Cup-Marked Stone: OS Grid Reference – NN 79744 47263
Also Known as:
- Croft Moraig – Stone D
Follow the same directions for the Croft Moraig stone Circle. Then check out the largest of the fallen or elongated stones on the northwest side of the ring, with a smoothed sloping surface, just at the side of the overgrown stone platform on which it rests. Y’ can’t really miss it.
Archaeology & History
When William Gillies (1938) wrote about the carvings at the Croft Moraig stone circle, he told how, previously, Fred Coles,
“noticed that several of the upright stones…show cup-markings on their perpendicular surfaces. Some of these are quite distinct, but others are so worn through weathering that they can only be traced with the fingers.”
This is one of them. Barely visible at the best of times, the cup-markings are faded and very hard to see unless daylight conditions are just right. As you can see in the photos, several distinct cup-like impressions are visible, but it only appears that two of them are cup-marks. The others seem to be more geophysical in nature – but I’d love to be wrong!
At the SSW edge of the circle, 13 yards (11.75m) away, is the Croft Moraig cup-and-ring stone.
The great northern Antiquarian Fred Coles (1910) noted that this particular stone (stone D in his ground-plan of the circle) had “been polished by the sliding of generations of children”. This playful action on stones elsewhere in the UK and around the world sometimes relates to fertility rites (i.e., the spirit of the stone could imbue increased fertility upon the practitioner), but Mr Coles made no mention of such rituals here.
- Coles, Fred, “Report on Stone Circles Surveyed in Perthshire,” in Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, Scotland, volume 44, 1910.
- Gillies, William A., In Famed Breadalbane, Munro Press: Perth 1938.
- Yellowlees, Sonia, Cupmarked Stones in Strathtay, Scotland Magazine: Edinburgh 2004.
Acknowledgements: Many thanks to hardcore crew for our various visits here: to Paul Hornby, Lisa Samson, Fraser Harrick, James Elkington, Penny & Thea Sinclair.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian