The Triquetra Or The Trinity Knot – Meaning, Appearances And History

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The Triquetra or the Trinity Knot reserves a special place on our list of popular Celtic symbols and their meanings.

Triquetra is a Latin word, meaning “triangular” or “three-cornered.”

In its purest form, the triquetra is three interconnected ovals — one pointing upward, the other two pointing down, to the left and right.

A typical Triquetra with a circle looks like this with the circle and without the circle:

This is what a Triquetra looks like. On the left it has a circle and the right no circle.
On the left with a circle and the right without

While many of the other Celtic symbols are popular in modern-day tattoos, the Celtic knot or “Triquetra” is by far one of the most popular.


Some interesting facts and appearances of the Triquestra or Trinity Knot:

You might be saying that you have seen this symbol before?

Well, you would be right! This Celtic Symbol has had some impressive appearances in the modern day.

  • In the motion picture, Thor a triquetra symbol is displayed on Thor’s hammer Mjollnir

    The symbol on Thor's hammer is actually an ancient Celtic Symbol the Triquetra you can see it in this image.
    Thor’s Hammer
  • A triquetra is one of the four symbols on the cover of Led Zeppelin’s fourth album, where it is used as the personal symbol of bassist John Paul Jones.The Triquetra making an appearance on Led Zepplins 4th album cover.
  • Michonne’s katana in the TV series The Walking Dead features a triquetra on the inner crossguard. Custom-designed for the character, propmaster John Sanders intentionally chose the triquetra for its meaning as a triple goddess symbol.
  • The triquetra symbol in a circle became well known as the cover motif on the Book of Shadows in the American TV show Charmed. It represents the three sisters working together as one, and the sisters’ “power of three” when united

    The triquetra in a circle became well known as the cover motif on the Book of Shadows in the American TV show Charmed.
    The Celtic Symbol even made into the series Charmed
  • Source Wikipedia

Who created the symbol has been an issue of controversy for centuries:

Christians feel that it started with the Monks, who brought these designs along with their teachings of Christianity when attempting to convert the Celts of the day.

However, the Triquetra has been speculated to be the oldest symbol of spirituality.

It appears in the ninth century in the Book of Kells as a decoration, with no particular religious significance, and the symbol has been found in Norwegian churches dating to the 11th century.

It has been documented and carved onto tombs that are thousands of years old.

When the triple spirals are drawn in a straight line, it has been speculated that this represents life and death.

What is the meaning behind the Triquetra

Meant initially as “triangle”  it was used to refer to various three-cornered shapes.

Sometimes, the traditional triquetra symbol is accompanied by a circle.

As previously mentioned in the Celtic tree of life the Celts favoured that everything in this world came in threes.

For example:

  • Three stages of life: life, death, and rebirth
  • Three elements: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit
  • Three domains: earth, sea and sky, past, present and future.

What is the meaning of the circle on the Triquetra(Trinity Knot)

Trinity Knot example.
Get your own Trinity Knot on Amazon here

The triquetra is sometimes drawn weaving around a circle, symbolising the unity of the three parts.

The circle, in many belief systems, is a symbol of eternity.

Some final notes on the Triquetra 

Whether it is the eternity of God’s love or the eternal circle of life itself, the circle adds even more weight to the significance of the triquetra.

So, whether you’re Christian, Pagan, or somewhere in between, there’s a good chance that the Triquetra could hold some kind of personal significance and no one else can dictate what it should mean to you.

If you enjoyed this post, I would suggest learning about some other Celtic Symbols here.

Otherwise thanks for reading and be sure to share this article or Pin the image below:

Triquetra and its meaning
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