One of the symbols the Aryans had was the sun wheel, representing the sun and originally meaning "well being". Originally a letter of the ancient Indo-European Sanskrit language, this emblem was carried by Celts, Germans and Slavs throughout their wanderings, with the Celtic Cross later incorporated into Christian symbolism. The sun-wheel was developed into the sign known today as the swastika and incorporated into the Indo-Aryan's religion, from where it was transported over into the Hindu religion, which sprang from a corruption of the Indo-Aryans' beliefs. This is the reason why the swastika can be seen to this day in Hindu temples.
As an enduring symbol of the Indo-European peoples wherever they went, the swastika is found in all the lands where these people settled. Some examples:
1. The Swastika in India:
Above: The swastika can be seen on a carving called an ayagaptha, in Mathura, India. The emblem is one of the last remains of the tribe of Nordic Indo-Europeans - who called themselves Aryans - who invaded India. In that land, they were eventually absorbed into the overwhelming Nonwhite mass, creating the caste system still present in that country to this day.
2. The Swastika in Classical Greece:
Above: An example of how the swastika was also used as a symbol in Classical Greece. Here it can be seen as a decoration on the clothing of a picture of Athene, the Goddess of Wisdom, the arts and war - and also patron of the city of Athens. This detail is from a Greek vase dating from approximately 500 BC.
3. The Swastika in Classical Rome:
Above: The Indo-European origins of the Romans - in particular the Latini tribe - are apparent through their liberal use of the swastika as an emblem. Here the swastika can be seen upon the Ara Pacis Augustae: the altar built to commemorate the peace established by Augustus, consecrated 4 July 13 BC. The swastika can also be seen in a virtually identical format in many Classical Greek designs: hence it is often called a "Greek key" pattern.
4. The Swastika in the Viking era
Above: The Indo-European origins of the Vikings is illustrated by this detail from a very well preserved Viking ship uncovered by archeologists in Scandinavia, known as the Osberg ship, circa 800 AD. A handle mount on a bucket found in the ship depicts a figure carrying a shield with four swastika sun emblems in its corners. The fact that the swastika appears as a symbol from Scandinavia to Italy to India indicates precisely how far the Indo-European influence was felt.
5. The Isle of Man Triskelion, ca. 10 Century AD.
According to the islanders, this symbol was of Norsk [Norwegian] origin, and was displayed on the armorial bearings of the Kings of Norway.
The Triskelion also appears on this 6th Century B.C. Greek vase - further evidence of cultural links through race and time:
6. The Swastika and Adolf Hitler
Above: The sun wheel, or swastika, was a symbol in the ancient Nordic Indo-European language, Sanskrit, meaning "well being" or "good", from the fact that the sun was regarded as a source of goodness. This symbol was carried by invading Indo-Europeans into Europe, India and even China. The ancient link to the Indo-European people was then the reason why Adolf Hitler chose the swastika as his movement's emblem, as pictured here.
7. The Swastika in Western Architecture
Prior to its demonizing through its association with Adolf Hitler, the swastika was a popular motif in much of western architecture, from the Opera Building in Paris through to the front door of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Far left: The entrance to the 'Met' and alongside, a close-up view of the swastika motif, prominently displayed over the heads of thousands of unsuspecting visitors.