5.2 What Is a Bard?



5.2 What Is a Bard?


Definition: Bard (n). 1 a poet, traditionally one reciting epics. 2 the winner of a prize for Welsh Verse at an Eisteddfod.

In Celtic Tradition a Bard is recognised as a combination of the following:

  • Poet
  • Storyteller
  • Musician
  • Remembrancer
  • Voice of the people/the tribe/the land/the ancestors.
  • Celebrant/eulogist
  • Seer-poet (Awenyddion)

In modern times the guidelines of a Bard are:

  • Remember and recite
  • Tell the stories of old and create new ones
  • Compose and perform poems
  • Research and disseminate Bardic lore
  • Use a musical instrument of some kind
  • Use the magic words for healing and inspiring, in a responsible way
  • Teach, either directly or indirectly
  • Raise the Awen
  • Have a basic understanding of the Ogham
  • Ideally be able to speak one of the Celtic languages
  • Have a mythic legacy – be steeped in myths, legends, and folk tales and recognise the different characters and common motifs.
  • Explain Bardic claims. Enter or judge eisteddfodau
  • Promote peace, reconciliation, understanding and healing.



© Gwion chan Beithe

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