The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Cothiemuir Wood

Stone Circle


I've deleted my previous images of Cothiemuir... they told me little about what it is to be here. An irony, perhaps, since the visitor - nay, the honoured guest - assumes this woodland clearing is merely the environment chosen for this shattered RSC's retirement.... and far removed from that of its 'working life'. Yeah, trees and a'gazing at Madame de la Luna are mutually exclusive, are they not?

Needless to say Cothiemuir didn't want to be photographed today. Far too much light contrast prevalent for this amateur. So I tried to capture the mood instead... something as nebulous as the clouds which manifestly refuse to make an appearance in the sky today.... then gave up and simply did as I was bid by the vibe. Lie back in the long grass and.... do nothing. Much to the apparent bemusement of a lizard basking upon one of the shattered, sun drenched orthostats. Yeah, he/she soon sussed I was there for reasons other than obtaining a rather small handbag. I mean 'man bag'. To be honest I don't know what I mean... Cothiemuir Wood is enchanting this late afternoon and rational thought seems, well, irrational, I guess. So much so that my recent decision to head towards Strathpepper tomorrow is discarded. Why not Schiehallion? Er, yeah. Why not?

One middle-aged woman walking her dog wanders through the circle... other than that I'm left to ponder the relationship the frankly magnificent recumbent and flankers have with the light that plays upon this corner of Aberdeenshire today. With utter wonder. In fact so fine, so beguiling is the atmosphere that it is easy to forget that this was a deadly serious structure. Somebody was interned within the central cist. No messing, this was - hey, is - for real. No Damien Hirst bollocks. Yet there is no feeling of foreboding. No shadow of retribution hangs over the traveller penetrating the sacred enclosure like the proverbial 'Sword of Damocles'. Just the feeling that there are few places I'd rather be right now. Cothiemuir may be 'camera shy', but it's certainly no Garbo. Oh no.

So... I wouldn't say Cothiemuir Wood is Aberdeenshire's finest stone circle. But I've yet to find another that I rather spend a few hours at, you know?
12th June 2012ce
Edited 12th June 2012ce

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