Cup-Marked Stone: OS Grid Reference – NN 53466 36485
Follow the same directions to reach the Duncroisk Crosses stone. From here, look up the slope to your right and you’ll see the line of fencing running uphill. Follow this until you reach the ruined remains of the old sheepfold building. From here, look towards the tree-lined gorge of Duncroisk Burn, a few hundred yards west and walk towards it for about 50-60 yards. There’s a group of three rocks hereby, two are large, but the carving’s on the smallest one in the middle.
Archaeology & History
This cup-marked stone was rediscovered as a result of the fine archaeological survey work by that Glasgow bunch of Certified Field Archaeologists, in their assessment of remains in and around Duncroisk Farm. As well as mentioning — albeit briefly — the carvings of Duncroisk Farm and Duncroisk Crosses, Dugald MacInnes (2001) and his team came across another that hadn’t been recorded before. Described in their survey as ‘feature 2’, he told,
“Some 20 metres downslope from the sheep fank and about 60 metres NW from it, there is a group of large boulders. On the southeast sloping face of one of these there are three previously unrecorded cup-marks. These are oriented vertically on a northeast to southwest alignment and are no more than 4cm apart. They are all about 7cm in diameter and 2.5cm deep.”
The carved rock is a relatively small one sitting roughly in between two much larger rocks, both of which are easily visible from the Duncroisk Crosses stone less than 100 yards down the slope. It’s probably only gonna be of interest to the rock-art purists among you and some may even question its veracity, particularly the bottom of the three cups, which gives the impression of being unfinished. If you visit the site in summer and autumn it will be much harder to find, as it gets overgrown with bracken. (we did take a number of photos of this stone, but managed to somehow delete them all before saving to disk – so have gotta check it again when we next visit here)
- MacInnes, Dugald, An Archaeological Field Survey of a Deserted Settlement at Duncroisk Farm, Glen Lochay, Association of Certified Field Archaeologists: Glasgow 2001.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian