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


Holed Stone


Men An Tol means 'stone of the hole' in Cornish - the stone's also been known as 'The Devil's Eye'. Holed stones are often thought to have special powers, especially for healing.
If scrofulous children are passed naked through the Men-an-tol three times, and then drawn on the grass three times against the sun, it is felt by the faithful that much has been done towards insuring a speedy cure. Even men and women who have been afflicted with spinal diseases, or who have suffered from scrofulous taint, have been drawn through this magic stone, which all declare still retains its ancient virtues.
- from Hunt's 'Popular Romances of the West of England' (online at the sacred texts archive

Hunt also described how the holed stone could answer your questions:
"If 2 brass pins are carefully laid across each other on the top edge of the stone, any question put to the rock will be answered by the pins acquiring, through some unknown agency, a peculiar motion."
Unfortunately he didn't mention how to interpret the peculiar motion. You'll just have to give it a go.

The site as it is has obvious sexual / fertility symbolism - but maybe it wasn't always as we see it now: there is a lot of debate over whether the stones have been rearranged, were part of a circle, tomb or cairn. The Avening Burial Chamber had a porthole style entrance - maybe this was the same.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
9th May 2002ce
Edited 24th February 2012ce

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