Cernunnos: The Antlered God

The horned or antlered human is a very old symbol found in many parts of the world from prehistoric times. At the Welsh Mythology blog, Gwilym Morus-Baird takes a look at a particular Celtic representation of this figure and what it might mean: the ancient horned god Cernunnos.

Scholars have interpreted this figure [on the Gundestrup Cauldron] as being a representation of an old Celtic god called Cernunnos, which translates as the ‘horned one’. Its rather obvious why he’s called that, but this also gives us a clue as to what potentially conflicting elements have been harmonised in this symbolic figure. If this mythic symbol is an expression of the collective unconscious, according to Jung we should be able to perceive within it some conflicting influences that have been brought together in a more or less stable form.