Prayer – Ùrnaigh
The cross is a deeply meaningful symbol and each one in this collection is inspired by the rich legacy of stone carving to be found on Iona. The designs are drawn from the high standing crosses of St. Martin and St. John and the collection of carved stones to be found around the Abbey cloisters and in the museum. Myth and legend surrounding St. Columba also play their part in the cross designs, as do the complex interlacements and symbolism from the Book of Kells. The gift of a cross whether to oneself or another is a personal and often important act and we are happy to advise you in your choice.
Eternity - Sìorraidheachd
The unbroken line, a never-ending interlacement is the most predominant motif of Celtic art and it has fascinated great artists from da Vinci to Durer.
Wonderfully complex in their original forms, our jewellery designs are inspired by the carvings in Iona Abbey and illustrations from the Book of Kells, comprising foliage and abstract animal forms known as zoomorphics. The notion of Eternity, which they are thought to symbolise is equally abstract yet endures in our imaginations
Trinity – Trianaid
The Trinity. Perfectly balanced. The three in one, a symbol of unity and continuity, the Trinity is one of the most enduring of Celtic knots and is found in many of the traditional designs by Ritchie and MacCormick. Influenced by the carvings in the Abbey cloisters and the Book of Kells, these pieces still have as much presence today as when originally created.
Sea – muir OR na mara
To reach Iona takes two sea crossings. The mainland becomes further removed from sight and mind and one arrives feeling a journey has been made. Our sea collection features galleys and imagined creatures inspired by the medieval stone carvings on Iona. The galley designs are often shown sailing west, which symbolises carrying the soul to “Tir-nan-Og”, the land of eternal youth which lies over the western horizon.
Land – Tìr
Iona’s landscape holds many stories and footprints; pilgrims, crofters, islanders and visitors have all left their mark on the land. Memories and patterns of the landscape real and imagined are reflected in designs of plants and foliage, tree of life symbols inhabited by strange and wonderful creatures, symbolizing the abundance of the natural world.
Sky – iarmailt
Iona’s canopy is a boundless sky of ever changing light and colour, as one weather front moves on to make space for another. Birds navigate this territory with such seeming ease that in Columban times they were seen as messengers between heaven and earth. Columba was known as Colum Cille meaning ‘Dove of the Church’. In his native Ireland the crane was considered a holy bird, connected to life and death and Columba is attributed to nursing a crane back to life during his time on Iona. Saints such as Columba would have been considered able to speak the language of birds, so bringing them closer to the voices of the heavens.
Stone – clach
Hold a stone of Iona in your hand and you hold the history of the world. The whole fabric of the island is created from some of the oldest stone we know. Too old even for fossils, Iona has become famous for its serpentine, collected as a talisman for centuries. Known as Columba’s tears or mermaid’s tears the greenstones are a prized reward for whiling away a day or two along the island’s shores. Equally beautiful is Iona’s white marble and the quartz intruded sedimentary stone found on the south west side of the island. Each piece of our stone jewellery begins with a search for these treasures, a lovely task, which we are happy to carry out for you.