Hallstatt, we call it) was lovely in its way but highly traditional, much of it hard to distinguish from art of the Bronze Age. La Tène Art was revolutionary, the static geometry of earlier eras giving way to swirling evocations of motion and change.
I have been a narrow, gilded spear,From what we can tell, it seems that these questions of time and change were much discussed in Iron Age Europe, for example among the pre-Socratic philosophers in Greece; the Druids ended up with a vision of the universe as a process of ongoing transformation, in which what we call an object or even a person is just a glimpse of time's endless river flashing by, like the flicker of a flame. La Tène metalwork puts this understanding into solid form.
I believe in what is clear,
I have been a raindrop in the air,
I have been the furthest star,
I have been word among letters,
I have been book in the beginning
I have been light of the lamp. . . .
I have been path, I have been eagle,
I have been fisherman's boat on the sea,
I have been shield in the battle,
I have been string of a harp,
In this way for nine years.
In the water, in the foam,
I have been sponge in the fire,
I have been tree in the uncharted wood.