednesday, 6 February 2019

The Iceni & The Belgae

The Iceni -

In a post some time ago I covered the 'Eye of Odin' coin minted by the Iceni Tribe of East Anglia, and suggested they could be a Germanic Tribe. Well it seems that in the area of academia there is perhaps a wind of change. I came across an article on the site www.academia.ed called 'The Language of Inscriptions on Iceni Coinage' by Daphne Nash Brigg which argued for a Germanic origin of some of the inscriptions on these coins. The argument covers a number of inscriptions, some of which I will feature here -


This one is interesting in that the author equated this with the IE Root *aig- which means 'oak'. From this roots we get -

Ek - Old Saxon

Ek - Old Frisian

Eik - Old Norse

Ac/Aec - Old English

Eih - Old High German

The Celts did not use this root but that of IR *dru/*drue so if this did mean 'oak' it would be Germanic. The root does appear in Germanic in words for 'tree', 'stag' and 'true' but not for the Oak-Tree. The inscription can thus mean -

ek - oak

en - 'made of'

The coin could be invoking 'strength' through the symbol of the Oak-Tree. The Old English aecen means 'oaken'. 


This is equated with the OE ece meaning 'eternal'; It stems from the IE Root *aiw-/*aiu meaning 'vital energy' or 'vital force'. In view of the later use of the ALU-ULA this could be an earlier way of invoking such subtle energies. 


This is actually equated with the Germanic Ansuz no doubt since the Root *asu is that of another kind of 'Vital Force' or 'Vital Energy'. Ansuz becomes AEsc in Old English. 

AL - FE - ALE (ALI) -

Perhaps the most interesting inscription is one that contains AL - FE - ALE (or ALI) which reminds us of the ALU-ULA Formula found in Caister, Norfolk, the area where this coin originates. This contains AL and ALE/ALI, so perhaps there never was a drastic change in people of this area and that the Wuffingas and the Iceni were closer blood-kinship that most scholars would have us believe. Again, alu is a vital force or vital energy. 

There is a valid point here and that is that the later inscriptions are runic which seems not to have been used until late times in regard to being letters and inscriptions, and probably brought over by the new wave of Wuffingas into East Anglia. It should also be remembered that the Iceni were Romanised at this time and a lot of stuff was Latin-orientated, as we see in the use of the 'V' for 'U' in some inscriptions. 

There is also the strange genealogy in the Wuffinga Royal Line which contains 'Caser' - 'Caesar'. This can now be explained if the peoples of East Anglia were little different than the incoming Wuffingas, for the latter may well have absorbed some of the Romanised elements into their own work. 

There is an Iceni Coin showing Romulus and Remus being suckled by the Wolf; the Wolf was the totem of the Wuffingas. The Wuffingas seem to be associated with Sweden and the 'Vendel' culture. 

The Belgae -

The Belgae here in these islands dwelt in the area of Hampshire, and the earlier Romanised name of Winchester was named after them. They seem to have been a federation of Tribes living in Belgica, which is differentiated from Celtica (Gaul). In his 'Gallic Wars' Julius Caesar recounts that in 57 BCE the Suessones (who may have formed part of this federation) were ruled by Galba, and that in living memory their king Diviciacus had exercised sovereignty over most of Belgica and even parts of Britain. Caesar described the Belgae as raiding Britain for booty. Belgic coins have been found in Sussex, Kent and even as far as The Wash. 

The Suessones or Suessiones were most likely a Germanic Tribe since (as I have shown in an old article) one of their coins shows what appears to be Woden being swallowed by the Wolf. Similar coins have been found among the Iceni of East Anglia. The 'Eye-in-the-Mouth' motif is fairly widespread, and also seems connected to Woden. As I mentioned before, this seems to be Woden and not Tiw since it is the left-hand that is being swallowed. The 'bulging eyes' suggests a link to Woden, whose prominent feature is the Eye. There were other tribes in Belgica who were also here in Britain -

The Atrebates - Berkshire.

The Catalauni - Chatti (?).

The Pictones - Picts of Scotland.

The wearing of a Torc around the neck is said to have been a sign of royalty, but this is usually the crown in regard to kingship. The Torc, like any form of neck ornament, was usually a sign of being 'fettered', and it is thus possible that the Golden Torcs were a sign of the Woden-Born and the AEthlinga 'fettered' to the god Woden. 

There is another Iceni Coin bearing a similar motif as the one of the Suessiones. The first one has what seems to be either the hair or a helmet with feathers across the top. Another coin suggests a feathered helmet. These are usually seen as influenced by the Romans, but there has been a find here in England of an Anglo-Saxon helmet adorned across the top with feathers. Again an Iceni Coin showing the 'Eye-in-the-Mouth' motif; on it is a 'feathered helmet', which in this case may represent the hair. This shows clearly an 'eye' entering the mouth, clearer than the other coin. 

The Fylfot is used on this Iceni Coin, and many of them show the Solar-Horse and the Solar-Disc. The die showing the Sunwise Fylfot is cast in such a way as to show four 'legs' or 'arms' suggesting movement, a very clever means of using this symbol. Seen as 'legs' this shown the sunwise movement of this particular symbol. 

In Freemasonry the 'All-Seeing Eye' is a symbol of deity. Perhaps the earliest forms come as the 'Third Eye' or 'Eye of Shiva' from the Vedic period. In regards to these facts the 'Eye' thus represents the god himself, and in these he is being swallowed, either by a man or wolf. The eye also represents the seer and thus knowledge and wisdom.

Note: If you read one of Wotan's Krieger's posts on one of his blogs, entitled 'The Iceni - A Germanic Tribe' you will find some good comments upon these same ideas. 

No comments:

Post a comment