Dating coptic crosses
Ringed crosses similar to older Continental forms appeared in Ireland and Scotland in incised stone slab artwork and artifacts like the Ardagh chalice.However, the shape achieved its greatest popularity by its use in the monumental stone high crosses, a distinctive and widespread form of Insular art.A staple of Insular art, the Celtic cross is essentially a Latin cross with a nimbus surrounding the intersection of the arms and stem.Scholars have debated its exact origins, but it is related to earlier crosses featuring rings.
In 1857, Henry O'Neill published Illustrations of the Most Interesting of the Sculptured Crosses of Ancient Ireland.
The form gained new popularity during the Celtic Revival of the 19th century; the name "Celtic cross" is a convention dating from that time.
The shape, usually decorated with interlace and other motifs from Insular art, became popular for funerary monuments and other uses, and has remained so, spreading well beyond Ireland.
Although there were doubts on the constitutionality of the ban, it was upheld in a decision of the supreme court.
In Italy, there is a similar ban, deriving from Legge Mancino (the "Mancino Act", from the Minister of Interior who enacted the law), although there are some examples of the use of the Celtic cross as a Roman Catholic symbol in Northern Italy.