European Paganism and Christianization

The Decolonial Atlas

The Christianization of Europe.png The spread of Christianity throughout Europe.

Generalized Religious Classifications of Europe Circa 1 CE.png Pre-Christian Religions of Europe Around the Time of Jesus

In contemporary conversations about decolonization, this is a point which is often overlooked – Europeans are indigenous too. Before the spread of Christianity, Europe was home to a profusion of  religious beliefs, most of which are pejoratively referred to as paganism. The word derives from the Latin paganus meaning ‘of the countryside,’ essentially calling them hicks or bumpkins. Some of these pre-Christian belief systems are listed below.

A note on the categorization – Indigenous religions are, by their nature, nebulous and dynamic. Unlike the relatively uniform Christian Church, indigenous religions have no codified dogmas and no universally ordained ways to worship. Celtic polytheism, for instance, was less of a religion in the modern sense and more of a spectrum of beliefs and practices. The Celtics tribes in Ireland, Gaul, and Galatia may have had some common rituals…

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