Cup-and-Ring Stone: OS Grid Reference – NT 714 275
Archaeology & History
“In the field “not far from the cairn” (just E of the farm), was a small convex gritstone boulder 25cm by 15cm by 15cm (¾ft x ½ft x ½ft). On its fairly smooth surface is:Now housed in the National Museum of Antiquities in Edinburgh, this little-known petroglyph was rediscovered in 1957 by a Mr G.F. Ritchie, not far from the once-large Kalemouth neolithic tomb. A carving that seems to be quite isolated (no others are known about in this area), this incomplete four-ringed design was in all probability a stray rock that came out of the cairn—although we don’t know this for sure. It was described in Ron Morris’ petroglyph survey, where he told us,
“a cup-and-four-rings with 2 parallel grooves from the inner ring (which is incomplete) through the others (which are gapped)—the outer two being now incomplete also—a form of ‘keyhole pattern’.”
A near-identical carving on a similiar-shaped portable stone can be seen in Galashiels museum, whose history has seemingly been forgotten.
- Morris, Ronald W.B., “The cup-and-ring marks and similar sculptures of Scotland: a survey of the southern Counties – part 2,” in Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, Scotland, volume 100, 1967.
- Morris, Ronald W.B., “The Cup-and-Ring and Similar Early Sculptures of Scotland; Part 2 – The Rest of Scotland except Kintyre,” in Transactions of the Ancient Monuments Society, volume 16, 1969.
- Morris, Ronald W.B., The Prehistoric Rock Art of Southern Scotland, BAR: Oxford 1981.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian