Tag Archives: Celts

Lime or Lime?

Barbarian tribes, particularly the Gauls and Celts, used lime to bleach their hair and to hold it in place.”

Hmmm. I can’t imagine there was much of a lime trade — the fruit — in Europe at the time. Do they mean lime, as in carbonates and limestone?

Celtic warriors have been described as resembling the Roman god Pan, for the way they lime their hair and make it stand up and pull it back to the nape of their neck. This was probably a battle tactic to make themselves look frightening to the enemy.”

The Greek historian Diodorus wrote a vivid description of the Celts.

“Their aspect is terrifying … They are very tall in stature, with ripling muscles under clear white skin. Their hair is blond, but not naturally so: they bleach it, to this day, artificially, washing it in lime and combing it back from their foreheaads. They look like wood-demons, their hair thick and shaggy like a horse’s mane.”