The Celts
History, Life, and Culture [2 volumes]
by John T. Koch, General Editor, and Antone Minard, Editor Editorial Team: Thomas Owen Clancy, Petra S. Hellmuth, Anne Holley, Glenys Howells, Marian Beech Hughes, Marion Löffler
August 2012, 898pp, 7x10
2 volumes, ABC-CLIO

Hardcover: 978-1-59884-964-6
$218, £168, 190€, A299
eBook Available: 978-1-59884-965-3
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

At the height of their power, the Celts established themselves across Europe, naming major cities such as Paris, Milan, and Vienna in the process. The Celts also introduced trousers and sophisticated wheeled vehicles to the Romans, and their literature brought tales of King Arthur to the world.

This succinct, accessible two-volume set covers all aspects of Celtic historical life, from prehistory to the present day.

The study of Celtic history has a wide international appeal, but unfortunately many of the available books on the subject are out-of-date, narrowly specialized, or contain incorrect information. Online information on the Celts is similarly unreliable. This two-volume set provides a well-written, up-to-date, and densely informative reference on Celtic history that is ideal for high school or college-aged students as well as general readers.

The Celts: History, Life, and Culture uses a cross-disciplinary approach to explore all facets of this ancient society. The book introduces the archaeology, art history, folklore, history, linguistics, literature, music, and mythology of the Celts and examines the global influence of their legacy. Written entirely by acknowledged experts, the content is accessible without being simplistic. Unlike other texts in the field, The Celts: History, Life, and Culture celebrates all of the cultures associated with Celtic languages at all periods, providing for a richer and more comprehensive examination of the topic.


  • A helpful subject index
  • A comprehensive chronology traces the evolution of Celtic culture over time and across regions
  • A–Z entries allow for easy location of material
  • A current print and nonprint bibliography of the most essential and accessible resources in English
John T. Koch, PhD, is research professor and senior research fellow at the Centre for Advanced Welsh & Celtic Studies at University of Wales, Aberystwyth, UK. He is the editor of Celtic Culture: A Historical Encyclopedia; The Gododdin of Aneirin: Text and Context from Dark-Age North Britain; and An Atlas for Celtic Studies: Archaeology and Names in Ancient Europe and Early Medieval Ireland, Britain, and Brittany.

Antone Minard, PhD, is a sessional lecturer in the Department of Classical, near-Eastern, and Religious Studies at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, and in the Humanities Department at Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC. He contributed to Celtic Culture: A Historical Encyclopedia and An Atlas for Celtic Studies: Archaeology and Names in Ancient Europe and Early Medieval Ireland, Britain, and Brittany.


2012 Editors' Choice Reference Source—Booklist, December 15, 2012


"[An] impressive addition to ABC-CLIO’s library of reference works . . . a useful ready-reference handbook . . . sturdily bound, well-designed, and nicely printed."—Journal of Folklore Research, April 10, 2013

"The Celts: History, Life, and Culture is a major reference work, suitable for libraries that support graduate level or substantial undergraduate programs in Celtic studies. Those that could not afford the earlier five-volume set will certainly want this. Even those that do have the earlier and more complete publication may want to consider this as well for its updated entries and bibliographies."—ARBA, January 1, 2013

"The variety of topics relating to Celtic civilization is quite astounding. . . . Recommended for academic and large public libraries—as well as other libraries where there is a need for Celtic resources—to fill the gap in this popular growing area of interest."—Booklist, Starred Review, December 15, 2012

"This latest accessible and affordable addition to the body of reference works in Celtic studies presents the full range and impact of this civilization in Western Europe and worldwide . . . The 800-plus entries present Celtic culture's unique features in both national and regional perspectives. . . . Summing Up: Recommended."—Choice, January 1, 2013

"Virtually all aspects of Celtic life are touched upon in these 800-plus entries on archaeology, art, history, music, mythology, and language and literature. . . . While certainly readable for high school or college age students, the information is in-depth and is perhaps a better fit for more advanced scholars who have a familiarity with Celtic languages and geography; either way, a fascinating browse."—Library Journal, November 1, 2012
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