Ogham Series - Clann - Family

Ogham is the first written script of Ireland. Said to have been created by the God Ogma as proof of his scholarly prowess, these characters can be found all across Ireland marking prominent stones where ever you may go. Combining this ancient script with the words from the living Irish language our Ogham series hopes to bring new energy and awareness to both.

Clann is the Irish word for family, but it can also be used to describe descendants or offspring of a family line. This is most common use of this word but in looking a little deeper into the language and exploring its other translations, maybe we can gain a deeper understanding of what family means in Irish culture.

Some of the older uses of the word Clann actually referred to the produce or off shoots of plants. Ireland has always been described as an abundant land of green growing things and so it 's easy to see how plants might figure in our language. Yet even here it is about that which grows out of or from the main plant.

Another interesting meaning come when we look at things with also grow from us, referring to a lock of hair, or indeed tresses. A person can be describes and having a 'clann' of 'gruaig' or a family of hair growing from them.

One of the more fascinating  meanings for me comes from weaving where a Clann is two interlocked threads on warping frame. The image of a union of threads in a greater weave making up a family really appeals to me.

The last I will share with you is that Clann can also be considered as people who share a following, be it spiritual or political. The idea that coming together to share and speak on an ideology can make one a family is a concept that many might benefit from sharing.

What all of this means is that the idea of family in the Irish culture is not something of a base matter of bloodline. Maybe it can be seen as a gathering of people of shared belief, intersecting and interlocking in any number of ways and producing off shoots that will grow into the future. Maybe, in some way, we are all family.

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