Celtic Connection

The Galicians are Celts, first cousins to the Irish, Welsh, Scots, Cornish and Bretons and used to speak a language of the same family .They are not only part of the 7 Celtic Nations, they are the oldest of the 7 and their culture can be traced back to 1000 years before christ. The people in Galicia, northwest Spain

around Santiago de Compostela are descendent of the same people that covered western Europe for a thousand years, until about the time of Christ, when the Romans overran them. The difference between Galicia and Asturias is simply two regions separated by a river and each occupy a different mountain range. Driven by the romans, Celts in many cases finally stopped struggling and became colonials, but many fled to the west, to Cornwall, Wales, Scotland and Ireland and Galicia in north west Spain. They have many ancient customs in common with the irish and the same laws of inheritance. Galician language is called Gallego, whereas a different language exists in Asturias called Pable or Asturian. The music closely resembles Irish jigs and reels, but is influenced by the 'processional' music of Christian traditions. The dance more closely resembles Breton dancing. 'Step' dancing is not part of either culture as its root is distinctly Irish. The Asturians were mountain based farmers and miners, whereas the Galicians faced the sea to the north and west so were primarily sea-farers and migrated mostly to South. The capital is Santiago de Compostela . Many devout Catholics make the pilgrimage thru the mountainous region, on the Camino de Santiago ( the route of St James) on foot. Along the way, churches and monasteries lend service to the pilgrims by providing free accommodations, food and drink. The region is mainly agricultural with a large fishing and timber industry and highly religious. Galicia was a Celtic kingdom from 411 to 585. Dances of these regions reflect the deep religious roots and celtic connection. Costuming reflects the cold, rainy climate and energetic dancing represents the abundance of foods produced by farms and vinyards; crops and animals which help to feed the entire country of Spain. Northern Spain produces some of the worlds most delicious wines, cheeses and seafood.