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Achnabreck Prehistoric Rock Art, Scotland

Monday, November 02, 2009

This site can be found at the southern end of Kilmartin Glen which itself is packed with tangible evidence of our prehistory forefathers as manifested in standing stones, stone circles and burial cairns.

The 'artists' at Achnabreck used a pre-existing canvas in the form of hard, ice-smoothed metamorphic rock. (During the ice-age Scotland was covered in glaciers up to one mile deep.)

The driver, purpose or function of these carvings is not known, we can only speculate on the mindset of the peoples who inhabited the area some four thousand years ago.

Motifs include:

  • Cup at he centre of concentric rings.

  • Oval and round cups of varying sizes.

  • Cup and duct at the centre of concentric rings.

  • One group of cup-centred rings cuts into another.

  • Cup and rings with long ducts.

  • A horned spiral
Overall, there are some 323 carvings comprising 183 cup marks, 135 cup and ring marks, 2 spirals and a few other designs. Some key features:

  • All carvings with four or more concentric rings have at least one radial groove.
  • The majority of grooves run downhill
  • The carvings are virtually invisible in the noonday midsummer sin but very prominent in low midwinter sun.


The visitor to Kilmartin Glen should include this site in the tour.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 1:19 PM  0 comments


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