Fir trees in Celtic Mythology

Fir trees in Celtic Mythology represent Truth, Honesty, Strength, hope, and Wisdom. Fir trees featured in many Celtic traditions which have been carried over in to modern European culture.

Truth, Honesty and Strength:

Douglas fir were a key species of the Caledonian forest which covered 95% of modern day Scotland. Fir trees can often be seen poking out above the treeline of the surrounding species. The straight, tall trunk was a symbolic tower of honesty, truth and strength.

Hope:

The coat of arms of Cascos, in Asturias features a Fir tree

Evergreen Fir trees remained green throughout the year, long after the surrounding deciduous woodlands have lost their leaves. For this reason, the Fir (along with other evergreens like Holly) was a symbol of hope in a dark winter.

Winter traditions in Celtic culture featured evergreen plants including Holly, Mistletoe and the Fir tree. The everlasting nature of the Fir tree was a symbol of hope to Celtic people, and was celebrated in winter, with the hopes of a fruitful Spring in mind.

This practice continues today, with Fir trees decorated at Christmas in modern European culture.

Fir trees are used in Christmas celebrations in modern European cultures (Pictured here is Tallinn, Estonia)

Wisdom:

Fir trees have a unique prediction ability, with their cones opening up in the heat of the sun, but always closing before rain. The Fir was associated with a sense of prophecy and wisdom.

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Fir Trees in the Ogham Alphabet:

Fir trees feature as the 20th letter of the Ogham alphabet Ailm, which is represented by the Fir or Pine tree.

The Ailm symbol is often found within a circle as a Celtic Symbol in its own right and shares a lot of common associations with the Fir tree.

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