HER BONE BUNDLE / si knâmi grendyo

A Book of Words curated & woven by CAROLYN HILLYER

Being a lyrical exploration into the mythic spirit of the Proto-Celtic ancestral mother tongue and her imaginative re-awakening for song, ceremony & celebration of the wild earth.
With accompanying CD album of songs & chants collated from previous original recordings in the ancient mother tongue. There is also a downloadable version of the album included with the bundle.
Includes limited edition illustration from the book for use as book mark or postcard.

340 pages, 12.5cms x 14cms, printed on recycled eco-craft card & fully
sustainable paper. Book, album and postcard come packaged in an
unbleached cotton drawstring bag. Price includes £4 postage
within the UK; extra post added at checkout for international orders.

SKU B7 Category Tag



This is a book of bone words gathered from an ancient mother tongue that was spoken by the Bronze Age ancestors across the islands of what is now Britain (and throughout a wide area of what is now Europe) but which is no longer a living language. This is an ancestral bone language because it has been found hidden deep within the body of living languages; it has been remembered and rekindled. This is a mother tongue because a tribe of other languages was born from it; and because these words were used by our ancient women to communicate with clan, with land, with nature and with spirit.

The words of Proto-Celtic (or Common Celtic) are 4000 years old and were archaeologically reconstructed by gathering up words (like ripened fruits into a basket) from different branches of the more recent diverse Celtic languages, words that are the same or closely similar, then stepping back in time to lay down this basket of communication into an earlier ancestral age. These interpretive studies have unfolded over a hundred years and more, resulting in a progression of detailed academic lexicons which have provided the feathers for the wings on which this book about the ritual use of ancestral language has taken flight.


With introductory chapters, an extensive Proto-Celtic to English lexicon, nineteen themed and expanded English to Proto-Celtic lexicons and examples of mother tongue songs and chants. This volume is partly a river of poetic inspiration, partly a source of ancient ritual elements, partly a personal work book awaiting your own journeys with these bone words, partly a profound honouring of ancestral roots. It is also a welcome to the eight sacred women of the Mâtîrja, anchored in the pagan and shamanic traditions of these islands and mainland Europe four thousand years ago.

Awakening the Bones – Roundhouse Hearth & Granite Tomb – Women of the Mâtîrja – Weaving the Words: Travelling with the Bundle – Beading the Necklace: Creating with Bone Words – Sounding the Bones: Speaking the Mother Tongue – Three Thousand Ancestral Voices – Words for Earth, Land and Season – Words for Plants, Herbs and Trees – Words for Wind and Wild Waters – Words for Wild and Herded Creatures – Words for Human Body and Relationships – Words from the Hearth Fire – Words from Home and Clan – Words from the Cooking Place – Words from the Loom – Words for Sacred Ceremony, Music and Myth – Words for Death and Darkness – Words for Life and Light – Words for Breaking and Mending : Words for the Journey – Words for Communication – Words that Describe the Being of Things – Words that Describe the Doing of Things – Words for Colour, Counting and Time Passing – Words that Form the Linking Beads – Songs, Prayers and Chants

This new publication has been designed as a chunky, earthy-textured, pocket-sized book that is beautiful to handle and easy to use. It is printed in Devon on 100% recycled Eco-Craft card (UK) and Arctic Paper Mundestals (Sweden) from one of the most environmentally sustainable paper mills in the world. 340 pages, 12.5 cms wide, 15 cms high, 2.5 cms deep, with three original b/w photo-sketch illustrations. The book, album and postcard come packaged in an unbleached cotton drawstring bag.


Songs and chants sung in the 4000-year-old Proto-Celtic ancestral mother tongue, featuring recordings from the albums Nine Prayers North, Bones and Winter Folded Everything Inside a Shawl of Feathers. This album is available only with the book. Album time: 32 minutes

There is also a downloadable high quality mp3 version of this album included with the bundle.

kadjo nanȋ – sago an snȋjo – enigenâ werito – sondo abonyâ – kamawo an okk-nu – galweyo – noibo nouslo nokʷe – Do You Remember When This Was All Forest? (2 parts) – Wounds of Winter – A Promise of Wolves



Why is this ancestral language significant or even relevant to us in our now-existing world? Because language is part of identity and when we identify with something that fits our deep sense of ourselves and our place in this world, then we grow in strength and clarity, trust and confidence. Because this ancient mother tongue offers us a new way of describing our sacred relationship with the soul of our world. Because when we use ancient language to express our deepest, truest, most raw relationship with a wild place, a landscape, a piece of the Earth, then we begin to recognise and to unravel our intangible yearning for home and to connect with our own indigeny: we feel that we belong. Because when we know that we belong, we also know how to celebrate and honour the natural world of which we are a part and we come to understand more profoundly our responsibilities towards it. Because when we realise the truth and magnitude of those responsibilities, we know we must work together to meet them. Because when we all meet our responsibilities as human people indigenous to this Earth, then we stand some chance of soothing and mending, healing and protecting what we, as a species, have broken.

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