The Celts (1992)

The Celts, released in 1992, is a remastered re-release of Enya's 1987 debut album Enya. It features music written and recorded for the soundtrack of the 1986 documentary television series by BBC, The Celts.

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In 1992, after Enya gained worldwide commercial success with her following two albums Watermark (1988) and Shepherd Moons (1991), Enya was remastered by Arun Chakraverty and redesigned with new artwork designed by Sooky Choi with photography by David Scheinmann. The album was reissued on 16 November 1992 as The Celts by WEA in Europe and Reprise Records in the United States. The Celts outperformed its original sales, reaching a new peak of No. 10 on the UK Albums Chart for two weeks from the week of 28 November 1992. It returned for two separate weeks 1993, one week in 1996, and six consecutive weeks in 1998. In the United States, the album sold a further one million copies.

Aside from the enhanced sound, The Celts also contains a longer version of the instrumental song "Portrait" (which runs for 1:23, found on the original release Enya), entitled "Portrait: Out Of The Blue" (3:11). In 2009, The Celts had a limited Japanese reissue on Super High Material CD with "Eclipse" added as a bonus track.

The instrumental song "Boadicea" was adapted and used, in three other artists' songs: "Ready or Not" by The Fugees; "I Dont Wanna Know" by Mario Winans and "You Should Really Know" by Pirates. The Fugees used the song without official permission. The case was almost taken to court, but Enya decided to make a personal agreement with The Fugees.

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The Celts lyrics

From the BBC documentary The Celts.

Roma Ryan

Hi-ri, Hi-ro, Hi-ri.
Hoireann is O, ha hi, ra ha, ra ho ra.
Hoireann is O, ha hi, ra ha, ra ha ra.
Hi-ri, Hi-ra, Hi-ri.

Saol na saol,
T�s go deireadh.
T� muid beo
Go deo.

Saol na saol,
T�s go deireadh.
T� muid beo
Go deo.

Hi-ri, Hi-ra, Hi-ri,
Hoireann is O, ho hi, ra ha, ra ha ra.



Life of lives,
[From the] Beginning to the end.
We are alive

"Hi-ri, Hi-ra, Hi-ri" and "Hoireann is O, ho hi, ra ha, ra ha ra" are Celtic spells, and don't have a translation.

Aldebaran lyrics

Roma Ryan

Codladh fada,
Codladh domhain.
Éirigh! Amharc síos

Siúil liom tríd an réalta dearg.
Deireadh, deireadh an turas.
Réaltóg, réaltóg dearg.


Long sleep,
Deep sleep.
Rise! Look down

Walk with me through the red star.
The end, end of the journey.
Star, red star.

I Want Tomorrow lyrics

Roma Ryan

Dawn breaks; there is blue in the sky.
Your face before me though I don't know why.
Thoughts disappearing like tears from the Moon.

Waiting here, as I sit by the stone,
they came before me, those men from the Sun.
Signs from the heavens say I am the one.

Now you're here, I can see your light,
this light that I must follow.
You, you may take my life away, so far away.
Now I know I must leave your spell
I want tomorrow.

Now you're here, I can see your light,
this light that I must follow.
You, you may take my life away, so far away.
Now I know I must leave your spell
I want tomorrow.

March Of The Celts lyrics

Roma Ryan

Beo go deo.

Ole ole ole,
ole ole ole ole ole ole ole,
ole ole ole,
ole ole ole.

Marbh go deo.


Alive forever.
Dead forever.

Deireadh An Tuath lyrics

Roma Ryan

'Sí an ghealach,
mall san oíche.
'Sí an ghrian.
Fán liom go Deo.

Hoireann is O Hi O Ho ra Ha.

'Sí na Samhna,
tús na Bliain Ur.
'Sí an crann marbh.
Deireadh an tuath.

Hoireann is O Ho O Ho ro Ho.
Hoireann is O Ho O Ho ro Ho.


End Of The Tribe

It is the Moon,
late in the night.
It is the Sun.
Stay with me forever.

It is Halloween,
beginning of the New Year.
It's the dead tree.
End of the tribe

Triad (St. Patrick) lyrics


Tabhair dom ghrása,
Fíormhac Dé.
Tabhair dom do neartsa,
An ghrian gheal glé.



Give me your love,
true son of God.
Give me strength,
the clear bright sun.

Dan Y Dwr lyrics

Roma Ryan

Dan y dwr, tawelwch sydd.
Dan y dwr, galwaf i.
Nid yw'r swn gyda fi.

Dan y dwr, tawelwch am byth.
Dan y dwr, galwaf i.
Nid yw'r swn ddim fwy gyda fi.


Beneath The Waters

Beneath the waters, there is silence.
Beneath the waters, I call you.
There is no company with me.

Beneath the waters, silent forever.
Beneath the waters, I call you.
The sound is no longer with me.

Linear notes

The Celts

As this is primarily a soundtrack project, we felt it would be appropriate to include the stories, images and thoughts behind the various themes which embrace this album. They represent histories, mythologies, impressions, hopes and our individual interpretations of them.


The Red giant Star, Aldebaran, found in the constellation of Taurus, is the Eye of the bull. From the Arabic, Al Dabaran, it means 'the follower' as it ''follows'' the Pleiades. This piece portrays future Celts passing Aldebaran on their journey to new territories, continuing the migratory pattern which was so predominant in their early history.

I Want Tomorrow

�thoughts of the present�

March of the Celts

�echoes from the past�

Deireadh an Tuath

Opened earth, spirits, incantations that earth may once again be fertile and thus ensure the future of the celts. Samhain, the greatest Celtic Festival, marked the beginning of their New Year - the 31st October - which is now celebrated as Hallow'een or All Souls night.

The Sun in the Stream

Inspired by the legend of the Salmon of Knowledge. In the Grove of the nine wise Hazel trees, from the sacred pool, the River Boyne flowed. The salmon feasted on the rich crimson nuts fallen from the hazel trees, and hence possessed all the truth in the world.

To Go Beyond

�reflection on the future�


This is based on the story of the Fairy King Midir and his love for the beautiful princess Etain. It is a story of great love, jealousy, secrets and endurance, in which Etain is banished and transformed into a pool of water, from which she emerges as a butterfly. Although immortal she is born a mortal child, one thousand and twelve years after her first birth.


Epona was revered as the Horse Goddess and is portrayed with birds as well as horses, with a bag or cornucopia. She is closely identified with Rhiannon. Her birds are reputed to lull the living to sleep and to awaken the dead.

Triad (Saint Patrick)

The son of a Roman official, Patrick was captured by a raiding party of Celts when a boy, and spent six years in captivity.  He escaped, became a priest and returned to Ireland. According to legend it is St. Patrick who is responsible for Ireland's conversion to Christianity and the final loss of the old Celtic beliefs.

C� Chulainn

C� Chulainn means the "hound of Cullan". As a child his name was "setanta" meaning 'the little'. He became C� Chulainn when he killed the watchdog of the smith Cullan, and so undertook to guard the smiths house in place of the dog. C� Chulainn is one of the great Irish heroes. The most famous deeds of this hero are found in the saga T�in B� Cualgne (the cattle raid of Cooley).


Oisin which means "little fawn" left his home to journey to Tir na n Og, the Land of Youth, with Niamh Cinn Oir, "Niamh of the Head of Gold". Timelessness - he stayed 300 years, though never aged. On his return to Ireland he found his contemporaries long dead, and Ireland now had St. Patrick and Christianity. Putting his foot upon the earth, he lost Tir na n Og, and so aged and died.


Out of the Blue�


Boadicea, or Boudicca, meaning Victorious, was Queen of the Iceni tribe of East Anglia. She led a rebellion in 60 A.D. against the Romans, destroying the cities of Colchester, St. Albans and capturing London. She was eventually defeated by the Romans, and rather than be humiliated by them, she poisoned herself.

Bard Dance

The Bard, in ancient Celtic times was a man of great importance. His foremost function was in the praise of his king. He also entertained the assembly, sometimes in eulogy, sometimes in satire. Together with the Druid, Warrior and Silversmith, he represents the image of the ancient Celt.

Dan y Dwr

Beneath the waters� the village Capel Celyn. This village in Wales was submerged, against much protest and struggle by its inhabitants, in order to accommodate a reservoir. This is a lament for the loss of Capel Celyn, memories now held beneath the water.


Year Chart Position
1990 Top New Age Albums (US) 14
1992 Official Album Chart (UK) 10


Guest musicians:
  • I Want Tomorrow: electric guitar by Arty McGlynn
  • The Sun In The Stream: uillean pipes by Liam O'Flionn
  • To Go Beyond II: violin by Patrick Halling

Produced by Nicky Ryan
Engineered by Nigel Reid, except tracks 2 and 4, by Nicky Ryan
Music composed by Enya
Arranged by Enya and Nicky Ryan
Lyrics by Roma Ryan

Published by EMI Songs Ltd
Mastered by Arun
Photography by David Scheinmann
Designed by Sooky Choi

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