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Friday 18 December 2009

Bluestone monoliths

Callum and Finley -- bluestone monolith in Tycanol Wood, Pembs

Bluestone monoliths or orthostats cause great excitement in Wiltshire, but they are all over the place in Pembrokeshire. This one is on the north side of the Preseli Hills, and is made (like many others in the area) of bluish dolerite. Probably it is local, from the Fishguard Volcanic series of rocks. Such rocks have been used since the Neolithic, usually very close to their places of origin, for cromlechs, standing stones, lintels and window sills, headstones for graves, and (as here) as gateposts. It is virtually impossible to say which of these stones are prehistoric and which are modern -- the collection and use of the stones goes on to this day.........

And forget about the idea that there was a "bluestone quarry" -- stones have been collected from the litter or scatter of elongated stones right across the North Pembrokeshire landscape. The collectors -- now as in the Neolithic -- have been opportunists and pragmatists driven by utilitarian motives rather than sacred or ritual ones.

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