Triskelion Celtic Symbol Meaning

Triskelion Celtic Symbol Meanings



Triskelion Meaning as a Celtic Symbol

In a nutshell, the triskelion Celtic symbol meaning deals with competition and man's progress. The Greek term triskelion literally means "three-legged," and appropriately, this sign looks very much like three legs running.

The triskelion (also referred to as triskele, triquetra or fylfot) Celtic symbol meaning holds two major components of symbolism.

First Component:
When we observe this symbol, we are taken with the concept of motion. All three branches (legs, protrusions, angles) are positioned in such a way so as to make the symbol appear as if it is in constant forward motion.

This is no accident as this feeling of motion represents fundamental energies within this Celtic symbol...

Active Symbolism of the Triskelion Symbol

  • Action
  • Cycles
  • Progress
  • Revolution
  • Competition
  • Moving forward

Second Component:
The three protrusions (legs, angles, branches, etc) are of significant symbolic importance. However, depending upon the era, region, culture, mythological history, etc...symbologists can have a challenging time defining the exact symbolic meaning of the three protrusions. The various representations of the three protrusions found in the triskelion include:

Meanings of the Three Symbolic Extensions of the Triskelion

  • Spirit, Mind, Body
  • Father, Son, Holy Ghost
  • Mother, Father, Child
  • Past, Present, Future
  • Power, Intellect, Love
  • Creator, Destroyer, Sustainer
  • Creation, Preservation, Destruction

All of these (and still yet more) can be designated for each of the protrustions found in the triskelion - it is simply up to the observer (or originating culture) to proffer up these meanings.

The combination of these two components (motion and triad attributes) lead us to the conclusion that this Celtic symbol meaning tells a story of forward motion in the endeavor to reach understanding (within the context of one of the many triad dynamics above listed).

This prominent Celtic symbol may also represent the three Celtic worlds...

Three Worlds Respresented by the Triskelion

  • The Otherworld: Where spirits, gods and goddesses live.
  • The Mortal World: Where you and I live along with plants and animals.
  • The Celestial World: Where unseen energies live and move about. Like the forces of sun, moon, wind and water.

An interesting side note - the number three is a powerful energy for seemingly infinite reasons. One such representation of number three deals with the three primary measure-marks within the phases of the moon (new, half, full).

This is a worthy point because most lunar creatures are depicted as only having three legs in Alchemical and early European esoteric art.

When we add lunar implications to the meaning of the triskelion we are dealing with...

Lunar Symbolism Associated with the Triskelion

  • Mystery
  • Feminine
  • Intuition
  • Subtleness
  • Subconscious
  • Spirituality
  • Illumination
  • Hidden desire

As you can see, the Celtic symbol meaning of the triskelion is more far reaching than just "three-legged." When we combine the variables listed here with the concept of motion and evolution and illumniation, we find that the Celtic symbol meaning of the triskelion has much broader connatations.

As you can see, this Celtic symbol meaning is vast, varied and diverse. With so many possibilities for profound depth and meaning, it's no wonder the triskelion was such a predominantly featured symbol amongst the Celtic people. But if we could try to sum up the trinity meanings of this symbol, here's a good start...

Summary of Symbolic Triskelion Meanings

  • Personal growth
  • Human development
  • Spiritual expansion

I hope you have enjoyed this more detailed background of the fascinating triskelion Celtic symbol meanings.

For more Celtic symbol information on this website, simply click one of the links listed at the end of this page. Happy symbolic journeys, and thanks for reading.




click links below for symbolic meanings.
Go to All Celtic Symbols All Celtic Symbols
Go to Celtic Animals Celtic Animals
Go to Celtic Symbolic Archetypes Celtic Archetypes
Go to Celtic Astrology Celtic Astrology
Go to Celtic Knots Celtic Knots
Go to Celtic Symbolic Trees Celtic Trees
Go to Other Animals Celtic Misc.
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