The Ogham alphabet is thought to be named after the Irish god Ogma. One theory of its origins is that it evolved out of a system of tallies used for accounting. Ogham is also known as or ogham craobh, beth luis fearn or beth luis nion.

About 500 Ogham inscriptions have been found in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England dating from between the 4th and 7th centuries AD. There are inscriptions in archaic forms of Gaelic and Pictish, which have not been deciphered. A handful of inscriptions featuring the Ogham script and the Latin alphabet have also been found.

While all surviving traces of Ogham are inscriptions on stone, it was probably more commonly inscribed on sticks, stakes and trees. Inscriptions generally take the form of somebody’s name and the name of a place and were probably used to mark boundaries.

Each letter is named after a tree or other plant and has a number of other associations.
Letters are linked together by a solid line, which represents the trunk of a tree, while the letters themselves represent branches or twigs. Ogham was usually written vertically (bottom to top) in inscriptions and horizontally (left to right) in manuscripts

The Eite (feather) and Eite thuathail (reversed feather) symbols are used at the beginning and end of sentences respectively.Made up of straight lines the ogham alphabet is easy to carve into stone and wood, unlike flowing letters and are therefore ideal at decorating toolslike wands and inscribing charms and candles.

Ogham is the Celtic alphabet. It is read from bottom to top, and occasionally right to left. The letters correspond to Celtic trees. In addition to the magic of their tree associations, they can also beused for divination.

The original Ogham alphabet is the following:

Beith

Birch
B
Purification, cleansing, new beginnings
Physical: You must rid yourself of negativity, unhelpful influences and bad thoughts for a new, fresh start.
Mental: Concentrate on your desire, the image of the result wanted must be held firmly in mind.
Spiritual: For a new beginning focus on the white of the birch, it stands out clearly from distractions and obstructions.

Luis

Rowan
L
Protection, instinctual knowledge,
Physical: You will keep your senses about you to distinguish good from bad, and harm from help.
Mental: You will not be swayed, tricked or beguiled. Keep your wits about you.
Spiritual: Your strength will turn away anything that threatens your purpose and your serenity. Be not afraid.

Fern

Alder
F,V
Decisions to be made, contact with the spirit world
Physical: Be aware of uniqueness in self and others. Keep your eyes open to see the unusual and acknowledge what is seen in another if at all possible.
Mental: You will utilize something you previously overlooked. Oracular skills are not easy to acknowledge. the mind is unwilling at times to deal with the intuitive part.
Spiritual: You offer spiritual aid and protection in a dispute. Let your intuition guide you.

Sail

Willow
S
Equilibrium, attaining balance
Physical: A comfortable relationship to the material world is full of lessons and cycles of changing values. Change is necessary for growth, and values are no exception to the rule.
Mental: To gain understanding of a particular concept, a steady accumulation of facts is the foundation that brings understanding. All cannot be learned in one lesson. Repetition is the key.
Spiritual: This is a period of taking it easy rather than full speed ahead. Learn to play with the cyclical nature of things.

Nion

Ash
N
Restriction or limitations
Physical: Your actions echo in the cosmos as a stone thrown in a pond casts ripples. Know you and the world are interconnected. Be aware of the effect of your actions.
Mental: Your problems or questions are not yours alone; others have the same ponderings. Look at the question in the wider context and ask opinions.
Spiritual: Endeavor to become aware that all things are connected. Balance your need with the Earth’s.

Uath

Hawthorn
H
Temporary limitations, obstacles
Physical: You need to work upon the physical condition of yourself. To better yourself you need to alter diet, smoking or eating properly. Healthy body can be attained by diet and exercise. A healthy body means a healthy mind.
Mental: You must open your mind to the self-imposed thickets of ignorance and false facts. Free your thoughts and cleanse your mind.
Spiritual: However hot the problem, the forge heat of overcoming it, in your spirit creates new and unexpected strengths.

Dair

Oak
D
Strength, endurance
Physical: A hands-on approach will nurture the skills you wish to have. Step through the door, one learns by doing.
Mental: You have accumulated acorns of wisdom, the time for dropping and sharing your wisdom is here.
Spiritual: You as a teacher or student must be tough and resilient despite life’s unpredictability as an Oak is to the bolt of lightening. Strong and wise.

Tinne

Holly
T
Unity, courage, guidance
Physical: Challenges will be overcome with unity and concerted effort. Ensure the cause is just.
Mental: As warriors train and retrain until what they do with spears is instinctive, so you too must train and learn daily.
Spiritual: Cultivate dynamic and instinctive intuition to respond to fast moving situations and accept the reality of here and now. Ensure the ability of slipping in and out of a great variety of behavior styles, to be able to respond to the environment at hand.

Coll

Hazel
C,K
Creativity, energy
Physical: Your skill in poetry, divination and meditation allows you to inspire others to increase their capacity in these arts. Example is the best teacher.
Mental: Allow the promptings of your intuition to bring ideas to the surface. Become a catalyst with those ideas.
Spiritual: Follow your intuition to the source, you will be rewarded with wisdom and your soul will ring with poetry.

Quert

Apple
Q
Choices, a fork in the road
Physical: Choice, while not easy, is necessary. Stop procrastinating, you will end up with nothing or an unsatisfying taste from each choice.
Mental: Many paths of learning are open to you – choose one! Better master of one than expert of none.
Spiritual: In your journey choose one of the Eight Paths to complete the others will follow.

Muin

M
Vine
Insight, spiritual growth
Physical: Unwind, if you then sense at a deep level that you must act in a certain way at this moment in order to deal with an issue; let intuition be your guide and do it.
Mental: Allow your senses to open to speed inner development as you learn to place trust in them when they are acting strongly. Instead of using reason constantly.
Spiritual: Open your inner self so it may harvest and gather all signs and omens that it is capable of understanding. Allow yourself this boon.

Gort

G
Ivy
Tread carefully, caution
Physical: Link with others turn out this is not the time to be alone.
Mental:Recognizegroup unconscious has an influence on you, absorb, and go inward to learn more about the self.
Spiritual: Enter group mind with joy, assist others in their spiritual journey as they assist in yours. We all are intertwined as the Ivy, their success is yours and vice versa.

nGéadal

Reed
NG
Disturbance, disruption, surprises
Mental: Your results are as sure as the intentions with which you began. Keep your target in sight. Do not be distracted.
Spiritual: Your journey has begun, surprise encounters and upsets are only to be expected. The skills you overcome these troubles with are as valuable as the trip itself.

Straif

Blackthorn
Z
Confusion, strife
Physical: Unexpected change, plans altered or ruined. No choice however unpleasant. Events take over forcing you down the unavoidable path. Take courage, issues must be faced, decisions are unavoidable.
Mental: Your negative view, clinging to old ways and facing challenges with anger and stubbornness will only make it worse and hurt you more. Accept the changes and move on.
Spiritual: Realize you and your life have changed radically, enter reborn.

Ruis

Elder
R
Endings, timelessness, croneage
Physical: Though one aspect of your life is over, another begins anew.
Mental: Changes from the old will bring creativity, to usher in new ideas and thoughts.
Spiritual: Links are continually formed as new phases of life and experience repeat in different forms that lead to renewal.

Ailm

White Fir
A
Foresight, perspective
Physical: In this issue you can see what is beyond and what is coming. You have the perception to see and to understand from the point where you stand. Take long viewpoint and foresee the future.
Mental: Receive from the past and present strength and healing from which to draw insight and knowledge for your future.
Spiritual: Be aware of your progress on your spiritual voyage.

Onn

Gorse
O
Discovery, abundance, goals met
Physical: Your search is over. What you seek shall be found. Continue on towards your goal.
Mental: Share the knowledge you have gathered, as the bee shares pollen and nectar gathered from the Furze.
Spiritual: There is an abundance of blessings in your spiritual voyage, do not stockpile and hoard. Share with others, you will be rewarded.

Úr

Heather
U
Rest, suspension, hibernation
Physical: Listen to your body’s message. The time for healing is now.
Mental: Do not permit yourself further stress. Go inward for healing and respite. This issue can wait.
Spiritual: Integrate inner with self to heal and be whole, to build the foundation for what will follow.

Eadhadh

Poplar
E
Endurance, speech, communication
Physical: Whatever challenge you now face, you will endure and conquer with determination. You can bend and not break.
Mental: Shield your thoughts from the fears and doubts about the odds you must overcome. A positive attitude will prevail.
Spiritual: Do not give in to worldly pressures, great assistance is yours on your journey to rebirth.

Iodhadh

Yew
I, J, Y
Change, endings, maturation
Physical: Something held for many years must be passed on, let go. It serves you no longer.
Mental: The knowledge that nothing lasts forever will bring ease at this time.
Spiritual: Changes are coming to you, you have a tendency to try and hang on, let go and experience the change as an ally not an enemy.

Koad

Grove
CH, KH, EA
Wisdom gained by seeing past illusions.
Physical: You may be participating in a resolution of conflict.
Mental: Misunderstandings can be ironed out if all parties will meet, work towards this.
Spiritual: You must try to hold the energy of judgment, of life aligned to the values that are above reproach. By example do we teach others.

Ór

Spindle
TH, OI
Finish obligations and tasks or you cannot move forward.
Physical: Fulfill your obligations, not for reward but because you must, honor demands it and the greatest happiness will be yours.
Mental: Sudden realization gives you the right and obligation to question authority.
Spiritual: Develop your consciousness of the right relationship with others in the community and tribe.

Uilleand

Honeysuckle
P, PE, UI
Proceed with caution
Physical: Pursue your desires, allow yourself to experience pleasure – you are not a monk. By joy do we learn, not by abstinence of what we enjoy.
Mental: The hidden secrets you pursue are not as impenetrable as you suspect. They are simply muted by background noises, home in on the secrets, put aside the distractions.
Spiritual: Remain true to your beliefs and principles in your journey to the self. Follow the Honeysuckle in safety and joy.

Pion

Pine
AE, X, XI
Physical: Use the guilt you have to clear the slate with those you have hurt and renew the relationships.
Mental: Creativity can be released as you release the guilt. Let it go and transform the energy from guilt to positive action.
Spiritual: Use the discomfort of your guilt to pursue essential changes within yourself. Transform the guilt and yourself.

Phagos

Beech
PH, IO
New experiences and information coming.
Physical: Reviving memories will bring understanding that is needed. Do not neglect the past it is rich in experience.
Mental: Heed the echoes within your mind, they will give wisdom to make the changes necessary.
Spiritual: Do not discount the past as old fashioned, words written, buildings erected and experiences gained have come with a price.

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