Abacus Stone, Holden, Silsden, West Yorkshire

Cup-Marked Stone (lost):  OS Grid Reference – SE 060 440

Getting Here

This carving is somewhere between Rivock’s western woodland edge, into the meadowlands next to it, down towards Robin Hood’s Wood.  Good luck if you find it!

Archaeology & History

The lost Abacus Stone design
The lost Abacus Stone design

I found this carved ‘design’ when I was but a nipper, as they say!  I was up all day, bimbling abaat checking out the stones and stuff, with notepad and pencil and found a number of cup-marked stones that I hadn’t come across in Stuart Feather’s surveys (the Hedge’s [1986] survey hadn’t been published at the time).   I’ve been back up round the Holden and Robin Hood’s Wood district several times in recent months, hoping to re-locate this carving — but without success.  I recall that when I found it all those years ago, how the design itself seemed almost ‘numeric’ in quality to look at (hence its title) and was hoping to come across it again, but the little fella’s hiding away somewhere!

The faded design was etched onto a small, slightly raised natural  stone, no more than 3ft x 3ft and about 2 feet high.  I thought that it might have been Boughey & Vickerman’s carving number 53 (Hedges survey, no.17), but it wasn’t to be. If anyone finds it again, I’d love to know!


  1. Bennett, Paul, Ramblings of Archaeological Remnants in West Yorkshire, unpublished: Shipley 1984.

© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian

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