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

The Idol Rock

Natural Rock Feature


The Idol Rock is a natural boulder that lies just south of the cup and ring marked Idol Stone and is a prominent marker visible from many of the other prehistoric sites on this part of the moor.

The rock itself bears no prehistoric markings, although it does seem to bear something akin to a masonic symbol which someone appears to have attempted to grub out at some point (these symbols appear on other rocks elsewhere on the moor).

Nearby prehistoric walling seems to point to this rock being used as a boundary marker and it is clearly visible from the Backstone Circle. West of this point are the living areas of Green Crag and the Backstone Beck Enclosure. East lie the cairns. Maybe this was a division between the lands of the living and the lands of the dead?
Kozmik_Ken Posted by Kozmik_Ken
6th November 2003ce

Comments (1)

Hi Ken!

Intriguing that you say this: Maybe this was a division between the lands of the living and the lands of the dead? I think similarly about this old rock. Although there are some cairns west of this, towards the settlement, the walling which runs down from here (north) heading towards Cow & Calf, certainly increases that impression considerably. I've wondered this on and off for quite a few years now, and after a few visits to the old moor recently, wandering from here eastwards along the Plain and up to Grubstones, I truly think that this entire area was in fact Ilkley Moor's 'Land of the Dead.'

On the other hand, I could be talking complete bollox!

All the best - Paul
Paulus Posted by Paulus
30th May 2007ce
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