Ancient Monuments

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Bodesbeck, standing stone 1180m east of

A Scheduled Monument in Annandale North, Dumfries and Galloway

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.3743 / 55°22'27"N

Longitude: -3.3241 / 3°19'26"W

OS Eastings: 316190

OS Northings: 609720

OS Grid: NT161097

Mapcode National: GBR 5679.EG

Mapcode Global: WH6WF.X59T

Entry Name: Bodesbeck, standing stone 1180m E of

Scheduled Date: 27 January 2010

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM12719

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: standing stone

Location: Moffat

County: Dumfries and Galloway

Electoral Ward: Annandale North

Traditional County: Dumfriesshire

Description

The monument comprises a single large monolith likely to be Neolithic or early Bronze Age in date (the third or second millennium BC). The stone occupies a position approximately 385m above sea level on the SE side of Moffatdale, where it sits on a terrace to the north of Bodesbeck Burn.

The earthfast stone measures around 1.25m in breadth by approximately 0.6m in thickness at the base, and stands to a height of around 1.45m.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on stone, to include the remains described and an area around in which evidence relating to its erection and use may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

The monument's cultural significance can be expressed as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics

This is a prominent standing stone that apparently still stands where it was erected it in prehistory. Buried deposits are likely to survive in the immediate area and may retain valuable information about the purpose of the monument, the people who created and used it, the methods used in its creation, dating evidence for its erection and for any later activity associated with the stone, including contemporary ceremonial and ritual landscapes. Standing stone sockets can contain packing stones and other archaeological material such as burial deposits. Other related features may surround them, including smaller stone settings, pits, burials and timber structures. It is clear that in some instances single standing stones represent the only surviving component of a larger stone monument (such as a stone alignment). The potential presence of associated artefacts and/or important environmental information in a pit beneath the stone, or in surrounding pits, reinforces the potential of the monument.

In this case, considerable effort would have been required to transport, position and erect the stone, demonstrating that it was a significant and worthwhile achievement to those who were responsible. Where it has been possible to date comparable monuments, they typically derive from the third or second millennium BC.

Contextual characteristics

The monument is a good representative of a widespread class. It has the potential to contribute to a better understanding of standing stones, particularly those of the Dumfries and Galloway area. Although there is a notable concentration of these monuments in Dumfries and Galloway, where there has been a long tradition of the erection of standing stones and related monuments such as stone circles and burial cairns, this example is one of relatively few in eastern Dumfries and Galloway. Due to the near total absence of evidence for settlement sites from the Neolithic, standing stones such as this are one of the main sources for archaeology to enhance understanding of the period and its socio-economic structure. The position of such monuments in the landscape is an apparently important factor in their location. This particular example stands on a terrace at the edge of Moffat Dale and has spectacular commanding views up and down the valley. It is also visible on the skyline when viewed from the side-valley of Bodesbeck Burn. Comparing and contrasting this monument with other examples of its type can give us valuable information on how and why the Neolithic and Bronze-Age peoples of the area placed such monuments in the landscape. Although the distribution of this type of monument does not appear to be uniform in eastern Dumfriesshire and Galloway, the connection to other similar monuments can also sometimes be an important factor in their location.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to contribute to the understanding of the past, in particular Neolithic and Bronze-Age standing stones and the part they played in ritual beliefs and practices. The loss of this well preserved and particularly carefully sited monument would significantly diminish our future ability to appreciate and understand this type of monument and its place within the landscape. Spatial analysis of this and other contemporary monuments may reveal valuable information on the layout and patterns of Neolithic and Bronze-Age ritual sites within the landscape. The loss of the monument would impede our understanding of the distribution of such monuments within the landscape and the nature and purpose of their erection and use.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography

RCAHMS records the site as NT10NE 10. The Dumfries and Galloway SMR as MDG8731.

References:

RCAHMS 1997, Eastern Dumfriesshire: An Archaeological Landscape, Edinburgh: RCAHMS.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Other nearby scheduled monuments

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