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

Stone of Mannan

Standing Stone / Menhir


You may think this stone looks like a mushroom. But actually it's only the stone on top that counts - the rest of it is a plinth, made from the same type of stone in the early 19th century. RCAHMS sticks its neck out no further than to say the monument is classed as a 'stone'. But one with a pedigree you have to agree - it's been the source of Clackmannan's name since at least the 13th century. [posts combined - TMA Ed.]
In Chamber's Gazetteer of Scotland [1832?] we find the following interesting account of the origin of this name:- "At the east side of the quondam prison of Clackmannanshire lies a huge-shaped blue stone, which, having been broken into three pieces, is now bound with iron. This is a sort of burgal palladium or charter-stone, like the Clachnacudden of Inverness, the privileges of the town being supposed to depend, in some mysterious wy, upon its existence, on which account it is looked upon by the inhabitants with a high degree of veneration.

Its legendary history is curious. When King Robert Bruce was residing in Clackmannan tower, and before there was a town attached to that regal mansion, he happened, in passing one day near this way on a journey, to stop awhile at the stone, and, on going away, left his glove upon it. Not discovering his loss till he had proceeded about half-a-mile towards the south, he desired his servant to go back to the clack (for King Robert seems to have usually spoken his native Carrick Gaelic), and bring his mannan, or glove. The servant said, 'If ye'll just look about ye here, I'll be back wi't directly,' and accordingly soon returned with the missing article.

From this trivial circumstance arose the name of the town which was subsequently reared about the stone, as also that of a farm at which the King stopped, about half-a-mile from the south, on the way to Kincardine, which took its name from what the servant said, namely, 'Look about ye,' and is so called to this day."
A likely story, quoted in 'Geography Classified' by Edwin Adams, from 1863.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
2nd March 2007ce
Edited 3rd March 2007ce

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