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

South Ythsie

Stone Circle


Aberdeen is one of those places I guess I'm never destined to see in a good light.... always hammering down with rain, the precipitation dubiously complementing the granite architecture. Today is no exception, leaving me in not the best of moods as I leave the A90 north of the city, taking the B999 towards Tarves. However the open countryside raises the spirits, the sign for South Ythsie the expectations.... Ignore the official car park to the left of the minor road, unless you wish to visit the 'Prop of Ythsie' [a monument erected to Lord George Gordon, Prime Minister between 1852 - 1855 and copping much of the blame (unfairly, perhaps) for the disastrous Crimean War]. Instead park at the entrance to the farm track servicing the 'Den of Ysthie' a little beyond, to the right past a cottage. A brace of DIY 'stone circle' signs take it from here, indicating the way down said track. Veer left and... wow... what a beautiful little monument, iconic in profile against the skyline!

Six quite substantial stones stand upon a mound - or rather, according to Burl, the mound is heaped around the stones - the monument set within a field of cereal in serious, wind driven motion. Futhermore, Burl reckons the four tallest form a rectangle... thus South Ythsie (incidentally the latter bit is pronounced 'icy') might well be a 'transitional 'Four Poster''. Nice. It is ceratinly a fine place to sit and watch the morning rain clouds swept away by the wind, to be replaced by blue. Who'd have thought it?

A local woman, with small children and poxy dog arrive to clamber all over the stones before leaving me in peace to watch the sky. Hey, one of the pleasures of visiting ancient sites is to actually lift your eyes above the horizontal and accept that you are just a tiny speck of humanity beneath the vastness above. Or something like that. Whatever, my proposed day's schedule disappears into the great blue yonder, if not my psyche.
23rd June 2011ce
Edited 23rd June 2011ce

Comments (0)

You must be logged in to add a comment