Ancient Monuments

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Ord, stone circle 635m WSW of

A Scheduled Monument in Huntly, Strathbogie and Howe of Alford, Aberdeenshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.3304 / 57°19'49"N

Longitude: -2.8609 / 2°51'39"W

OS Eastings: 348264

OS Northings: 826974

OS Grid: NJ482269

Mapcode National: GBR M99B.VJ1

Mapcode Global: WH7MB.00YS

Entry Name: Ord, stone circle 635m WSW of

Scheduled Date: 19 December 1934

Last Amended: 2 March 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM51

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: standing stone

Location: Auchindoir and Kearn

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Huntly, Strathbogie and Howe of Alford

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

Description

The monument comprises the remains of a stone circle dating to the Bronze Age, visible as two standing stone monoliths. It lies at the SW foot of Ord Hill, 230 m above sea level, in a NE-SW sloping cultivated field. The monument was first scheduled in 1934, however this area was inadequate; the rescheduling rectifies this.

The monument now comprises two granite boulders standing around 4 m apart on a WNW-ESE orientation. The NW stone is 1.7 m in height while the NE stone is 1.3 m in height. A 1902 survey noted another three stones that formed a part of the circle. Based on this, archaeologists provisionally classify the site as a recumbent stone circle, a ritual monument regarded as dating to the Bronze Age. Other remains of cairns and standing stones have been recorded in this field and the surrounding landscape.

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

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

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

Intrinsic characteristics: The monument is a well-preserved archaeological site. It is unexcavated and therefore has the potential to provide archaeological evidence of the religious practices of prehistoric peoples. The known period of use and quality of earlier survey documentation enhance this potential. Archaeological evidence for the remainder of circle is likely to survive beneath the ploughsoil.

Contextual characteristics: The site is a good example of a type known throughout Scotland. The monument may form part of a class of monument known as a recumbent stone circle which is unique to NE Scotland. It lies within a rich landscape of similar standing stones and circles.

Associative characteristics: The monument is the product of prehistoric peoples during the Bronze Age and demonstrates their religious and ritual practices.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to the understanding of the past, in particular the religious and ritual practices of Bronze-Age peoples in Scotland. Its relatively good preservation, known period of use and quality of earlier documentation enhance this potential, as does the fact that it lies within a landscape of monuments that are likely to be related. The loss of this example would affect our ability to understand the Bronze Age in Scotland as well as this particular landscape.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography

The RCAHMS records this monument as NJ42NE6; Aberdeenshire SMR as NJ42NE0006.

References:

Burl H A W 1973a, 'THE RECUMBENT STONE CIRCLES OF NORTH-EAST SCOTLAND', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 102, 79.

Burl A 1976a, THE STONE CIRCLES OF THE BRITISH ISLES, London and New Haven.

Coles F R 1902a, 'REPORT ON STONE CIRCLES IN ABERDEENSHIRE (INVERURIE, EASTERN PARISHES AND INSCH DISTRICTS) WITH MEASURED PLANS AND DRAWINGS OBTAINED UNDER THE GUNNING FELLOWSHIP', Proc Soc Antiq Scot 36, 563-5.

Aerial photographs:

AB 2940 PO View of the two surviving stones of the circle.

E 94485 PO Oblique aerial view of Upper Ord, taken from the NW, centred on stone circle 24.01.2000.

D 73911 View of the two surviving stones of the circle.

D 57892 View of North-West stone from South-East. (Scale in 0.5m divisions) 1999.

D 57893 The South-East stone viewed from North-East. (Scale in 0.5m divisions) 1999.

D 57894 General view from South. 1999.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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