Skip to main content

Full text of "Prehistoric Scotland and its place in European civilization; being a general introduction to the "County histories of Scotland,""

See other formats


•"'S-:-,.Vi: .K\-::rS!:i'\i*Aji- 




Stenrg laa. Sage 


4.f.JA.'^..£.S..l ^.^^.^..c?..3.. 


Cornell University Library 
DA 777.M96 

Prehistoric Scotland and its place in Eu 

3 1924 028 145 005 

Cornell University 

The original of tiiis book is in 
tine Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 







author of 
'prehistoric problems;* 'the lake-dwellings of Europe; 

'rambles and studies in BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA 




All Rights reserved 


The primary object of this book is to lay before the 
public a short account of the methods and means by 
which arch^ologists are endeavouring to elucidate that 
obscure period in the history of Scotland vaguely 
defined as the prehistoric. From the very beginning 
I foresaw that this would be a labour of some difficulty, 
owing to the varied and comprehensive materials which 
had to be dealt with. A preliminary coup-d'ceil of the 
subject disclosed a population occupying a small, but 
well-defined, geographical area amidst diversified sur- 
roundings. As soon, however, as the superficial crust 
was broken, it became apparent that both people and 
environments were subject to progressive changes not 
always emanating from causes inherent to the restricted 
locality under review. I had thus to look beyond 
the Scottish area, and to trace these exotic elements 
to their proper sources. At the present time direct 



evidence, either as regards the physical qualities of 
the people or the fluctuations and peculiarities of 
their environments during the earlier portion of the 
prehistoric period, is both scanty and fragmentary. 
Nor are the stray objects of the less perishable 
materials, such as stone and metal, altogether un- 
impeachable witnesses in the inquiry; for even these 
in many instances, betray their foreign origin. More- 
over, the earliest inhabitants were themselves immi- 
grants. These imperfections in the archsological 
record had therefore to be considerably supplemented 
from collateral sources. Thus on all hands the field 
of inquiry became enlarged in proportion as the 
materials were carefully scanned. Hence, in the com- 
pilation of this work the same ground had to be 
traversed as if I were engaged in writing an intro- 
duction to the prehistoric archaeology of the whole of 
the British Isles. To bring such diffuse evidence 
within the narrow compass of one small volume is 
a kind of tour de force which is bound to disclose 
many shortcomings and errors of judgment. 

From these inherent difficulties in connection with 
the selection and arrangement of the materials it is 
pleasant to turn my thoughts to those who have 
supplied me with so many beautiful illustrations, with- 
out which the work would be shorn of much of its 
value. On this score I have to thank the Councils 


of the following Societies : Society of Antiquaries of 
Scotland for most of the woodcuts illustrating the re- 
mains of the prehistoric fauna, as well as for a number 
of other objects, such as the massive bronze armlets, 
which are peculiar to the Scottish archaeological area ; 
Ayrshire and Galloway Archaeological Association for 
a considerable number of the woodcuts of stone and 
bronze implements ; Society of Antiquaries of London 
(figs. i66 and 175-177); Royal Irish Academy (figs. 
123 and 162-164); Royal Society of Antiquaries of 
Ireland (figs. 141, 211, 213, and 257) I am also in- 
debted (through my publishers) to Messrs Macmillan 
& Co. for a few woodcuts from Sir Daniel Wilson's 
'Prehistoric Annals of Scotland' (figs. 4, 89, 130, 138, 
258, and 259), and to John Murray for the illustrations 
of Maeshowe and New Grange (figs. 192-196) from 
Fergusson's ' Rude Stone Monuments.' Of the large 
number of illustrations specially prepared for this 
work, many are mere sketches taken from objects in 
various museums, and have no claim to any artistic 
effect. But, as they are accurate in outline and reduced 
to a uniform scale, I preferred to retain them in their 
crude form rather than to have them touched up by 
a skilled artist. Indeed, a mere outline is all that is 
necessary for many of the objects which illustrate pre- 
historic archaeology. On every occasion that I found it 
necessary or advisable to appropriate the results of other 


workers I have done so, when practicable, by quoting 
the ipsissima verba of the authors ; and all such obli- 
gations are duly acknowledged in their proper place 
throughout the work, or in the list of illustrations. 

Professor Sir William Turner, F.R.S., has kindly 
read the proof- sheets of the chapter on Ethnology ; 
and James Macdonald, Esq., LL.D., has done the 
same for the other chapters. While cordially thank- 
ing these gentlemen for their valuable services, I have 
only to say of each of them. Nihil quod tetigit non 

Manor Place, Edinburgh, 
■yd Jtily 1899. 




Allusions by classical writers to the British Isles — Voyages of Himilco 
and Pytheas — Julius Caesar's invasion of Britain — Agricola in North 
Britain — Battle of Mons Graupius — The Emperor Severus niarches 
as far as the Moray Firth — The Druids — Historic Borderland— Plan 
of work explained 1-18 



The Glacial Period — Alterations in relative level of sea and land — Ancient 
sea -margins — Marl-deposits in lakes — Arborescent growths — Peat- 
bogs — Great trees found in peat — Hatfield Moss and forest — Woods 
formerly in Orkney and Shetland — Chronological data — Destruction 
of the forests 19-44 



, The MacArthur Cave and rock-shelter at Oban — Shell-heap of Cais- 
teal-nan-Gillean, Oronsay. 2. Implements of deer-horn associated 
luith the skeletons of whales in the Carse of Stirling. 3. Other relics 
of man in Carse-lands and alluvial deposits — Kitchen-middens at 
Inveravon — Canoes and other relics found at Falkirk, Friarton brick- 
clay -pit, Lochar Moss, and Moss of Cree. 4. Canoes in basin of the 
Clyde. 5. Evidence from raised beaches^ sand-dunes^ caves, rock- 


shelters, &c. — Flint factory and camping-ground at Campbeltown — 
Hoard of bronze axes at " The IVIaiden's " — Cave near the mouth 
of the North Esk— House and kitchen-midden on Ghegan Rock — 
Rock -shelter at Ardrossan — Chronology and the rock -shelter of 
Schweizersbild 4S"S3 



Reindeer— Elk— Irish Elk— Red-deer— Urus— Celtic Shorthorn— Beaver 

— Wild Boar — Great Auk — General remarks — Domestic animals 84-136 


Preliminary remarks — Prehistoric man already a toolmaker — The three 
ages ; i. The Raw Materials — Flint, jade, obsidian, jet and cannel- 
coal, amber, bones, stones, and organic materials. 2. The Workshop 
and its Tools — Chipping, polishing, and boring of stones — Tubes 
not used in Scotland for boring holes — Anvils, fabricators, borers, &c. 
3. Implements, Weapons, and Ornaments — Axes, chisels, and hammers 
— Knives, saws, and scrapers — Weapons — Clothing and ornaments 137-176 


Axes, chisels, &c. — Knives, saws, sickles, and razors — Weapons — Objects 

of toilet and personal ornaments — .^rt of the Bronze Age . . 177-225 



The supersession of Bronze by Iron in cutting implements. Late Celtic 
Period — Shields — Helmets — Swords and sword -sheaths — Daggers 
— Horse-trappings — Personal ornaments. Special Finds of the Late 
Celtic Period: Balmaclellan, Kirkcudbrightshire — IVIount Batten, 
Plymouth — Trelan Bahow, Cornwall — Site of ^sica on the Roman 
Wall— Gold hoard found in Ireland — Barrows at Cowlam, Yorkshire 
— Urn field at Aylesford, Kent— Hunsbury Camp, Northamptonshire 
— Military accoutrements at Lisnacroghera, Ireland — Caldron with 
iron implements from Carlingwark Loch, Kirkcudbrightshire — 
General remarks 226-277 




More important than those of the living — Various methods of classifying 
sepulchres — Forms of Barrows — Cairn of Achnacree — Cairns at 
Largie, Kilchoan, and Kilmartin, Argyllshire — Stone circle at 
Ballymenach — Horned cairns of Caithness — Variety of structural 
remains in Orkney — Standing stones of Stennis — Maeshowe — The 
"Knowe" of Unstan — Chambers at Quanterness and Wideford — 
Chambers on Papa Westray, and at Quoyness on the island of Sanday 
— Stone circle of Callernish in the island of Lewis — Stone circles 
and chambered cairns at Clava — Cairn at CoUessie, in Fife, and 
Gilchorn, near Arbroath — Bronze-Age cemeteries at Kirkpark and 
Magdalen Bridge, Mid-Lothian — Cemeteries at Pitreavie, near Dun- 
fermline — Mr C. E. Dalrymple's discovery of burials in stone circles 
in the counties of Kincardine and Aberdeen — Stone circles of 
Mauchrie Moor, Arran — Standing stones — Contents of graves — 
Urns, implements, ornaments, &c. — General remarks . . 278-328 



Wooden huts — Beehive houses — Earth-houses in Scotland— Underground 
chambers in Ireland and Cornwall. Indications of Social Life : 
Factories for the manufacture of Flint implements — Division of 
labour — North Britons in time of Tacitus were a pastoral people — 
Coracles and canoes — Civilisation of people indicated by the char- 
acter of grave-goods 329-362 



Forts, Camps, &c. — The classification and distribution of Forts — 
Division into earthworks and stoneworks — Moats or Motes, and 
Moothills — The Caterthuns in Forfarshire— Barmekyne of Echt — 
East Fort of Bennachie — Midhill Head, Mid -Lothian — Forts of 
Abernethy, Forgandenny, Burghead, and Seamill — Fortifications on 
the Laws, Forfarshire — Dunbuie fort, relics from — Distribution of 
Hill-forts. Vitrified Forts — Discussion on their structure, age, and 
distribution. II. BROCHS. — Peculiar structures found only in Scot- 
land—A number of specimens examined — Secondary buildings at- 
tached to them — Relics point to post-Roman times as the earliest 
date of their construction — Discussion as to their origin — Recent 
investigations in Caithness 363-403 




I. Sketch of Lake-d-welling Researches : First discovery at Lagore — Dis- 
covery of Swiss pile-dwellings at Ober-Meilen — Further discoveries 
in Europe — Discoveries in Lochi of Dowalton — Researches of Ayr and 
Galloway Archceological Association — The more recent discoveries 
at Lochan Dughaill, Hyndford, and Ashgrove Loch — Discoveries in 
England — Glastonbury Lake-village. 2. Structure of Lake-dwell- 
ings : (i) Pile-dwellingSj Pfahlbauten^ Palafittes — (2) Cellular base- 
ments — (3} Crannogs. 3. Marine dwellings : Terpefim Holland — 
Structures in Loch Crerar, Beauly Firth, Clyde (Dumbuck), and at 
Ardmore Bay, Ireland — Pile-dwellings still used in various parts of 
the world ........... 404-441 


Importance of the subject, i. Craniology : IVIodern researches — Kjok- 
kenmoddings in Portugal — French archaeologists on Neolithic 
crania in Gaul — DolichocephaHc and brachycephalic skulls. 2. 
General Anthropological Data ; Linguistic researches and the 
Aryans — Religiosity and Funeral Rites — Cremation and the Bronze 
Age in Britain— Early Iron Age. 3. General Conclusions: Early 
people of the British Isles were non-Aryan— First Aryan immigrants 
(Goidels) were Bronze-Age people— Second wave of Aryans (Bry- 
thons) were the importers of Late Celtic Art— Non-Celtic speech — 
Goidelic and Brylhonic tongues were Celtic— Huxley on dark whites 
and fair whites— A monopoly of intellectuality not peculiar to any 
form of skull 442-487 

I>'DEX 489-502 





i8, 19. 




33. 34- 
3S. 36. 
41, 42. 


Bronze caldrons, found in Scotland 

Bronze beaded torque and bowl, Lochar Moss . 

Bone pin and borer, MacArthur Cave, Oban 

Implements of bone and deer-horn, MacArthur Cave, Oban 

Bone implement and harpoons of deer-horn, MacArthur Cave 

Oban . . . 

Harpoons from different localities 
. Hammer-axe and implement of deer-horn found with whales 

skeletons, Carse of Stirling .... 
Five bronze axes, Ayrshire .... 

A needle, a comb, and an ornament of bone, Ghegan Rock 
Portions of reindeer horns found in brochs 
Skull of elk, Whitrig Bog, Berwickshire 
From a painting in oil of elk's skull, Forfarshire 
Elk's horn. Strath Halladale, Sutherlandshire . 
Skull of elk, Willie Struther's Loch, Roxburghshire 
Elk's horn, river Cree, Wigtownshire 
Irish elk {from Prof. A. Nicholson's ' Palaeontology ') . 
Horns of red-deer found in " The Meadows " and at Ashkirk 106, 107 
SVnU. of Bos primigenius, Fifeshire . . . 113,114 

Tvio teeth of Bos primigenius . . . . .114 

Portion of skull and horns of i?tfj /oK^z/roKj . . . 118 

Bronze implement, Kinleith ..... 119 
Axe-hammer, West Kilbride ..... 149 
Stone anvil and hammer-stone, Skelmuir . . . 151 

Hammer-stone, with circular depressions . . . 152 

Fabricator of flint from the cairn of Unstan . . . 153 






87, 88 



45, 46, Flint borers or drills .... 

47. Axe-haramer-head, Ardrossan . 

48. Axe-hammer-head, Crichie 
49, 50. Stone hammer and urn, from cairn at Glenhead 

51. Stone axe-head, Tarbolton 

52. Polished stone celt or adze, Slains 

53. Whetstone with stone axe, Stoneykirk 

54. Polygonal grinding-stone, Lamberton Moor . 

55. Various methods of mounting stone implements 
56-58. Trimmed flint knives, Wigtownshire . 

59. Fhnt knife with ground edge, Butterlaw 
60-63. Flint saws from Glenluce and Culbin . 
64-67. Flint scrapers, Wigtownshire . 
68-74. Flint arrow-heads, Wigtownshire and Ayrshire 
75, 76. Stone bracers, Wigtownshire and Ross-shire . 

77. Flint javelin-head, Wigtownshire 

78. Ornamented stone ball, Aberdeenshire 
79, 80. Buttons of jet, Lanarkshire and Forfarshire . 

81. Portion of knitted fabric, Yorkshire 
82, 83. Flat bronze axe-heads, Ayrshire 
84, 85. Bronze axes, winged type, Ayrshire 

86. Socketed bronze axe, Ayrshire . 

87. Ornamental bronze axe in miniature, Wigtownshire 

88. Bronze knife-dagger 

89. Bronze knives 
90, 91. Bronze sickles, Scotland and Ireland 

92-95. Ornamented bronze blades, Scotland 
96-100. Vai-ious kinds of bronze weapons, Scotland 


106. Knife dagger of bronze, Forfarshire 

107. Tanged dagger, Ayrshire 
108-115. Bronze swords, found in Scotland 

116. Rapier sword-blade, Ayrshire . 

117. Bronze dagger-blade, Ayrshire 
11B-120. Bronze shield, Ayrshire 

121. Portion of a side-blast trumpet, Wigtownshire 

122. The Caprington bronze horn, Ayrshire 

123. Ornamental disc of a bronze trumpet, Ireland 
124, 125. Head of a bronze pin, and a bronze button, Edinburgh 
126, 127. Bronze armlets of penannular and ring forms, Scotland 

128. Bronze armlet of a peculiar type, Argyllshire . 

129. Penannular ring of bronze with cup-shaped ends, Ross-shire 

130. II gold II Inverness-shire 



162, 163 

165, 166 

167, 168 

182, 183 



i 199 




142, 143. 









168, 169. 


Coiled armlet of gold, Mid-Lothian . . , , 210 
Gold armlet or torque, Perthshire . . . .211 

Necklace of jet beads, and urn, and portion of a trepanned 

skull, found in a Bronze Age burial, Bute . . 212, 213 

Gold ear-ring, one of a pair found in a stone cist, Morayshire 214 

Entrance to great cairn at New Grange, Ireland . . 220 

Cover-stone of a cist at Coilsfield, Ayrshire . . . 221 

n II Carnwath, Lanarkshire . . 222 

Sculptured stone at Monzie Castle, Perthshire . . 222 

Sculptured stone in Knockmany Cairn, Ireland . . 223 
Cup-marked rock surface at High Banks, Kirkcudbrightshire 224, 225 
Bronze with horns, supposed to be a helmet or mask, Torrs, 

Kirkcudbrightshire (now at Abbotsford) . . . 239 

Bronze sword-sheath found at Hunsbury Camp, Northampton 242 

Bronze sword-sheath, Ayrshire .... 243 

II II Lisnacroghera, Ireland . . 244 

II 11 Pentland Hills .... 245 

Iron dagger with bronze sheath from the river Witham . 246 

Enamelled ring, Westhall, Suffolk .... 248 

Enamelled ornament, Norton, Suffolk . . . 249 
Ornament with trumpet-shaped spaces. Loch of Dowalton . 249 
Bridle-bit, ornamented with enamel and Late Celtic ornamen- 
tation, Birrenswark ...... 250 

Portion of a supposed beaded torque, Hyndford Crannog . 253 

Bronze collar, Stitchel, Roxburghshire . . . 253 

Bronze armlet, Borgue, Kirkcudbrightshire . . . 254 

II Auchenbadie, Banffshire . . . 255 

II Seafield Tower, Fife .... 256 

I, Castle-Newe, Aberdeenshire . . . 257 

Bronze spiral armlet. Grange of Conan, Arbroath . . 258 

Bronze snake-headed armlet, Wigtownshire . . . 259 

Bronze fibute found in Ireland .... 260 

Bronze fibula, Falkirk ...... 261 

Late Celtic ornament, Northamptonshire . . . 262 

Upper stone of a quern, Balmaclellan, Kirkcudbrightshire . 263 

Bronze mirror and crescent, Kirkcudbrightshire . ' . 263 

Ornamented plate on mirror, Kirkcudbrightshire . . 264 

Back and side views of a bronze fibula. Mount Batten . 264 

Bronze armlet opening by a hinge. Mount Batten . . 265 
Two handles of bronze mirrors. Mount Batten. (Last three 

are after drawings in 'ArchcEOlogia,' vol. 40) . . 265 
Bronze mirror from St Keverne, Cornwall. (' Arch. Journal,' 

vol. XXX.) ....... 266 



175. 176- 



185, 186. 

194. 195- 




217, 218, 
219, 220, 

Fibute from Aylesford ...... 270 

Tankard with bronze mounting, Elveden . . . 271 

Fragment of pottery, Hunsbury Camp . . . 272 
Iron dagger and saw, bone combs, and fibulae, Hunsbury 

Camp ........ 273 

Bronze caldron, Carlingwark Loch .... 274 

Objects found in caldron, Carlingwark Loch . . . 275 

Ornamented bronze ball, Walston, Lanarkshire . . 277 
Section of the cairn of Achnacree. (After plan by Dr Angus 

Smith, ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. ix., PI. xxiii.) . . 284 

Urn from cairn at Largie, Argyllshire . . . 287 

Urns found at Ballymenach and Kilmartin . . . 289 
Ground-plans of cairns in Caithness. (Reduced from plans 

accompanying papers by Dr Joseph Anderson and others in 

'Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. vi., PI. 27, and vol. vii., PI. 60-62) 292-297 

View of the central chamber, Maeshowe. . . . 299 

Ground-plan and section of Maeshowe . . . 300 

Dragon and " Wurm-knot " in Maeshowe . . . 301 

View of the great cairn at New Grange . . . 302 
Ground-plan of cairn at Unstan. (Reduced from plan by Mr 

Clouston, ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. xix. p. 343) . . 303 
Ground-plan of cairn at Quanterness. (Reduced from plan 

in ' Scotland in Pagan Times,' p. 288) . , . 305 
Ground-plan of sepulchral chamber in Holm of Papa Westray. 

(From plan by G. Petrie, ibid., vol. ii., PI. iii.) , . 307 
Ground-plan and section of stone circle at Crichie. (After 

plan by C. E. Dalrymple, ibid,, vol. xviii. p. 320) . . 317 
Specimens of urns, various localities . . . 319-323 

Dolmen at Ballymascanlan, Ireland .... 326 

Spinsters' Rock, Chagford, Devonshire . . . 327 

Clochan-na-Carraige, North Island, Aran . . . 337 
Ground-plan and section of beehive house (restored) in South 

Uist. (After Captain Thomas, R.N,, ' Proc, Soc, A, Scot.,' 

vol. vii. p. 166) ....,, 339 

Oratory of Gallerus, Ireland ..... 342 
Ground-plan and sections of earth-house, Forfarshire. (After 

Mr Jervise, ibid,, vol. iv. p. 493) .... 350 
Ground - plan and sections of earth - house, Berwickshire. 

(Ibid., vol. viii. p. 21) ..... 352 

Currach or coracle used on the Boyne . . . 360 

Bronze finger-ring and fibula, Abernethy fort . . . 372 

Ring of lignite and stone axe, Abernethy fort . . . 373 
Objects of shale, bone, and bronze, Seamill fort . 376-378 


225. Ground-plan and sections of broch of Ousdale, Caithness. 

(After plans by Mr James Mackay, ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' 

vol. xxvi. p. 352) ...... 392 

226. Bone comb from the Knowe of Saverough, Orknty . . 399 

227. Bronze object, broch of Harray .... 400 

228. Quartz pebble from the broch of Kintradwell . . 401 

229. Bronze patella, crannog in the Loch of Dowalton . . 410 

230. Glass beads, crannog in the Loch of Dowalton . . 41 r 

231. Bronze brooch, crannog in the Loch of Dowalton . . 411 

232. Portion of leather shoe, crannog in the Loch of Dowalton . 412 

233. Two spiral finger-rings of gold, Buston crannog . . 412 
234-236. Gold coin (Buston), glass bead, and ornament of rock-crystal, 

Lochspouts crannog ...... 413 

237. Stone with cup-and-ring markings, Lochlee crannog . 413 

238. Jet ornament, Lochspouts ..... 413 

239. Fringe of moss, Lochlee ..... 414 

240. Bridle-bit, Lochlee ...... 414 

241. Bone comb, Buston ...... 415 

242. Bronze fibula, Lochlee ...... 415 

243. Bronze ornament, Lochspouts ..... 415 
244-247. Flint scraper, jar, handle, and crucible, from crannog of 

Lochan Dughaill ...... 417 

248. Stone axe from Hyndford crannog .... 418 

249-254. Various objects, Hyndford crannog .... 419 

255, 256. Fibulse and handle of mirror, Glastonbury lake-village . 425 

257. View of piles at Robenhausen, Switzerland . . . 429 

258, 259. Views of prehistoric skulls ..... 446 

260-262. Views of a skull from MacArthur Cave, Oban . 453"455 


I. Various forms of Bronze Razors found in Western 

Europe 191 

I. South Lodge Camp, Rushmore Park (after General Pitt' 
Rivers, ' Excavations in Cranborne Chase,' vol. iv., PI. 238, fig. 
4}. 2. Wor Barrow, Hudley Down, found along with Romano 
British remains (ibid., PI. 258, fig. 16). 3. Bowerhouses, Dunbar, 
associated with sepulchral urns (' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. vi, 
p. 361, and 'Scotland in Pagan times,' p. 26). 4. Terramara 
(Museo Civico di Reggio d' Emilia). 5. Found in Thames near 
Wallingford (Ancient Bronze Implements, fig, 269). 6. Found 
in the Shannon (Cat. R. I. Acad., fig. 433). 7, n. Lake-dwelling 
of Moeringen (Keller's 7th Rep., PI. vi., figs. 3 and 6). 8. Basin 


of the Sadne {Museum of St Germain). 9, 10. Lake of Bourget 
('Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' fig. 20, Nos. 22 and 23). 12, 14. 
Scandinavian types (Bromealderen ved S. JVIiiller, figs. 294 and 
188). 13. Lake Garda (see ' Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' fig. 63, 
Nos. I to 6). 15. Found with an iron sword in a tumulus in 
Lorraine (Barth^lemy, ' La Lorraine avant I'Histoire,' p. 132 and 
fig. 60). 

II, III. These are photographic illustrations by Mr R. Welch of the 
late Canon Grainger's collection of Irish antiquities (now in 
the Belfast Museum). They -were taken shortly before his 
death, and the author was among those privileged to receive 
copies 196, 197 

IV. Various forms of Prehistoric Rock-sculpturing in 

Western Europe 218 

Nos. I to 10 are mere diagrammatic illustrations after Sir 

James Simpson's types of the more common cup-and-ring mark- 
ings. II. Stone found at Bakerhill, near Dingwall, Ross-shire 
(Simpson, op. cit., PI. xiv., tig. i). 12. Stone at Cargill, Perth- 
shire (' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. xviii. p. 314). 13. Stone in the 
dolmen of " Manner Hrogg," about 3^ feet in length. 14. Stone 
in dolmen at Locmariaquer with incised figure like a fort, size -^ 
(L. de Cuss6, ' Des signes sculpt^s sur les monuments mega- 
lithiques duMorbihan,' Vannes, 1886). 15,16. Sculptured on the 
chalk walls of the Neolithic caves of Petit-Morin (Baron de Baye, 
'Arch^ologie prehistorique'). 17. Stone in Loughcrew cemetery 
('Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. xxvii., fig. 39). 18. This figure, repro- 
duced from Fergusson's ' Rude Stone Monuments ' (fig. 149), has 
done duty for many years as the representation of a mounted 
stone axe on the roof of the dolmen called "Table des Mar- 
chands." The original is about 4 feet in length, rudely carved 
and very unlike this outline (see phot, illustration of the stone in 
' Revue Mensuelle,' 1899, p. 164). 19. On a stone in the 
dolmen of Petit Mont (Arzon). The foot-marks are about 9^ 
inches long (De Cuss6, op. cit.) 

V. Bronze Shield found in the Thames (British Museum) 236 
VI. Objects found in the Bog of Lisnacroghera . . 274 
Nos. I, 2. Iron swords. 3. Iron spear-head. 4, 5. Axe and 
adze of iron. 6-9 and 17. Bronze rings. 10. Bronze dish. 
II, 12, and 14. Glass beads. 13. Amber bead. 15, 16. Bronze 
objects. 18, 19, 20, and 22. Bronze ornaments. 21. Top of a 
bronze rivet. 23-25. Bronze ferrules. 26. Bronze rivet serrated. 
27. Bronze ornament for handle. 28-30. Bronze knobs for the 
butt-end of spear-handles. 


VII. The Ring of Brogar, Orkney .... 
VIII. The Circle of Stennis, Orkney . 
IX. The Tumulus of Maeshowe, Orkney .... 299 


X. Stone Circle of Callernish, Lewis . . . 309 

XI, XII. Chambered Cairns at Clava .... 310, 311 

(From sketches by Cosmo Innes, ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' 
vol. iii., PI. vi. and vii.) 

XIII. Stone Circle of Auquhorthies, near Inverury . 318 

It contains eleven stones — one lying horizontally, called 
the altar stone. 

XIV. Giant's Ring and Dolmen, near Belfast . . 328 

The ring is an earthen circular mound 580 feet in diameter. 

XV. Broch of Mousa, Shetland 389 

XVI. Broch of Clikamin, near Lerwick . . . 398 
XVII. Edenshall, Cockburn Law, Berwickshire . . 399 

(From 'Proc. Berwickshire Nat. Club,' 1879-81.) 
XVIII. General View of Pile-dwellings near Singapore 441 




RIOR to the occupation of Britain by the 
Romans vague reports of the British Isles 
had found their way into the hterature of 
Greece and Rome, but of these only a 
few have come down the stream of time 
to our day. Such historical data are now 
valuable chiefly for comparison with deductions derived from 
archseological and other sources. The Phoenicians, as early 
as the twelfth century B.C., founded colonies on the western 
shores of the Mediterranean, as well as on the coast of the 
Atlantic beyond the Pillars of Hercules ; and after the conquest 
of Phoenicia by the Assyrians, about the middle of the ninth 
century B.C., these colonists acquired greater influence, more 
especially the Carthaginians, who organised commercial enter- 
prises to distant lands. They sent expeditions in quest of tin, 
then so much in demand in the East, to the Cassiterides, 
or Tin Islands, identified by some authorities as the Scilly 
Isles, and by others as a group of islands on the north coast 



of Spain. Herodotus candidly confesses his ignorance of the 
whereabouts of the Cassiterides, "from whence," he says, 
"our tin comes." During the last few years there seems to 
be a consensus of opinion among English scholars that there 
is no evidence that the Phcenicians ever traded for tin as 
far as Britain. But, however this may be, there can be 
no question that they held for a long time a monopoly of 
navigation and trade in the Mediterranean, so that they 
must have played an important part in the early civilisation 
of Europe. 

At a subsequent date (600 B.C.) the Phocseans founded 
Massilia (Marseilles), which speedily became an important 
station for the tin trade of Britain by means of a land-route 
across France. It was through this source that the Greeks 
became first aware of the existence of the British Isles, and 
henceforth we find the two largest of the group incidentally 
referred to by various classical writers under the distinctive 
names Albion and lerne. Much of their information appears 
to have been derived from the narratives of the voyages of 
Himilco and Pytheas, but, unfortunately, only a few frag- 
mentary passages of these narratives have survived to the 
present day as extracts incorporated in other works. 

Himilco was a Carthaginian who, about 500 B.C., set out 
from Gades, beyond the Pillars of Hercules, on a voyage of 
discovery. Coasting along the shores of Spain and Portugal, 
he crossed the Bay of Biscay and arrived at the islands of the 
CEstrymnides, described as rich in tin and lead, and inhabited 
by a numerous population who were in the habit of using skin 
boats (coracles). It would appear from ' Ora Maritima' of 
Festus Avienus that Himilco knew of the plains of the 
Britons, the distant Thule, the grass-green "Insula Sacra" 
inhabited by the race of the Hibernians, and the adjacent 
island of the Albiones. 


About 150 years later the Romans, then aspiring to be 
rivals to the Carthaginians in the tin trade, but unable to pro- 
cure any definite information in regard to the Cassiterides, 
instigated the merchants of Marseilles to fit out an expedition 
to ascertain the whereabouts of these mysterious islands. 
Pytheas, an eminent mathematician of that town, and a con- 
temporary of Aristotle and of Alexander the Great, accom- 
panied the expedition, and on his return home published an 
account of his adventures. His story, though received both at 
the time and by subsequent classical writers with the greatest 
distrust — Strabo, indeed, going so far as to characterise him as 
a charlatan and his statements as utterly untrustworthy — is 
now recognised to be singularly accurate. 

Entering the Atlantic by the Straits of Gibraltar, Pytheas 
sailed round Spain to Brittany, and thence crossed over to the 
neighbouring shores of Britain and the estuary of the Thames. 
From Britain he sailed to the mouth of the Rhine, and after 
coasting along the shore northwards, rounded Jutland and 
entered the Baltic, going as far east as the mouth of the 
Vistula. Here he turned back and proceeded along the coast 
of Norway as far as the Arctic circle and the island of Thule. 
On his return journey he touched at the north of Scotland, 
and finally reached Brittany and the mouth of the Garonne, 
whence he travelled to Marseilles by land. Although Pytheas 
does not appear to have visited the tin districts of Cornwall, 
his statements made known, for the first time, the three pro- 
montories of Cantium (Kent), Belerion (Land's End), and 
Orcas (North of Scotland). From his time the overland trade- 
route to Britain was permanently established, a fact which 
satisfactorily accounts for the earliest coins struck in the 
island being modelled after Greek coinage, especially the gold 
stater of Philip II., king of Macedonia. 

It was not till the invasion of Britain by Julius Caesar, 


in 55 B.C., that the Romans came into actual contact with 
the tribes inhabiting that mysterious and, hitherto, to them 
inaccessible island. The reasons which induced Caesar to 
fit out this expedition at such an advanced season (August) 
are thus stated in his Commentaries (book iv. chap, xx.) : — 

" During the short part of summer which remained, Caesar, 
although in these countries, as all Gaul lies towards the 
north, the winters are early, nevertheless resolved to pro- 
ceed into Britain, because he discovered that in almost all 
the wars with the Gauls succours had been furnished to our 
enemy from that country ; and even if the time of the year 
should be insufficient for carrying on the war, yet he thought 
it would be of great service to him if he only entered the 
island, and saw into the character of the people, and got 
knowledge of their localities, harbours, and landing-places, 
all which were for the most part unknown to the Gauls. 
For neither does any one except merchants generally go 
thither, nor even to them was any portion of it known, 
except the sea-coast and those parts which are opposite to 
Gaul. Therefore, after having called up to him the mer- 
chants from all parts, he could learn neither what was the 
size of the island, nor what or how numerous were the nations 
which inhabited it, nor what system of war they followed, 
nor what customs they used, nor what harbours were con- 
venient for a great number of large ships." ^ 

With the military exploits of Caesar in Britain during that 
and the following year we are not here concerned, beyond 
the glimpses of British civilisation which they disclose — thus 
summarised in the Commentaries (book v. chaps, xii.-xiv.) : — 

" The interior portion of Britain is inhabited by those of 
whom they say that it is handed down by tradition that they 
were born in the island itself ; the maritime portion of those 
^ Bohn's Classical Library. 


who had passed over from the country of the Belgae for the 
purpose of plunder and making war ; almost all of whom are 
called by the names of those states from which being sprung 
they went thither, and having waged war, continued there 
and began to cultivate the lands. The number of the people 
is countless, and their buildings exceedingly numerous, for 
the most part very like those of the Gauls ; the number of 
cattle is great. They use either brass (bronze) or iron rings, 
determined at a certain weight, as their money. Tin is 
produced in the midland regions ; in the maritime, iron, but 
the quantity of it is small ; they employ brass, which is 
imported. There, as in Gaul, is timber of every description 
except beech and fir. They do not regard it lawful to eat 
the hare, and the cock, and the goose ; they, however, breed 
them for amusement and pleasure. The climate is more 
temperate than in Gaul, the colds being less severe. . . . 

" The most civilised of all these nations are they who 
inhabit Kent, which is entirely a maritime district, nor do 
they differ much from the Gallic customs. Most of the 
inland inhabitants do not sow corn, but live on milk and 
flesh, and are clad with skins. All the Britons, indeed, 
dye themselves with woad, which occasions a bluish colour, 
and thereby have a more terrible appearance in fight. They 
wear their hair long, and have every part of their body shaved 
except their head and upper lip." ^ 

Caesar bears testimony to the courage with which the 
Britons fought against his troops, sometimes fearlessly en- 
countering them in the open in war- chariots, and at other 
times rushing upon them from their places of conceatoent 
in woods and fortifications. 

Strabo (book iv. c. v.) supplies some additional particulars 
as to the manners and customs of the Britons. According 
^ Bohn's Classical Library. 


to him their country produced corn, cattle, gold, silver, iron, 
skins, slaves, and dogs sagacious in hunting. The natives 
carried on a trade in these commodities with the Kelts, who 
exported ivory bracelets and necklaces, amber, vessels of glass, 
and small wares. The manners of the Britons were in part 
like those of the "Kelts" of Gaul, but more simple and 
barbarous; insomuch that some of them, though possessing 
plenty of milk, had not skill enough to make cheese. They 
were also unacquainted with horticulture and other matters 
of husbandry. Strabo informs us that there were four pas- 
sages commonly used for crossing over into Britain — viz., 
from the mouths of the rivers Rhine, Seine, Loire, and 
Garonne ; but for such as sailed from the parts about the 
Rhine the passage was not exactly from its mouths, but 
from the country of the Morini, in which also was situated 
Itium, which Cffisar used as a naval station when about to 
pass over into the island. 

Diodorus Siculus makes mention of the tin-miners near 
the promontory of Belerion, and characterises them as more 
civilised than the other inhabitants, owing to their intercourse 
with strangers. Those who were regarded as the aborigines 
are represented as living in mean dwellings made of reeds 
or timbers, and leading a simple, frugal, and virtuous life. 
With regard to the method of harvesting, he makes the 
curious statement that they merely cut off the ears of corn, 
which were stored in underground cellars till required to 
be dressed for food. This suggests a speedy method of 
preparing a meal — a method which was probably the same 
as that practised on emergencies in Scotland up to recent 

Not till the year 79 a.d. did the Romans extend their 
conquests as far north as the borders of Scotland. In 

>■ See 'The Past in the Present,' by Sir Arthur Mitchell, pp. 46, 238. 


that year the famous commander, Julius Agricola, moved 
his forces northwards through the territories of the Brigantes 
in the direction of the Solway Firth, with the intention of 
carrying out his dehberately formed plan of subjugating the 
warlike tribes of North Britain, who had hitherto maintained 
their independence. The story of his invasion of Scotland, 
embracing a period of five years, is concisely told by the 
historian Tacitus. Sir Herbert Maxwell ^ has already so 
well and thoroughly reviewed the Roman operations in the 
south of Scotland during that period that nothing remains 
to be done. And as other writers of the County Histories 
Series may probably do the same for the other provinces 
occupied by the Romans, it is unnecessary for me to enter 
on this part of the subject. I shall therefore restrict myself 
to giving a few extracts from the narrative of Tacitus illus- 
trative of the topography of the country and the methods 
of warfare adopted by the natives. 

During the two succeeding years Agricola continued his 
victorious career northwards. Penetrating the hilly regions 
north of the Solway, he reached the valleys of the Forth 
and Clyde. Struck by the narrowness of the neck of land 
which separates these two estuaries, he seemed to regard it 
as the most natural boundary of the new province, and so 
he erected a chain of forts along its entire length as an 
effective means of defence. Having thus secured the parts 
of the country already subjugated, Agricola transferred his 
operations to the regions on the north of the Firths of 
Forth and Clyde. In this enterprise he was assisted by 
his navy, which entered the Firth of Tay. The appearance 
of the fleet, as it were in the heart of the country, caused 
great consternation among the Caledonians, and so they 
resolved to take up arms, with the view of compelling the 
' Dumfries and Galloway, chap. i. 


Romans to retire from that part of the country. Tacitus 
thus describes the events which led to this rising : — 

"In the summer which began the sixth year of Agricola's 
administration (a.d. 83), extending his views to the countries 
situated beyond Bodotria, as a general insurrection of the 
remoter nations was apprehended, and the enemy's army 
rendered marching unsafe, he caused the harbours to be 
explored by his fleet, which, now first acting in aid of the 
land-forces, gave the formidable spectacle of war at once 
pushed on by sea and land. The cavalry, infantry, and 
marines were frequently mingled in the same camp, and 
recounted with mutual pleasure their several exploits and 
adventures ; comparing, in the boastful language of military 
men, the dark recesses of woods and mountains, with the 
horrors of waves and tempests ; and the land and enemy 
subdued, with the conquered ocean. It was also discovered 
from the captives that the Britons had been struck with 
consternation at the view of the fleet, conceiving the last 
refuge of the vanquished to be cut off, now the secret re- 
treats of their seas were disclosed. The various inhabitants 
of Caledonia immediately took up arms, with great prepara- 
tions, magnified, however, by report, as usual where the 
truth is unknown ; and by beginning hostilities, and attack- 
ing our fortresses, they inspired terror as daring to act 
offensively ; insomuch that some persons, disguising their 
timidity under the mask of prudence, were for instantly 
retreating on this side the firth, and relinquishing the 
country rather than waiting to ■ be driven out." ^ 

To prevent being surrounded Agricola distributed his army 
into three divisions, an arrangement which induced the 
Britons to make a sudden attack in the night-time on the 
9th Legion, it being the weakest. So skilfully was this 

' Life of Agricola, chap. 25 (Bohn's Classical Library). 


manoeuvre carried out that, having killed the sentinels, they 
were actually fighting inside the camp when Agricola, who 
had received information from his scouts of the movement 
of the enemy, came up just in time to save his friends. The 
enemy was routed ; and, according to the historian, " had not 
the woods and marshes sheltered the fugitives, that day would 
have terminated the war." 

This victory completely restored the drooping spirits of 
the Roman soldiers, and henceforth they became eager " to 
penetrate into the heart of Caledonia." 

In the beginning of next summer (a.d. 84) both armies 
prepared for the impending struggle. Agricola, having sent 
his fleet to various parts along the coast in order to cause 
alarm among the natives, advanced northwards as far as a 
hill called " Graupius," where the enemy, to the number of 
upwards of 30,000, was already encamped. There being no 
description of Agricola's march, nor of the locality in which 
the hostile armies met, we have no clue to the precise 
situation of the field of conflict, beyond the vague topo- 
graphical allusions in the account of the battle. We need 
not be surprised, therefore, to find that historians differ on 
this point. General Roy places Agricola's headquarters at 
the camp of Ardoch, while Dr Skene contends that they 
were at Cleaven Dyke, on the peninsula formed by the 
junction of the Isla with the Tay; 

Agricola arranged his troops as follows : 8000 auxiliaries 
occupied the centre, supported right and left by 3000 horse, 
while the legions were stationed in the rear before the in- 
trenchments. " The British troops, for the greater display 
of their numbers, and more formidable appearance, were 
ranged upon the rising grounds, so that the first line stood 
upon the plain, the rest, as if linked together, rose above 
one another upon the ascent. The charioteers and horse- 


men filled the middle of the field with their tumult and 

The following extract is interesting as showing that the 
Highland broadsword dates to pre -Roman times: "The 
Britons, armed with long swords and short targets, with 
steadiness and dexterity avoided or struck down our missile 
weapons, and at the same time poured in a torrent of their 
own. Agricola then encouraged three Batavian and two 
Tungrian cohorts to fall in and come to close quarters — a 
method of fighting familiar to these veteran soldiers, but 
embarrassing to the enemy from the nature of their armour ; 
for the enormous British swords, blunt at the point, are unfit 
for close grappling, and engaging in a confined space. When 
the Batavians, therefore, began to redouble their blows, to 
strike with the bosses of their shields and mangle the faces 
of the enemy, and, bearing down all those who resisted 
them on the plain, were advancing their Hne up the ascent, 
the other cohorts, fired with ardour and emulation, joined in 
the charge, and overthrew all who came in their way." 

Professor Rolleston,^ in narrating a somewhat similar in- 
cident^ in a contest between the Romans and the Gauls, 
makes the following remarks on the GauHsh method of fight- 
ing with their long pointless broadswords : " The same tactics 
succeeded at CuUoden, as the tactic of thrusting and giving 
point always will succeed when masses of men in rows, not 
isolated individuals merely, are pitted against each other on 
the thrusting versus the slashing plan, though the slashing 
sword at Culloden was of good steel enough." That the 
Caledonians should be defeated at Mons Graupius and Cul- 
loden — the first and last of their battles since they appeared 

1 " On the Iron, Bronze, and Stone Ages," p. 3 : reprint from ' Trans, of 
the Bristol and GI. Arch. Society.' 
^ Polyb., Hist. ii. c. 33 


in history — through a pecuHarity of their celebrated claymore 
is certainly very remarkable. 

The actual result of the memorable battle of Mons Graupius 
was that Agricola withdrew his entire army to winter quarters 
south of the line of forts which he had erected between the 
Firths of Forth and Clyde, thus relinquishing all the fortresses 
previously held by his soldiers to the north of this line. It 
does not therefore appear that the victory was such a crush- 
ing defeat of the Caledonians as might, primA facie, be in- 
ferred from the words of the narrative. Whatever may have 
been the motive for abandoning the garrisons north of the 
firths, it is only natural that Tacitus, being the son-in-law of 
. Agricola, would give as much renown and Mat to the battle 
as possible. The recall of Agricola, shortly after the defeat 
of the Caledonians became known in Rome, owing, according 
to his biographer, to the jealousy of the Emperor Domitian, 
was quickly followed by the abandonment of all the fruits of 
his northern victories. How the Caledonians settled their 
affairs is not known, but we do know that when Hadrian 
became emperor, thirty -three years afterwards, he had to 
resort to the construction of a wall across the island, from 
the Solway to Newcastle, in order to check the ravages of the 
northern barbarians: nor was it till about the year 142 a.d. 
that the Roman frontier was extended to Agricola's original 
line of forts between the Forth and Clyde. 

The remarkable march of the Emperor Severus (208 a.d.), 
in the course of which he penetrated as far north as the 
shores of the Moray Firth, appears to have been on so 
large a scale as to preclude the natives from contesting the 
progress of his army in any pitched engagement ; but yet, 
according to Dio, he lost 50,000 men during that expedi- 
tion. He explains, however, that this loss was caused by 
the hewing of woods, the building of bridges, the draining 


of marshes, and especially by the ambuscades of the natives, 
who kept up a kind of guerilla warfare against the parties 
so engaged. The same author also states that the Romans 
were often entrapped into the lifting of cattle which had been 
purposely put in their way by the Caledonians themselves ; 
and while the former were thus occupied the latter fell upon 
them from their ambuscades, so that the Romans, rather 
than become a prey to these people, often entreated their 
own companions to slay them. 

At this time we read of the North Britons being divided 
into two tribes, the Maatce and Cakdonii, the former inhabit- 
ing the parts near the Roman Wall and the latter the regions 
beyond. It was a century and a half later before the Picts 
and Scots made their first appearance in history. 

As to the religion of the Britons, little is said directly by 
any of the earlier classical writers. Cffisar (book vi. chaps, 
xiii.-xvi.) informs us that throughout Gaul there were two 
orders among the people of rank and dignity — viz., the 
Druids and the Knights — the commonality being held in 
the condition of slaves. The institution of the Druids he 
regarded as devised in Britain and brought over from it 
into Gaul ; and he states that those who desired to gain a 
more accurate knowledge of the system were generally in 
the habit of going to Britain for .the purpose of studying 
it. He represents these Druids as having great influence, 
both in religious and civil affairs. They conducted public 
and private sacrifices, gave decisions in all controversies, 
decreed rewards and punishments, and had the power of 
excommunicating criminals and law-breakers from all social 
and religious privileges. 

The description given by Tacitus ^ of an attack, made by 
the Roman army under Suetonius Paulinus, on the Isle of 
' Annals, book xiv. chaps, xxix., xxx. (Bohn's Classical Library). 


Mona, and the destruction of the Druids who accompanied 
the native forces, throws a lurid light on the ceremonies of 
this mysterious cult : — 

" He therefore prepared to attack the Isle of Mona, re- 
markable for the valour of its inhabitants, and a common 
receptacle for fugitives ; he built, for that end, boats with 
flat bottoms, to meet the difificulties of a sea abounding in 
shallows and subject to variations ; in these the foot were 
embarked ; the horse followed, partly by fording and partly 
swimming by the side of their horses, where the water was 

" On the shore stood the forces of the enemy, a dense 
array of arms and men, with women dashing through the 
ranks like furies ; their dress funereal, their hair dishevelled, 
and carrying torches in their hands. The Druids around 
the host, pouring forth dire imprecations, with their hands 
uplifted towards the heavens, struck terror into the soldiers 
by the strangeness of the sight ; insomuch that, as if their 
limbs were paralysed, they exposed their bodies to the wea- 
pons of the enemy, without an effort to move. Afterwards, 
at the earnest exhortations of the general, and from the 
effect of their own mutual importunities that they would 
not be scared by a rabble of women and fanatics, they 
bore down upon them, smote all that opposed them to 
the earth, and wrapped them in the flames themselves 
had kindled. A garrison was then established to overawe 
the vanquished, and the groves dedicated to sanguinary 
superstitions destroyed ; for they deemed it acceptable 
to their deities to make their altars fume with the blood 
of captives, and to seek the will of the gods in the entrails 
of men." 

That the Britons practised mystic ceremonies of a religious 
character is also stated by Pliny, as may be seen from the 


following passage : ^ " There is a plant in Gaul, similar to 
the plantago in appearance, and known there by the name 
' glastum ' ; with it both matrons and girls among the people 
of Britain are in the habit of staining the body all over, when 
taking part in the performance of certain sacred rites ; rivalling 
hereby the swarthy hue of the Ethiopians, they go in a state 
of nature." 

The result of the above clippings from historical sources 
is to show that the whole island of Britain was thickly popu- 
lated, prior to the Roman invasion, by the descendants of 
different races of people distinguished, even then, from each 
other by racial and physical characteristics. From the small 
swarthy Silures to the large red-haired Caledonians there 
was a wide gap, which may have been since filled up by 
cross-breeding, and may thus account for the intermediate 
physiognomic shading of the present day. There appears 
also to have been a difference in degree in their culture, the 
people of the south and east being more refined than the 
aborigines. Their villages are described as wooden huts, 
located within woods, and rudely fortified with stakes and 
felled trees. The Caledonians depended for their living on 
finding pasturage for cattle rather than on the cultivation 
of the soil. On the whole, the British people were brave, 
proud, and superstitious. They fought in chariots with 
shield, sword, spear, and dagger, and painted or tattooed 
their bodies, especially when going to battle. The stories 
about cannibalism and laxity of morals are probably mere 
gossip,, deriving at any rate Httle or no support from archse- 
ological evidence. 

Within the historic borderland the historian and the archte- 
ologist meet on a common platform, and their respective 
researches become for a short time contemporary; and as 
' Nat. Hist., book xxii. chap. ii. (Bohn's Classical Library). 


the methods of the historian do not conduct him beyond the 
historic fringe, the archaeologist is bound to bring his general 
conclusions into harmony with the most approved interpre- 
tations of the historical materials. Both investigators are 
virtually dealing with one and the same subject — viz., the 
story of the culture and civilisation of the people of Scot- 
land since their arrival on its shores up to the present time 
— the only break in the narrative being due merely to the 
different means by which the information is gathered. 
But with the advent of written records — the true starting- 
point of the historian — the methods of the archseologist are 
not necessarily to be discarded, and, indeed, they may be 
continued profitably, pari passu with the former, a long way 
down the stream of human progress. 

Having thus parted from my fellow-workers — the historians 
— it may be well to cast a coup -d' mil on the special work 
before us. Half a century ago the unwritten records of man 
were scarcely recognisable through the impenetrable mists 
which had settled on the prehistoric horizon. Now, through 
the industry, researches, and scientific methods of modern 
archseologists, this happily is no longer the case. Numerous 
explorers have made incursions into the domain of prehistoric 
archaeology, with the result that its highways and by-ways are 
being rapidly opened up. Already much of its materials has 
been gathered ■ together, carefully surveyed, and parcelled out 
into the pigeon-holes of progressive civilisation. Definite 
landmarks in the various phases of culture have been laid 
down as on a chart ; and the chronological sequence in the 
evolution of primitive tools and weapons is steadily pursued 
with increasing means of precision. 

Although the prehistoric materials collected and annotated 
within the Scottish area do not comprise objects of any 
striking or exceptional character — such as hieroglyphs, archi- 


tectural ornamentation, art products like thiose of the Dordogne 
Troglodytes, &c. — yet, rude and commonplace as many of 
them are, they have yielded some deductions of the greatest 
importance to the history of Scottish civilisation. During 
the centuries covered by the prehistoric period that por- 
tion of Britain now known as Scotland differed greatly 
as regards the social condition of its inhabitants, and even 
in its physical features. The vegetative garb which clothes 
its more permanent skeleton of mountain-ridges and wind- 
ing river - valleys, has varied from time to time with the 
vicissitudes of climate and other changes in the environ- 
ments. The low-lying plains of sedimentary deposits which 
stretch along the shores of our river estuaries, and the 
numerous filled-up lake basins, are comparatively recent ad- 
ditions to the cultivable soil. Immense fields of heath and 
peat-bogs have taken the place of equally extensive areas 
of primeval forests. Between the flora, fauna, and physical 
conditions of all these successive panoramas there has 
always been a close relationship. To such fluctuations 
of his environment man, being the most adaptable of all 
animals, readily accommodated himself. But, en revanche, the 
environment affected him most powerfully, not only partially 
moulding his organic constitution but to some extent regu- 
lating his actions. Scotland is only part of an island, and 
that the most distant from the old-world civilisations on the 
eastern shores of the Mediterranean ; hence it is manifest that 
many of the physical and social changes which have taken 
place within its area were common to the whole island. The 
southern portion of Britain having been first occupied by the 
Neolithic immigrants, it took them some time to extend their 
hunting expeditions to the primeval forests and mountain re- 
cesses of its northern extremity. No description of the pre- 
historic inhabitants of Scotland which excludes their previous 


wanderings and relationship to contemporary races can, there- 
fore, be regarded as adequately dealing with the ethnological 
problems involved. And this remark applies a fortiori to 
their handicraft products and racial characteristics. There 
is, therefore, no alternative but to treat the whole subject in 
its wider aspects. Accordingly, the first few chapters of this 
volume are devoted to a review of the physical phenomena 
which obtained in North Britain when the first Neolithic 
wanderers appeared on the scene. Concurrent and subse- 
quent changes, such as the natural decay of forests, the 
growth of peat, and the alterations in the relative level of 
sea and land, are briefly described. After a few notes on 
the contemporary fauna we pass on to the more important 
subject of the culture and civilisation of the people who, 
by degrees, settled in these regions. Both in the inception 
of the work and in the filling in of the details, the twofold 
object of describing the salient features of the archseological 
materials found within the present Scottish border, and of 
showing their connection with analogous remains in outside 
areas, has been steadily kept in view. Western Europe was 
partitioned in Neolithic times among various races and 
nationalities, whose spheres of influence may still be traced by 
their well-defined antiquarian remains ; but the areas thus 
defined do not correspond with the political divisions of the 
present day. Also within the range of these wider influences 
there were often smaller archsological areas, whose charac- 
teristics depended on local developments. From the latter 
point of view it is possible that a few Scottish relics may 
present some local peculiarities ; but, in their tout ensemble, 
they cannot be separated from the wider area of early 
British civilisation. This volume is not, therefore, intended 
to be a handbook to Scottish archaeology, nor does it en- 
croach on the domain of special treatises on that subject. 



It goes further afield, and deals with the antiquarian daris 
of a bygone civilisation and the sources from which its 
culture elements were derived. The picture which exhibits 
the prehistoric people of Scotland in the foreground is not 
less instructive because we have also figured in the back- 
ground those from whom they inherited their culture and 

Antiquaries who restrict their investigations to mere local 
relics may look askance at the wide range thus extended to 
the field of our inquiry. But let me remind such critics that 
the unwritten records of man have no defined limitations, for 
they spread their absorbent radicles into all departments of 
knowledge. Consequently, no evidence bearing on any of 
the past phases of human civilisation can be of permanent 
value until it has been subjected to, and tested by, the side- 
hghts and methods of comparative archaeology. 





^TYMOLOGICALLY, the word prehistoric 
includes the entire past of a country 
prior to the starting-point of the his- 
torian ; but, practically, it has come to 
be regarded as only that portion of the 
indefinite past during which the country 
has been inhabited by man. Had the Romans found Scot- 
land in the possession of wild beasts, without any evidence 
of the presence of man then or previously, the phrase 
" Prehistoric Scotland " would have no relevancy in the sense 
in which it is used in these pages. The physical and topo- 
graphical features of a country do not, per se, contain the 
elements with which the archaeologist concerns himself, but 
upon the faintest indication that man moved on the scene 
they become invested with the highest interest. In follow- 
ing up the trail of prehistoric man, we have to investigate 
not only his ordinary haunts — rocks, caves, woods, mountain 
recesses, &c. — but also his entire environments, — the flora 
and fauna, climatic changes, &c. — in short, everything capable 
of influencing or of modifying the conditions of human life. 


I. Climatic and Topographical Features. 

There is one notable landmark which, as it fixes an ai 
initio limit to archEeological researches in Scotland, must be 
here briefly touched upon — viz., the Glacial period. The 
extension of a vast sheet of ice over the entire surface of 
the country, during the Quaternary period, excludes the 
possibility of its having been then the abode of man. The 
extreme and fluctuating climatic changes which accompanied 
this remarkable phenomenon gradually supervened on a sub- 
tropical climate, and as gradually disappeared, not, however, 
without leaving profound traces on the contour of the 
country. The breaking up and final dispersion of the sub- 
tropical world of North Britain, by the intervention of what 
may truly be called an Ice Age, and the subsequent reversion 
to a more genial climate, together with the incoming of a new 
flora and fauna, are phenomena of absorbing interest to those 
who study the civilisation and environments of Palaeolithic 
man. But they lie outside the scope of this work. Scotland 
was not a congenial home for prehistoric man until its icy 
mantle had given place to a covering of herbaceous growths, 
and its primeval glens and forests had become stocked with 
a numerous and varied fauna. Nor, on the supposition that 
the Ice Age consisted of a succession of alternately cold 
and genial periods, is this statement Hkely to be modified; 
for, among the organic remains hitherto found in its inter- 
glacial deposits, there are no indications of the presence of 
man. The gradual shrinking backwards of the ice-sheet is 
the most probable explanation of the fact that in Scotland 
and Scandinavia — localities where the ice lingered longest 
— remains of PalaeoUthic man have not been found.^ But 

^ The Rev. Fred. Smith, Cromlix, claims to have discovered stone im- 
plements of Paleolithic types, manufactured from the ordinary quartzite 


although the field of our inquiry is thus lightened and 
limited by the exclusion of paleolithic controversies, we 
have still to go hand -in -hand with the geologist, whose 
deductions are often essential in determining the relative 
position of sporadic finds in the scale of chronological 
sequence. Thus, at both ends of the prehistoric period, 
the materials and methods of archeology interdigitate with 
those of the collateral sciences. 

When the last ice-sheet dissolved, under the effect of a 
more genial climate, its nourishing rootlets remained as a 
series of local glaciers, at first filling the great glens, but 
gradually diminishing, till finally they disappeared altogether. 
This transformation carried in its train corresponding changes 
in the fauna of the surrounding seas, as well as of the land 
surface. So long as Scotland was enveloped in an ice-sheet, 
whose limits extended far beyond its present area, it is im- 
possible to say what might have been the relative level of 
the land to the surrounding sea ; but when the diminution 
of the ice allowed the water to come into contact with the 
land, we find the country submerged at least loo feet more 
than it is at the present time. The waters of this sea 
were inhabited by an arctic fauna, remains of which can 
still be detected in the marine clays then deposited on the 
shores. Icebergs, shed by the glaciers which protruded 
into the estuaries, and other floating ice, deposited morainic 
debris over the submerged area. As the lands in the 
interior became exposed to atmospheric agencies arctic 
plants took root on them, and the numberless hollows 
which studded the moraine profonde became converted into 

and schistose rocks of the district, in the river and coast gravels of the 
Tay, Forth, Clyde, &c. The most suggestive specimens are water-worn 
pebbles which, he thinks, were used as implements, and subsequently 
transported from above the 5°-^^' sea-margins. See 'Brit. Association 
Report,' 1892, p. 896 ; and ' Phil. Soc. Glasgow,' 30th November 1898. 


lakelets, whose flora and fauna tell the same story of arctic 

Concurrent with the amelioration of climate which followed 
the gradual disappearance of the ice, there is now a new 
element to be considered — viz., a process of land elevation 
which henceforth became an important factor in determin- 
ing the physical environments of man. The result of this 
movement was that the land rose much above its present 
level. The British Isles became part of the Continent, and 
the arctic climate gave place to a temperate one — probably 
more genial than that of the present day. Great forests of 
oaks, pines, and other trees covered the country, and ex- 
tended to latitudes and altitudes far above those in which 
a similar vegetation is now to be found. The extent to 
which the land rose is not accurately known, as it is difficult 
to make researches below the sea ; but judging from the 
evidence supplied by the submerged forests, and the wide 
distribution of the post-glacial flora and fauna, it must have 
been adequate not only to join Britain to Europe, but to 
connect it with Ireland, the Hebrides, and other islands in 
the Atlantic. 

While these changes were in progress, the deposits of clay, 
sand, silt, shells, &c., which were left in the estuaries as the 
sea retired from the loo-feet level, became exposed to the 
ordinary disintegrating and denuding agencies. The large 
rivers and frequently flooded streams cut through them, wash- 
ing away the finer ingredients and strewing the coarser gravel 
here and there at lower levels. As already mentioned, organic 
life was equally active in its varied manifestations, and cul- 
minated in the great forests of oaks and pines. How long 
this arborescent age continued it is almost impossible to say. 
The first check to its development seems to have been coin- 
cident with the commencement of another oscillation in the 


land the reverse of the former. The sea now again began 
to encroach on the land, and continued to do so until it 
reached 45 or 50 feet higher than it stands at present. 
This movement seems also to have been concurrent with 
a cold humid climate, favourable to the growth of peat and 
injurious to forest-trees ; the upshot of which was the re- 
appearance of valley-glaciers, which extended in some parts 
of Scotland down to the sea, as we find terminal moraines 
deposited on the so-feet raised beach. The cold of this 
period was, however, not excessive, nor had it induced any 
marked change in the flora and fauna of the country. A 
partial destruction of the forests, caused chiefly by the in- 
creased growth of peat and a diminution of the altitudes 
at which they formerly flourished, are the principal changes 
to be noted. Professor James Geikie, to whom we owe so 
many advances in this department of research, makes the 
following remarks on the period in question : " That many 
of our mountain - valleys contained glaciers at this time 
cannot be doubted ; but, had it not been for the fortunate 
circumstance that some of these glaciers reached the sea 
and deposited their moraines on the beaches of the period, 
we should probably have assigned all the valley- moraines 
to the closing stages of our epoch of district ice - sheets. 
We should, in short, have considered these later moraines 
to have been dropped during the final retreat of the valley- 
glaciers of the earlier epoch. . . . But the intercalation 
of the beach - deposits shows clearly that we are dealing 
with the detritus of a later and less important glaciation." ^ 
The 50-feet raised beach, which marks the turning-point 
of this post-glacial submergence, coincides with the maximum 
cold of the period. As the sea again began to retreat the 
country passed through climatic conditions analogous to those 
' Great Ice Age, 3rd ed., p. 312. 


which obtained during the previous period of forest growths. 
Whether this re-elevation of the land to the extent of 50 feet 
has been effected at a uniform rate, it is difficult to say, as 
about half-way in its progress there appears to have been a 
prolonged period of stagnation, now indicated on the land by 
the 2S-feet raised beach. Professor Geikie maintains that 
this beach was due to another cycle of depression and eleva- 
tion, with corresponding changes in climate and forest 
growths. 1 On what grounds he comes to this conclusion I 
am unable to ascertain. According to his own description of 
the successive geological phenomena observed in the estuaries 
of the Forth and Tay, I find no data for such an interval. 
The carse-clays, beneath which lies the forest-bed, correspond 
with the submergence which left behind it the "mud silt, 
clay, and sand, with beds of recent shells," which constitute 
the 50-feet raised beach. "When these carse-beds," he 
writes, "are followed down the valleys to the shores of the 
present estuary, the level of the carse-lands falls more or 
less gradually away to a height of 25 or 30 feet, and still 
lower terraces succeed down to the more recent alluvium." ^ 
I cannot see where in this sequence the deposits and pheno- 
mena of a still later glacial epoch come in, or how they are 
to be distinguished from the former? In my opinion the 
upheaval corresponding to the 25-feet raised beach was due 
to a local earth-movement which had probably nothing to do 
with glacial phenomena. I have elsewhere ^ attempted to 
prove that it took place during the interval since Neolithic 
man appeared on the scene, and some time prior to the 
occupation of the country by the Romans, and that it was 
contemporaneous with an opposite movement in the south of 
England and other localities. 

•* Great Ice Age, 3rd ed., pp. 313, 612. 
= Prehistoric Europe, p. 400 ^ Arch. Journal, September 1898. 


In tracing more minutely the successive changes in the 
appearance of the couritry since the ice-sheet vanished, down 
to the development of the arborescent growths and their 
peculiar fauna, two sets of concoriiitant phenomena have to 
be observed. First, the change from an arctic to a temperate 
climate, with corresponding changes in the flora and fauna ; 
and second, the alteration in the relative level of sea and land 
which transformed the British Isles from a series of semi- 
submerged islands of arctic sterility into part of a vast con- 
tinent with a luxurious inland vegetation. At the beginning 
of this transformation, clays, sands, and gravels would be 
washed into all the hollows left on the surface of the moraine 
profonde ; but as the ice melted away, and the surface-water 
became diminished, the rivers and streams would also be- 
come less muddy. The smaller lakes thus became stagnant 
pools of clear water, and even those fed by the streams had 
much less sediment washed into them. The vast reservoirs 
of spongy peat which now supply a perennial flow were as yet 
in an incipient stage. Such topographical and meteorological 
conditions were favourable to the development of a peculiar 
fresh-water fauna, which have left their remains to this day 
as shell-marl in most of the lakes of Western Europe. Ever 
since I began to study the phenomena of lake-dwellings, I 
have been struck with the number of settlements which had 
been founded immediately over the marl-deposits (weisser 
Grund, blanc fond) of the Swiss lakes. Such was the case 
with the settlement of Moosseedorfsee. Mr Lee states that 
Dr Uhlmann, one of its investigators, informed him that many 
of the specimens of Limnaa palustris and Z. stagnalis in the 
shell-marl were larger than those of the present day ; and that 
it contained L. auricularis, and a species of Paludina now 
extinct in the smaller lakes.^ Immediately above the shell- 
^ Lake-Dwellings, 2nd ed., p. 36. 


marl deposits in Scotland, as well as on the Continent, comes 
the peat, often without any appearance of a transition stage — 
a fact which may be partly accounted for by the latter spread- 
ing over the bottom of the lake from its margin. As a rule, 
the stratigraphical succession of lake-deposits, especially in 
the smaller lakes of this country, is first clay, then shell-marl, 
and finally peat — all reposing on glacial till or bare rock. 
Doubtless, we have in these successive strata a record of the 
climatic conditions which obtained in post-glacial times. The 
suggestion that the period of maximum development of the 
fresh-water testacea which produced the shell-marl deposits in 
Scotland correspond, chronologically, with that of the forest 
growths, is not, therefore, unreasonable. Small stagnant lakes 
of clear water, fed by calcareous springs, appear to have 
supplied the most favourable conditions for their develop- 
ment. The icy water of glaciers was too muddy, and prob- 
ably too deficient in calcareous matter, to be a congenial 
habitat to these organisms. Nor do they appear to have 
successfully held ground against the steady increase of peat 
in the succeeding ages. Sir Charles Lyell states that marl- 
deposits do not occur in countries whose geological formations 
consist of granite, gneiss, mica, slate, clay-slate, and greywacke, 
but are most numerous in sandstone districts, such as Forfar- 
shire, where they are exceptionally abundant.^ 

From geologists we learn that in its main outlines Britain 
has not greatly altered since prehistoric times, and that its 
mountains, valleys, and river-courses have retained nearly the 
same relative positions during the whole of the post-glacial 
period. But it is the minor elements and their ever-changing 
combinations that furnish the most striking features in a 
landscape. The view from the Abbey Craig, when the school 
of whales got stranded on the slimy mud of the inland sea (see 
^ Geological Transactions, 2nd series, vol. ii. p. 79. 


chap, iii.) which then occupied the site of the present carse- 
lands, to the west of Stirling, would be as great a contrast to 
the primeval forest which subsequently took possession of the 
bed of the vanished sea, as either scene would be to the 
present condition of the Forth valley. Such variations in 
Scottish scenery are always more or less in progress, owing 
to the unceasing activity of their natural causes ; but since 
man appeared on the scene still greater changes have taken 
place. One thing is certain, that without the hand of man 
these carse-lands would have still been covered with a vast 
peat-bog, such as they were a few centuries ago. The scenery 
which met the gaze of prehistoric man when he first wandered 
as far north contained neither stone-built houses, nor culti- 
vated fields, nor trimmed hedges, nor roads, nor dykes. 
Human interference had not yet set bounds to the primeval 
forests which clothed the lower hills and the banks of the 
meandering rivers, nor fettered the roamings of their wild 
animals. Nature alone regulated the outcrop of the organic 
world, and the only check to the exuberance of life was the 
internecine contests of the various animals and plants which 
there struggled for existence. 

2. Arborescent Growths and Peat-bogs. 

The actual extent of surface covered by arborescent growths 
at any given time must always remain a matter of uncertainty. 
It is probable that it was long before man became an 
inhabitant of Scotland that the first great post-glacial forests 
spread over the country, as no human relics, to my know- 
ledge, have ever been identified as belonging to that period. 
By the time man took possession of the country it would 
appear that the age of great forests had already passed 
its zenith, and that the trees were getting into a death- 


struggle with the peat which ultimately entombed many of 

Since the last glaciers disappeared extensive surface changes 
have taken place in the valleys and river-courses. The areas 
of lake-basins have become contracted, and many of the 
smaller ones are now entirely obliterated, in consequence of 
aquatic growths and the amount of disintegrated materials 
carried into them through the agency of streams and floods : 
upland plateaux and hillsides have become carpeted with the 
decayed remains of successive crops of heather and other 
plants : the prostrate trunks of trees, which had succumbed 
either to storms or to the inevitable natural decay, initiated 
peat-bogs, and so transformed the soil that it no longer formed 
a suitable habitat for the recurrence of the same species. This 
is an important point in considering the phenomena of suc- 
cessive vegetations, as it partly explains the frequent changes 
that take place in this respect. In the fresh raorainic dSbris 
of a glacier the Pine at once finds a congenial home, but with 
a slight amelioration of climate the Oak would as readily take 
possession of the same ground. Oak does not grow on peat, 
and when the peat-cutter encounters its roots he finds them 
invariably implanted in the virgin soil. But birch, hazel, 
alder, and Scotch fir are found in the upper deposits of peat, 
in succession to the buried oaks. Thus nature may be said 
to work on the system of rotation of crops, so universally prac- 
tised by experienced farmers of to-day. On these principles 
the Danish antiquaries have shown that there has been a 
regular chronological sequence in the forests of their country, 
beginning with the Pines, which sprung up on the wane of the 
glaciers, then the Oaks, and lastly the Beeches. Nay more, 
they have attempted to correlate these successive forests with 
the three ages of Stone, Bronze, and Iron.^ 

^ See ' Lyell's Antiquity of INIan,' p. g. 


As evidence of the scenic and organic changes thus effected 
we can still point to the stools of huge trees, at the bottom of 
extensive tracts of moorland peat, in localities where not a 
vestige of a living forest is now to be found. Early in June 
1897, while staying at the Carrick Hotel in the west of 
Donegal, I became greatly interested in the remains of one of 
these ancient forests which had been exposed by peat-cutters 
on the hillside to the east of the hotel, and overlooking the 
Atlantic Ocean. Here the stumps of huge trees in situ, chiefly 
pines and oaks, could be counted in hundreds, and were as 
fresh looking as if they had been of a comparatively recent 
growth. The peat reposes on the original glacial debris of 
the metamorphic rocks of the neighbourhood, in which these 
widespreading roots had taken a deep hold. I could find no 
evidence of two forests, an upper and a lower, but occasionally 
the contorted roots of stunted shrubs were to be seen half-way 
up in the sections. Similar remains of forests may be seen in 
nearly all the glens of that neighbourhood. At the present 
time small shrubs and willows grow in the district, but only in 
the vicinity of houses. 

Those who are conversant with phenomena of this kind, 
so abundantly met with over the British Isles, especially in 
districts where peat -cutting is still carried on, as between 
Shapwick and Glastonbury in England, Lochar Moss in 
Scotland, and the Bog of Allen in Ireland, may regard 
further evidence on this subject as superfluous. However, 
for the benefit of those who are denied these outdoor privi- 
leges, the following extracts from old documents, selected 
almost at random from a large number of similar records, 
may be interesting : — 

" It may be a matter of surprise," says a writer on North 
Uist," "■ that though no trees now grow at present in this 
' Sinclair's Stat. Account of Scotland, vol. xiii. p. 321. 


parish, the time has been when the whole face of it was 
covered with wood. The truth of this assertion is evident 
from the circumstance that the roots of trees are found in 
peat-mosses in different parts, and even below high-water 
mark : where the sand is washed away by the sea or blown 
away by the wind they plainly appear in a kind of black 
soil, or rather moss. This is the case particularly in the 
island of Vallay." After expressing the opinion that the 
spray of the ocean prevents the growth of forests at the 
present time, he continues thus : " Though it is evident 
that the island was once covered with trees, it must have 
been at a period when the ocean was at a greater distance 
— that is to say, when the land extended a great deal farther 
to the westward." 

The topographical conditions, on which this writer so 
judiciously comments, existed when Great Britain, Ireland, 
and all these western islands, formed part of the, continent 
of Europe. The presence of deer- bones in the peat, as 
mentioned in an unquoted portion of the same article, and 
of most of the present flora and fauna of the island, can 
only be accounted for on the supposition that the British 
Isles were formerly the central parts of an extensive land 
area now submerged. 

Another writer describes analogous phenomena on the 
mainland of Scotland as follows : " Of old in the parish 
of Croy, Inverness -shire, and before the records of the 
kingdom, there were extensive forests of oak, birch, 
fir, and hazel, which have been converted into moss, in 
some places upwards of 20 feet deep. In a moss 400 
feet above the level of the sea, oaks of extraordinary size 
are dug up, some of them measuring from 50 to 60 feet. 
Where the parish joins the Strathdearn hills large blocks 
of fir are found, where now, from cold and storm, the 


dwarf willow can scarcely raise its downy and lowly 
head." 1 

A moss in the parish of Kilbarchan, Renfrewshire, from 
7 to 9 feet in depth, is thus described : " The soil below is 
a deep white clay, where has formerly been a forest. The 
oak is perfectly fresh ; the other kinds of timber are rotten. 
The stumps in general are standing in their original position. 
The trees are all broken over at about the height of 3 feet, 
and are lying from south-west to north-east. So, whenever 
you see a stump, you are sure to find a tree to the north- 
east. How an oak-tree could break over at that particular 
place I never could understand. But we may be allowed 
to form a conjecture, that before the tree fell the moss 
had advanced along its stem and rotted it there." ^ 

Sir John Clerk ^ in one of his letters thus refers to magni- 
ficent oaks found at Drumcrief : " Here in a mosse of small 
extent, I believe 40 or 50 fathoms at least above the level 
of the sea, I saw the finest oak my eyes ever beheld. It 
lay 6 feet under the surface, straight, and above 70 feet 
in length, all fresh from the root to the top, though it no 
doubt had lain there 1500 years; near to it were a great 
many other oaks, and above, near the surface, a whole 
wood of birch trees, which have grown up after the catas- 
trophe of the oaks." 

Mr Alton,* in an excellent introduction to his treatise 
on moss earth, says : " Trees of enormous dimensions have 
grown spontaneously in many parts of Britain where it 
would baffie the ingenuity of man to rear a tree of the 
tenth part of the size. The mosses in all parts of the island 

^ New Stat. Account, vol. xiv. p. 449. 
' Old Stat. Account, vol. xv. p. 484. 
' Reliquiae GaleansE, p. 333. 

* A Treatise on the Origin, Qualities, and Cultivation of Moss Earth, 


abound with trees of much greater dimensions than any now 
to be found growing in this country." In support of this 
statement he instances a number of huge trees dug up from 
peat-bogs in various localities throughout Scotland. 

In a letter dated November 19, 1701, in the 'Philo- 
sophical Transactions' (vol. xxii. p. 980), describing a buried 
forest exposed when Hatfield Moss (Chace), Yorkshire, was 
being reclaimed, the author, Mr Abraham de la Pryme, 
after mentioning various trees, firs and oaks, from 20 to 
35 yards in length (one oak was 120 feet long, 12 feet in 
diameter near the root, and 11 feet in the middle), thus 
writes : — 

" It is very observable. Sir, and manifestly evident, that 
many of those trees of all sorts have been burnt, but especi- 
ally the Pitch or Firr trees, some quite through, and some 
all on a side ; some have been found chopped and squared, 
some bored through, otherwise half riven with great wooden 
wedges and stones in them, and broken ax - heads, some- 
what like sacrificing axes in shape, and all this in such 
places, and at such depths, as could never be opened from 
the destruction of this forest, until the time of the drainage. 
Near a great root in the parish of Hatfield were found 8 
or 9 coins of some of the Roman Emperors, but exceedingly 
consumed and defaced with time; and it is very observable 
that upon the confines of this low country, between Burning- 
ham and Brumby in Lincolnshire, are several great hills of 
loose sand, which, as they are yearly worn and blown away 
with sand, are discovered under them many roots of great 
Firrs or Pitch trees, with the impresses of the ax as fresh 
upon them as if they had been cut down a few weeks, 
which I have several times with pleasure taken notice of, 
as I have rid that way. 

" Hazle nuts and acorns have frequently been found at 


the bottom of the soil of those Levels and Mores, and Firr 
or Pitch tree apples or cones in great quantities by whole 
bushels together. And at the very bottom of a new river 
or drain, that the drainers cut, were found old trees squared 
and cut, rails, stoups, bars, old links of chains, horse-heads, 
an old ax somewhat like a battle-axe, two or three coins 
of the Emperor Vespatian, one of which I have seen in 
the hands of Mr Cornelius Lee of Hatfield, with the Em- 
peror's head on one side and a spread eagle on the other ; 
but that which is more observable is, that the very ground 
at the bottom of the river was found in some places to lye 
in Rigg and Fur, manifesting thereby that it had been 
plow'd and tilled in former days. . . . 

"That which is also very strange, is that about 50 years 
ago, at the very bottom of a turf-pit, was found a man lying 
at his length, with his head upon his arm, as in a common 
posture of sleep, whose skin being as it were tann'd by the 
More Water preserved his shape entire, but within, his flesh 
and most of his bones were consumed and gone, an arm 
of whom one of the workmen cut off, and brought home 
to his master, which is now in the possession of my honoured 
friend and great antiquary Dr Nat. Johnson, whose antiqui- 
ties of this county are earnestly expected by all ingenious 

The opinion of the writer was that the Hatfield forest 
had been destroyed by the Romans, and that the prostrate 
stems and branches of the trees, by preventing the flow of 
water, had converted the locality into a peat-bog. Among 
other examples of great trees buried under peat and asso- 
ciated with the remains of human industry, he instances 
{loc. cit., p. 984) the following : " Dr Leigh (in his late 
learned and ingenious history of Cheshire) observes that in 
the draining of Martin Meer (which was performed but a 



few years ago) was found multitudes of the roots and 
bodies of great Pitch trees commonly called Firrs, in their 
natural postures, with great quantities of their cones, 8 
canoes, such as the old Britons sailed in; and in another 
More was found a brass kettle, beads of amber, a small 
millstone, the whole head of an Hippopotamus, and human 
bodies entire and uncorrupted, — I suppose he means to 
outward appearance." 

The Orkney and Shetland Islands are at the present time 
absolutely destitute of woods or trees of any kind ; but yet 
we are informed, on trustworthy authority, that decayed 
timbers of considerable size are frequently found in the 
peat -bogs on these islands. In June 1896, while on a 
short visit to Shetland, I made an excursion to an exten- 
sive peat-moor in the vicinity of Lerwick for the purpose of 
satisfying myself on this question. The peat - deposits in 
this locality have been utilised as fuel by the inhabitants of 
Lerwick from time immemorial, and so I had no difficulty 
in finding numerous sections exposing the structure of the 
peat down to the virgin clays. These showed two distinct 
layers, a lower and an upper, of nearly equal thickness. 
The former was a black, dense, heavy material, which, when 
cast into peats and dried, looked almost Hke a piece of 
coal ; the latter was a spongy, fibrous substance, of a brown- 
ish colour, with a tendency to lamination. Between these 
different deposits I noticed in several places an aggregation 
of the remains of shrubs, and also beneath the lower 
bed. The bogwood was much decayed, and looked like 
scraggy contorted stems and roots of stunted hazel or 
willow. The largest pieces I found measured only 14 and 
16 inches in circumference. I visited another peat -bog 
on the road to Scalloway, where peat - cutting was going 
on ; but there I could find no trace of wood in the sections. 


although the two qualities of peat were much the same as 
in the former. 

Mr George Low,^ more than a century ago, puts on record 
the following observations on this subject : " Crossed the 
Parish of Belting, thro' deep moss grounds, for Yell. Ob- 
served near the kirk of Scalsta, in the bank where the sea 
had wore away the earth, a continued stratum of large 
pieces of wood, in a horizontal position, a few inches 
above the hard gravel, covered with about 10 feet of moss. 
This stratum is continued as far as I could search the 
whole length of this worn bank, and, probably, round the 
bay; it consists of pieces from 8 inches to half an inch in 
diameter, roots, stocks, and, in a word, all parts of a tree ; 
seems Hazel and Aquatick woods, but so much rotten that 
no part can be moved. This, however, is a proof of trees 
having been here at some period, but this seems to have 
been very ancient, if we compute from the vast dispropor- 
tion there is between the thickness of moss below the 
stratum with that above, and at the same time consider 
the length of time the latter would require to grow, both 
in height and solidity, both which it has in a great degree, 
particularly towards the bottom. The horizontal position 
seems to indicate that they have all fallen at the same 
time, or have subsided after some terrestrial convulsion, a 
partial or universal flood ; but however this is, are a plain 
proof of wood having been here of old, and might be a 
lesson to the inhabitants to enquire what woods are fittest 
for, and would be most valuable in, their country." 

While the existence of bogwood in the Outer Hebrides, 

and in the Orkney and Shetland Islands, demonstrates the 

wider geographical distribution of forests in former times, 

its presence in the peaty uplands of the mainland is equally 

' Tour thro' Orkney and Shetland, 1774, p. 146. 


conclusive as to the greater altitudes at which they flourished. 
The most stunted Scotch fir at the present time rarely grows 
above 1800 feet above sea-level, but in the peat-bogs its roots 
are found up to 3000 feet, as has been observed at Glen- 
avon,i Banffshire, and other localities. 

The inferences to be derived from these and similar obser- 
vations on peat-bogs and their buried forests, throughout 
Scotland, are somewhat conflicting. There can be no doubt 
that the climatic conditions which permitted oaks to flourish 
on the uplands of Scotland, and trees of considerable size to 
grow in the Orkney and Shetland Islands, where scarcely 
a stunted shrub is now to be seen in a wild state, were more 
favourable to the growth of forest trees than those which 
now obtain. On the other hand, the large pines found in 
some of the Lowland mosses would seem to indicate a colder 
climate. The probable explanation of this is, that the pines 
and oaks, though sometimes found associated in the same 
bog, belong to slightly different periods of time. 

3. Chronological Data. 

Nothing, in my opinion, can be more certain than that an 
extensive forest of oaks and other trees sprang up after the 
sea retreated from the valley of the Lochar and the Carse of 
Stirling, and that both of them subsequently succumbed to 
the growth of peat. In the south portion of Lochar Moss I 
have seen stems and trunks of oak-trees which grew on the 
subjacent marine clays. Farther inland, where the marine 
deposits are light and gravelly, the roots of the fir are said to 
be more abundant — a difference which is readily explained by 
the nature of the deposits, the oak preferring a clayey soil. 
These facts are in accordance with the experience of peat- 
' Old Stat. Account, vol. xii. p. 451. 


cutters and others who have recorded their observations from 
practical knowledge. Nor can there be any doubt that a 
forest preceded the formation of the Blair Drummond Moss 
in the Carse of Stirling. A wooden roadway, exposed in the 
early part of this century, is thus described : " The mosses 
preserved the remains of an ancient forest chiefly of oak-trees, 
which had occupied the plain but little above the surface of 
the river during ordinary floods, part whereof appears to have 
been lower and marshy, across which a road had been formed 
of trees laid longitudinally, with a second laid transversely. 
The depth of Blair Drummond Moss (in which this road 
occurs), prior to the operations, was 8 feet, extending to 14 
towards the upper extremity. Some of the roots of the trees 
were very large, and occupied their natural position in the 
soil, their trunks being extended horizontally, many retaining 
distinct impressions of the axes employed in felling them — an 
operation commonly referred to the period of the Roman 
conquest." ^ 

The surmise that this wooden pavement was part of a 
Roman road is not at all improbable, and if this could be 
substantiated it would disprove the theory advanced by Sir 
Archibald Geikie and others, that the 25-feet raised beach 
had been formed since the Romans visited Scotland.^ That 
these peat-deposits in the Forth and Lochar valleys, as well 
as those of the Cree, Solway, and others within the 25-feet 
zone of submergence, are comparatively recent, there can be 
little doubt from the evidence of man's presence in the 
localities long before their formation. A bronze caldron 
(fig. i), now in the National Museum, was discovered in 
the Kincardine Moss in 1768 "upon the surface of the 
clay buried under the moss." It is made of thin plates of 

^ Mem. Wem. Soc, vol. v. p. 426. 

^ Edin. New Phil. Journal, vol. xiv. p. 102. 


bronze riveted together— the rounded bottom portion being 
shaped from one plate— and measures 25 inches in diameter 
and 16 inches in depth. The everted rim, which is formed 
of a couple of bands of sheet-bronze fastened to the upper 
edge of the vessel, bears marks of the rivets by which a 
pair of ring-handles had been attached. Another caldron 

Fig. I. — Bronze caldron found in the Moss of Kincardine (25 inches 

(fig. 2) of the same type, said to have been found in the 
west of Scotland, is also in the National Museum. ^ A 
third caldron (fig. 3), showing the same style of workman- 
ship, but differing from the former in being bucket-shaped 
with a flat bottom, was found at Cardross, in a small camp 
on the north-west corner of Flanders Moss, in the valley of 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xix. p. 315. 



the Forth.^ The globular- and round-bottomed forms are 
more commonly met with in the British Isles, whereas on 
the Continent the reverse of this is the case. Both kinds 
have, however, been found on the Oppidum La Tene. (See 
'Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' p. 290, and fig. 92, Nos. 18 and 
19.) These vessels appeared in Britain in pre-Roman times, 

Fig. 2. — Bronze caldron from tM West of Scotland (25 inches 

probably in the late Bronze or early Iron Age; but never- 
theless the Kincardine caldron might have been a " Roman 
camp-kettle," as described in the Museum list of 1782. It 
was apparently abandoned in the depths of a forest, which 
had already shown symptoms of decay, and ultimately got 
covered over with the growing peat. 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxii. p. 37. 


Another beautiful object of the Late Celtic period was 
found in Lochar Moss inside a bronze bowl (fig. 4). This 
is a beaded torque, consisting partly of ornamented beads and 
partly of a solid portion elegantly chased with a pattern of 
"late Celtic" design.^ Other reHcs reported to have been 
found in buried forests have already been mentioned ; and it 
may be observed that all of them, so far as the circumstances 
of their discovery can now be recalled, support the theory 

that man was an eyewitness of 
the successive transformations 
of sea, forest, moss, and wheat- 
lands which have taken place in 
the Carse of Stirling. If the 
facts regarding the Culzean 
hoard (p. 77) be of any value, 
the sea had not retired in the 
early Bronze Age much be- 
yond the 2 5 - feet level. But 
this evidence could be entirely 
negatived on the supposition 
that a severe storm would suffice 
to throw up gravel on a gently 
shelving beach to that height.' 
That the relative level of sea and land during the Bronze Age 
was not much different from what it is at the present time 
is proved by the position of a small cemetery of the Bronze 
Age found at Magdalen Bridge, near Joppa, and described 
by Mr W. Lowson.^ The surface of the ground was only 
12 to 14 feet above high -water mark. On the top was 
ordinary soil, and beneath that a layer of sea - sand, 4 to 8 
feet thick (in which urns and a bronze blade were found), 

1 Wilson's Preh. Annals, vol. ii. p. 140; Plate IX. vol. i. p. 465. 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv. p. 4:9. 

Fig. 3. — Bronze caldron (19 inches 
in height) found at Cardross. 



resting on a bed of gravel. This conclusively shows that 
the sea had then retreated to near its present limits. 
During Roman times it would appear that the sea had for- 
saken the Carse of Stirling and Lochar Moss sufficiently 

Fig. 4. — Bronze leaded torque and bowl found in Lochar Moss. 

long to admit of forests to grow on areas which in Neolithic 
times had been sea. 

Outside the 50-feet zone of submergence the older and 
newer peat - deposits cannot be readily distinguished, as the 
two periods are in a certain measure continuous ; but within 


it they are often separated by beds of day, as may be seen 
in the valleys of the Forth and Tay.i It is possibly to the 
older forest-bed that many of the large trees found in the 
Cree, and described by Sir Arthur Mitchell, must be as- 
signed. He has recognised their existence in "two distinct 
positions " — one " on the surface of the clay," and the other 
in the channel of the river, with "from lo to 15 feet of 
sandy clay" above them (see p. 69). It is also probable 
that many of the great oaks found in peat-bogs, as well as 
the pines in the higher altitudes, belong to the same older 

Many of these consecutive changes on the earth's surface 
are as legible to the geologist as the seasonal indications of 
flowering-plants, autumn tints, and snowy wreaths are to the 
country peasant. They are indeed hour shadows on the 
dial of time. Like the dies and the annus, the intervals be- 
tween one ice age and another were measured by precise 
movements of the heavenly bodies ; and they had their con- 
secutive phases — dawn, noon, and evening — distinguished 
in the book of Nature by concurrent phenomena in the 
physical and organic environments. The evolutionary phases, 
which preceded the vegetative garb, now clothing the rugged 
contour of our country, are also valuable factors in decipher- 
ing the history of past ages. But space will not admit of 
discussing this interesting subject at greater length. 

To whatever causes the disappearance of the great forests 
may be assigned, there can be no doubt that North Britain 
was more extensively wooded in prehistoric times than at the 
present day. Roman historians agree in representing the 
climate of Britain as humid and favourable to luxuriant 
vegetation, and sufficiently mild to permit of the natives 
going about in a semi-nude condition. Ctesar states that all 
' Geikie, Great Ice Age, 3vd ed., p. 291. 


kinds of trees grew on it, with the exception of the fir (silver 
fir) and the beech, and that its climate was more temperate 
than that of Gaul. Tacitus also describes the climate of 
Britain as always damp with rains, and overcast with clouds, 
without, however, the cold being extremely rigorous. He 
speaks of cutting down woods and draining bogs ; and 
represents the natives, when beaten, as flying for shelter 
to the woods and marshes. Another writer (Dio Cassius) 
describes the Caledonians as dwelling in tents, naked, and 
without shoes ; enduring hunger, cold, and all manner of 
hardships with wonderful patience ; and capable of remain- 
ing in bogs for many days immersed up to the neck, and 
without food. In the woods they lived on the bark of trees 
and roots, and had a sort of food always ready, of which, if 
they took but the quantity of a bean, they would be neither 
hungry nor thirsty for a long time after. Herodian de- 
scribes them as going about partially naked to prevent the 
beautiful figures painted on their bodies from being hidden. 
According to him, they wore neither coat of mail nor helmet, 
to prevent them being encumbered in their marches through 
bogs and morasses — whence such a quantity of vapours was 
exhaled that the air was always thick and cloudy. 

According to tradition and the annals, the Romans are 
credited with being the prime movers in the destruction of 
the British forests ; and certainly the quoted extract, about 
the drainage of Hatfield Moss, supports that view. But 
however destructive they may have been on the forests, 
while clearing a way for their legions, it is impossible to 
assign to this agency more than a nominal value. Forests 
have equally disappeared in countries and districts never 
visited by the Romans. That the natives themselves partly 
contributed to the clearance of the woods and jungles, as they 
became habituated to the systematic tillage of the land, is 


probable. But whatever may have been the real agency of 
their destruction, — whether the growth of peat, the varia- 
tion of cHmate, or the hand of man, — the change was not 
effected all at once. The numerous place-names, such 
as Woodlands, Woodend, Woodside, Linwood, Fulwood, 
Oakshaw-side, Oakshaw-head, Walkingshaw, &c., &c., prove 
that the south of Scotland was well wooded after the Saxon 
language had ousted the Celtic. On the other hand, in medi- 
eval times wood was becoming scarce. Cosmo Innes thus 
alludes to the subject : " At the earliest period illustrated 
by the Melrose Charters there is sufficient evidence that the 
southern division of Scotland was not a well-wooded country. 
On the contrary, the right of cutting wood was carefully re- 
served when pasturage or arable land was granted ; and when 
that right was conceded for some particular purpose, such as 
for fuel for a salt-work, or for building, the use was limited in 
express terms. The high grounds of Ayrshire may be an ex- 
ception, where there seems to have existed an extensive forest; 
but elsewhere wood was a scarce and valuable commodity." ^ 

1 Sketches of Early Scottish History, p. loo. 




HAT there is a remarkable parallelism 
between the repeated land-submergences 
and the glacial epochs, as partially 
described in the last chapter, has been 
frequently pointed out by geologists. 
The most probable explanation of this 
coincidence of two apparently independent phenomena is 
that they were the effects of one common cause — viz., cosmic 
or astronomical cycles. But the operation of such causes 
would not destroy the effects of other agencies capable of alter- 
ing the relative level of sea and land. The result of a local 
— i.e., terrestrial — element coming into play, synchronously 
with a cosmic movement, would be either to intensify the 
action of the latter, if they were acting in one direction, 
or to counteract it, if in opposite directions. The 25-feet 
raised beach in Scotland may, therefore, be accounted for 
on the supposition that while the land was gradually rising 
in obedience to an astronomical cause, it became arrested 
by a terrestrial movement of depression, the apparent result 
being a cessation of all movement. But my object is not 


to explain the physical causes of land oscillations, but to 
chronicle their existence and effects on the career of man. 
Without, therefore, taking into consideration local volcanic 
disturbances, such as Sir Charles Lyell describes as having 
occurred at PuzzuoH since the temple of Jupiter Serapis 
was built, there are other obscure land oscillations whose 
effects have to be investigated. The first evidence of this 
nature which falls to be discussed is that which proves that 
the shore-lands of Scotland have risen some 25 or 30 feet 
since Neolithic man appeared in Central Scotland. As the 
facts on which this conclusion is based are derived from 
sources of investigation which have little or no connection 
with each other, there is no necessity for marshalling them 
in any particular order. Accordingly, I begin with one of 
the most recent discoveries bearing on this subject, viz. : — 

I. The MacArthur Cave and Rock-Shelter at Oban. 

The MacArthur Cave was discovered in December 1894 
by quarrymen while removing stones, for building purposes, 
from a cliff facing the bay of Oban, long regarded by 
geologists as marking the line of an old sea-beach. In the 
course of these operations a cavity was exposed in the rock 
which turned out to be a cave 25 feet long (north to south) 
and from r6 to 20 feet broad. This opening was made near 
the back of the cave, but its natural entrance, which had been 
most effectually concealed by an old talus of earth and stones, 
was at the other or north end. Before the discovery came 
under the notice of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, the 
whole of the roof had been removed by the quarrymen ; but 
as the floor, already ascertained to be an accumulation of 
relic-bearing debris, remained practically undisturbed, it was 
decided by the Council of the Society to have it thoroughly 


excavated. A full report of the investigation was read at 
a meeting of the Society — nth March 1895 — by Dr Joseph 
Anderson, who, with the co-operation of a number of local 
gentlemen interested in the antiquities of their neighbour- 
hood, superintended the excavations. 

The contents of the cave consisted, first, of a layer of black 
earth, the presence of which was accounted for by a slanting 
shaft filled with a similar material, which extended from the 
wall of the cave to the surface of the ground above. This 
shaft was formerly an open-air passage, by means of which, 
it was conjectured, surface -soil had been washed into the 
interior of the cave. In this layer, besides the bones of 
various animals, the following human remains were found, 
the relative positions of which are thus stated : " Towards the 
back of the cave, and under a projecting part of the roof 
which remained on the east side, a human skull was found 
on the surface of the black earth. A few feet farther north, 
on the same side of the cave, another skull was found em- 
bedded in the black earth, almost on the top of the shell-bed 
underneath. Still farther north, and only a few feet distant, 
were a good many other bones of a human skeleton. Two 
lower jaws were also separately found near these remains on 
the same side of the cave." 

Professor Sir William Turner gave a report on these human 
remains, but it is unnecessary here to dwell on their special 
characters, as, from their superficial position in the cave, their 
owners had probably no relationship with the cave-dwellers 
who left the implements and weapons among the subjacent 

The next deposits in descending order are thus described : 
" It was found that underneath the layer of black earth there 
was a bed of shells, varying from 27 inches to about 3 feet in 
thickness, extending over the whole floor of the cave, and 


showing little or no intermixture of black earth or gravel, but 
here and there patches of ashes mixed with wood-charcoal, 
and charred splinters of bone. Under this shell-bed was a 
bed of fine clean gravel, composed entirely of small water- 
rolled stones. In this gravel, at a depth of about i8 inches 
(where the section was first made), there was intercalated a 
deposit of shells, which we at first spoke of as the lower shell- 
bed, but which proved to be of partial extent and unequal 
thickness, thinning out towards the sides and towards the 
mouth of the cave, and in several places presenting an 
irregular or patchy appearance in the section, as if the shells 
had been deposited in heaps or pockets in the gravel. Under- 
neath this intercalated layer of shells the gravel extended for 
about 4 feet or more to the cave bottom, where it was mixed 
with large and small fragments of loose rock. The whole 
thickness of the gravel-bed under the upper deposit of shells 
was thus about 6 feet, including the intercalated lower deposit 
of shells." 

Both the upper and lower shell-beds were composed of the 
shells of edible species found on the neighbouring shores and 
of the bones of land and marine animals, the entire mass being 
a true refuse-heap, evidently the result of a lengthened occu- 
pation of the cave by people who fed on the fauna represented 
in it. The bones were, for the most part, broken into 
splinters both for the purpose of extracting the marrow and 
of manufacturing bone implements, of which a large number 
was collected. 

All the implements recovered were made of bone or deer- 
horn, with the exception of three hammer-stones, and twenty 
flints (three being natural nodules), mostly flakes and chips, 
"a few of which show secondary working, though none are 
really implements in the sense of being fashioned and 



The bone and horn implements consist of three pins (fig. 
5) ; three borers (fig. 6), together with a few bones of 
nondescript characters, being merely pointed or flattened at 
the end; 140 " round-nosed, chisel-ended implements having 
an extraordinary likeness to each other" (figs. 7, 8, 9, and 10) ; 
and seven harpoons (two being entire) made of deer-horn. 
The larger of the entire harpoons (fig. n) (6 inches in length) 

Fig. 5. — Bone pin (J). 

Fig. 6. — Bone borer (^). 

has four barbs on each side and a perforation at the butt- 
end. The other (fig. 12) differs from it only in being 
smaller (4^ inches in length) and having no perforation at 
the butt-end. 

The animal remains from the respective deposits were 
identified by Mr James Simpson, assistant to Sir William 
Turner, as follows : — 

" (i) In the upper layer of black earth were bones or teeth 




of the red -deer and of a species of ox, also of the pig, 
dog, and badger {Meles taxus). Some bones of birds, fish, 
claws of crabs, and shells of patella, solen, and whelk were 

" (2) In the shell-bed underneath the black earth, in addition 
to bones of badger, red-deer, and ox, a part of the jaw of a 
roe -deer (C capreolus) was recognised; also bones of small 

Figs. 7, 8, 9. — Implements of bone and deer-horn (^). 

birds and of fish, claws of crabs, and shells of patella, pecten, 
and solen. 

" (3) In the deeper shell-bed and pockets underneath the 
gravel below No. 2 were portions of two frontal bones of an 
ox, probably Bos longtfrons, antlers, and bones of red-deer, 
one of which had been a large stag, the burr being 80 mm. 
(about 3 inches) in diameter, bones of roe-deer, the humerus 
of an otter {Lutra vulgaris), the humerus of a cat, the lower jaw 
of a young pig, the upper jaw of a badger ; also bones of small 
birds, jaw and vertebrce of fish, crabs' claws, and shells of 



molluscs. Some of the bones were blackened and calcined 
from the action of fire." 

It is fortunate that the record of arch^ological phenomena 

Fig. lo. — Bone i 

made of the leg-bone of a 
deer (f ). 

Fig. 12. — Har- 
poon of deer- 
horn (f ). 

Fig. II. — Harpoon of deer-horn (|). 

found in this cave fell to be described by such experienced 
and accurate observers as Sir William Turner, Dr Anderson, 


was the result of some sudden coup, some specific action, 
which came into operation a considerable time after the 
people had taken possession of the cave. The facts would 
be quite consistent with the idea that the Troglodytes aban- 
doned the cave for a time, and that, on coming back, they 
purposely spread this layer of gravel over the former refuse- 
heap, so as to start, as it were, with a clean floor and 
hearth. There is, however, no natural process which, to my 
mind, accounts for it more satisfactorily than the supposition 
that during a severe storm the waves were forced into the 
cave, carrying with them a certain amount of shingle, which 
henceforth became the floor of the cave, and over which the 
cave-dwellers, after the abatement of the storm, again took 
up their quarters as formerly. 

If this opinion be correct, the importance of the Oban cave 
cannot be exaggerated, as it proves that man was an inhabitant 
of the district when the opening to the cave was on the sea- 
beach, and sufficiently near the water to permit the waves to 
enter it during a storm. But the beach of to-day is i oo yards 
distant, and the lower shell-bed lay fully 30 feet above the 
present high-water mark.^ 

At the beginning of May 1898 another discovery was made 
at Oban which yielded similar remains of human industry, 
associated with a refuse-heap of shells and broken bones 
precisely analogous to those from the MacArthur Cave. This 
was a rock-shelter, situated at the base of a steep rock called 
Druimvargie, and overlooking a marsh in which, some years 
ago, the remains of a lake-dwelling were found. The area 
of the shelter was some 10 feet square, and the debris which 
lay in it had been covered over for ages by a deep talus. It 
was while clearing away this talus, preparatory to laying the 

1 In addition to Dr Anderson's Report, see ' Proc. Soc. A. Lond.,' May 
21, i8q6. 



foundations of a house, that the shell-heap became exposed. 
Among the relics were a few stone implements of water-worn 
pebbles of an elongated shape and slantingly abraded at one 
end, two or three bone borers, a portion of a deer-horn 
broken across a circular perforation, a number of " round- 
nosed " chisels of bone, and the front portions of two har- 
poons (figs. 13 and 14) made of deer-horn, and of the same 




Figs. 13-17. — Harpoons frojn Dndmvargie, Caisteal-nan-Gilhan, and 
Newcastle-upon- Ty7ie (§). 

character as those found in the MacArthur Cave, differing 
from them only in having the barbs — three in each case — 
on one side. M. Piette also records unilateral barbed 
harpoons from the cave of Mas-d'Azil in France. Hence 
the discovery of this variety at Oban only strengthens the 
remarkable analogy between these relics in the French and 
Scottish caves, the significance of which I have elsewhere 
fully discussed.^ 

^ Prehistoric Problems, pp. 60-77. 


Bone harpoons and implements of bone and stone, similar 
to those from the MacArthur Cave and the rock-shelter of 
Druimvargie, have also been found at Caisteal-nan-Gillean, 
Oronsay, explored by Mr Symington Grieve and the late Mr 
William Galloway. These investigations have been described 
by Mr Grieve in his work on ' The Great Auk or Garefowl,' 
and recently by Dr Joseph Anderson in the Proceedings of 
the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, vol. xxxii. Caisteal- 
nan-Gillean is a sand-hill, about 150 feet in diameter, with an 
average height of 2 5 feet. Its surface was covered with grassy 
turf, having blown sand underneath to a depth of from i 
to 5 feet. " Below this covering," writes Dr Anderson, " an 
accumulation of shells and bones, in a series of layers mingled 
with sand and ashes, extended downwards for a total depth of 
about 8 feet. Underneath this refuse-heap the substance of 
the mound consisted of blown sand in layers, the upper part 
of each layer defined by a thin line of dark mould, with a few 
sea and land shells intermixed, but no implements or other 
remains of human occupancy." The bone and horn imple- 
ments found in this shell-heap consisted of eleven harpoon- 
heads (figs. 15 and 16), three bone awls, and 150 "round- 
nosed," chisel-like implements, similar to those from the caves 
at Oban. The stone implements, which numbered over 200, 
were elongated water-worn pebbles worked at one end into 
" round-nosed " endings precisely similar to the bone chisels. 
They are supposed to have been utilised by the people who 
formed this midden as " limpet hammers." Besides the 
above-named objects there were eight fragments of perforated 
implements of deer-horn, and others roughly cut round the 
circumference and then broken across ; two small anvil-stones 
measuring about 4 by 3 inches and i^^ inch thick; fifty 
chips and splinters of flint, but none which can be charac- 
terised as a worked implement. With the exception of bones 


of the Great Auk, the organic remains were those of the 
existing fauna of the West Coast. 

Two other shell-heaps in Oronsay were excavated by Mr 
Galloway, whose contents were apparently similar to those of 
Caisteal-nan-Gillean. Also Dr T. B. Sprague exhibited at a 
meeting of the Scottish Natural History Society, in 1898, a 
large quantity of broken bones found in a shell-heap or 
kitchen-midden on the island of Inchkeith, among which I 
observed a few round-nosed chisels similar to those of Oban 
and Oronsay. 

Recently, when on a visit to the Antiquarian Museum at 
Newcastle - upon - Tyne, I saw a bone harpoon labelled as 
having been picked up on the shore at Whitburn in 1852. 
As will be seen from figure 17, "it is very similar to the Oban 
specimens. Another of the same class of weapon was found 
in the Victoria Cave, Yorkshire,^ which has the peculiarity of 
having two reverse barbs, one at each side, for the purpose of 
fastening the string, instead of a hole as in the Whitburn 

2. Implements of Deer-horn associated with the Skeletons of 
Whales in the Carse of Stirling. 

On the 17th September 1889 Professor Sir William Turner 
read a paper at the British Association, then held at New- 
castle-upon-Tyne, " On Implements of Stag's horn associated 
with Whales' Skeletons found in the Carse of Stirling." In 
this paper the author describes a perforated horn implement 
shaped like a hammer-axe head, 1 1 inches long and 6 % 
inches in its greatest girth (fig. 18). It was found in 1877, 
resting on the skull of the skeleton of a Balaenoptera exposed 
in the course of drainage operations on the estate of Meikle- 

^ Cave Hunting, p. 112. 


wood, a few miles west of Stirling. In 1819 and 1824 it is 
recorded that implements of deer-horn, two of which are 
described as being perforated with a round hole about an 
inch in diameter, were found also associated with whales' 
skeletons, but they appear to have been lost.^ 

In his introductory remarks Sir William writes as follows : 
" Those who are acquainted with the valley of the Forth 
know that the river Forth winds for many miles through an 
extensive plain called the Carse of Stirling. This plain is a 
raised sea-beach, which reaches from 5 or 10 to 30 feet above 
the present level of high-water. Geologists regard this beach 

Fig. 18. — Hammer-axe head of stag's horti found with a whale's skeleton at 
Meiklewood, near Stirling {\), 

as a post-glacial accumulation of marine origin, for the shells 
which it contains are not Arctic but those of molluscs now 
extant in the seas of Scotland. In the subsoil of the raised 
beach the skeletons of large whales have from time to time 
been found, and as many as seven well authenticated speci- 
mens have been recorded. They were all got under almost 
similar conditions imbedded in a blue silt which underlay a 
former peat moss, at a depth of usually 3 to 5 feet below the 
present surface of the ground, and at levels varying, it is said, 
from 5 feet to 25 feet above the present high-water mark. 
At the time when those whales were stranded the estuary of 
the Forth would have extended some 8 or 10 miles to the 

' See Mem. Wern. Soc, vol. v. pp. 437-441. 


west of the site of the town of Stirling, and there must have 
been a sufficient depth of sea to permit, with a flowing tide, 
large whales to swim many miles farther west than is now 
possible, with the risk, however, of becoming stranded as the 
tide receded. It has been customary to speak of these whales 
as Greenland whales ; by which term, I presume, has been 
meant the right whale — Balana mysticetus — which is an 
Arctic species. But the skeletons which I have examined 
did not belong to the genus Balsena, but to the genus 
Balsenoptera, or the Finner whales, several species of which 
now frequent the British seas. I have identified one skeleton 
as that of Balanoptera musatlus." 

The deer-horn implement is here figured from a drawing 
kindly made for the author by Miss Turner. It consists of a 
portion of the beam, 1 1 inches in length and 6 3^ inches in 
greatest girth. It is perforated by a hole, oval on one side 
and round on the other, the former orifice measuring i ^ by 
^ inch, and the latter ^ inch in diameter. When found 
there was a portion of a wooden handle in the hole. The 
implement is truncated at one end and bevelled into a flat 
cutting edge at the other, and the perforation is not in the 
middle but about 2 inches nearer the truncated extremity 
than the cutting edge. Sir Wilham sums up his report of 
these discoveries as follows : " The discovery of those horn 
implements proves that, when the fertile land now forming 
the Carse of Stirling was submerged below the sea-level, the 
surrounding highlands were inhabited by a hardy Caledonian 
race, who manufactured from the antlers of the red-deer useful 
tools and weapons. I have already stated that there is nothing 
in the form of these implements to lead one to suppose that 
they could be used in the chase of the whale as lances or 
harpoons. It is probable that the whales, by the side of 
which they were found, had been stranded during the ebb of 


the tide, and that the people had descended from the adjacent 
heights, and, with the aid of their chisels of horn, had spoiled 
the carcass of its load of flesh and blubber. In support of 
this view, I may state that the three skeletons along with 
which the implements were found were lying in proximity to 
the edge of the Carse-land, where it approached the adjacent 
high ground." 

One of the previously recorded whale skeletons was found 
in July 1 8 1 9 immediately adjoining the east gate to Airthrey 
Castle. The following account of this discovery was given 
at the time by Mr Robert Bald in the 'Edinburgh Philo- 
sophical Journal' for 1819 (vol. i. p. 393): "The skeleton 
is evidently that of a whale, and the animal appears to have 
been about 7 2 feet in length. The greater part of the bones 
were found at the depth of about 4)^ feet, but some were 
nearer the surface. The head was lying across the march 
ditch, the jawbones projecting a few feet over Sir Robert 
Abercromby's march-line into the estate of Powis. The tail 
lay in a westerly direction from the head. Though the bones 
were a little disjoined, yet they lay, upon the whole, in a 
regular position. The bones which have been preserved 
consist of the cranium, numerous vertebra, several ribs, the 
jawbones, and the bones of the swimming paws, with some 
smaller bones ; likewise some bones of the ear, particularly 
the mastoid process, which is remarkably hard, and some- 
what of the shape of a large shell of the genus Cyprsea, for 
which it was at first mistaken. Some of the ribs are 10 
feet in length ; and it is remarkable that one of them had 
been broken and healed again, being, as usual, much thicker 
at the place of fracture. The bones are in general firm, 
and in a state of good preservation, excepting the jawbones. 
These last were immured chiefly in the dry bank upon the 
side of the ditch, and upon exposure to the air the cellular 


Structure speedily fell to powder. Bones of equally open 
structure which lay in the sludge remain very entire. There 
were found close by the skeleton two pieces of stag's horn, 
one perforated. The lovers of natural history are under 
great obligations to Sir Robert Abercromby for the attention 
he paid in searching for and securing the bones of the 
skeleton. It may be added that he has in the most polite 
and handsome manner presented the whole to the Museum 
of the University of Edinburgh, where they are now 

The other recorded ^ whale skeleton, which had associated 
with it perforated implements of stag's horn, was unearthed 
in 1824 in the barony of Burnbank, about three-quarters of 
a mile from Kincardine Church. The ground was originally 
covered with peat, which had been artificially removed for 
improving the land, and it was while digging a ditch in the 
underlying clay that the bones were encountered. The clay 
here was only 4 feet thick, and beneath it there was a 
stratum of peat, which cropped up to the surface at the 
edge of the carse. It was on this peat layer, but imbedded 
in the clay above, that the skeleton lay. " It is a very singular 
circumstance that, along with these bones," says the writer 
(Mr H. H. Drummond), " there should have been found 
a fragment of a stag's horn similar to that found along with 
the Airthrey whale, and having a similar round hole bored 
through it. This piece of horn is also deposited in the 
Museum [of the College of Edinburgh]. The peat stratum: 
was 6 feet thick, and contained wood, particularly alder, 
and various water-plants." 

The limits of this work prevent me from continuing the 
history of these stranded whales further ; but to those who 
have a desire to do so I heartily recommend an article by 

' Mem. W^em, Soc. , vol. v. p. 440. 


Mr David B. Morris on the subject,^ in which he gives the 
records of ten other well authenticated whale remains, in 
addition to the three above described. To the writings of 
Mr Morris ^ I am indebted for the following facts in regard 
to a recent discovery, in these Carse-lands, of whale remains 
associated with at least one primitive implement. 

It appears that in May and June 1897 the County 
Council of Stirlingshire carried out a scheme of drainage 
for the village of Causewayhead. A drain track leading 
from the village to the river Forth was cut into the clays 
of the Carse to a depth of 13 or 14 feet, and in it the 
following relics were found : — 

1. Portion of a rib of a whale, 3 feet long, which was 
unfortunately broken into three pieces after being found. 

2. Several bones, which are in the possession of Mr 
Morries Stirling at Gogar. These have not been identified, 
but they are probably bones of a whale. 

3. Portion of a rib of a whale, measuring 29^ inches 
along its convexity, and split in two in the greater part of 
its length. 

4. Fragment of a rib of a whale, 6^ inches long, and 
the same in circumference, which corresponds to the whole 
thickness of the rib. This is an interesting specimen, as it 
is supposed to show traces of human workmanship. 

5. Portion of horn of red-deer {Cervus elaphus), which 
had been used by man as an implement for boring (fig. 19). 

6. Right horn core attached to fragment of the frontal 
bone of a small ox of an extinct species. Bos longifrons. 

7. Similar right horn core of a smaller animal of the 
same species. 

8. Numerous marine shells, of which a selection is placed 
in the Smith Institute. 

» Stilling Nat. Hist, and Arcli. Soc, 1S92. 2 i^i^.^ jgg^. 



In the course of cutting the drain the following sections 
were noted, the first by Mr Morris and the second by Mr 

Fig. 19. — Implement of deer-horn associated with whale remains in 
Carse of Stirling (f ). 

Kidston, but, unfortunately, the position of the relics in the 
different layers is only occasionally given : — 

Section I. — About 2,00 yards east from Caiisewayhead Inn. 


Soil ..... I 

Yellow " brick clay " ... 4 

Blue mud or " sleech " ... 9 

Sand . . . depth unknown 


Section IL — In the viL 


Road metal 




Yellow clay 


Blue clay- 


Sand with shells 


Clay . 

depth uaknown 

" Sir William Turner states that the ribs are thicker than 
the ribs of Balmnoptera rostrata and B. borealis, and are more 
of the size of B. musculus or B. Sibbaldii, which had not 
reached full growth. The whale remains were not all found 
together, but were scattered over a distance of loo yards. 
The locality is on the public road, from 300 to 400 yards east 
of the inn. This is just at the old coast-line of the 50-feet 
raised beach, where a whale would readily become stranded in 
the shallows. The carcass would in time be broken up by the 
prehistoric men who inhabited the shore, and by the beating 
of the waves, and so the bones, being scattered over a space 
and cast up on the beach, would be left in just such a position 
as that in which we have found them now." 

The deer-horn borer was found " within a short distance of 
the fragments of the whale's ribs, and at the junction of the 
blue clay and the subjacent sand. It is the right frontal 
process broken off from the frontal bone, with the burr and 
nearly two inches of the beam of the antler continuous with 
it. Springing from the beam, close to the burr, is the curved 
pointed tine of the brow antler, five inches long, following the 

With regard to a portion of a whale rib. Sir William Turner, 
to whom these interesting relics were submitted for examin- 
ation, writes as follows : " One end of this fragment showed 
an irregular fractured surface ; the opposite end was cleft, and 
the lateral boundaries or lips of the cleft were formed by the 


inner and outer surfaces of the rib. The surface of bone 
forming each hp was smooth as if from rubbing. When the 
clay was picked out of the cleft, its depth varied from 1 2 to 
26 mm., and in its deepest part the cancellated tissue of the 
bone was exposed. The appearance presented by this end of 
the bone was not natural to the rib, but was obviously due to 
some artificial process. It is difficult to account for it on the 
supposition that it was produced by accidental friction in the 
soft mud or blue carse clay in which the bone was found ; 
rather it gives one the impression that it had been artificially 
fashioned into shape by the hand of man, so as to adapt it for 
use as a rude bone implement." 

Such are the main points of interest in the Causewayhead 
discoveries, as described by Mr Morris and Sir William Turner. 
I have seen the larger portion of the relics, and find no reason 
to differ from the opinion of these two experienced observers 
that the stag-horn was used as an implement by the whale- 
hunters of the period ; but as to the portion of the whale- 
rib the evidence of human workmanship seems to me more 
doubtful. The position of the former, at the junction of 
the blue clay and subjacent sand, points to a time long 
before the tidal waters ceased to flow over the Carse-lands. 

3. Other Relics of Man in Carse-Lands and alluvial Deposits. 

But the association of implements with cetaceous remains is 
not the only evidence we have that prehistoric man wandered 
about the shores of these old inland seas. Accumulations of 
sea-shells in conjunction with fireplaces have been observed 
along the bluff of the old coast-line on both sides of the Avon, 
just where it enters the Carse — a locality which, singularly 
enough, is still called Inveravon, although the present mouth 
of the river is several miles distant. The following extract from 



the Memoirs of the Geological Survey (sheet 31) is quite 
explicit on this point. " A section," writes Mr Peach, F.R.S., 
"across a heap 50 yards long by 20 wide was exposed in a 
road cutting, and showed many successive layers of shells — 
principally oysters — to a depth of 3 feet without the bottom 
being visible. The remains of fireplaces were plentiful among 
the shells. Oysters seemed to have been preferred by the 
makers of the midden, though they had also used the Anomia, 
the big ' horse-mussel ' [Modiola), the common mussel {Mytilus 
edulis), the whelk (Buccinum undatum), and periwinkle {Littorina 
littorea). Fragments of the large edible crab (Cancer Pagurus) 
were also present. All the valves of the oysters were separate 
except such as had been empty, and which still had bar- 
nacles or zoophytes in their interior. The mussel and other 
shells were found in separate nests, and not indiscriminately 
throughout the mound. Layers of sand were also found 
among the shells. All the middens observed occur on the 
bluff itself or just at its base, as if, when it was the limit 
of high water, the people who formed the middens, after 
searching the shores during low water, had retreated thither 
to enjoy their feast while the tide covered their hunting- 
ground. Few or no oysters are now found in the Forth 
above Borrowstounness." 

The finding of canoes in the Carse-lands is well authenti- 
cated. Sir John Clerk in ' Reliquiae Galeanas ' '^ informs 
his correspondent that " a very ancient curiosity " was found 
in the Carse of Falkirk in the month of May 1726. "The 
washings of the river Carron discovered a boat, 13 or 14 
feet underground; it is 36 feet in length and d,^/i in breadth, 
all of one piece of oak. There were several strata above it, 
such as loam, clay, shells, moss, sand, and gravel; these 
strata demonstrate it to have been an antediluvian boat. 
1 Bib. Top. Brit., No. IL, p. 24. 


The tree of which it was made was, no doubt, very big, 
but still no bigger than one which is yet alive not far from 
that place, which is about 12 or 13 feet in diameter." To 
this he adds a cutting from a contemporary newspaper, in 
which the boat is described as finely polished and having 
a pointed stem and a square stern. At a later period another 
writer 1 mentions that a canoe was found near Falkirk, 5 
fathoms deep in the clay, and that anchors were dug up 
in the ground between Alloa and Stirling. These instances 
are given as a proof, in the opinion of the writer, that these 
lands were formerly under sea. 

Professor James Geikie gives a description of a canoe 
made of pine-wood found in a brick clay-pit at Friarton, 
Perth. It lay on its bottom over a bed of peat, under- 
neath 10 or II feet of clay, and measured 1 5 feet in length, 
3^ in breadth, and 3 feet in depth. This clay, according 
to the Professor, belongs to the second series of terraces 
forming the raised beaches in the carse- lands of the valley 
of the Tay, rising from 25 to 45 feet above mean -tide 

Another locality which has yielded evidence of the same 
nature is Lochar Moss, in Dumfriesshire, long utilised as 
a storehouse of fuel for the neighbouring inhabitants. This 
moss extends to the Solway, over an area of twelve miles 
in length and in some places three miles in breadth, with 
a fall of only about 30 feet. A couplet from an old 
rhyme, quoted by Sir Daniel Wilson,^ — 

" First a wood, next a sea, 
Now a moss, and ever will be," — 

reveals the facts, as they appeared to the unsophisticated 

^ Beauties of Scotland, vol. iii. p. 419. 

^ Scot. Naturalist, vol. v. p. 167. 

' Prehistoric Annals of Scotland, vol. i. p. 44. 


peat-cutter's mind, long before they became the subject 
of geological investigation. 

The Rev. James Laurie, writing in Sinclair's ' Statistical 
Account' (vol. i. p. i6o), thus describes the opinion current 
about this moss in the end of last century : " There is a 
tradition universally credited, that the tide flowed up this 
whole tract above the highest bridge in the neighbourhood. 
In the bottom of the moss sea-mud is found ; and the banks 
are evidently composed of sea-sand. A few years ago a 
canoe of considerable size, and in perfect preservation, was 
found by a farmer when cutting peats, 4 or 5 feet below 
the surface, about four miles above the present flood-mark; 
but it was destroyed before any antiquarian had heard of 
it. Near the same part of the moss, and about the same 
depth, a gentleman found a vessel of mixed metal, con- 
taining about an English quart. . . . Antiquities of various 
kinds are found in every part of this moss where peats are 
dug, even near its head, such as anchors, oars, &c. ; so that 
there is no doubt of its having been navigable near a mile 
above the highest bridge, and fully twelve miles above the 
present flood-mark. Near the manse there is a narrow gut, 
between two sandy hillocks, called CoUyveat, supposed to 
be a corruption of Collin's boat, where it is thought there 
was a ferry, which indeed would be very necessary, on the 
supposition of the tide flowing there." 

Previous to this Pennant (1772), while passing through 
the country, took notice of these boats, which he thus de- 
scribes : " Near a place called Kilblain I met with one of 
the ancient canoes of the primeval inhabitants of the coun- 
try, when it was probably in the same state of nature as 
Virginia when first discovered by Captain Philip Amidas. 
The length of this little vessel was 8 feet 8 inches, of the 
cavity 6 feet 7 inches, the breadth 2 feet, depth 1 1 inches, 


and at one end were the remains of three pegs for the 
paddle. The hollow was made with fire in the very manner 
that the Indians of America formed their canoes. Another 
was found in 1736 with its paddle, in the same morass. 
The last was 7 feet long, and dilated to a considerable 
breadth at one end ; so that in early ages necessity dictated 
the same inventions to the most remote regions." ^ 

Sir Arthur Mitchell ^ has put on record some interesting 
observations on the ancient forest of Cree, in Galloway. 
According to him the mosses of Cree, Carsegown, and 
Borrow, cannot cover less than 1500 to 2000 acres, and 
average 7 to 8 feet in depth. The peat lies immediately 
over the clay, the line of separation being sharply defined. 
But I cannot do better than quote Sir Arthur's own words : — 

" These trees, which, as far as I know, are all oak, are 
found in two distinct positions — first, in the channel of the 
Cree, or projecting into its channel from the banks at the 
side, many of these last having 10 to 15 feet of sandy clay 
above those parts of them which are on the bank, and an 
unknown number of feet of clay below ; and secondly, under 
the peat, on the surface of the clay. 

" The existence of this ancient Cree forest does not rest 
on our finding some half-dozen trunks. You may count 
them by the hundred, exposed in the bed of the river, be- 
tween Newton-Stewart and Barsalloch ; and you may reckon 
roots by the score where the moss has been cleared away, 
near the mouth of the Lome Burn. I say roots in this case, 
' because such trunks as are discovered in peat-casting are 
carted off at once." 

These trees are described as of great size, and specimens 
measuring 15 feet in girth and 50 feet in length are not 
uncommon. The objects which are found with them, or 
' Tour, vol. ii, p. 107. ^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. v. pp. 20-29. 


"in such positions as lead to the possible conclusion that 
they are coeval with the trees," are the following : Two 
canoes, a quern, a Roman battle-axe, a couple of stone celts, 
and one bronze celt, together with horns of deer and several 
heads of the extinct Urus. A very large deer -horn was 
found under 1 2 feet of clay, along with " some human bones 
said to have been of great dimensions." Unfortunately the 
precise localities where the heads of the Urus were found, 
whether in the clay or in or beneath the moss, are not given. 
In commenting on these discoveries Sir Arthur makes the 
following remarks : " It thus appears that very interesting 
remains are found in close association with the vestiges of 
this forest. The country appears to have been peopled 
when these trees were living. On the margins of this forest 
man paddled in his canoe, and under the shade of these 
mighty trees he pursued the red-deer and the Urus. He 
cultivated corn in the neighbourhood, and ground it ; he was 
of goodly stature, and carried formidable weapons of war. 
These things at least are possible, if not probable, inferences 
from the facts I have detailed." 

4. Canoes found in the Basin of the Clyde. 

It would be too great an encroachment on my space to 
describe the number of old canoes, and the circumstances 
in connection with their discovery, which have been disin- 
terred from the basin of the Clyde, in localities now far from 
the sea and at elevations considerably above its present 

Mr John Buchanan describes the finding of not less than 
eighteen in the environs of Glasgow prior to 1854.^ The 
first recorded specimen, dating as far back as 1780, was 
1 See Appendix to Smith's Newer Pliocene Geology, 1862. 


found, in the course of digging the foundations of old St 
Enoch's Church, lying in a horizontal position and at a depth 
of 25 feet from the surface. In its interior lay a polished 
stone celt, figured in Wilson's ' Prehistoric Annals ' (vol. i. p. 
53). Since 1854 seven additional canoes have been recorded 
from the bed of the Clyde, five before the 2nd of February 
1869, as we find Mr Buchanan referring to them in an 
address to the Archaological Society of Glasgow of that date 
(vol. ii. pp. 77 and 121). In this address he said: "The 
last of the five canoes was found also last summer, a little 
below Milton Island, near Douglas. It is 22 feet in length 
and about 2 feet 10 inches in breadth. The interior is well 
scooped out. Some interesting relics were got inside. These 
consist of six stone celts, an oaken war-club, and a consider- 
able piece of deer's horn." 

In discussing the chronological problems suggested by these 
Clyde canoes, we must bear in mind that, as boats may be 
submerged in any depth and become afterwards silted up, 
their positions afford no reliable data for determining the 
relative level of sea and land at that time. It is only when 
they are found deposited in marine beds, now above high- 
water mark, that they have a bearing on this problem. The 
" dug-out " does not necessarily carry us back to prehistoric 
times, as canoes are invariably found associated with cran- 
nogs and other medieval remains, so that it is quite probable 
that some of those found in the Clyde basin may be com- 
paratively modern.^ But after discounting all such objections, 
there is no escape from the conclusion that some of them 
foundered when the sea was 20 or 30 feet higher than it 
is at present. This was the opinion of Mr Buchanan and 
other geologists, who had better opportunities than we have 
of examining the exact details of each discovery. 

^ See notice of the Dumbuck "Crannog" and Canoe, p. 438. 


In 1848 Mr Robert Chambers 1 makes the following 
pertinent observations on the evidence to be derived from 
the canoes discovered in the Clyde basin up to that 
time : — 

" The situation of the boats found under the Tontine and 
Trades' Lands (places within a pistol-shot of each other) is 
21 or 22 feet above high-water in the river. It forms part 
of that extensive plain which rises from the river's brink 
to the height of 26 feet above tide-mark, forming the site 
of the Trongate and Argyle Street, and the numerous 
streets to the north and south of that line. This plain is 
composed of sand, as appears whenever the foundation of 
an old house is dug up. . . . 

"The question arises, Are the deposits such as the river, 
while pursuing in general its present level, could have laid 
down ? The situation, be it remembered, is a quarter of 
a mile from the river ; its superficies is 2 1 feet above tide- 
mark, while Mr Robert Stevenson has determined the greatest 
recorded river floods as only 15. The laminated sands do not, 
moreover, appear such a deposit as a river flood would bring 
to the spot, even if it could reach it. It therefore appears 
that we scarcely have an alternative to the supposition 
that, when these vessels foundered, and were deposited 
where in modern times they have been found, the Firth of 
Clyde was a sea several miles wide at Glasgow, covering 
the site of the lower districts of the city, and receiving the 
waters of the river not lower than Bothwell Bridge. We must 
suppose this to have been a time when already a people 
instructed to some degree in the arts of life occupied that 
part of the island. Taken in connection with the whales' 
bones and perforated deers' horns of the Carse of Stirling, 
the boat and other relics said to have been found near 

^ Ancient Sea-Margins, p. 206. 


Falkirk, the human skull at Grangemouth, and the various 
particulars already cited with respect to the Carse of Gowrie, 
those Glasgow canoes are objects of much greater interest than 
any one seems yet to have thought of attaching to them." 

5. Evidence from Raised Beaches, Sand- Dunes, Caves, 
Rock-Shelters, cs'c. 

Important information bearing on the problem we are 
now discussing is occasionally derived from a careful in- 
spection of the sand-dunes, raised beaches, &c., along our 
shores, which yield flint implements of Neolithic types. I 
am informed by experienced . collectors that such relics are 
not found on or near the present sea-level, but always at 
some distance inland, which, in flat districts, may be far 
from the actual shore. Certainly this is in accordance with 
the little practical experience I have gained by a few visits 
to the sand-hills of Irvine in Ayrshire, and Glenluce in 
Wigtownshire. At the former locality the flint-bearing ground 
is several hundred yards from the shore, and at the latter the 
distance is still greater. 

Mr Alexander Gray has communicated to the Society of 
Antiquaries of Scotland (vol. xxviii. p. 263) some notes on a 
discovery of urns and flint implements in sand-pits within 
the town of Campbeltown, in Argyllshire, which I claim as 
strong evidence in favour of the theory of land elevation 
within the Neolithic period. This town, it appears, is built 
on deposits of sand and gravel which gradually rise to the 
old 50-feet beach, and sand for building purposes is con- 
tinually being excavated at about 30 feet above present sea- 
level. Reports of finding urns and other relics in these pits 
induced Mr Gray to keep an eye on the excavations. In 
the beginning of 1894 a new pit was opened in which an 


urn containing some bones was found, without being pro- 
tected by any cist. While he and others were collecting 
the fragments of the urn they discovered that the finely 
stratified gravel, beneath the position in which the urn stood, 
contained numbers of worked flints, cores, and splinters; 
from which they concluded it had been the site of an old 
flint factory. 

Subsequently, at Millknowe, in another part of this old 
sea-beach, and 300 or 400 yards south-west of the sand-pit, 
similar flint implements were discovered in the beach shingle 
which was being cleared away to make room for a new 
bonded warehouse at Albyn Distillery. 

"The section," writes Mr Gray, "as exposed at present, 
consists of about 3 feet of rich black loam ; beach shingle, 
with a very little sand, 2 feet ; a thin dark-coloured band 
which extends along the face of the section for about 7 yards, 
and is from 3 to 6 inches thick, thinning out and disappear- 
ing on both sides. Below this is about 2 feet of shingle 
similar to that above. The dark seam is not a former land- 
surface, as might at first be supposed, but the site of the old 
flint-working encampment. It is in reality a dirt-band, com- 
posed of litter and refuse of all sorts, such as bits of charred 
sticks, burnt bones, and innumerable chips and splinters of 
flint, the latter all quite sharp and unworn. In some spots 
the dirt has actually a greyish, pepper-and-salt appearance, 
from the great number of minute bone fragments which exist 
in it, in the last stages of decay. To separate them from the 
other material is generally quite impossible, as they are mostly 
so small and so far gone that a good lens is necessary to 
convince one that they really are bone. From this dirt-band 
I took the full of a large zinc bucket, not selected, but 
filled with the shovel, and carefuUy washed it out. I found 
that at least 80 per cent of the total bulk was made up of 


the ordinary shingle, and from the remainder I picked out 
498 pieces of ilint, mostly very small chips and scales, such 
as fly off during the process of breaking. A few were be- 
tween I and 2 inches long, and seemed to be broken or 
spoiled arrow-points, knives, or flakes which had been re- 
jected. Besides the flints, I succeeded in finding about 
eighty fragments of bones, in a sufficiently sound condition 
to stand washing, among them being two of what I took to 
be the vertebras of a small fish. The others seemed to be 
the bones of larger animals, but are, I am afraid, too small 
for recognition. The better-preserved fragments look as if 
they had been burned ; the mouldering bits 'which fall away 
on being touched have no such appearance. Of small bits 
of burnt sticks I picked out 104, but a great deal of this 
material went to mud in the washing, so that the quantity 
found bears an insignificant proportion to the total amount 
which must have been present. A number of those picked 
out seem to be parts of very small twigs or branches. The 
evidence here adduced, together with the fact that the dirt- 
band is not continuous — as it would be were it a former land- 
surface — but a mere isolated though large patch, in the 
midst of the ancient beach, proves beyond a doubt that this 
is the spot on which the Palaeolithic {sic) men camped for a 
time, and dressed the flints, the refuse of which still remains 
mixed up with the general camp debris to attest their presence 
there. The flint-bearing gravel above the dirt-band shows 
that the site was probably that of a summer encampment, 
over which the storms of winter had washed the layer of 
flint-strewn gravel, and thus preserved to us the old camp- 
floor, which otherwise might have been entirely obliterated. 
All through the beach which has been cleared away, and at 
frequent intervals, the workmen found little nests of a simi- 
lar black material, generally with a few larger stones lying in 


and around them. A good many of these stones were 
angular lumps of the ordinary vein quartz from the schist 
of the neighbourhood, which have lost their natural glassy 
semi - transparency, and taken on that opaque dull -white 
appearance, with all their natural seams opened up, and 
of that peculiar rusty -red colour, which indicates severe 
burning. It is quite evident that they had been built up 
to form the backs and sides to the old camp-fires, of which 
the black sooty material in which they now lie is the only 
remains. The total absence of even the smallest bit of 
pottery is very remarkable ; and still more remarkable is the 
absence of shells, of which not a fragment has yet turned 
up, and no recognised article of human manufacture except 
the flints has yet been found." 

It is impossible not to recognise the force of Mr Gray's 
arguments in support of his opinion, that this was an en- 
campment of people of the Stone Age, who here con- 
gregated for the purpose of manufacturing such implements 
and weapons as were required in their various social or 
warlike duties. 

Evidence of similar encampments — fireplaces, flint chips, 
and other refuse of occupancy — has been observed on 
Shewalton Moor, freshly exposed by the shifting sands.^ 

After discussing the various theories to account for the 
presence of flint nodules in the gravels of the district, Mr 
Gray comes to the conclusion that these flints could not 
have been obtained from local sources, and that con- 
sequently they must have been imported in canoe-loads. 

But the significant feature of Mr Gray's discovery as 
regards this inquiry is that, while the settlement was in 
existence, the waters of the Campbeltown bay washed the 

1 Annals of Kilmarnock Glenfield Ramblers, 1893-94; ^'""i Ayr and 
Gal. Arcli. Assoc, vol. vi. p. 77. 



surrounding shores some 30 feet higher than they do at 
the present time. 

In 1883 I contributed to the collections of the Ayr and 
Galloway Archaeological Association (vol. iv. p. i) notes 
on the discovery of five bronze celts, of an early type (fig. 
20), found in an excavation near the shore of a little bay 
called the " Maidens," in the vicinity of Culzean Castle, 
Ayrshire. While clearing out 
the foundations for building a 
shipyard the workmen had to 
slice away a portion of a whin- 
stone rock which projected into 
the area of the proposed build- 
ing, and at the lowest part of 
the trench they came upon the 
celts and a bronze ring which 
had apparently bound them to- 
gether. They had been inserted 
into a cleft in the rock facing 
the sea ; and this cleft had been 
subsequently covered by 2 feet 
of sea-gravel, apparently thrown 
up against the rock by the ac- 
tion of the waves. Over this ^^'S- 20.— /-Vz/^ bronze celts fotmd 

together at the '^Maidens" Ayr- 

gravel there was a deposit of shire (i). 
surface- earth also 2 feet thick. 

The present high-water mark was ascertained by measure- 
ments to be 100 yards distant from the spot where the 
bronze implements had been concealed, and 25 feet lower 
in level. I visited the locality along with the Marquis of 
Ailsa and Mr Smith, his factor, a few days after the dis- 
covery ; but before this, and indeed before the implements 
were found, the soil and gravel in front of the rock, as well 


as a portion of the rock itself, had been removed. After a 
careful inspection of the spot and inquiries of the workmen 
into all the circumstances, the conclusion to which we came 
was thus recorded : " Unless, therefore, there had been a 
vertical slit in the rock, of which there was no indication 
whatever, it is difficult to form any other opinion than that 
the ledge of rock under which the celts were concealed was, 
at the time of their deposition, open towards the shore ; and 
that the waves subsequently dashed against it with sufificient 
violence to cover up the opening of the crevice with a 
portion of this coarse gravel. Since then, however, the tide 
has gradually receded, either in consequence of the ac- 
cumulation of detritus or of a general rising of the sea- 
beach. Curiously enough, the position of this find coincides 
with the latest and best-defined of the ancient sea-margins 
or raised beaches, the remains of which are so conspicuous 
in the south-western districts of Scotland." 

The interpretation of the phenomena of raised beaches is, 
however, so liable to error, owing to the number and variety 
of minor details which have to be considered, that great 
caution is necessary in accepting such conclusions as evidence 
of alteration in the relative level of sea and land. 

To the caves along our shores, ascertained to have been 
occupied by man, we naturally look for some additional 
scraps of information on this subject. We know, however, 
of very few caves which have been so used, at least as early 
as Neolithic times. A cave becomes habitable by man only 
after the retreat of the sea, and such an incident as a storm 
causing the waves to enter it synchronously with man's oc- 
cupation, as was the case in the MacArthur cave at Oban, 
must of necessity be a most unusual occurrence. Most of 
those which have hitherto been examined prove by their 
relics that they became inhabited in post -Roman times. 


Such was the case with the Borness cave in Kirkcudbright- 
shire.'- The floor of this cave stands 19 feet above the 
present high-water mark, but we have no means of associ- 
ating the work of man with that of the sea. 

In 1847 a cave near the mouth of the North Esk, in 
Kincardineshire, was discovered and reported on, first by 
Mr A. Bryson,^ then by Mr W. Beattie,^ and lastly by Dr 
Howden, in 1866.* According to Dr Howden the entrance 
to the cave, which faces the south, is about half a mile from 
the estuary of the river, and 15 feet above high- water mark. 
It contained a mass of debris, including bones of various 
animals, as well as some relics of man. Among the latter 
were an amulet formed of the leg-bone of an ox, four chain 
plate bolts, " evidently belonging to a small craft of about 100 
tons," and the remains of an iron harpoon or spear. An 
inner compartment of this cave contained only remains of 
marine mollusca — a fact which, says Mr Bryson, "seems 
certainly to indicate the presence of the German Ocean 
12 feet above its present highest spring- tide." Notwith- 
standing the preciseness of this statement, it is more prob- 
able that these shells were merely a portion of the refuse- 
heap from the outer cave, so that no conclusion can be 
drawn from the facts as regards land elevation. 

Mr J. W. Laidlay, in describing an early habitation and 
kitchen-midden on the " Ghegan Rock," near SeacHff, East 
Lothian, which yielded a few rehcs of late-Roman times, 
concludes by observing that this discovery goes against the 
supposed rise of the neighbouring coasts within the historical 
period. "Against this theory," Mr Laidlay writes, "the 

1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. x. p. 483. 

2 Edin. New Phil. Journal, vol. 49, p. 253. 
* Brit. Assoc, Aberdeen, 1859, p. 99. 

■• Proc. R. Phy. Soc, vol. iii. p. 368. 



dwelling on the Ghegan seems to me a cogent protest; 
a very inconsiderable depression of the rock would render 
habitation there simply impossible." The foundation of the 
dwelling stood 22 or 23 feet above sea-level, and the author 
assumed the relics to be of "an age not later than the 
Roman, possibly before it, but extending to it, as the large 
vase would seem to show."^ 

The site of this habitation is interesting as showing the 
foundation of a rude rectangular building of undressed stones 
without mortar. It presented a front 39 feet long, and a 
breadth of 26 feet at one end — the other corner being 

2r 22 23 

Figs. 21-23. — -"^ needle^ a comb, and a?i ornament of bone found on 
Ghegan Rock (^). 

demolished. From its position at the base of the slanting 
side of the rock, it became covered up in the course of time 
with 3 to 4 feet of soil. The relics are of the kind usually 
found on Romano-British sites, comprising fragments of a 
large Roman jar, and of other pottery; a bone needle (fig. 21), 
and some bone pins and implements ; fragments of toilet 
combs, one double - edged made of plates fixed with iron 
rivets, and another highly ornamented (fig. 22); a curious 
ornament of dark bone (fig. 23); a small crucible; a polished 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 377. 


disc of serpentine, one inch in diameter ; the upper and lower 
stones of a quern-mill made of gneiss, &c. Also teeth and 
bones of ox, horse, sheep, goat, pig, deer, dog, &c., and a 
variety of sea-shells of the edible species. 

Mr John Smith ^ has excavated the dtbris of human occu- 
pancy in a rock - shelter close to the Ardrossan Railway 
Station, the result of which, he thinks, "demonstrates" a 
rise of " many feet " in the Ayrshire coast since the rock- 
shelter was first frequented by man. The shell-heap rested 
on a raised beach of sand and gravel containing rolled shells. 
The evidence of alteration in the relative level of sea and land 
is thus stated by the investigator : " That this place had been 
occupied by man shortly after the waves left it was clearly 
evident, as there had only been time sufficient for a layer of 
earth, little more than half an inch in thickness, to form on 
the top of the gravel, nor had there been time for any talus 
of fragments from the rock-face to gather upon the gravel 
before the inhabitants began to throw down the shells and 
other debris upon it. In fact, the talus of rock-splinters was 
formed on the top of the mound, as will be seen from the cross- 
sections, demonstrating at once its antiquity, and affording 
some guidance to the time of its commencement. Another 
point in favour of its antiquity is the fact that many specimens 
of a spiral mollusc, Trochtis lineatus, were got in the mound, 
and must have been common on the then existing shore. 
This mollusc is now extinct in the Clyde and in the West of 
Scotland, and has only been found in the Clyde district 
before as a fossil, Mr David Robertson having got it in the 
Raised-beach strata of Millport." 

The land animals represented in the food-refuse, all of 

which belong to the ordinary Neolithic fauna, are of no 

special interest beyond the fact that they include the beaver. 

' Ayr and Gal. Arch. Assoc. , vol. vii. p. 60. 



It is somewhat startling to find that these people were not 
only cannibals but made implements of human bones. " A 
great many jaws with teeth," writes Mr Smith, "and bones 
were obtained, all the latter which had contained marrow 
having been split open. Under the ledge of rock at a point a, 
and imbedded in the mass of shells, was a human upper jaw 
without teeth, which had evidently been knocked out with a 
stone, splinters of the jaw having been broken off in the 
process. On finding this grim relic my first impression was 
that the people who lived here had been cannibals, the jaw 
having evidently been thrown in the most matter-of-fact way 
on the general shell - heap, while, probably, the teeth had 
been kept to make a necklace or other ornament. Further 
evidence, however, obtained during the exploration, showed 
that, although the mound-men had feasted, probably during 
' hard times,' on their own species, they were not habitual 
cannibals, for the whole human remains obtained seemed to 
show that not more than two human beings had been 
devoured." Part of a human lower jaw was got in a mass of 
shells cemented together into a stalagmite " about a foot 
above the Raised -beach bed; it had three well-preserved 
teeth. Near the top of the same bed a well-made diamond- 
pointed bone chisel, a rude implement made of a human 
bone, and several human vertebrae, were obtained." Of 
implements only a few bone pointers or awls are recorded. 
From these and other considerations it is manifest that in 
attempting to account for land oscillations we have to deal 
with a complicated series of phenomena, probably due both 
to astronomical and terrestrial causes. It is therefore not 
impossible that while a submergence followed by a re- 
elevation of the land has occurred over an extensive area 
corresponding with the glacial and interglacial epochs, other 
local disturbances may have been going on which would 


considerably modify the effects of the former. The hypothesis 
that the 50-feet raised- beach was contemporaneous with the 
last glacial epoch (an event which, according to the astro- 
nomical theory, occurred about 11,000 years ago) admirably 
harmonises with the recent chronological deductions founded 
on the archaeological remains in the rock -shelter of the 
Schweizersbild in Switzerland.'- We have no means as yet, 
so far as I know, of dating the first appearance of Neolithic 
man in Britain. It is, however, a significant fact that the 
remains of his handiworks have been found in the submerged 
forests of the south of England (Quart. Jour. Geo. Soc, 1865 ; 
Early Man in Britain, p. 248) and in the raised beaches of 
Scotland ; but, although it was probably the same land 
oscillation which depressed the one and elevated the other, 
we cannot at present identify this earth movement with any 
archaeological phenomena which have been dated. 

^ See Journal of the R. Arch. Institute, vol. Iv. pp. 259-285. 




O complete our survey of the environments 
of prehistoric man, a few remarks must 
now be made on the fauna of the period, 
especially on the larger animals with which 
he came in contact in the chase or other- 
wise. Our knowledge of these animals is 
derived mainly from the discovery of their bones in marl-pits, 
peat, and alluvial deposits, and also, but more rarely, associ- 
ated with human remains on inhabited sites. My labours in 
this most interesting department of prehistoric archseology 
have been greatly lightened by the exhaustive monographs 
of the late Dr John Alexander Smith, nearly all of which 
have been published in the 'Proceedings of the Society of 
Antiquaries of Scotland.' 

According to our definition of the word "prehistoric," 
which covers only that portion of man's existence in Scot- 
land prior to Roman times, a distinction ought to be made 
between it and "post-glacial," which embraces a much 
longer period of time. Broadly speaking. Neolithic man was 
in possession of the domestic animals — ox, sheep (?), goat, 
and dog — and acquainted with the art of cultivating plants 


and cereals. Perhaps, therefore, the best principle of classifi- 
cation to follow would be that which associates prehistoric 
man with the introduction of domestic animals into Britain, 
as advocated by Professor Boyd-Dawkins at the International 
Congress of Archseology, held at Norwich in 1868.^ But 
as the date of man's immigration into Scotland is unknown, 
it is evident that we must here act under a kind of roving 
commission, without assigning any precise limits to the 
commencement of the prehistoric period. Again, by treating 
of the remains of the prehistoric fauna, so far as they have 
been found within the Scottish area only, we are merely 
touching the fringe of a vast subject which embraces the 
whole Pleistocene or Quaternary period of Western Europe. 
It is therefore manifest that independent conclusions of any 
great value cannot be drawn from the Scottish specimens 
without, to some extent, correlating them with analogous 
discoveries over the wider area. Of the post-glacial fauna 
whose remains have been found in Scotland, some undoubt- 
edly became extinct, or at least disappeared from Britain, 
before Neohthic man came on the scene ; others, again, 
such as the domestic animals, have been introduced by 
him. Hence, for chronological purposes, it is almost as 
important to determine what animals were not contemporary 
with man, as it is to determine those with which he was 
actually acquainted. 

Excluding the inter- and post-glacial mammalia which were 
the contemporaries of Palaeolithic man — with the exception of 
the Irish Elk, which is surmised to have touched the horizon 
of Neolithic man in Ireland — the chief animals which are of 
archaeological interest in the present inquiry are the Reindeer, 
Elk, Bos longifrons. Bos primigenius, Beaver, Brown Bear, 
Wolf, Wild Boar, and the Great Auk. As the limits of 

1 Transactions, 1868, p. 269. 


this work are absolutely prohibitory*; of discussing the re- 
mains of these animals on the basis of their geographical 
and geological distribution, I shall only bring before my readers 
as much of the collateral details from beyond the Scottish 
area as will enable them to grasp and appreciate the import- 
ance of the palseontological problems raised. 

Reindeer (Cervus tarandus). 

Dr Smith was induced to look for horns of the reindeer 
among Scottish archaeological remains in consequence of 
having his attention directed, through an article by Dr 
Hibbert,! to a passage in the ' Orkneyinga Saga,' to the 
effect that, in the twelfth century, the Jarls of Orkney were 
in the habit of crossing the Pentland Firth to chase the 
roe-deer and the reindeer in the wilds of Caithness.^ The 
following tabulated statement of localities which have yielded 
remains of this animal is compiled mainly from his re- 
searches : — 

I . On the Morbhaich Mor, a sandy flat to the east of Tain, 
Ross-shire, the Rev. Dr Joass found, at a depth of 4 feet, 
" the skull of a young ox, several bones of a large deer, one 
tyne of a palmated stag's horn, and the jaw of a large canine 
animal. All these bones lay beneath the moss, and on a 
natural shell-bed in which occurred the Scaphander lignarius, 
believed, from its size and delicacy of structure, to indicate 
warmer conditions of climate during its existence in such a 
situation, as well as a considerable subsequent elevation of the 
sea-bottom. The coast - line is now three miles distant." 

' Edinburgh Journal of Science, 1831. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 186 : see also Professor Boyd-Dawkins 
in 'Transactions of International Congress of Prehistoric ArchEeology,' 
1868, p. 287. 



Professor Owen subsequently identified the above-mentioned 
tyne as portion of a reindeer horn.^ 

Fig. 24. — Portions of reindeer s horns found at Cill-Trolla Broch, 
Sutherlandshire (i), 

2. Several pieces of reindeer horns (fig. 24) were found 
among a collection of bones, shells, and other debris of occu- 

Fig. 25. — Front and hack view of a portion of reindeer horn found in a hroch 
at Keiss, Caithness (J). 

pancy, while cleaning out the ruins of Cill-Trdlla Broch, 
near Brora, in Sutherlandshire.^ 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vi. p. 387, and vol. viii. p. 187. 
^ Ibid., vol. viii. p. 188. 


3. In the course of the investigation of the Harbour Mound, 
Keiss, Caithness, by Mr Samuel Laing, several portions of 
reindeer horns (figs. 25 and 26, No. i), some of which had 

Fig. 26. — Portions of reindeer horns found at Keiss (No. i), and at YaHwuse 
(Nos. 2 and 3), Caithness (\). 


been sawn or cut, were disinterred along with numerous relics 
of man.^ 

4. Two small tynes, and a poriion of third tyne showing 
workmanship (fig. 26, Nos. 2 and 3), were found by Dr 
Joseph Anderson and Mr J. Shearer in a broch at Yarhouse, 
associated with the bones of the ox, horse, pig, deer, sheep, 
and goat, as well as a vast quantity of the ordinary dibris of 
human occupancy. This broch was situated on what was 
formerly an island in the Loch of Yarhouse, and had attached 
to it a number of outhouses, in one of which the fragments 
of horn, subsequently identified as those of the reindeer, 
were found.^ 

5. Pennant states that he was assured by Dr Ramsay, 
Professor of Natural History at Edinburgh, that the horns of 
the reindeer "were found fossil in 1775, in a marl-pit, 5 feet 
below the surface, near Craigton, in the shire of Linlithgow."^ 

6. In 1833 the skull of Bos primigenius and fragments of 
deer-horns were found in beds of laminated clay on the north 
bank of the river Clyde, below the junction of the Kelvin. 
These relics were sent to the Glasgow Museum, and after- 
wards the horns were recognised as those of the reindeer.* 

7. A fragment of a reindeer horn in the Hunterian Museum, 
Glasgow, was traced to sub-glacial deposit at Raesgill, Lan- 

8. In one of the marl-pits sunk in the partially drained 
Loch of Marlee, Perthshire, the skeleton of a beaver was 
found, and in another the horns of a large species of deer, 
now supposed to have been those of the reindeer.^ 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 193. 
^ Ibid., p. 200; also Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 230. 
^ History of Quadrupeds, vol. i. p. 100. 

* Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 207. ' Ibid., p. 208. 

" See Owen's Fossil Mammals, p. 482 ; Stat. Account, vol. xvii. p. 
478; and Mem. Wern. Soc, vol. iii. p. 214. 


9. In 1856 a portion of a reindeer horn was found in 
a railway cutting at Croftamie, Dumbartonshire, embedded 
in blue clay underneath glacial till ; and in its close vicinity 
arctic shells were detected.^ 

10. Reindeer horns and a mammoth tusk were found while 
removing alluvium (till) over part of the Woodhill quarry, 
Kilmaurs, Ayrshire.^ 

11. Sir W. Jardine describes the finding of the horns of 
a reindeer along with the remains of roe, red-deer. Bos primi- 
genius, and the skull of a bear ( Ursus ardos) under a peat-bog, 
while digging for marl on the Shaw property, Dumfries.^ 

12. Sir Arthur Mitchell fell in with a large horn of a 
reindeer nailed above the door of a house in Orkney, which, 
as he was informed, had been found deep below the surface 
of a peat-bog in the adjoining island of Rousay.* 

13. Professor Boyd-Dawkins states that " Sir Philip Egerton 
met with a small fragment of an antler in the peat-bogs of 
Ross-shire, which, beyond all doubt, belongs to this animal" 
(reindeer). 5 

1 4. Professor Rolleston identified, among the animal remains 
sent to him from the Lochlee crannog, two fragments of rein- 
deer horns.^ 

15. Mr James Simpson read a paper at the Edinburgh 
Geological Society (March 18, 1886), "On Reindeer and 
other Mammalian bones discovered by Mr Macfie of Dreg- 
horn in a rock-fissure at Green Craig, Pentland Hills." These 
bones are deposited in the Anatomical Museum of the Edin- 

^ Proc. R. Phy. Soc, vol. i. pp. 163, 247. 
^ Trans. Geo. Soc. Glasgow, vol. i. p. 71. 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 216, and vol. xiii. p. 360. 
* Ibid., vol. viii. p. 216. 

^ International Cong. Prehistoric Arch., Norwich, p. 276. 
" Ancient Scottish Lake-Dwellings, p. 142, and Proc. Soc. A. Scot,, vol. 
xiii. p. 244. 

ELK. 91 

burgh University, and the animals represented include the 
reindeer, horse, dog, and deer. 

16. Pieces of reindeer horn have recently been found in 
a broch excavated by Sir F. T. Barry, M.P., on his estate 
of Keiss, Caithness. They were associated with painted 
pebbles, part of the antlers of an elk, and the canine tooth 
of a bear.^ 

The Elk {Cervus alces). 

The elk, like the reindeer, inhabits northern regions, being 
at the present time met with in Finland, East Prussia, Lithu- 
ania, and some parts of Russia. Essentially a forest animal, 
its geographical range must at all times have been largely 
governed by the distribution of the primeval forests. The 
spread of Neolithic civilisation, which entailed the clearing 
of woods for tillage, curtailed the haunts of the elk. Partly 
for this reason, and partly on account of the change in 
climate, it would appear that in Roman times it had be- 
come virtually extinct in Western Europe. Ceesar merely 
mentions it as one of the three wild beasts peculiar to the 
Hercynian forest — viz., Reindeer, Elk, and Urus. During 
the Quaternary period the elk roamed over Europe from 
the Pyrenees to the Altai Mountains, and from the north- 
ern fringe of the forests to the south of France and North 

Its remains have been found on the sites of several of the 
Swiss lake-dwellings, and in numerous localities throughout 
the British Isles. The following are the instances of its dis- 
covery in Scotland : — 

In 187 1 Dr J. A. Smith recognised the skull and horns of 
a reported large species of deer recently found in the Whit- 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Lond., vol. xvii., and series, p. 191. 
2 Hamy, Paleontologie Humaine, p. 151. 



rig Bog, Berwickshire, as those of the elk (fig. 27). Whitrig 
has been an old lake basin of considerable size, but it is 
now entirely filled up and superficially occupied with a thick 
deposit of peat. 

" Below the peat," writes Dr Smith, " there is an extensive 
bed of shell-marl ; for 3 feet in thickness you have pure mart, 
then over a part at least of the bog there is a bed of blue 
clay about 3 feet in thickness, and below this again there 
are other 3 feet of marl. Under the marl is a bed of brick 
clay, averaging 6 feet in thickness, and underneath this clay 
you come at last to the hard till, or boulder-clay. 

Fig. 27. — Skull of the elk, fou7id in Whitrig Bog, Berwickshire. 

" Mr Hogarth told me the elk's head was found about two 
months before my visit, at about 150 or 200 yards from the 
northern margin of the bog. They were cutting peat at the 
time, and there was a great abundance of water in the peat ; 
the wall of peat, I may mention, is not cut down to its very 
bottom, to avoid the marl, and Mr Hogarth cut a drain 
through the bottom or remaining peat and part of the marl, 
towards the open side of the bog, to let the water escape. 
It was while cutting this drain in the peat, and before he 
reached the marl, that the skull was discovered."^ 

This discovery induced Dr Smith to hunt up all the scat- 
tered notices he could find of the remains of this animal 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol, ix. p. 29 

ELK. 93 

throughout the British Isles. Of those recorded in Scotland ^ 
the following is an epitome : — 

I. In a printed list of the first donations made to the 
Museum of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, the horns 
of the elk are four times included among the gifts, but un- 
fortunately none of them have been preserved. These don- 
ations are thus recorded. 

(a) By Sir Alexander Dick of Prestonfield (1781). "A 
quantity of Roman arms, consisting of twenty-three pieces of 
the heads of the hasta and jaculum ; twenty pieces of the 
blades and nine of the handles of the gladius and pugio ; a 
ring, 3 inches in diameter, fastened to the end of a staple ; 
and a mass of different pieces of these arms, run together by 
fire, all of brass ; skulls and other human bones, together 
with the horns of animals of the deer and elk species, dragged 
out of the middle of a bed of shell-marl at the bottom of his 
loch of Duddingston." This remarkable hoard of the Bronze 
Age was presented, at the time, to the Antiquarian Museum. 

(i^) By Mr James Muirhead (1781). "A skeleton of a 
palmated head, with very large horns, projecting both before 
and behind, dug up lately on the farm of Greycrook, near 
Cramond, occupied by Mr Henry Sawers, and found buried 
8 feet below the surface, covered with 5 feet of marl, above 
which was 3 feet of moss." 

(c) By Mr George Aitkenhead (1783). "The broad upper 
part of the horn of an elk, dug up anno 1779, 76 feet below 
the surface of the ground, in Trinity Muir [Brechin], in the 
heart of a marie bed, which, besides being covered with 
several strata of earth, clay, and sand, each between 6 and 
8 feet in thickness, had over them all a covering of moss to 
the height of 30 feet." 

(d) By Mr William Mabon, cutler in Dunse (1783). "A ' 
1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. pp. 297-345, and vol. xvii. p. 325, 



large palmated horn, 27 inches in length, and 9 inches in 

2. A donation to the Royal Society of Edinburgh by the 
Honourable Lord Dunsinnan, in 1788, is "a painting in oil 
of the head and horns of an elk, found in a marl-pit, Forfar- 
shire"! (fig. 28). 

3. In the account to the parish of Kinloch, Perthshire, 
the Rev. J. Brodie states : "A pair of very large deer's horns 

Fig. 28.— From a painting in oil of elk's skull found in Forfarshire. 

were found a few years ago, in a bed of marl, in Mr Far- 
quharson's marl-pit at Marlee. From their superior size and 
palmated form they appear to be the horns of the elk-deer, 
anciently the stately inhabitant of the Caledonian forests." ^ 

4. The circumstances in which a head and horns of the 
elk from a marl-pit at Airleywight, Perthshire, preserved in 
the Hunterian Museum, Glasgow, were found, are thus de- 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 315. 
- Old Stat. Account, vol. xvii. p. 478. 



scribed : "They were got in the mossy hollow ground to the 
north of this house in digging for marl. The first section was 
moss of from lo to 12 feet in depth; then 2 or 3 feet of an 
inferior kind of marl ; then a bed of rich plastic red clay of 
about I or i}4 foot in thickness ; and last, the rich marl for 
which the work was done. It was between the moss and 
inferior marl strata, and partly in both, that the head and 

Fig. 29. — £li's horn found in Strath Halladale, Sutlierlandshire. 

bones were found. The heads were pretty perfect when got, 
and the horns almost entire, showing distinctly the species to 
which each belonged, the one evidently of the elk kind ; the 
other just; like our present red-deer heads, but of rather 
larger size than we now see. The bones found along with 
the elk's head showed it to have been a very large animal ; 
it must have been, at least, as tall as a good-sized ox." ^ 

5. A shed palmated horn (fig. 29) of the left side of 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 320. 


the head of an elk " was found about forty years ago in the 
formation of a cutting made for diverting the course of the 
river in Strath Halladale (a river valley running north through 
the eastern part of the country, and opening to the shores 
of the North Sea at the bay of Melvich), and was preserved 
by Mr Robert Rutherford, Helmsdale, in whose possession 
it remained until it was recently presented, through the Rev. 
Dr Joass, to the Duke of Sutherland's Museum at Dunrobin. 
. . . The horns of a very large red-deer, Ceivus elaphus, 
were also found in the course of the same cuttings, and are 
now in the museum at Dunrobin ; they display no less than 
some twenty-five or twenty-six points." 

On the above discovery Dr Smith makes the following 
comments : " This horn has almost the look of the horn of 
a recent elk, having apparently lost little or nothing of its 
animal or mineral constituents. So that, judging from its 
appearance, we are led to consider it must either have 
belonged to a recent elk, or that the elk lived down to a 
comparatively late period of time in this most northern part 
of Scotland, and perhaps to a still later period here, than in 
the more southern localities in which its remains have been 
discovered." ■*• 

6. Besides the skull and horns of the elk discovered in 
Whitrig Bog, already noticed, Dr Smith considers that a por- 
tion of a palmated horn, found at Coldingham in Berwickshire 
— described and figured by the late Mr James Hardy, in the 
'Proceedings of the Berwickshire Naturalist's Club for i860,' 
as belonging to the Irish elk — has a much closer resemblance 
to the horns of the elk. Mr Hardy, in a footnote, refers to 
another instance of the discovery of what he supposed to be 
the Irish elk in the neighbourhood of North Berwick. In 
vol. i. of ' Hillside and Border Sketches,' by W. H. Maxwell, 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 324. 



London, 1847, at p. 317, it is stated that "a medal of 
Trajan, a fibula, a patera, and a horn of a moose-deer " were 

7. According to Dr Smith, the finest specimen of the true 
elk that had yet been discovered in the British islands was 
found, in 1828, "in a peat on the edge of a small loch called 
Willie Struther's Loch, in the valley of the river Slitrig," in 
Roxburghshire (fig. 30). Some other bones, including the 
skull of a Bos longifrons, were found in this moss.'^ 

8. Another specimen of the cranium of an elk with its 

Fig. 30. — Skull of elk found at Willie Struther's Loch, Roxburghshire. 

horns was discovered in a bog at Oakwood, " a few miles 
up the river Etterick, above the town of Selkirk, and was 
brought upwards of thirty years ago by the Hon. Francis 
Scott to Mertoun House, Roxburghshire, where it is still 
preserved." ^ 

9. In the 'Edinburgh Encylopsedia ' (1830) the following 
statement occurs under the description of Selkirkshire : " It 
is likely that in ancient times the urus had been common, 
for skulls of that animal have frequently been found in the 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 326. ^ Ibid., p. 331. 




marl mosses along with those of the stag, and another extinct 
species of deer with palmated antlers, of a size which seems 
to indicate the bearers to have been as large as a blood horse." 
(Probably the same as the deer of Saomme of Cuvier.) 

The Rev. James Russell, in his account of the parish of 

Fig. ■^z.—Horn of the elk found in /he river Cree, Wigtownshire. 

Yarrow, states that " the skulls of the urus, described by 
Csesar, and an extinct species of deer with large palmated 
antlers, have been found embedded in the marl mosses." ^ 
10. In the account of the parish of Kirkurd by the Rev. 

1 New Stat. Account of Scotland, Selkirkshire, p. 38. 

ELK. 99 

David Anderson, it is stated that " not long ago, in digging 
for marl in the Mount bog, several horns of the elk, in a high 
state of preservation, were found." ^ 

11. In 1883 Dr Smith records the finding of the horn 
of an elk (fig. 31) in Wigtownshire. It and a fragment 
of a large deer-horn were drawn out of the estuary of the 
river Cree, " somewhere between Newton-Stewart and Cree- 
town, in a salmon net," and given to the Rev. George Wilson, 
of Glenluce, by the man who got them.^ 

12. Part of the antler of an elk (Cervus alces) was found 
recently by Sir F. T. Barry, M.P., in underground buildings 
attached to a broch at Keiss, excavated by him.^ 

England and Ireland. 

The remains of the elk have also been recorded from 
various localities throughout England and Ireland, among 
which the following may be mentioned : Chirdon Burn, 
Northumberland ; * Walthamstow, Essex ; ^ in a Romano- 
British settlement at Wetton, Staffordshire ; " Hartlepool, 
Durham ; '' Thorpe Hall and Carnaby, Yorkshire ; ^ Isle of 
Man ; ^ in a cave at Llandebie, Caermarthen ; 1° and at 
Stewartstown, Tyrone, Ireland.^''- 

^ New Stat. Account nf Scotland, Peeblesshire, p. 128. 

^ Proc. See. A. Scot., vol. xvii. p. 325. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Lend., vol. xvii., 2nd series, p. 191. 

* Trans. Tyneside Nat. Field Club, vol. v. p. HI, 1863. 
' Geo. Mag., vol. vi. p. 389. 

^ Bateman's Ten Years' Digging, &c., 1861, pp. 202, 298. 
' Trans. Tyneside Nat. Field Club, vol. v. p. 121. 

* Proc. Geo. and Polytech. Soc. of the West Riding of Yorkshire, 186c. 

* Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 339. 
i» Ibid. 

" Proc. Zool. Soc, London, part v. p. 52, 1837. 



Gigantic Irish Deer {Megaceros hibernicus). 

The Irish elk (fig. 32) is remarkable, among all the species 
of deer both living and extinct, for the great proportional size 
of its horns. Dr Molyneux,'- to whom we owe the first ac- 

Fig. 32. — Irish elk. 

count of this fossil animal, gives the length, from the extreme 

tip of the right to that of the left antler, as 10 feet 10 

inches; the length of each antler from the burr to the 

' Phil. Trans., vol. xxx. p. 485. 


extreme tip, 5 feet 2 inches ; and thie breadth of the 
palmated part i foot 10 }4 inches. From these data he 
infers the amount of the superiority of the bulk of the 
animal over ordinary deer. Further discoveries, however, 
have shown this conclusion to be erroneous, as the osteo- 
logical modifications necessitated by the vast weight of the 
head consisted merely in the greater strength of the limbs 
and neck. 

"The first tolerably perfect skeleton of the Megaceros" 
says Sir R. Owen, writing in 1846,^ "was found in the 
Isle of Man, and was presented by the Duke of Athol 
to the Edinburgh Museum ; the figure in the ' Ossemens 
Fossiles,' torn. iv. pi. viii., is taken from an engraving of 
this skeleton transmitted by Professor Jamieson to Baron 
Cuvier. Another skeleton was composed and set up by 
Dr Hart, in the Museum of the Royal Dublin Society, 
from a collection of bones found at Rathcannon, in Ireland, 
and this is figured in his ' Description of the Skeleton of 
the Fossil Deer of Ireland.' A third engraving of a fore- 
shortened view, by Professor Philips, of the skeleton of the 
Megaceros, from Waterford, in the Museum of the Yorkshire 
Philosophical Society, was published, without description, by 
Mr Sunter of York ; and this exhibits a more natural collo- 
cation of the bones than do either of the above - cited 
figures. Three very complete and well -articulated skeletons 
have since been added to English collections ; one of those 
is in the British Museum, another in the Woodwardian 
Museum at Cambridge, and a third in the Hunterian 
Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons in London." 

Remains of the Megaceros are sparingly found in Britain, 
but so abundantly in Ireland that about one hundred heads 
have been found, during the last thirty or forty years, in 
^ British Fossil Mammals, p. 447. 


the small bog of Ballybetagh alone.^ Besides Britain and 
Ireland, it inhabited the largest part of the Continent, 
where its remains are met with in caverns and Pleistocene 
deposits. Like the Bos primigenius, it is represented in 
the Cromer forest -bed, so that it existed throughout the 
entire glacial period. It probably found its way into Scot- 
land during the first great forest growths in post - glacial 
times. It is maintained by some writers that the Megaceros 
was the contemporary of man in Ireland, on the ground 
that its remains have been found associated with the works 
of man in caves and crannogs.^ Mr Kinahan, in his notice 
of the crannogs in Loughrea, states that from Shore Island 
300 tons of bones were procured, among which " were 
perfect heads of oxen, sheep, goats, deer, pigs, and what 
seemed to be large dogs or wolves. There was also ex- 
humed the head of a Megaceros hibernicus which measured 
over 13 feet from tip to tip of its horns." ^ Horns of the 
animal were also found on the crannog of Cloonfinlough.* 
In the cave of Ballynamintra, County Waterford, explored 
by Messrs A. Leith Adams, F.R.S., G. H. Kinahan, M.R.I.A., 
and R. J. Ussher,^ numerous bones of the Irish elk were 
found, associated with a number of hammer - stones and 
pounders, and so broken as to suggest to the authors that 
it had been done by the hand of man. " Taking, therefore, 
into consideration," they write, "the oblong and rounded 
stones, battered and chipped at the ends by blows, also 
other stone tools bearing traces of man's handiwork, and 
strewn about among the Irish elk's remains, one can 
scarcely doubt but that the regularity in the mode of 

^ Geo. Mag., vol. viii. p. 35S. 

^ Scientific Transactions of R. Dublin Society, vol. i., 2nd series, p. 222. 
" Proc. R. I. Acad., vol. viii. p. 424. * Ibid., vol. v. p. 208. 

•' Scientific Transactions of R. Dublin Society, vol. i., 2nd series, p. 200. 


fractures was the result of his ingenuity for the extraction 
of the marrow, and possibly also for other objects." 

It may also be observed that these Irish elk bones were 
associated with the remains of a Neolithic fauna, among 
them being the bones of horse, pig, ox (Bos longifrons), 
grizzly bear {Ursus ferox), goat, red -deer, badger, wolf, fox, 
dog, &c. Among the relics of man were human bones, a 
polished stone celt, various implements of bone, an amber 
bead, two bone plates of the handle of a knife ornamented 
with incised concentric circles, charcoal, &c., showing that 
the cave had been frequented by man up to early medieval 

The remains of the Megaceros hitherto discovered in Scot- 
land are very few. The Rev; George Gray ^ gives an exceed- 
ingly interesting notice of a find in the parish of Maybble, 
Ayrshire, in which the head and horns of the animal were 
found associated with bones of the ox and the red-deer. In 
this report he writes as follows : — 

" Towards the southern boundary of the parish there are 
a series of hollows between the undulations of the sandstone, 
some of them still in the state of lochs, and others of marshes. 
On draining some of them, it has been found that, after pene- 
trating a bed of soil and moss of about 8 to i o feet in thick- 
ness, great deposits of marl occur, containing an immense 
number of organic remains. It is to be regretted that at 
the time the marl was excavated no greater attention than 
what curiosity prompted was directed towards these interest- 
ing relics. Portions of different animals have, however, been 
preserved ; and for the following notice of the heads of the 
elk and Bos in the possession of Mr Kennedy of Drummellan 
I am indebted to Dr M'Tyer of Redbrae. 

" ' The fossil head of the Cervus megaceros differs from the 
1 New Stat. Account, vol. v. p. 353, 


specimen in the Museum of the Royal Society of Dublin in 
the head being larger and the horns a little less, probably 
from the Drummellan animal having been aged.' [Then 
follow the dimensions.] 

" The other head appears to have belonged to a variety of 
Bos faurus, the forehead being concave. It measures lo 
inches between the horns, and 1 3 J^ inches round the hole of 
the horn. Horns of the Cervus elaphus were also found." 

Two portions of the horns of the Megaceros, consisting of 
the left beam of a shed horn of average size, and the brow 
snag of another horn, were found in a cutting on the Croft- 
head and Kilmarnock Railway; but geologists differ as to 
the nature of the deposits, some assigning them to an inter- 
glacial period.^ 

In September 1897 an almost complete skeleton of the 
Irish elk was dug out of a bed of marl at Close-y-Garey, 
parish of German, Isle of Man. The marl bed lay under 3 
feet of disturbed soil and peat, and extended downwards to 
a depth of about 10 feet. The skeleton was found about 9 
feet from the surface, lying " on its right side, the head to- 
wards the bank and the legs drawn up to the body." From 
the interim report of the Committee conducting the inves- 
tigation, I extract the following notes on this interesting 

"The bones were nearly in juxtaposition, and in a fair 
state of preservation. Unfortunately, however, the skull was 
badly decayed, having probably broken, as suggested by 
Professor Dawkins, under the weight of the antlers, of which 
the left one had fallen over the lumbar vertebrae, the right 
dropped down by the cervical vertebrse and shoulder-blades. 
The latter was in almost perfect preservation ; the tines, how- 

^ Trans. Geo. Soc. Glasgow, vol. iv. ; Geo. Mag., vol. v. p. 393, vol. 
vi. p. 390, and vol. vii. p. 137. 



ever, dropped off in lifting it out of the marl. The left 
antler is the larger, measuring across the palm 15 inches, 
allowing for a small piece of the front edge which has de- 
cayed away; the right measures 13 inches. With tines 
restored, they are respectively 56^ inches and 53 inches 
long. Curiously, the beam was missing in both ; this would 
probably have been another 10 inches. They have each six 
points or tines besides the brow tines which had fallen off, 
the part of the beam to which they were attached having 
decayed away. 

"The size and shape of the antlers show the animal to 
have been an adult male ; the teeth which remain are in ex- 
cellent preservation, showing no sign of weakness or decay. 
The limbs are perfect, all the small bones having been re- 
covered ; the vertebrae are sound, but, unfortunately, the atlas 
is missing, having probably been turned over and reburied in 
the wet clay without being observed. The right shoulder- 
blade, which lay beneath the other, is badly decayed, as are 
many of the ribs and the pelvic bones ; but we hope that, 
with a little piecing out and patching, the bones, when ar- 
ticulated and mounted, will make a perfect skeleton." 

Red-deer (Cervus elaphus) and Roe-deer (C. capreolus). 

Red-deer had formerly a wide distribution throughout the 
temperate regions of Europe and Asia, and they are still 
to be found in some of the European forests, though in 
greatly diminished numbers from what they used to be even 
in early historic times. The great range of this animal in 
time is attested by numerous discoveries of its antlers, teeth, 
and bones, throughout England, Scotland, and Ireland, in 
ossiferous caves, in the newer fresh-water deposits of the 
Pliocene period, and in intermediate formations up to the 



growth of the existing peat-bogs. " The chain of evidence 
of the existence of this species of deer in Britain," writes Sir 
R. Owen, " from the Pliocene tertiary period to the present 
time, seems to be unbroken. This at least is certain, that a 
deer, undistinguishable by the characters of its enduring re- 
mains from the Cervus elaphus, coexisted with the Megaceros, 
the spelsean Hyasna, the tichorhine Rhinoceros, and the Mam- 

Fig. 33. — Horns of red-deer found in the Meadows, Edinburgh. 

moth, and has survived, as a species, those influences which 
appear to have caused the extinction of its gigantic asso- 
ciates, as well as of some smaller animals — for example, the 
Trogontherium, the Lagomys, and the still more diminutive 
Falceospalax." ^ 

No animal, among the prehistoric fauna of Britain, comes 
more frequently before the eye of the archseologist than the 

' British Fossil Mammals, p. 478. 



red-deer. Indeed from the very dawn of Neolithic civilisa- 
tion it was sought after, not only as food, but also for its 
horns and bones, which were utilised as implements, weapons, 
and ornaments, &c. The frequency and abundance with 
which its remains have been found on ancient inhabited sites, 
such as crannogs, brochs, earth-houses, caves, rock-shelters, 
&c., is positive evidence that in those times great herds of 

Fig. 34. — Horns of red-deer found in a moss, Ashkirk, Roxburghshire. 

deer roamed over the country. Although the area of their 
existence in Britain has now dwindled down to a few protected 
forests in 'the north of Scotland, where some herds enjoy a 
kind of wild life, there is ample historical evidence to show 
that deer abounded in the south of Scotland in medieval 
times. Thus, by order of Edward I., dated 1 8th August 
1291, "Simon Fresel (Frazer), Keeper of the forest of Sel- 


kirk, is enjoined to bestow upon the venerable fathers, 
"William Frazer, Bishop of St Andrews, thirty stags ; Robert 
(Wishart), Bishop of Glasgow, twenty stags and sixty oak- 
trees ; and the Bishop of Caithness for himself, ten stags ; 
James the Steward of Scotland, twenty stags," &c.i For 
further historical notices of the red-deer, and the specified 
locaUties throughout Scotland which have yielded the remains, 
I would refer my readers to the valuable article of Dr J. 
Alexander Smith, in the 15th volume of the 'Proceedings 
of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.' I will only 
further remark that the horns disinterred from marl -pits, 
and the older turbaries, appear to indicate animals de- 
cidedly larger than those of the present day. At any rate, 
nowhere throughout Europe could we find, at the present 
time, a stag's head to match with the two here illustrated 
(figs. 33 and 34), one found in the Meadows, Edinburgh, and 
the other in a moss at Ashkirk, Roxburghshire. 

The history of the roe-deer, as well as its distribution in 
space and time, may be paralleled with that of the red-deer, 
and, as obtains at present, at no time was it so numerous as 
the latter. The antler of the roe-buck requires very little to 
convert it into a convenient hand-dagger ; and I have found 
weapons or implements of this description in various crannogs.^ 

Urus (Bos priniigenius). 

Of the two wild oxen, the Bison and the Urus, stated by 
Pliny to be, in his time, inhabitants of Germany,^ the remains 
of the former have not yet been discovered among 'the super- 
ficial deposits of the prehistoric period in Britain ; but its 

' Quoted in Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv. p. 61. 
^ See Ancient Scottish Lake-Dwellings, fig. 174. 
' Nat. Hist., book viii. chap. 15. 

URUS. 109 

presence in earlier times, as a contemporary of the mammoth, 
tichorhine rhinoceros, and cave hyaena, is unequivocally estab- 
lished. " A characteristic cranium with horn-cores of the 
Bison priscu-s" says Professor Owen, " obtained by Mr 
Warburton from the fresh-water newer Pliocene deposits at 
Walton in Essex, is suspended in the Hall of the Geological 
Society of London." ^ 

In France and Germany its remains are frequently met 
with, being indeed among the fauna of the lake-dwellings of 
Robenhausen and Wauwyl ; and, in more eastern parts, it is 
still extant as the auroch of the Lithuanian forest. " Its 
absence from Britain," says Professor Boyd-Dawkins, " may 
perhaps be accounted for by our island having been cut off 
from the mainland of Europe before the commencement of 
the prehistoric period, and by the animal having been conse- 
quently exposed to the craft of the hunter in an area too small 
for its concealment."^ On the other hand, the urus continued 
to live in Britain during the prehistoric period (probably longer 
in Scotland than elsewhere in the island). The discovery of 
its remains in marl-pits, in the newer tertiary deposits, and 
in the Cromer forest-bed, proves that the animal had a wide 
geological range, embracing the entire glacial period. Caesar 
gives a good account of the uri of the great Hercynian forest : 
" There is a third kind, consisting of those animals called uri. 
These are a little below the elephant in size, and of the 
appearance, colour, and shape of a bull. Their strength 
and speed are extraordinary; they spare neither man nor 
wild beast which they have espied. These the Germans 
take with much pains in pits and kill them. The young 
men harden themselves with this exercise, and practise them- 
selves in this kind of hunting, and those who have slain the 

^ British Fossil Mammals, p. 494. 

2 International Cong. Prehistoric Arch., Norwich, p. 283. 


greatest number of them, having produced the horns in public 
to serve as evidence, receive great praise. But not even when 
taken very young can they be rendered familiar to men and 
tamed. The size, shape, and appearance of their horns differ 
much from the horns of our oxen. These they anxiously seek 
after, and bind at the tips with silver, and use as cups at their 
most sumptuous entertainments" (Book vi. chap. 28). 

The fossil remains of this great ox have been abundantly 
found throughout Scotland, as the following records will 
show : — 

1. Five skulls were discovered in a marl-moss at Whitmuir- 
hall, one of which was presented to the Museum of the 
Society of Antiquaries of Scotland by the Rev. Thomas 
Robertson, accompanied by a letter, in which the writer 
says: "Among other curiosities dug out of a marie moss 
at Whitmuirhall, in this parish, the skull and flints of an ox 
which I have sent you attracted my attention. You, I know, 
are fond of anything that tends to throw light upon the 
ancient state of this country, and therefore I used the freedom 
to transmit this, not merely on account of its uncommon size, 
but as a proof of the large breed of cattle with which this 
country abounded in the last century. I found five skulls, 
evidently larger, but not so entire. I found also several 
small axes, resembling those used by coppersmiths, but I did 
not think it worth while to trouble you with them." ^ 

Subsequently, in noticing this discovery,^ Mr Robertson 
states that a Roman spear was found along with these 

2. Another fine specimen of the head of the urus, labelled 
from Selkirkshire, is in the Museum of the Royal College of 
Surgeons, Edinburgh. 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 643. 

^ Stat. Account of Scotland, vol. ii. p. 434. 

URUS. Ill 

3. A fine large skull of Bos primigenius is preserved in the 
Abbotsford collection, said to have been found in a moss 
near Jedburgh. ^ 

Dr J. A. Smith has put on record the fact that during a 
drive in the valley of the river Ale, near the town of Lillies- 
leaf, he saw two large skulls impaled one on each of the 
wooden posts of an old field-gate.^ 

4. In 1826 the bones of a large ox, described as the Bos 
primigenius, were got in the marl of Linton Loch, Roxburgh- 
shire, as well as those of deer. A perfect skull of the beaver 
{Castor fiber) was also found "below the peat and on the 
surface of the marl, now preserved in the Museum of the 
Tweedside Physical and Antiquarian Society at Kelso." ^ 

5. A skull of the urus was presented to the Museum of 
the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, in 1782, by Thomas 
Scott of Hapsburn. Also in the same year another 
specimen, from a moss in Galloway, by the Rev. David 

6. The Rev. G. J. Hamilton states, inter alia, that in a marl- 
moss on the estate of Synton, Ashkirk, " besides the horns 
of the stag already mentioned, the horns of the urus {Bos 
primigenius) were dug up from the same moss." ^ 

7. A portion of the skull of the urus was found by Dr Hen- 
derson in the Whitrig Bog, and presented to the Hunterian 
Museum, Glasgow.^ 

8. Remains of Bos primigenius were found in Dumfriesshire 
associated with the bones of the bear and reindeer, as already 
described (p. 90).'^ 

9. In the British Museum there is a skull, from a turbary 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 656. ^ Ibid., p. 657. 

' Edin. New Phil. Journal, July 1858. 

'' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 644. ' Ibid., vol. xv. p. 50. 

^ Ibid., vol. ix. p. 658. ' Ibid., vol. viii. p. 216. 


in the county of Kirkcudbrightshire, presented by Lord Selkirk 
in 1859.1 

10. A skull of the urus is recorded as having been found 
in a marl-pit near Maybole, associated with remains of various 
other animals (see p. 104). 

11. A portion of the skull with a horn-core was found in a 
bed of clay in a railway cutting, near Crofthead, Renfrewshire, 
along with remains of Irish elk and horse.^ 

12. Professor J. Geikie describes the remains oi Bos primi- 
genius found in the valley of Cowden Burn in clay-beds, which 
he considers to be interglacial.^ 

1 3. Mr William Lockhart, in his account of the parish of 
Lanark, states that, in 1785, while digging a mill-lade, " there 
was found the skeleton of the Bison scotiais, or Urus, de- 
scribed by Caesar, lib. vi., which has been extinct in Scotland 
for above 300 years. The cores or flints of the horns are 
still preserved, one in the College of Glasgow, and another 
in my possession : the last, though not entire, is 2 feet in 
length, and next the head measures above 15 inches in 
circumference." * 

14. Remains of the urus were found on the north bank 
of the Clyde, associated with those of the reindeer,^ and 
also in an excavation in Greendyke Street, Glasgow.^ 

15. A large skull of a Bos taurus, described in Fleming's 
' History of British Mammals,' is now preserved in the 
Museum of the New College, Edinburgh. A label, fixed 
on it in Dr Fleming's handwriting, is to the effect that it 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 659. 

'•^ Trans. Glasgow Geo. Mag., vol. iv., and Geo. Mag., vol. vii. p. 137. 
^ Geo. Mag., vol, v. pp. 393, 486, 535 ; vol. vi. pp. 73, 390 ; vol. vii. 
P- 53- 

'' Stat. Account of Scotland, vol. xv. p. 34. 
' Pioc. Soc, A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 207, 
" Trans, Geo. Soc. Glasgow, vol. ii., 1867. 



was found in a marl-pit at Newburgh, Fifeshire (figs. 35, 
36, and 37). 

16. A large skull from near Athol, now in the British 
Museum, is figured and described by Professor Owen in his 
'British Fossil Mammals,' p. 501. At the end of his descrip- 
tion he makes the following remarks, which show that his 
opinion was against the supposition that any of the domestic 

Fig. 35. — Skull of Bos -pximigtnms found in Fifeshire {27 5< inches in length). 

cattle of Scotland are descendants of the prehistoric wild 
ox : " In the manuscript catalogue of the British Museum 
this fine specimen is ascribed to ' the Caledonian Ox, Bos 
taurus, var. gigantea.' But the wild white variety with black 
muzzles, ears, and horns, the ' boves sylvestres ' of Leslie, 
which are identical with the cattle preserved at Chillingham, 
are of very inferior dimensions, and differ particularly in the 
smaller proportional size, and finer and more tapering figure 




of the horns. The Kyloes of the mountainous regions of 
Scotland, which are more likely to have been derived from 
an indigenous wild race than the cattle of the Lowlands, differ 

Fig. 36. — Side view of skull in fig, 35. 

Still more from the Bos primigenius than does the Chillingham 
breed in their diminutive size, and very short horns." 

F'g- 37.— Two last maxillary molar teeth of left side of Bos primigenius 
(natural size). 

17. Another skull was found in the last century in a marl- 
pit half a mile from Moulin, Perthshire.^ 

18. The Rev. J. Scott, in his account of the parish of 

^ Stat. Account of Scotland, vol. v. p. 70. 


Muthil,! writes as follows: "At this time (1793) there are 
no wild deer, but as the horns of both the elk and forest 
deer of very large size have of late been found in marl-pits, 
on both sides of the parish, and as the head and horns of the 
urus {Bos ferus of Linnseus) or mountain bull were lately dug 
up at the side of a small lake near Drummond Castle, it 
plainly shows that forest deer, and the other animals now so 
little known, once frequented this part of the country." 

Another specimen, got in a marl-pit in the neighbourhood 
several years ago (one of several found at the same time), 
is preserved at Drummond Castle.^ 

19. A skull and bones found in Belhelvie peat-moss, a few 
miles north of Aberdeen, are now preserved in the Museum 
of the University of Aberdeen.^ 

20. Rev. Dr Joass found in a ruined broch at Kintradwell 
remains of the pig, reindeer, and other animals, along with the 
frontal bone, horn-cores, and other bones of a large animal 
of the ox tribe.* 

21. Dr Joseph Anderson discovered in an ancient mound 
at Keiss the upper part of the skull, with the frontal bone and 
horn-core, of a large ox — now preserved in the Museum of 
the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, which, in Dr Smith's 
opinion, corresponds more to that of the Bos primigenius 
than to any other species.^ 

22. Another specimen found in the marl of the Loch of 
Breckigo, along with antlers of the red-deer, was presented to 
that museum by Bentley Innes, Esq. of Thrumster, in June 

23. Dr Smith records, on the authority of Dr Joseph 
Anderson, the two following instances of the finding of bones 

1 Stat. Account of Scotland, vol. viii. p. 487. 

2 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 663. ^ Ibid. 
^Ibid., p. 665. •' Ibid. "Ibid. 


of the Bos primigenius in bogs : Two heads with the horns 
entangled, as if the animals had been fighting, were found in 
a bog in the parish of Bower when digging for marl on the 
estate of Thura. They were upwards of 3 feet in the ground, 
and in a high state of preservation. The second instance 
was also of two heads similarly locked, and buried about 
the same depth. They were found at Clayock, in the parish 
of Bower, by Alexander Ross, while digging a drain in the 
month of October 1840.^ 

24. Mr Samuel Laing recognised the horns of a large ox 
found in the "Underground House of Skaill," Orkney, as 
those of the Bos primigeniusP' 

Celtic Shorthorn (Bos longifrons). 

Sir Richard Owen gave the name longifrons to a frontlet 
and horn-core of a small ox, which formed part of the original 
collection of fossils of John Hunter, recorded as having been 
obtained " from a bog in Ireland." " Had no other localities," 
he writes, " for the Bos longifrons been known than that of 
the Hunterian specimen, the species might have been held to 
be of later date than the Bos primigenius and Bison prisms, 
of whose existence, as the contemporaries of the Mammoth 
and tichorhine Rhinoceros, we have had such satisfactory 
evidence. I have, however, been so fortunate as to find, 
in the survey of the collections of Mammalian Fossils in the 
eastern counties of England, some indubitable specimens of 
the Bos longifrons from fresh-water deposits, which are rich in 
the remains of Elephas and Rhinoceros." ^ 

Professor Boyd-Dawkins * denies the validity of the evi- 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 66$. "^ Ibid., vol. vii. p. 76. 

* British Fossil Mammals, p. 510. 

■■ Transactions of International Congress of Prehistoric ArchEeology, 
Norwich, 1868, p. 281. 


dence on which the Bos longifrons is thus made contemporary 
with the fauna of the newer Phocene age. After critically 
reviewing the reported geological conditions in which the 
specimens on which Owen based his opinion were found, he 
comes to the following conclusion : " In fine, all the cases of 
its reputed occurrence, associated with post-glacial mammalia 
in Britain, may be resolved either into a mistaken identifica- 
tion of its remains with those of bison, or by the mixture of 
its remains with those of animals derived from a different 

The difference of opinion thus manifested is not yet 
satisfactorily disposed of, so far as I know ; but as it can 
only be settled by an appeal to further discoverable materials, 
it would be useless to continue the discussion here. 

There are no animal remains, with perhaps the exception 
of those of the red-deer, which come more frequently before 
the archaeologist than those oi Bos longifrons (fig. 38). They 
are constantly met with on the sites of the earlier con- 
structions and habitations of man, such as lake-dwellings, 
earth - houses, Roman camps and villages, brochs, barrows, 
caves, and kitchen-middens ; also in peat-bogs and alluvium. 
It is unnecessary to enumerate all the finds recorded ; and 
I shall, therefore, notice only a few of the more instruc- 
tive circumstances in which the bones of this animal have 
been found. 

Crannogs. — On the crannogs in the loch of Dowalton, they 
were associated with Romano-British industrial relics, as well 
as with remains of pig and sheep or goat ; ^ and on the 
crannog of Lochlee, with the bones of the horse, tame pig, 
sheep, red-deer, roe-deer, and reindeer.- 

Roman Station. — On the site of the Roman station at 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vi. p. 118. 

"- Ancient Scottish Lake-Dwellings, p. 139. 



Newstead, in Roxburghshire, several specimens were found 
along with Roman pottery.^ 

Brocks. — In the brochs of Cill Trolla, Kettleburn, Keiss, 
Yarhouse, &c.- 

Caves. — In the MacArthur Cave at Oban (see p. 50J, and 
in the Borness Cave in Kirkcudbrightshire.^ 

Fig. 38. — Portion of skull and horns of Bos longifrons found in a bog in Ire- 
land 2c^feet below the surface^ and now preserved in the Museum of the New 
College, Edinburgh. 

Kitchen-middens. — On the Ghegan Rock (see p. 80), asso- 
ciated with the goat, horse, pig, deer, roe, and dog.'' 

Forts. — Mr Hugh W. Young notes the remains of the 
Bos longifrons along with those of the horse, sheep, and 
pig, at Burghead.'' 

Alluvium. — At Kinleith, near Edinburgh, bones of the ox 
and dog were found in a gravel-bed, formed by the river in 

^ Pi-oc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 588. 
' Ibid., vol. X. p. 502. 
" Ibid., vol. xxvii. p. 91. 

- Ibid., vol. ix. pp. 631-634. 
■* Ibid., vol. viii. p. 372. 



ancient times, at a depth of nearly 1 1 feet from the surface, 
together with a remarkable bronze razor (fig. 39).^ 

Peat. — Near Drem, a skull with horn -cores was found 
15 feet under a peat-moss at Balgone ; and also in Blair- 
Drummond Moss its remains were found in several places.^ 
At Morbhaich Mor, Tain (see p. 86), its remains were asso- 
ciated with those of the reindeer and dog. 

Professor Owen states that it has been found under 
peat in the neighbourhood of 
Bridgewater, Devon, and in 
various localities in Ireland 
" from sub - turbary shell - 
marl." ^ 

I may observe that on the 
sites of the Swiss lake-dwell- 
ings remains of a small ox 
are everywhere noted. As 
Bos brachyceros it is recorded 
among the animal remains 
found on the great Neolithic 
settlement of Butmir, in 
Bosnia, including the Urus, and other varieties of Bos, as 
well as the pig, sheep or goat, stag, and roe-deer.* 

Remains of Bos longifrotis have also been found in tombs 
of the Stone and Bronze Ages by numerous explorers, as 
Canon Greenwell,^ Mr Bateman,^ Sir R. Colt Hoare,'^ and 
Mr Warne.^ 

Sir Richard Owen, in combating the idea that our modern 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. v. p. 84, and vol. ix. p. 625. 

^ Ibid., vol. ix. pp. 627-629. ^ British Fossil Mammals, pp. 511, 512. 

* Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, &c. , p. 108. 

^ British Barrows, pp. 168, 230. 

^ Vestiges, p. 82 ; and Ten Years' Diggings, pp. 126-129. 

' Ancient Wilts, vol. i. p. 199. ' Celtic Tumuli of Dorset, p. 37. 

Fig. 39. — Bronze razor found at 
Kinleitk, Mid-Lothian (|). 


domestic cattle are descendants of the Bos primigenius, re- 
gards it as " more probable that the herds of the newly 
conquered regions would be derived from the already domesti- 
cated cattle of the Romans." To this, however, he adds 
the following : " But, if it should still be contended that the 
natives of Britain, or any part of them, obtained their cattle 
by taming a primitive wild race, neither the Bison nor the 
great Urus are so likely to have furnished the source of 
their herds as the smaller primitive wild species, or original 
variety of Bos, which is the subject of the present section." i 

On reviewing the whole circumstances, so far as I can 
gather the evidence in support of both sides of the ques- 
tion, I am inclined to agree with Professor Boyd-Dawkins 
that the Bos longifrons was part of the indispensable belong- 
ings of Neolithic man when he iirst entered Britain. It 
was indeed the possession of domestic animals that gave 
him the mastery over his Palaeolithic predecessors in Europe. 

I have already quoted Cffisar's statement (p. 5) that the 
Britons possessed numerous herds of cattle. There can, there- 
fore, be no doubt that the Bos longifrons was a domestic 
animal in the British Isles long before the Romans invaded 
the country. 

Beaver [Castor eiiropaus). 

According to Sir Richard Owen, remains of the Beaver have 
been found, both in this country and on the continent of 
Europe, in Pleistocene fresh-water formations associated with 
those of the Mammoth, Hippopotamus, Rhinoceros, Hysena, 
and other extinct mammalia. They are not, however, found 
in the bone-caves of this country belonging to that period. 
The most common situation in which they occur is in the 
■^ British Fossil Mammals, p. 509. 

BEAVER. 121 

sub-turbary deposits and the peat-bogs. At Newbury, Berk- 
shire, bones of the beaver were discovered in a deposit of 
shell-marl, 20 feet below the surface, associated with those 
of the "wild boar, roe-buck, goat, deer, and wolf." Also 
at Hilgay, Norfolk, they were found at a depth of 8^ feet 
beneath peat, resting on a stratum of clay and associated 
with remains of the Megaceros} 

Among the debris of the Swiss lake-dwellings remains of 
the beaver are almost everywhere to be found. At the 
station of Laibach, in Carniola, so abundant were they that 
Dr Karl Deschmann calculated that over 140 individuals 
were represented.^ It is not, however, among the animal 
remains at Polada, and its bones are only sparingly found 
in the Terremare of Italy.^ Among the prehistoric remains 
recently discovered at Sobunar, near Sarajevo in Bosnia, 
portion of the under jaw of this animal has been identified 
by Herr Fiala — who also remarks on the frequency with 
which Daber (Beaver) occurs in place-names of the country.* 
In England remains of the beaver have been found in the 
crannogs explored by Mr Thomas Boynton in the Holder- 
ness, Yorkshire ; ^ and in the Glastonbury Lake-village they 
are associated with bones of the ox, goat, sheep, pig, horse, 
and domestic fowl.^ Canon Green well describes a sharp- 
pointed implement, made from a beaver's tooth, found in one 
of the Yorkshire barrows.^ 

Equally unequivocal is the evidence of the prevalence of 
the beaver in Scotland. On the i6th December 1788, Dr 
Farquharson presented to the Society of Antiquaries of Scot- 

' British Fossil Mammals, p. 193. 

^ Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 185. ' Ibid., p. 274. 

■' Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, &c., p. 321. 

^ Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 474. 

" Brit. Association Report, 1894, p. 433. 

.' British Barrows, p. 138. 


land " the fossil skeleton of the head and one pf the haunch 
bones of a beaver " which had been dug up in a marl-pit in 
Perthshire. The locality was a partially drained loch (Marlee, 
in the parish of Kinloch), and the marl in which the bones 
were found was overlaid by a covering of peat-moss 5 or 6 
feet thick.i Another discovery was in October 1818, on the 
estate of Kimmerghame, parish of Edrom, near the head of 
that district of Berwickshire called the Merse. In the drained 
morass, known as Middlestot's Bog, the skeleton of a beaver 
was found partly embedded in a deposit of shell-marl over 
which 7 feet of peat had accumulated.^ In more recent times 
its remains have been found by Mr John Smith in a cave and 
rock-shelter, both in Ayrshire.^ 

Nor must we omit the historical notices of this animal, 
which show that in Wales and Scotland it continued to live 
down to about the twelfth century. From the article in the 
' Memoirs of the Wernerian Society,' already referred to, it 
would appear that the earliest written reference to the beaver 
is contained in a document of the ninth century, pubhshed in 
-' Leges Wallicse,' or the Laws of Howel the Good (Hywel 
D'ha), book iii. sects. 11, 12, in which the prices of skins are 

The Marten's skin is valued at ... . 24d. 
The Otter's (Ddyfrgi, or Lufra) at . . . . I2d. 
The Beaver's (Llosdlydan, or Castor)]at . . . I20d. 

In the ' Itinerarium Carabrige ' of Giraldus de Barri, the 
beaver is said to be found only in the Teivi : " Inter universes 
Cambrise seu etiam Ltegrias fluvios, solus hie castores habet"; 
to this he added, " In Albania quippe, ut fertur, fluvio sim- 
iliter unico habentur, sed rari." But this is not the only his- 

^ Mem. Wern. Soc, vol. iii. p. 207. ^ Ibid. 

^ See chap. iii. p. 81 ; and Trans. Geol. Soc. Glasgow, vol. vii. p. 309. 


torical evidence of the existence of the beaver in Scotland. 
Hector Boece (Boethius), at the end of the fifteenth century, 
states that beavers were in Loch Ness in Scotland. "Ad 
lacus latera, propter ingenta nemora ferarum ingens copia est, 
cervorum, equorum indomitorum, capreolorum ; ad hsec, mar- 
terelte, fovinse ut vulgo vocantur, vulpes, mustelse, fibri lutrese- 
que, incomparabile numero, quorum tergora exterse gentes ad 
luxum immense pretio coemunt."^ 

Bellenden in his translation uses the words : " Mony wyld 
hors, and among yame ar mony martrikis, bevers, quhitredis, 
and toddis, the furrings and skynnis of thayme are coft with 
great price amang uncouth merchandis." ^ 

Mr Patrick Neill, the author of the article in the ' Memoirs 
of the AVernerian Society,' states that Dr Walker, Professor of 
Natural History in the University of Edinburgh, used to men- 
tion in his lectures that the beaver was known among the 
Highlanders by a peculiar Gaelic name, which name, he ascer- 
tained, through Dr Stuart of Luss, to be Dobran losleathan — 
i.e., the broad-tailed otter.^ 

A\'iLD Boar {Sus scrofa). 

Sir Richard Owen informs us that when Cuvier communi- 
cated his memoir on the fossil bones of the hog to the French 
Academy in 1809, he had met with no specimens from forma- 
tions less recent than the mosses or turbaries and peat-bogs, 
and knew not that any had been found in the drift associated 
with the bones of the elephant. There can, however, now be 
no doubt that this animal was contemporary with the extinct 

1 Boethius, Scot. Hist. 
^ Bellenden, Croniklis of Scotland. 

^ See also Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, vol. i. p. 177 ; and Owen's 
British Fossil Mammals, p. 198. 


mammalia of the Quaternary period.^ Although the present 
range of the Wild Boar extends over certain portions of 
Europe, Northern Africa, and Western and Central Asia, it 
is by no means so abundant as it was in the prehistoric 
period. Its prevalence throughout the British Islands in 
pre- and proto - historic times is attested, not only by the 
discovery of its remains in peat-bogs and occasionally in 
graves and refuse-heaps associated with relics of Neolithic 
man, but also by historical evidence that boar-hunting was 
a favourite pursuit of our ancestors till the animal was ex- 
terminated, about the middle of the sixteenth century. As 
further proof of this statement, we might adduce the fact 
that the Celtic names, mtic (pig) and tore (boar), enter 
largely into the composition of place-names, both in Scot- 
land and Ireland : as Sliabh-iia-miiic, Ceanii-tuirc, Loch-na- 
muick, &c. 

The tusks of the wild boar have occasionally been utilised 
as cutting implements and ornaments, and, accordingly, they 
are not unfrequently met with among grave-goods in barrows 
of the Stone and Bronze Ages ; ^ but otherwise its remains, 
neither in the wild nor tame condition, are of much archffio- 
logical significance. Among the Gauls the figure of a boar 
was frequently placed on the helmets of their warriors, prob- 
ably as an amulet — a practice which, whatever its object may 
have been, was continued in late Celtic times in Britain. 
Sir A. Wollaston Franks, in describing the beautiful bronze 
shield found in the river Witham, says : " The boar, of 
which the outline occurs on this shield, is a well-recognised 
Celtic symbol. M. de la Saussaye, in a valuable communi- 
cation to the 'Revue Numismatique ' for 1840, p. 91, has 
shown that this beast is to be found on the coins of every 

' British Fossil Mammals, pp. 426-431. 

^ British Barrows, p. 389; Ten Years' Diggings, pp. 131, 169, 172. 



part of Gaul, as well as on the coins struck by the cognate 
races of Britain, Spain, Illyria, and Galatia. On English 
coins it is to be found on gold, silver, and copper ; even on 
the coins of Cunobehn it is to be seen, though there refined 
and modified according to Roman taste." ^ 

According to Professor Riitimeyer, the Swiss lake-dwellers 
of the early Stone Age did not possess the tame pig, but only 
two races of wild swine, which might be called species — viz., 
the wild boar (Sus scrofa ferus) and the marsh pig' (6'. scrofa 
palustris). He thinks the marsh pig was first tamed, and 
afterwards the wild boar. But since the introduction of 
metals, remains of a domestic breed along with those of the 
wild species have been found on many of the lacustrine 
stations. The late Professor Strobel has noted both the 
wild and tame species among the animal remains on the 
Terremare, in Italy,^ those of the latter, however, being 
far more abundant than the former. 

The remains of swine, so frequently found on the sites 
of crannogs, Romano-British villages, and other early habita- 
tions in this country, are those of domestic breeds. 

The Great Auk {Aka impennis). 

A few bones of the Great Auk were recognised by Sir 
R. Owen among a quantity of osseous remains, submitted 
to him for examination, from a refuse-heap in the "Har- 
bour Mound at Keiss," in Caithness. Mr Samuel Laing, 
the explorer of that mound, thus describes the significance 
of the presence of the Great Auk among the former fauna 
of Caithness : " The most interesting fact is the discovery 
of the Aka impennis, which is now extinct in Europe, hav- 
ing but lately died out in Iceland, but said to survive in 

' Horse Ferales, p. 185. Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 274. 


Greenland. Its bones are frequent in the Danish Kjok- 
kenmoddings, where they have been thought to imply great 
antiquity and a more glacial climate ; but it is believed 
that they have never been found in any tumuli or deposits 
of a later date than those primeval middens. Hence their 
discovery in the Caithness middens affords an important 
link of connection with those of Denmark, and strengthens 
the evidence of high antiquity drawn from the rudeness of 
the implements." ^ Remains of this bird have also been 
notified by Mr Symington Grieve as being among the debris 
of a shell-mound in the island of Oronsay ^ (see p. 56). 

The chronological value of these discoveries cannot, how- 
ever, be very great, seeing that the bird is constantly referred 
to in the current historical annals down to the end of last 
century, and that a live specimen was caught, near Loch- 
broom, as late as i82i.'> Moreover, the osseous remains 
of the animals with which these few bones of the Auk were 
associated (only two or three individuals represented) do not 
carry us back to the chronological horizon of the people 
of the Danish Kjokkenmoddings, who, according to the late 
Professor Steenstrup, possessed only the dog in a state of 
domestication ; whereas in the Keiss mound we find the 
Bos longifrons, horse, red-deer, goat, and pig. 

Remains of the Great Auk have been found in considerable 
abundance both in the north and south of Ireland. Mr R. J. 
Ussher has recorded the discovery of its bones on the sites 
of Kitchen-middens on the coast of Co. Waterford in 'The 
Irish Naturalist' (1897-99). With regard to his later finds, 
he thus writes : " These were all found strewn about on or 

1 The Prehistoric Remains of Caithness, p. 50. 

^ For a most interesting account of the Great Auk, see Mr Grieve's book, 
' The Great Auk or Garefowl : Its History, ArchLi;ology, and Remains,' 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xiii. pp. 76-105. 


near the old surface where this cropped up, among the bones 
of domestic animals and fowls and of red -deer, of which 
many pieces of the antlers were also obtained. There were 
numerous burned stones, and charcoal in layers, and great 
quantities of shells of edible species, often very large, limpets, 
oysters, mussels, cockles, &c. I have now seventeen bones 
of Aka impennis, which have either been determined by Dr 
Gadow or correspond with specimens that he has pronounced 
upon — eight coracoids, which he assigns to six individuals, 
five humeri, belonging to three individuals, one tibia, right 
and left metatarsals, and a portion of the pelvis. A right 
and a left humerus were found close together. In some 
of the bones the outer surface is well preserved, but in 
others it is much worn down, and the bones split from 
time and exposure. That my superficial searches among the 
sandhills, where but little of the old surface is now exposed, 
should have resulted in finding the remains of at least six 
Great Auks strewn about, suggests that these birds must have 
been used for food in some numbers. To obtain them, access 
was probably available to some breeding-place of the species 
on the neighbouring coast ; so that when Professor Newton 
remarked that the Great Auk obtained near Waterford Harbour 
in 1834 may have been revisiting the home of its forefathers, 
he possibly described what took place." 

Mr W. J. Knowles, in the same number of ' The Irish 
Naturalist' (January 1899), records the finding of twenty- 
four bones of the Great Auk at Whitepark Bay, Co. Antrim. 
Besides other animal remains Mr Knowles informs us that 
"there were also associated with them flint-flakes, cores, 
hammer - stones, and flint - scrapers, together with edible 

Another bird, represented among the fauna of the Kjokken- 
moddings — viz., the Capercailzie (Tetrao iirogallus)—\)\x\. now 


long extinct in Denmark, has for similar reasons been some- 
times regarded as indicating great antiquity. This bird feeds 
principally on the buds of the pine, and its presence in 
Denmark, contemporary with the people of the Kjokken- 
moddings, is explained by the existence at that time of 
extensive pine forests which supplied the bird's natural food. 
Doubtless its disappearance from the country was synchronous 
with the decay of the pine forests, which gave way to the 
subsequent oaks and beeches. But, nevertheless, the caper- 
cailzie continued an inhabitant of Scotland up to the beginning 
of the present century. 

Remains of the reindeer are very rarely found in Denmark 
in the peat, but more frequently in the subjacent deposits. "■ 
Among the fauna of the Kjokkenmoddings this animal is not 
represented. Hence it is probable that the reindeer left the 
country before man pushed his way along the fiords and low- 
lands of Denmark. But yet the animal survived in Scotland 
to the twelfth century. 

General Remarks. 

Of the other wild animals which were contemporary with 
prehistoric man in Britain, it is unnecessary to make more 
than a few passing remarks. The skull of a brown bear 
( Ursus arctos) has already been noticed as having been found 
in a peat-bog in Dumfriesshire (p. 90). Recently Sir F. T. 
Barry, M.P., found a bear's tooth in a broch at Keiss.^ This 
is a rare find in Scotland, but in the Swiss lake-dwellings 
perforated bears' teeth are not uncommon — one such from 
Polada, in Italy, is figured in my 'Lake-Dwellings of Europe' 
(fig. 68, No. 31). Remains of this animal have also been 

■■ Congres Inter. d'Arch. et d'Aiith., 1869, p. 162. 
''■ Proc. Soc. A. Lond., vol. xvii., 2nd series, p. 191. 


recorded from Roman refuse -heaps at Colchester and in 
London, from Neohthic caves in North Wales,^ and from the 
Cambridgeshire Fens.^ As proof that the bear existed in 
Scotland during the Roman occupation of Britain, the fol- 
lowing lines of Martial are often quoted : — 

" Qualiter in Scythica religatus rupe Prometheus, 
Assiduum nimio pectore pavit avem, 
Nuda Caledonio sic pectora praebuit urso, 
Non falsa pendens in cruce Laureolus." 

According to Pennant, the brown bear infested the moun- 
tainous parts of Scotland as late as 1057; but Professor Boyd- 
Dawkins discredits this statement, finding no documentary 
evidence in support of it, and believes that the animal became 
extinct at an earlier period.^ 

Remains of the wolf {Lupus vulgaris)^ the fox {Vulpes 
vulgaris), and several species of dogs, have been found in 
the Brit- Welsh caves, associated with those of the domestic 
animals — horse, pig, and Celtic shorthorn.* Mr Bateman 
includes these three animals, and also the fallow-deer, 
among the fauna of the British Barrows.^ The last wolf in 
Britain is said to have been killed by Sir Ewen Cameron 
in 1680 ; but in Ireland wolves survived till at least 17 10. 

Among animals sometimes represented in the accumulations 
of food-refuse found in caves, which had afforded shelter to 
man, such as the MacArthur and Borness Caves, may be men- 
tioned the badger (Meles taxus) and the otter {Lutra vulgaris), 
both of which still survive in various localities throughout 

Bones of the whale and seal have also been found among 
the dibris of brochs and of other early habitations in the nortli 

' Cave-Hunting, pp. 131, 166. ^ British Fossil Mammals, p. 105. 

* Cave-Hunting, p. 75. ^ Ibid., p. 166. 

* Ten Years' Digging, p. 298. 



of Scotland and in the surrounding islands. These were 
utilised in the manufacture of vessels and implements, and 
for other purposes in the domestic life of the people. 

On the classificatory value of the historic animals, Professor 
Boyd-Dawkins ^ writes as follows : " The principal changes in 
the fauna of Great Britain during the historic age are the ex- 
tinction of the bear, wolf, beaver, reindeer, and wild boar, and 
the introduction of the domestic fowl/- pheasant, fallow-deer, 
ass, the domestic cat, the larger breed of oxen, and the com- 
mon rat ; and as this took place at different times, it is obvious 
that these animals enable us to ascertain the approximate date 
of the deposit in which their remains happen to occur. And 
for this purpose the following table may be consulted : — 

Animals extinct. 


Brown bear 

circa 500-1000 


II 1200 

Beaver . 

II 1 100-1200 

Wolf . 

II 1680 

Wild boar 

Animals introduced. 

11 1620 

Domestic fowl 

before 55 


circa 55 



Domestic ox of u 

rus type 

circa 449 


II 800- 850 


II 800-1000 

Common rat 

II 1727-1730 

Domestic Animals. 

As the ordinary domestic animals — ox, sheep, goat, horse, 
and dog — were in all probability importations by Neolithic 

' Cave-Hunting, p. 78. 


man into Europe, it is by no means an easy task to ascertain 
where and when their domestication first originated. In the 
old-world civilisations of the valleys of the Nile and Euphrates 
this important step in human progress was, even then, lost in 
the mists of antiquity. 

Whether the domestic breeds of our modern cattle were 
derived from one or both of the two typical oxen, the Bos 
primigemus and the £. longifrons, is a matter of opinion. 
M. Dupont-*^ mentions the remains of a small ox among the 
fauna represented in the cave of Naulette, in the valley of 
the Lesse, which also includes those of the mammoth, 
rhinoceros, &c. If these animals were really contemporary 
there is some reason for believing, with Sir Richard Owen, 
that the progenitor of the Celtic shorthorn existed in 
Europe as a wild animal before Neolithic man found his 
way thither. Since the very commencement of the Swiss 
lacustrine settlements their inhabitants were in possession 
of the small marsh cow ; but later on new breeds of cattle 
were reared. 

The domestic races of sheep, according to some authori- 
ties, have been derived from a common stock represented 
by the mouflon — now confined to the islands of Corsica 
and Sardinia — and the Armenian and Cyprian wild sheep. 
Others, however, consider it an open question whether they 
were derived from a single or several wild stocks. As to the 
origin of the domestic goat, there seems to be a consensus 
of opiniori that it was derived from the Persian wild goat 
(Capra agagrus). 

The horse {Equus caballus) had a wide range throughout 
the larger part of Europe, Asia Minor, and the regions around 
the Caspian Sea, during the Pleistocene period. Its fossil- 
ised remains, which indicate a middle-sized animal, have been 

1 L'Homme pendant les Ages de la Pierre, p. gS. 


abundantly met with in caves and post-pliocene deposits of 
Western Europe. Sir Richard Owen, writing in 1846, makes 
the following statement : " The best authenticated associations 
of bones of the extremities with jaws and teeth, clearly indi- 
cate that the fossil Horse had a larger head than the do- 
mesticated races ; resembling in this respect the Wild Horses 
of Asia described by Pallas, and in the same degree ap- 
proximating the Zebrine and Asinine groups." ^ It is very 
interesting to note that the drawings of the horse scratched 
on bones and horns in the reindeer caves of France and 
Switzerland corroborate in a singular degree the accuracy of 
this statement. The teeth and bones of the fossil horse are 
so like those of the existing species that even Cuvier failed 
to detect any difference, except size, by which he could dis- 
tinguish the one from the other. The osseous remains of the 
horse are found in such prodigious numbers on the prehis- 
toric camping-ground at Solutre, in the valley of the Rhone 
(see chap. xii. p. 462) — estimated at least at 40,000 individ- 
uals — that it has been surmised that the animals were kept 
in a state of domestication. But this opinion is controverted, 
on the ground that the dog is unrepresented in the osseous 
remains of this station, and without the assistance of this 
animal, it would be impossible to keep herds of horses and 
reindeer (also largely represented at Solutre) together. There 
seems, therefore, little doubt that the domestic horse was 
of the same breed as the wild animal which roamed during 
the Pleistocene period over Europe and Western Asia. But 
where, or when, its domestication was effected it would be 
hazardous to state. According to Egyptologists, the horse 
does not figure in pictorial representations of social life in 
the Nile valley till the i8th dynasty, which dates, according 
to the most recent corrections, from 1587 to 1327 B.C., — 
^ British Fossil Mammals, p. 385. 

HORSE. 133 

the general opinion being that it was introduced by the 
Shepherd Kings.^ 

Canon Greenwell records the finding of remains of the 
horse in several barrows ; but these barrows were either of a 
late period, or their contents had been so disturbed that no 
chronological sequence could be drawn from them. Thus, 
a large barrow in the parish of Kirby Underdale contained 
Anglo-Saxon remains ; ^ another, in the parish of Cowlam, had 
its contents so much disturbed that Canon Greenwell sug- 
gested that the " barrow was an ossuary " •; ^ and in a third 
they were associated with bones of the deer, goat or sheep, 
domestic dog, domestic pig, and two species of oxen.* In 
a fourth group there were horses and chariots buried together, 
but from the most indubitable evidence of the associated 
relics these burials belonged to the " Late Celtic " period.^ 

Professor Rolleston thus comments on the rarity of the 
horse in the early Neolithic period : " As in the earlier pile- 
dwellings of Switzerland, so in the Stone-Age barrows of this 
country, the horse is less frequently found than from what we 
know of the discovery of its bones in cave-dwellings on the 
one hand, and in interments of later date than the Stone Age 
on the other, we should be inclined to expect. I have never 
found the bones or teeth of a horse in a long barrow, and I 
would remark that, whilst such bones are very likely to be 
introduced into such barrows in the way of secondary inter- 
ments, I have not met with any exact record as to the finding 
of them in surroundings which left no doubt as to their being 
contemporaneous with the primary interments." ^ 

The general conclusion to which these observations point 
is that a middle-sized horse was introduced into the British 

^ See Lenormant, ' Les Premieres Civilisations,' vol. i. p. 300. 

'' British Barrows, p. 136. ^ Ibid., p. 220. ^ Ibid., p. 262. 

^ Ibid., p. 456. ^ Ibid., p. 736. 


Isles by Neolithic man. We have already quoted (p. 9) 
a passage from Tacitus to the effect that the Caledonians 
fought from chariots at the battle of Mons Graupius ; con- 
sequently the horse must have been a domestic animal in 
North Britain prior to the Roman occupation. Perhaps the 
Shetland ponies of the present day may be regarded as the 
direct descendants of this first domesticated horse which, 
in the course of time, in obedience to the less favourable 
environments in which they have lived, have become more 

Although the dog is acknowledged on all hands to be 
the earliest animal which attached himself to man, there is 
no evidence to show that this friendly alliance dates further 
back than the Neolithic period. In Europe the oldest 
instance of its domestication is furnished by the Kjokken- 
moddings of Denmark. This fact was established by the 
late Professor Steenstrup in a most interesting manner. Ob- 
serving that all the cartilaginous and succulent portions of 
the mammalian bones found on the middens had been 
gnawed by a carnivorous animal, he concluded, from the 
completeness with which the practice had been carried on, 
" non seulement dans tons les amas mais dans toutes les 
parties des amas," that this animal had daily access to the 
food - refuse. The preponderance of the bones of the dog 
over those of other carnivorous animals left no doubt that 
this constant gnawing of the osseous remains was the work 
of a race of domestic dogs.^ 

Canine skeletons have rarely been found in the British 
barrows, — a fact which one would hardly expect, considering 
the warm attachment there has always been between this 
animal and man. Professor Rolleston, from one instance 
which came under his cognisance, determined the size of 

^ Congres International, 1869, p. 141. 

DOG. 135 

the animal to be about that of an ordinary sheep-dog,^ — 
a result which harmonises with Professor Riitimeyer's con- 
clusions with regard to the dog of the Swiss lake-dwellings. 
As to the origin of this early domestic dog in Europe, whether 
it was derived from the wolf, fox, or jackal, or from neither 
of them, naturalists are not yet agreed. Some regard the 
greyhound as derived from the Kaberu or Abyssinian wolf 
(Canis Simensis), an opinion which derives some support 
from the fact that the oldest dogs represented on the Egyp- 
tian monuments are of this description. On the other hand, 
an Assyrian monument, dated 640 b.c, shows the figure 
of a dog like that of a large mastiff. 

Mr Darwin, who, as is well known, paid great attention 
to the domestication of animals, thus expresses his opinion 
of the descent of our domestic dogs : " Looking to the do- 
mestic dogs of the whole world, I have, after a laborious 
collection of all facts known, come to the conclusion that 
several wild species of Canidss have been tamed, and that 
their blood, in some cases mingled together, flows in the 
veins of our domestic breeds." ^ 

Looking back on the concurrent phenomena of man's 
environments during the short time he has existed, even in 
such a secluded corner as Scotland, we can distinctly trace 
periods of growth and decay in the organic world. Coinci- 
dent with climatic changes and alterations of sea and land, 
there were continuous modifications going on in the topo- 
graphical features of the country, to all of which prehistoric 
man had to adapt himself Yet, in these ever-changing 
scenes, few points can be fastened on as bringing any part 
of his career within the category of positive chronology. 
Beyond an occasional intermingling of his works with those 
of nature, such as was disclosed in the Oban cave and in 
' British Barrows, p. 736. '^ Origin of Species, p. 14. 


the Carse of Stirling, we have rarely the means of correlating 
contemporary events. Should, however, the actual age of 
any such points of contact be determined by extraneous or 
collateral circumstances, it would be the key to the solution 
of many of the subsidiary chronological problems which so 
frequently disturb the equanimity of arch^ologists. Nothing 
has surprised me more, in the course of these investigations, 
than to find how few of the archseological remains, hitherto 
discovered on Scottish soil, can be assigned to a time much 
earlier than the Roman occupation. This remark, as we shall 
afterwards see, is especially applicable to inhabited sites indi- 
cating any kind of constructional features, such as crannogs, 
brochs, forts, earth-houses, &c. 




I HEN man started on his career as an in- 
telligent utiliser of nature's forces, he had 
recourse to methods and practices unique 
in the history of the organic world. By 
means of his special monopoly as a 
toolmaker, he manufactured a variety of 
implements, weapons, and tools, by the use of which he 
established a supremacy over all other animals. These in- 
ventions, being virtually the products of an intelligent mind, 
have one important characteristic which is of inestimable 
value in the study of archaeology — viz., that they disclose 
the technical skill and teleological purpose of their manu- 
facturers. In other words, the progressive phases of man's 
intelligence have been stereotyped in the material world by 
corresponding changes in his handicraft works. Hence, in 
the analysis of archseological remains — implements, weapons, 
ornaments, temples, tombs, houses, idols, &c. — we have now 
the means of gaining some information regarding the intel- 
lectual and social condition of man during his past career 
on the globe. 

The specialisation of the human hand is one of the most 


remarkable phenomena of organic evolution. Its efiSciency 
as a prehensile and manipulative organ is due, primarily, to 
the freedom of the movements of the arm, the refinement 
of digital palpation, and the facility with which the thumb 
can be opposed to the other fingers so as to form a clasp 
or hook. But before the full import of this great engine 
of human civilisation can be appreciated, there is another 
element to be considered — viz., the objective tool or instru- 
ment which the hand grasps, without which the manipulative 
function of the latter would be shorn of half its value. 
The relation between the hand and the instrument is such 
that it may be plausibly asked whether the hand was 
adapted for the instrument, or the instrument for the hand. 
But however this may be, in their conjoined functional 
capacity the arm often becomes a handle, and the hand 
itself a mere pliant means of fixing the implement. The 
supplementary adjuncts to this special use of the hand are 
ingeniously adapted for a great variety of purposes. The 
various mechanical processes — cutting, sawing, scraping, bor- 
ing, hammering, &c. — are all effected by appropriate tools, 
such as the knife, axe, chisel, scraper, &c. The mechanical 
efficiency of some of these implements is increased by the 
further interposition of an artificial handle of wood or some 
other material, as in the case of the ordinary axe — an ad- 
justment which simply increases the leverage by adding to 
the length of the human arm ; or, as in the case of the 
knife, which merely enables the hand to grasp it more firmly. 
In all hafted tools the hand-grasping, which was originally 
applied to the tool itself, is thus replaced by some sort of 
contrivance for binding the handle and it together ; in which 
case the hand-grasping is more advantageously transferred to 
the handle. In the selection of materials for the manufacture 
of tools, as well as in the methods and contrivances by which 


they are adjusted, it must be acknowledged that prehistoric 
man has exercised an almost faultless judgment, as they 
invariably disclose a pre-eminent fitness for the special 
purpose for which they were intended. 

When prehistoric man first entered the romantic glens 
and forests of North Britain, he was a skilled craftsman, 
and his life-drama had already been moulded on the funda- 
mental principles of modern civilisation. As a thoughtful 
interpreter of the laws of nature, and a skilful manipulator 
of the economic materials around him, he appears to have 
been little inferior to his more refined descendants of the 
present day, although, of course, it cannot be maintained 
that his actual amount of knowledge was as great. But the 
difference is one of degree, and not of kind. 

In this and the following chapter I shall treat of some 
of the archseological remains of the prehistoric period in- 
dependently of the chronological element, except in so far 
as they may be defined by the sequence of the so-called 
three Ages of Stone, Bronze, and Iron. In regard to this 
doctrine, it is essential to have clear notions from the 
outset, as, whatever its critical and archaeological value may 
be, it is undoubtedly applicable to Scotland. For its in- 
vention and application to prehistoric researches we are 
indebted to Scandinavian savants. Struck with the elegance 
and beauty of the stone implements, so profusely scattered 
over the land, they seized the idea — hitherto never seriously 
considered, though occasionally mooted, by writers in other 
countries — that there was a time when people were entirely 
ignorant of the use of metals, and had to depend exclusively 
on such tools as could be manufactured of stone, horn, 
wood, &c., in the prosecution of their social industries and 
requirements. To this idea was linked another, which also 
seemed to be well founded — viz., that their earliest metal 


objects were made of a compound of copper and tin known 
as bronze. Iron was not known in the country till several 
centuries afterwards ; but when it did become known, its 
superior qualities for cutting purposes gave it a preference 
over the former metal. 

;/ With these remarks I proceed to inquire into the nature 
of the culture and civilisation of the early inhabitants of Scot- 
land, so far as this may be deduced from the character and 
technic of the stray remains of their handiworks which, in 
defiance of the gnawing tooth of time, have survived to the 
present day. For convenience of description, and to prevent 
undue discursiveness, the subject will be treated under the 
three following heads: (i) The economic or raw materials; 
(2) The workshop and its tools ; (3) The manner in which 
their handicraft products were applied to the exigencies of 
social and domestic life. 

I. The Raw Materials. 

The economic materials utilised by the Stone Age people 
in the manufacture of such articles as were indispensable to 
their simple mode of Hfe consisted of different kinds of stones 
and minerals ; horns, bones, teeth, shells, and skins of ani- 
mals ; wood-bark, reeds, and the prepared fibres of plants. 
Flint, on account of its hardness and peculiarity of flaking 
when struck with a smart blow, was chiefly used for cutting 
implements ; but in Scotland, where the raw material is only 
sparingly found as nodules among travelled gravels, this in- 
dustry was necessarily restricted to the manufacture of the 
smaller objects, such as knives, arrow-points, scrapers, borers, 
&c., — the larger implements and tools being made of the more 
common stones found in the neighbourhood. 

Although no prehistoric implements of jade or nephrite 


have been found in Scotland, the problems associated with 
their origin and prevalence throughout Central Europe 
are of so much importance, from an ethnological point of 
view, that, even in this sketch, some notice of them is desir- 
able. Independent of the lake-dwelling finds, the number of 
jade axes known in Europe may be roughly estimated at 200, 
about the half of which have been found in graves of the 
Stone Age in France, especially the dolmens of Brittany. 
Of the remaining half about eighty are from Western Ger- 
many, and the rest from various localities in Italy, Austria, 
and Greece. Seeing that jade could not be found in situ 
in Europe, the favourite theory for the origin of these im- 
plements was that they were imported by the Neolithic 
people in their westward journey from Asia. The discovery 
of a large number of celts and chisels in the Swiss lake- 
dwellings has reopened the question as to the origin of jade 
implements. The stations in Lake Constance have alone 
yielded over 1000 specimens- — that of Maurach being the 
richest. In the latter station 349 tolerably well made and 141 
badly made implements have been found, besides 154 chips 
and sawn portions varying from the size of a finger - nail 
to a few square inches. This proves that the lake-dwellers 
were in possession of the raw material; but, notwithstand- 
ing the most careful search, not a particle of jade has been 
yet found in situ in any part of Switzerland. 

Jade, as known in Europe, may be classified into three 
varieties — nephrite, jadeite, and chloromelanite. From care- 
ful examination by Fischer, Meyer, and others, it appears 
that nephrite was greatly in excess of jadeite in the settle- 
ments of Lake Constance and its neighbourhood; but on 
moving westwards this inequality became gradually altered, 
till in France it was entirely reversed. Chloromelanite, on 
the other hand, though much rarer than either of the other 


two varieties, seems to have been more evenly distributed. 
Roundly speaking, we find in the whole of Europe from 
300 to 400 worked objects of jadeite, 200 of chloromelanite, 
and as many as twice these numbers combined of nephrite. 

A few isolated portions of jade have been found in 
Germany and Styria ; and it is said that the mineral in 
small quantities has been detected in situ in the rocks of 
Silesia. A few chips have also been observed in the pre- 
historic caves of Mentone. Some thirteen small axes and 
chisels of green jade, and one of white jade, are recorded by 
Schliemann as having been found in the prehistoric cities of 
Troy.'^ During a recent visit to Vancouver, Mr Hill Tout 
showed me in his private collection several polished masses 
of jade, as large as a man's head, which had been found in 
glacial dibris some distance up the Frazer valley ; also, a few 
small axes made of this material, as well as portions that had 
been sawn off, evidently in the course of working the mineral, 
which had been found on an old inhabited site in the same 
neighbourhood. Specimens of differently coloured jades may 
be seen in the Natural History Museum of Kensington from 
China, New Zealand, New Caledonia, India, &c. One large 
water-worn mass, weighing 1156 lb., is from Battugol, Irkutsk, 
Asiatic Russia. Further references to the distribution of jade, 
together with a fuller notice of jade implements in Europe, 
will be found in 'The Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' p. 505, 
and ' Ilios,' p. 240. 

The beautiful flakes and knives of obsidian found among 
the relics of the ancient Peruvians and Mexicans, as well 
as those which may still be seen in use among New 
Zealanders, American Indians, and other semi-civilised races 
prove how suitable this mineral is for cutting purposes. 
Though found in situ in several volcanic districts in Europe, 
1 Ilios, p. 573. 


implements made of it do not figure largely among pre- 
historic collections, probably owing to its rarity. No objects 
of obsidian have been found in Scotland, to my knowledge ; 
and in the Continental museums their occurrence is rare. 
I have noted, however, a few dozen flakes in the Museum 
Ponti, on the Isola Virginia, from the " palafittes " of Lake 
Varese. Others have been collected on the sites of some 
primitive habitations in Hungary.^ The late Herr Fiala 
has recorded a few flakes and a beautifully worked arrow- 
point from Debelobrdo and Sobunar, near Sarajevo.^ One 
knife is among the objects found on a lake-dwelling in the 
Attersee.^ Dr Schliemann has noted the occurrence of 
knives and arrow-heads in several of his excavations, as 
many as thirty -five beautifully formed arrow-points having 
been found in the fourth sepulchre at Mycenae.* Nuclei 
of obsidian have also been found in Greece.^ 

Jet and its inferior varieties-^brown or cannel coal and 
bituminous shales — were manufactured by the prehistoric 
inhabitants of Britain into a variety of ornaments, such as 
rings, pendants, necklaces, buttons, &c. According to Pliny,^ 
gagates (now corrupted into jet) takes its name from Gages, 
the name of a river in Lycia, from the banks of which this 
substance was obtained. Bede, in his description of Britain 
(book i. chap, i.), states that "it has much and excellent 
jet, which is black and sparkling, glittering at the fire, and 
when heated, drives away serpents." The principal modern 
source of jet in this country is the vicinity of Whitby, 

' Cat. de I'Exposition Prehistorique, Budapest, pp. 19, 24, 28, 34, 44, 86. 
2 Wissenschaft. Mitt, aus Bosnien und der Hercegovina, vol. i. p. 48, 
and vol. iv. pp. 53, 54. 
' Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 163. 

* Mycense and Tiryns, pp. 158, 272 ; Ilios, pp. 247, 445, 

^ Perrot et Chipiez, Histoire de I'Art dans I'Antiquite, vol, vi, p. 127. 

* Hist. Nat., xxxvi. 34. 


in Yorkshire, where it is found mixed with beds of lignite 
in the Upper Lias. It is also largely found in France 
(Aude) and in Spain (Asturias), where it gives employment 
to a number of artisans, who manufacture it into beads, 
crosses, and other trinkets used in Roman Catholic countries. 

Jet, like amber, is electrical when rubbed, and hence it 
is called black mnber by the German amber-diggers. Articles 
made of jet, or of the inferior shales, were more abundantly 
used in prehistoric times in Scotland than those made of 
amber, probably because the raw material was more readily 
procured. Being easily worked, and capable of taking on 
a high polish, it admirably suited the requirements of the 
age. Its highest development to ornamental purposes ap- 
pears to have been during the Bronze Age, as many of the 
plates, which formed the component parts of necklaces, are 
ornamented with designs which are considered characteristic 
of that period. 

Amber, a fossil gum derived from an extinct coniferous 
tree, was an important substance in the prehistoric civilisa- 
tion of Europe on account of its attractive appearance, 
and the facility with which it could be manufactured into 
ornaments. The Greeks and Romans set a high value on 
it, and used it as beads, pendants, and brooches. Pliny 
devotes a long chapter (book xxxvii. chap, ii) to an 
account of it and "the many falsehoods that have been 
told about it." Homer refers to it in the line — 

"The gold necklace hung with bits of amber." ' 

Although doubtfully indigenous to Britain, pieces of amber 
are said to have been occasionally found washed up on its east- 
ern shores, as at Buchan in Aberdeenshire, Queensferry on 
the Firth of Forth, and along the coasts of Norfolk, Essex, 

^ Odyssey, xv, 460. 


and Sussex. Reference to the occurrence of amber in lignite 
beds in tlie counties of Londonderry and Tyrone, Ireland, is 
given by Mr G. Coffey.-^ It has also been found in small 
quantities on the shores of Norway, Sweden, Sicily, and the 
Adriatic. But the chief source of its supply, both in ancient 
and modern times, is the south shore of the Baltic, especially 
between Konigsberg and Memel, and the east coast of the 
island of Riigen. Its use in the British Isles during pre- 
historic times was exclusively confined to the manu- 
facture of beads and pendants, a few examples of which have 
been recorded from English barrows of the Bronze Age ^ and 
some ancient graves in Scotland.^ But during the Stone Age 
in Eastern Prussia it was put to more multifarious uses, not 
only beads and necklaces, but also buttons, studs, pendants, 
and rudely-formed human figures, having been found in the 
graves of that district.* Ornaments of amber have been found 
in the Scottish and Irish crannogs, the lake - dwellings of 
Switzerland, the Terremare of Italy, and more especially 
among remains of the early Iron Age of South-Eastern Europe. 
The cemeteries of Glasinac and Jezerine, in Bosnia, Santa 
Lucia, at the head of the Adriatic Gulf, and Hallstatt in 
Austria, have yielded large numbers of beads and brooch- 
pendants of imported amber. 

The granites, quartzites, porphyries, serpentines, green- 
stones, felstones, diorites, clay -slates, and indurated sand- 
stones, of which the larger stone implements and weapons 
were usually made, are to a greater or less extent readily pro- 
curable in Scotland, either in situ or among ice - travelled 

^ Origins of Prehist. Ornament, p. 66. ^ British Barrows, p. 55. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvi. p. 186. 

* See 'Der Bernsteinschmuck der Steinzeit,' by Richard Klebs, Konigs- 
berg, 1882 ; also ' L'Ambra nella Storia e nella Geologia,' by A. Stoppani, 
Milano, 1886. 



The other substances made use of in the prehistoric work- 
shop call for no special remarks. There appears to have been 
no lack of deer-horn in any part of Scotland ; and of course 
bones, teeth, shells, skins, &c., were to be had everywhere. 
Many of the organic materials are, however, so liable 
to decomposition that most of the articles made of them 
have long ago crumbled into dust. It is, consequently, very 
rare to find woollen fabrics, skins, bast, &c., in burials, or on 
any of the inhabited sites, except the lake - dwellings. The 
fine mud and peaty deposits of the latter afforded the most 
favourable conditions for preserving such fragile objects as, 
from time to time, dropped into them from the hands of their 
occupiers. But these, and other remains of this kind, will 
be discussed later on under the category of worked objects. 

II. The Workshop and its Tools. 

In describing the methods practised by prehistoric workmen 
in the stone industries of the period, we have sometimes not only 
to wander outside the Scottish area for archfeological evidence, 
but also to be guided, to some extent, by the manner in which 
analogous objects have been manufactured in recent times by 
races who may still be regarded as living under a Stone-Age 
civilisation. Sir John Evans, in his usual exhaustive manner, 
has collected a mass of valuable information from both these 
sources.^ He has, moreover, shown by practical experiments 
with his own hands that the simple appliances contained in a 
" kit of tools," such as can be proved to have been in the 
possession of the Stone-Age people, were capable of producing, 
in skilled hands, the effects assigned to them. As regards the 
fine chipping of flint, he has demonstrated that it could be 
produced both by skilfully directed blows of a stone hammer, 
' Ancient Stone Implements, &c., chap. ii. 


and by the application of steady pressure with a suitable 
implement made of some hard material, as the tyne of a rein- 
deer horn. He admits, however, that, notwithstanding all his 
ingenious methods, there remains a residuum of manipulative 
skill to the credit of the Stone-Age operator which still baffles 
modern ingenuity. " I may, therefore, at once confess," he 
writes, "that though by the use of stag's horn the ordinary 
surface-chipping characteristic of ancient implements may be 
obtained, yet the method of producing the even fluting, like 
ripple-marks, by detaching parallel splinters uniform in size, 
and extending almost across the surface of a lance- or arrow- 
head, is at present a mystery to me, as is also the method by 
which the delicate ornamentation on the handles of Danish 
flint daggers was produced." ^ 

For a long time it was maintained by many antiquaries that 
round holes could not be bored through hard stones without 
the use of metallic instruments. But the discoveries on the 
sites of lake-dwellings have entirely disproved this assertion, 
as it is now conclusively shown that both the sawing and 
boring of all manner of stones could have been effected by 
properly adjusted instruments made of wood or horn, with 
the addition of a little sand applied in the same way as the 
modern lapidary uses emery. The late Dr Keller, experi- 
menting with a thin wooden board and dry sand, proved 
that, by these means alone, he could saw through the hardest 
stone. Similarly with a wooden tube, or a piece of hollow 
horn, put into rotatory motion in alternate directions by means 
of a string bow, like the fire-drill of modern savages, he could 
bore perfectly round holes in stones. Soft wood was found 
to be more suitable than hard, as it took up more of the 
particles of sand into its tissues, thus acting like fine teeth 
in grinding the stone. That tubes of some kind were used 
' Ancient Stone Implements, &c., chap. ii. p. 38. 


for boring by the lake-dwellers is proved by the finding of 
hundreds of the cylindrical cores, which remained as refuse 
after the perforation had been completed. In the Archseo- 
logical Museum of Lausanne I saw a tray full of these cores 
exhibited in one of the cases ; and in the Museum at Zurich 
there may be seen a portion of a stone hammer, with the 
core still in its place, which had evidently been broken before 
the perforation was completed.^ This interesting relic was 
found on the station of Bauschanze. Another flat stone, just 
showing the commencement of a tubular perforation, may be 
seen in the Laibach Museum among the relics from one of 
the neighbouring lake-dwellings. Similar partially bored holes 
still retaining the cores may also be seen in the Museum of 
Stockholm and elsewhere. But it was not an essential part 
of the process of boring that the perforator should be a hollow 
tube, as a solid piece of wood, horn, or stone, could be used 
in the same way. Indeed, according to the evolutionary law 
of progress, I should say that the latter method preceded 
the former. In several instances I have seen evidence that 
the sawing or boring had been preceded by little pick 
marks, as if intended to guide the instrument in the initi- 
atory stages of the operation. 

Many of the Scottish specimens of perforated stone im- 
plements show that the boring had been performed from 
both sides, the two holes meeting near the middle, where on 
section they are seen to diminish in width (fig. 40). Such 
perforations would be readily accounted for by the rotatory 
motion of a cylindrical piece of wood, or a stone pestle, the 
funnel shape of the aperture being due to the gradual wasting 
of the borer by friction. Hollow tubes do not appear to 
have been used for boring holes in Scotland, or indeed 
within the British Isles, as, so far as my knowledge goes, no 

' See Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 184, No. 6. 



such cores have been found among the antiquarian rehcs 
hitherto collected in these countries. I have seen one 
specimen, found in Scotland, in which the operation had 
just been begun, and it consisted of a conical depression on 

Fig. 40. — Axe-hammer found under ail inverted urn on Chap 
West Kilbride (f ). 


each side, apparently picked out with some sharp tool. 
Perhaps this first stage would be followed up by grinding 
with a stick and sand. 

In the manufacture of flint implements from the raw 
material the operator proceeded to work the nodule from 
one of two points of view, according to the class of imple- 


ment required. To procure the flakes intended to serve 
as the groundwork of the smaller worked objects, such as 
knives, arrow-points, scrapers, &c., all his ingenuity was 
directed to the production of the suitable form of flake; 
and having exhausted the nodule's capacity in this respect, 
the remaining core was thrown away as useless. But if the 
operator's intention was to secure a large implement, say an 
axe or chisel, his attention was exclusively confined to re- 
ducing the nodule to the required shape, without any regard 
to the resulting flakes and splinters which, in this case, became 
waste products. The tools used in these operations were 
stone-anvils, hammer-stones of various sizes, and fabricators 
or flaking-tools made of flint, or perhaps of horn or bone. 
Anvils have been found in Scotland in various localities, 
but more especially on the site of the flint factory at Skelmuir, 
in Aberdeenshire, where no less than nine specimens are 
known to have been found. ^ They are generally made of 
quartzite, often from water-worn peebles, and show a number 
of small worked depressions on one or both surfaces (fig. 41). 
Two anvil-stones from this factory, which were presented to 
the National Museum, in 1897, by Mr John Rae, are thus 
described by Dr Anderson: "They are water-worn quartzose 
boulders, about 8 inches by 6 inches, and 2^ inches in 
thickness, strongly marked on both faces with a central pitted 
depression, surrounded by six or seven similar but smaller 
depressions, apparently produced by the wear resulting from 
the process of breaking flints upon them with hammer-stones, 
which are also abundantly found on the same site, amidst 
great quantities of splintered flint nodules."^ One of these 
anvils and a hammer - stone from the same locality are 
represented on figs. 41 and 42. 

} Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xiv. p. 314; vol. xvi. p. 13. 
^ Ibid., vol. xxi. p. 135. 



Five other specimens purchased for the Museum are thus 
described : ^ " Five anvil-stones of quartzite, found at Shel- 
muir, Aberdeenshire — viz., (i) with nine hollows on one face 
and six on the other; (2) with four hollows on each face; (3) 
with two hollows on one face and one on the other, and 
grooved on each side for a handle ; (4) with three hollows on 
one face and two on the other, and the sides worn by use 

Figs, 41, 42. — Stone anvil and hammer-stone from Skelmuir^ Aberdeenshire 
(about J). 

as a hammer-stone ; (5) with a deep circular smoothed hollow 
on one face." 

The stone hammers associated with the debris of flint 
factories are generally oblong quartzite pebbles showing mark- 
ings of usage at one or both ends. Those found throughout 
the country, in fields or among the remains of human dwell- 
ings, vary greatly in size and configuration. They are often 
flat pebbles of a circular or oval shape, with marginal 
markings. Sometimes they present slight hollows on both 
faces, which go under the name of finger-marks (fig. 43). 
When perforated, so as to be used with a wooden handle, 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. x.\iv. p. S. 



they display careful workmanship, with a symmetrical surface, 
often highly polished, and sometimes ornamented as shown in 
a remarkable specimen found at Corwen, in North Wales, 
and figured in the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries 
of Scotland, vol. vi. p. 43. But neither stone perforated 
hammers nor hammer-stones are peculiar to the Stone Age, 
as they are, especially the latter, abundantly found in the 

The so-called fabricators, or flaking tools, are made of flint, 
and worked into long narrow chisel -like objects with an 

Fig. 43. — Hammer-stone^ with circular depression on both surfaces^ found on 
the farm of Balcraig; Ayrshire {^). 

approach to a ridge on one or both surfaces, thus presenting 
a triangular or lozenge - shaped section across the middle. 
They are 4 to 5 inches in length, with rounded, or bluntly 
pointed, extremities. Such tools are by no means common 
in Scotland. Two have been found in Kincardineshire;^ one 
in the chambered cairn of Unstan in Orkney (fig. 44), asso- 
ciated with some beautifully worked flint arrow-heads and 
knives ; ^ one from Strathspey ; ^ three from Aberdeenshire ; * 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xi. p. 25. 
' Ibid., vol. xxiii. p. i8. 

- Ibid., vol. xix. p. 351. 
■' Ibid., vol. xxvii. p. II. 



and one from Roxburghshire.^ Similar implements have been 
found in England, especially in districts, such as Yorkshire, 
where flint is abundant ; also in Scandinavia there are 
analogous forms which, though not recognised as flaking 
tools, could hardly have been 
used for any other purpose. I 
have not observed them else- 
where in Europe, but perhaps the 
tynes of deer -horns might have 
been used instead. 

Another tool is the borer, or 
drill, used for making small per- 
forations, such as the eye of a 
bone needle. Its characteristic 
feature is a sharp point worked 
on the tip of a flake (figs. 45 
and 46). Such instruments are 
of great antiquity, as they were 
used in Palteolithic times both 
in England (Kent's cavern) and 
on the Continent (the reindeer 
caves of France and the rock- 
shelter of the Schweizersbild). 
They are found among Neohthic 
remains all over Europe, though Fig. 44.- 
by no means numerously. Only 
three or four specimens have 
been found in Scotland — viz., one on the Culbin Sands,^ 
one in Roxburghshire,^ and the two here figured.* 

As there is no sharp line of distinction between some of the 

- Fabricator of Jlint 
found in the chambered cairn 
of Unstan, Orkney (|-). 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxviii. p. 338. 

- Ibid., vol. xi. p. 546. ^ Ibid., vol. xxviii. p. 338. 

■* Col. Ayr and Gal. Arch. Association, vol. i. pp. 23, 62. 



tools of the workshop and other utilitarian implements, it may 
be as well to postpone further remarks on the mechanical 
skill of their manufacturers till after we have looked into the 

Fig. 45. — Flint drill found 
ill the parish of Galston, 
Ayrshire {^. 

Fig. 46. — Flint drill, 
Tows, Old Luce, Wig- 
townshire {{). 

contents of the whole armoury with which Neolithic man 
fought the general battle of life. 

III. Implejsients, Weapons, and Ornaivients. 

To analyse and classify the multifarious relics of the Stone 
Age people collected on Scottish soil, in accordance with 
their specific forms and purposes, would greatly exceed the 
limits and scope of this work. I must, therefore, confine my 
remarks to a brief general survey of their structural features 
and functional uses in the social economy. The objects 
which thus fall to be noticed may be conveniently and simply 
classified as implements, weapons, and articles of apparel 
and ornament — comprising axes, adzes, chisels, hammers, 
knives, saws, gouges, scrapers, grinding - stones, &c.; spear- 
and arrow-heads, daggers, sling-stones, &c. ; spindle whorls, 
loom weights, smoothers, cloth, buttons, beads, rings, &c. 



I . Axes, Chisels, and Hammers. 

Axes may be divided into two groups, according as they 
have or have not a haft-hole. The former are rarely made 
of flint, even in countries where this material is abundant. 

Fig. 47. — Axe-hammer fou?id in afield near Ardrossan, Ayrshire (f). 

owing to the difficulty of perforating such a hard substance. 
They generally present one cutting edge running parallel to 
the axis of the handle, the other being blunt ; and hence 


they are sometimes called axe- hammers. Some, however, 
have both ends brought to a cutting edge; while, on the 
other hand, implements of similar types have both ends 
blunt, in which case they fall into the category of stone 
hammers. All the axes in this group are worked with care, 
being nearly always polished, and sometimes ornamented 
with linear grooves along the margins of the perforated 
surfaces (fig. 47). They vary in size from a few inches to 
10 or II inches in length. One fine example (fig. 48) was 
dug up in the stone circle of Crichie (see p. 316). 

Fig. 48. — Axe-hammer found hi the stone circle of Crichie^ Aberdeenshire 
(4 inches in le?igth). 

The stone hammer may be of any shape, but usually it 
is of an elongated or oval shape, with the perforation near, 
or in, the middle. The beautifully polished specimen here 
represented (fig. 49) was found, in 1873, under a sepulchral 
cairn, and associated with an urn of the food-vessel type 

(fig- SoV 

The typical form of the unperforated axe, or celt, is that 
of a wedge with one end brought to a cutting edge, and 
the other bluntly pointed or more or less truncated (fig. 51). 
Specimens having both ends adapted for cutting are, how- 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvii. p. 453. 



ever, occasionally met with. As a rule they have polished 
surfaces, with the exception of those made of flint, which 
are ground only at the cutting edge, though, even among 
these, some specimens may be seen which are beautifully 
polished all over. The members of this group vary so much 
in composition, finish, and dimensions that no two, among 
several hundreds in the National Museum, are exactly alike ; 
but yet many of them have so many points of resemblance 
that certain types are recognised as peculiar to special areas 

Fig. 50. — Urn found in a cairn at 
Glenkead {4^ indies hig. 

Fig. 49. — Stone ham- 
mer found luith an 
urn in a cairn 
at Glenkead, near 
Donne (^). 

— a fact no doubt due to fashion in local influences and 
customs. It is marvellous to what precision experts have 
carried the art of assorting these implements according to 
their provenances. In Scandinavia, owing to the abundance 
of flint in certain localities, we find specimens of very large 
dimensions made of this material, some being beautifully 
chipped and others finely polished. 

In the Scottish National collection there are a few speci- 
mens which may be characterised as adzes, notably one from 



Ferny Brae, parish of Slains, Aberdeenshire. It is made of 
grey fiint, "finely polished and of unique form, being tri- 
angular in section across the middle, and expanding slightly 

Fig. 51. — Stone axe found while cutting a drain on the farm of Brownhill, 
Tarbolton (^). 



Fig. 52. — Polished celt 
of grey flint found at 
Ferney Brae, Slains, 
Aberdeenshire (7 
inches in length). 

towards the two extremities. It is finished to a curved 
adze-like edge at both ends" (fig. 52).^ A few chisels are 
also to be noted, their characteristics 
being a short cutting edge and a long 
slender body. 

Besides stone, bone and deer -horn 
have been utilised for making various 
kinds of implements, such as hammers, 
chisels, spatulae, picks, &c., numerous 
specimens of which have been recorded 
from crannogs, caves, kitchen -middens, 
brochs, &c. They are not often found 
in graves, being in such positions liable 
to decay. Canon Greenwell, however, 
has met with a few horn implements in 
the Yorkshire barrows, two of which, a 
perforated hammer and a pick, are en- 
graved as figs. 33 and 34 of his ' British Barrows.' Among 
the industrial remains from the Continental lake-dwelHngs, 
the Terremare of Italy, and the reindeer caves of France 
and Switzerland, implements of this class are very common. 
Picks of deer-horn were used by the prehistoric people of 
Britain in extracting flint from chalk pits, as at Grime's 
Graves near Brandon. - 

The process of grinding and polishing stone implements 
appears to have been accomplished by the manual labour 
of rubbing them, either upon a fixed block of sandstone 
or with a portable hone. Specimens of these grinding-stones 
have been occasionally met with in Scotland, as shown in 
the accompanying illustrations (figs. 53 and 54); but in Den- 
mark and Sweden large slabs, worn into elongated hollows 

1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. x. p. 598. 

2 Journ. Eth. Soc, N.S., vol. ii. p. A19. 



and grooves by the friction of the implements, are of frequent 

With regard to the methods of hafting the unperforated 
axes and chisels, we have, since the discovery of the Swiss 

F'g- 53- — Whetstone with stone axe found 7iear the sandhills in 
Stoneykirk, Wigtownshire (^). 

lake-dwellings, most satisfactory evidence as to how this 
was done. Remains of the actual handles have been very 
rarely found in Scotland — only two instances of the kind 

Fig- SA-— Polygonal grinding-stone of quartzite found while excavatitiga 
drain on Lamberton Moor, Berwickshire (J). 

being known to me. One, consisting of a simple wooden 
handle with a hole into which the celt was inserted, was 
found by a man digging peats in the Solway Moss, at a 
depth of 6 feet (fig. 55, No. i). The other, found in a peat- 



bog in the island of Bute, and preserved in the Chapelhill 
Museum, Rothesay, was attached, with some sort of pitch, to 
a wooden handle now greatly decayed. 

Among the relics from the Swiss lake-dwellings are numerous 

Fig. 55. — Various methods of moitnting stone implements. 

I, Stone axe from Solway Moss (Proc. Soc. A. Lond., vol. iv. p. 112); 4 and 16, 'Ancient 
Stone Implements, &c.,' figs. 92 and 93 ; 8, Arrow-head still in shaft from Fyvie (Proc. 
Soc. A. Scot., vol. xi. p. 509) ; all the rest from ' Lake-Dwellings of Europe.' 

wooden objects, including the handles and horn fixtures for 
mounting stone axes. Specimens of a few of these are shown 
in the accompanying sketches (fig. 5 5). 

2. Knives, Saws, and Scrapers. 

A flint flake, when suitably formed, is well adapted for cut- 
ting and scraping by a kind of sliding pressure, but when 
much used in this manner the edge becomes quickly blunted, 
and hence it was necessary to work up the flake by second- 


1 62 


ary chipping. Sometimes this was done by grinding instead 
of chipping, but this variety of knife is much rarer in Scotland 
than the ordinary worked flakes. A few specimens of these 
trimmed flakes are represented in figs. 56-58. Those with 
ground edges and chipped surfaces, though few in number, 
have been recorded from such widely-separated districts as 
Caithness, Argyll, Aberdeen, Lanark, and Berwick. A very 
fine specimen of a ground-edged knife was found on the 
farm of Butterlaw,^ near Coldstream, and measures 4 inches 


Figs. 56, 57. — Trimvied knives from Torrs, Old Luce, Wigtownshire {\). 

in length and 2^ inches in breadth, but only % inch in 
thickness (fig. 59). 

Canon Greenwell has figured a flint knife, with regard to 
which he writes as follows : " Amongst the bones was de- 
posited a flint knife, unburnt, 2]4, inches long and Ji inch 
wide, by far the most beautiful specimen I have yet met with ; 
it is very delicately flaked over the whole of the convex sur- 
face, the edges being serrated with the greatest skill and 
regularity. It is another example of those implements which, 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxviii. p. 324. 



when associated with interments after cremation, have been 
usually found to be themselves unburnt." ^ 

Originally the knife-flake and the saw were one and the 
same, but their specialisation into separate tools dates as 
far back as Palaeolithic times, as we find saws among the 
relics of the reindeer caves of France and the rock-shelter of 
the Schweizersbild in Switzerland.^ In the earlier archse- 

Fig. 58. — Trimmed 
flake, Mid Torrs, 
Old Luce (\). 

Fig. 59. — Ground-edged knife offiint 
found at Buiterlaw {§). 

ological works the term "saw" is indiscriminately applied to 
a knife-flake accidentally chipped by usage, as well as to one 
intentionally trimmed. The special characteristic of a saw is 
a cutting edge, with teeth so regularly formed that its function 
involves the necessity of a to-and-fro motion. Hence the 
knife described by Canon Greenwell in the above quota- 
tion might be regarded as a saw. True saws, though widely 

' British Barrows, p. 285. 

'■^ Neue Denkschriften der allg. schw. Gesel., vol. xxxv., PI. xi. 



distributed over Europe, are not abundantly to be seen in 
archaeological museums. They have been found on the sites 
of lake-dwellings and other primitive habitations, and also 
in graves, but most frequently as stray objects in the surface 
soil. The flint saws in the Scottish National Museum (figs. ' 
60-63) have been collected chiefly on the subsoil of the 
sand-dunes of Glenluce, Culbin, and Golspie. Their number 
now amounts to upwards of 160. They are usually made 
of flakes, but sometimes of chips, carefully trimmed so as to 

Figs. 60, 61. — Flint saws from 
Glenluce {^), 

Figs. 62, 63. — Flint saws from 
Culbin Sands (^). 

present a series of regularly serrated teeth. Some are tri- 
angular on section and only one of the edges is serrated. 
Others, again, are serrated on both edges. The teeth in all 
the specimens found in Scotland are minute and fashioned 
with the utmost care and regularity. Along the edge of one 
specimen from Glenluce — a long, narrow, thickish flake— 
I counted thirty-five teeth over a length of i^ inch; and 
along this edge there was to be seen a narrow band of 
glistening polish, scarcely broader than the length of the 



teeth. This feature has been observed on many of these 
saws without regard to their provenance. 

Formerly it was a current opinion among archaeologists 
that flint saws were not to be found in Ireland. That this 
opinion is erroneous is proved by Mr Knowles, who writes 
to me that he possesses numerous examples picked up among 
the dibris of kitchen-middens on the sandhills. He states 
that in addition to flakes, "so serrated at the edge that a 
person at once comes to the conclusion that they had been 


Figs. 64, 65. — Pointed flint scrapers, Torrs, Old Luce {\), 

prepared for use as saws," there is another class of implements 
largely found in Ireland called "hollow scrapers," many of 
which must be regarded as true saws, as the teeth are regular 
and well defined. Mr Knowles has, recently, more particularly 
described these implements in a paper on " Irish Flint Saws " 
to the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland (vol. iv., 5th 
series, p. 341). For further notices of saws and their dis- 
tribution in Europe I must refer my readers to ' Prehistoric 
Problems,' chap. viii. 

1 66 


Among the remains of the ancient stone industry in 
this country the implement most largely represented is that 
known as the scraper, or "thumb flint" (figs. 64-67). It 
generally consists of a flake having the thick end worked 
into a semicircular edge slanting to its flat face, while the 
body or "neck" may be held between the fingers. But 
sometimes there is little or no neck, and the implement 

Fig. 66. — Slender 
sc7'aper, Tor?-s, 
Old Luce (J). 

Fig. 67. — Horse-slioe scraper from the Crannog 
of Lochspouts, Ayrshire (}). 

may be of a discoidal, circular, or horse - shoe shape ; in 
which case it was necessary to have it mounted in some 
kind of handle to make it effective for any mechanical pur- 
pose. Some have a concave edge, and are known as 
" hollow scrapers " — a type of implement hitherto more fre- 
quently found in Ireland than in Scotland. The instruments 
used for boring have, of course, a sharp point, but otherwise 
they may be regarded as scrapers. 

3. Weapons. 

Arrows, spears, and javelins, being intended for piercing 
the tissues of the body (man or beast), naturally resemble 
each other in having a sharp point. Otherwise, they differ 



only in size and in the manner in which they are used. 
But whatever be the specific weapon,— arrow, spear, dagger, 
or javelin, — its efficiency demanded that the tip should be 
made of a harder substance than wood. For this purpose 
the best material was flint, although bone and horn were 
also used — especially for short hand - daggers, hke those 
found in the lake -dwelling stations of Laibach, Mondsee, 
and others. 

Arrow-points may be divided into tanged (figs. 68-70) and 


Figs. 68, 69, 70. — Tanged arrow-points of flint : dZ and 'ja from Torrs, Old 
Luce, Wigtownshire; and6g from- Lanfine, Ayrshire {^, 

untanged (figs. 71-74), the latter being further subdivided 
according as they resemble a leaf, a lozenge, or a triangle — a 
division which is also applicable to spear-heads. The work- 
manship on some of those objects displays marvellous man- 
ipulation, especially in the execution of what is known as 

Having secured the tip, the warrior or sportsman had to 
consider how it could be best attached to the shaft or handle. 
This was generally effected in the case of the arrow by insert- 
ing the lower end of the flint into a slit in the wood, and then 
tying it with a string. Among the lake -dwellers a kind of 

1 68 


asphalt was used to keep the tip firmly in its position. 
These methods are illustrated in fig. 55, Nos. 7 and 8. 
It is perhaps unnecessary to say that the presence of 

71 72 73 

Figs. 71, 72, 73. — Lozenge- and leaf-shaped arrow-heads, Old Luce, 
Wigtownshire (y). 

arrow-points implies the other necessary equipments of the 
archer — viz., the bow, the arrow-shaft, the quiver, and the 
bracer. Of the actual remains of the three former articles 
almost nothing has survived in this 
country to the present day, owing, no 
doubt, to their decay. . But in the 
Swiss lake-dwellings several specimens 
of the bow have been found — as, 
for example, one from the station of 
Nidau in Lake Bienne, and another 
from Robenhausen, both being about 
5 feet in length. The latter is made 
of yew, and shows the notch at both 
V\g. J i,.— Triangular flint gnds for the String. The bracer, sup- 

arrow-head, High Torrs, 

Wigtownshire (\). posed to be for protecting the wrist of 

the archer, being made of stone, and 

therefore not liable to decay, has been found in several 

localities in this country — generally in graves (figs. 75 

and 76). 



In Scotland, spear-heads, whether made of flint or of any 
other material, do not figure largely among its prehistoric relics. 
The few objects that may be so classified differ from the 
arrow-heads only in being a little 
larger, seldom exceeding 3 inches in 
length (fig. 77). In England we 
meet with a few large lanceolate, 
or leaf- shaped, flakes with elaborate 
workmanship, which, according to 
Sir John Evans, might have been 
used as daggers ; ^ and in the Swiss 
lake - dwellings similar blades were 
either inserted into wooden handles, 
or had the butt -end covered over 
with twisted withes so as to afford a 
better grasp.^ No specimens of the 
beautifully formed daggers, having 
the blade and handle made of one 
piece of flint like those of the Scan- 
dinavian archaeological area, have been found within the 
British Isles. 

Barbed harpoons of an early type have already been noticed 

Fig. 75. — Bracer of stone 
found at Mid Torrs^ Old 
Luce (^). 

Fig. 76. — Polished bracer of felstone found uuith an urn at Fyrisk, 
Evanton, Ross-shire {^). 

in the description of the MacArthur cave and rock-shelter 
at Oban, as also the perforated deer-horn chisels and picks 

' Ancient Stone Implements (figs. 264, 265). 

2 Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 8, Nos. 2 and 28. 



associated with the stranded whales in the Carse of Stiriing. 
Sharp-pointed objects made of bone and horn, some of which 
may be regarded as daggers, have also been found in graves 
in this country, and more especially among crannog remains. 

Among weapons may be noticed the so-called sling-stone, 
which may be a smooth pebble from the brook, or a flint 
nodule roughly chipped into a lenticular, discoidal, or globular 
shape. In the Wolds of Yorkshire these 
/ \ prepared flint nodules may be picked up 

in great numbers on ploughed fields, 
and elsewhere, as stray relics. It is, 
however, difficult to believe that all the 
objects so characterised were really used 
as sling-stones. The primary apparatus 
for projectiles was the hand itself, with- 
out the intervention of any mechanical 
appliances ; and I cannot help thinking 
that many of the larger pebbles, so fre- 
quently found on ancient inhabited sites, 
were used in this manner. 

Hundreds of ovate pellets of clay, 
Fi&- n-— Javelin-head, generally not larger than a pigeon's egg, 

Machermore, Old , , , i i ^ i 

£2(« (I). burnt and unburnt, have been found on 

the site of the lake - village of Glaston- 
bury, which are regarded as sling-bolts, or perhaps fire-balls. 
Similar clay pellets have been recently dug up in consider- 
able numbers on the site of Ardoch Camp, associated with 
Roman pottery and other Roman remains. 

The remarkable series of ornamental stone balls found 
in Scotland — and only in Scotland — and supposed to have 
been attached to thongs and used as flail -like weapons, 
may here be noticed, though it is probable that they belong 
to a later period of Scottish civilisation than that now under 


review. They were first critically examined and described by 
Dr J. Alexander Smith,i but since then their number has 
greatly increased. They vary in size from i inch to about 
3^ inches in diameter, and have their surfaces divided into 
four, six, or more symmetrical discs, or, sometimes, projecting 
knobs. The discs are generally ornamented by incised spirals, 
concentric circles, check patterns, &c. Dr Joseph Anderson 
thus refers to their probable use : " In all their varieties of 
form, these objects present certain features which are sug- 

Fig. 78. — Stone hall ornamented with incised patterns found in digging a 
drain in the Glas Hill, Towie, Aberdeenshire (f). 

gestive of a possible use as weapons. Their ornate char- 
acter, their speciality of form, which renders them capable 
of being swung by thongs or bound to the end of a handle, 
and the fact that one example is pierced by a hole, are 
indications in this direction. Although there is no con- 
clusive evidence of the fact, it is at least conceivable that 
they may have been mounted as mace-heads similar to those 
metal mace-heads with pyramidal projections which are found 
occasionally among the rehcs of the Iron Age, and con- 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xi. p. 29. 


tinued in use in the early Middle Ages, and similar, at least 
in appearance, to the mace -heads shown in the hands of 
unmounted men in the Bayeux Tapestry." ^ Some of these 
balls (fig. 78) are decorated with spiral ornamentation, which 
resembles that on metal work of the Bronze Age in Scandi- 
navia and in the Danubian valley. 

4. Clothing and Ornaments. 

We have no knowledge of any phase of humanity in which 
the love of personal adornment does not play an important 
part in the life of the individual. The savage of the present 
day, who paints or tattoos his body and adorns it with shells, 
feathers, teeth, and trinkets made of the more gaudy materials 
at his disposal, may be accepted as typical of the Stone-Age 
men of Europe. Their ornaments consisted chiefly of beads, 
pendants, rings, bracelets, necklaces, &c., made of jet, amber, 
bone, horn, teeth, &c. Few, however, of such relics have 
been found in Scotland that can be identified as belonging to 
the Stone Age. Buttons made of jet are not uncommon 
among the contents of ancient graves. They are generally 
conical on the upper surface, and flat beneath, with a curved 
or V-shaped tunnel, both ends opening on the under surface, 
as shown in fig. 79. On the 12th December 1898, three 
jet buttons, varying in size from ^ inch to i^ inch in 
diameter, but of the usual conical form and perforated under- 
neath, were exhibited at the Society of Antiquaries of Scot- 
land as having been found in a cist with a cinerary urn at 
Keith Marischal, East Lothian. One found in a cist on 
Law Hill, Dundee,^ is quadrilateral in shape, with linear 
ornamentation on the back (fig. 80). Another, hemi- 

' Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 170. 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxiv. p. 10. 



spherical in shape, is from Mid - Torrs, Glenluce.^ Three 
made of cannel coal, and found in a tumulus near Rothbury 
Northumberland, are described as circular, two inches in 
diameter, slightly conical on one surface and with the usual 

Fig. 79. — Jet button, xtpper and under surfaces, found on Crawford Moor, 
Lanarkshire (f ). 

perforation on the other. Canon Greenwell has figured 
a number from the Yorkshire barrows, some of them being 
highly ornamented. Buttons of bone have also been found 

Fig. 80. — Back and front view of a jet butto?i found in a cist at 
Law Hill, Dundee (|). 

occasionally — one with two holes being from an urn at 
Murthly, Perthshire. 

Of the more perishable works of the earliest inhabitants of 
Scotland very little, if anything, has reached our day. Of the 
spinning industry the spindle-whorl alone remains as evidence, 

1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxx. p. 5. 


but, as it has also been used in all subsequent ages, even 
up to the present time, it possesses no chronological value. 
Fragments of woollen cloth, along with a skeleton, were found 
by a man cutting peats in a bog at Birsay, in Orkney. The 
body, that of a female, was in a sitting position, the top of 
the skull being 2 feet below the surface of the peat. " The 
portions of woollen fabric are of two or three different 
varieties of texture, the largest portions woven of thick and 
coarsely-spun yarn. The pieces are much patched, so much 
so as to suggest the dress of a vagrant rather than that of 
a person careful of appearances." ^ 

Portions of woollen cloth of four or five different textures 
are said to have been found in a cist at Greenigoe, parish of 
Orphir, Orkney, along with two beads, one of amber and the 
other of an opaque vitreous paste.^ 

A complete woollen hood, with a wide fringe,^ found in a 
moss in the parish of St Andrews, Orkney, is preserved in 
the National Museum ; also fragments of cloth and a leather 
shoe said to have been found associated with human skele- 
tons in a moss at Culrain, Ross-shire.* 

Canon Greenwell has occasionally recorded the finding of 
remains of woollen and leather garments in British barrows, 
as, for example, in a coffin made of a hollow oak trunk, found 
in a barrow at Scale House, Craven. For a notice of this 
and similar tree-coffins in England and Denmark I would refer 
my readers to 'British Barrows,' p. 377. 

Sir Daniel Wilson,^ in describing a garment procured by 
Dr Samuel Hibbert from some labourers who had found it, 
on the chance exposure of a stone cist, while excavating for 
railway work near Micklegate Bar, York, about the year 1838, 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvi. p. 12. ^ Ibid., vol. xxiii. p. 123. 

' Ibid., vol. xiv. p. 81. * Ibid., pp. 91, 92. 

° Prehistoric Annals, vol. i. p. 475. 



thus writes : " This valuable relic — now in the Scottish 
Museum — appears to be a sleeve, or covering for the leg; 
and somewhat resembles the hose worn by south-country 
Scottish farmers, drawn over their ordinary dress as part of 
their riding -gear. It has been 
knitted ; a process which doubt- 
less preceded the art of weaving, 
probably by many centuries. The 
fabric is still strong, and, in care- 
ful keeping, may long suffice to 
illustrate the domestic manufac- 
tures of the ancient Briton. This 
is one of the examples to which 
reference has been made in a ., > i; j 

L ^ •* ' ttt 'tA'v 

former chapter, as showing the // lif' \" •■ 'imW/i 

source to which it is conceived fi '-V' ■" ' ' *• / /», , 

the ornamental designs on early J&V*''.'^ ^t-N- " ^V iVi'i''-" 

British pottery may be traceable; J*-^*!'?*' ».'' .^ • K'*' ' 1' 

though the resemblance is less ^Wr'' •\~v ^t ' h 

striking here than in some more ,, ^ .^. J» 

imperfect specimens of such pro- pig. Si.-Por/io,, of knitted work 

ducts of the primitive knitting- >«"'^ ^'^ '^ "'' '^^'^^ Mhkiegate 

Bar, York. 

needle or loom. The accom- 
panying woodcut (fig. 8i), representing a portion of the 
knitted fabric, will enable the reader who is familiar with 
the style of ornamentation on the pottery of the tumuli to 
judge for himself how far this idea is justified by the corre- 
spondence traceable between them." 

A human body, the mummy of which is now preserved 

in Dublin, was found in a bog 9 or lo feet beneath the 

surface. " When first exhumed," writes Sir W. Wilde,^ " the 

body was perfectly fresh, and enclosed in a dress not unlike 

^ Beauties of the Boyne, p. 237. 


that in the description given of Gurth in ' Ivanhoe,' con- 
sisting of a tunic of cow-hide, apparently tanned, but with 
some remains of hair still preserved on the side worn next 
the skin. This dress is joined in the most accurate and 
beautiful manner, exhibiting an extraordinary perfection in 
the art of sewing. The hair on the head, which is both 
long and fine, is of a dark-brown colour, and the skull is 
compressed in a remarkable manner, owing to a portion of 
the earthy matter having been removed by the acid of the 

But for a more complete picture of the culture and civi- 
lisation of Neolithic man we must investigate the relics of 
the lake-dwellings of the Stone Age of Europe. In the 
station of Robenhausen we meet with a variety of woollen 
cloths, yarn, bast ropes, &c., associated with spindle- whorls, 
loom-weights, and other objects used in spinning and weav- 
ing. In the Neolithic stations of Butmir, in Bosnia,^ and 
Laibach, in Styria,- as well as ii) other localities throughout 
Europe, human figurines have been found which are gener- 
ally regarded as idols, thus showing that their inhabitants 
were guided to some extent by supernatural influences. 

' Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, p. 98, PI. xiii. 
'•^ Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 532, fig, 195. 




HE discovery of bronze, and its introduc- 
tion into the simple arts and industries 
of. the Stone Age people of Europe, 
may be said to have speedily revolu- 
tionised their whole system of social 
economy. Not only had all the primitive 
implements and weapons to be remodelled, in accordance 
with the principles of a metallic regime, but new industries 
and higher artistic aspirations were engendered which, by 
degrees, greatly modified the commercial and social aspects 
of life. 

That this metallic innovation first found its way into Britain 
by means of cutting implements of bronze imported from 
abroad there can be little doubt, as the oldest metallic objects 
known — the small hand-daggers generally found in graves — 
were made of the best quality of bronze. Now, since a know- 
ledge of this compound implies a previous acquaintance with 
its component elements, copper and tin, it follows that the 
progress in metallurgy had reached the stage of selecting the 
best combination of these metals for the manufacture of cut- 



ting tools, at the same time as, if not indeed before, the 
simple metals were known to the inhabitants of the British 
Isles. That this skill in the working of metals had not 
been acquired by the ancient nations on the shores of 
the Mediterranean without a long experience of the un- 
combined use and qualities of copper and tin, and of the 
various methods of hardening the former, was demonstrated 
by Dr Gladstone, F.R.S., at the meeting of the British 
Association held at Liverpool in 1896. In a paper on 
"The Transition from pure Copper to Bronze made with 
Tin" he writes as follows: "The use of copper in Egypt 
can be traced from the fourth dynasty, when King Senefern 
captured the copper and turquoise mines of the Sinaitic 
peninsula. Tools made of this metal have been found not 
only in Egypt, belonging to the fourth, sixth, and twelfth 
dynasties, but also in Assyria, at Lachish in Palestine, 
HissarUk in Asia Minor, and Naqada. Attempts were made 
to render this copper harder and stronger, and that in three 
ways. First, the admixture of a large quantity of suboxide 
of copper, or of its formation in the process of smelting, as 
seen in adzes from Egypt and Palestine, and perhaps Naqada. 
Second, the presence of a little arsenic or antimony, as shown 
in many tools from Kahun dating from the twelfth dynasty, 
and from the Sinaitic mines, as shown in a communication 
to the French Academy by Berthelot a few weeks since. 
Third, the admixture of a little tin, as at Kahun, the Sinaitic 
mines, and Cyprus, perhaps not exceeding i per cent. When, 
however, the superiority of tin, as the hardening material, 
came to be acknowledged, it was added in larger quantities, 
and formed the alloy known as bronze. Such proportions as 
4 and 6 per cent occur in early specimens, as at Hissarlik ; 
but subsequently about 10 per cent was usually employed. 
Tools of this composition are found not only in Egypt during 


the eighteenth dynasty, but in most countries, and for an 
immense variety of purposes." ^ 

The existence of a real Copper Age in Egypt, Cyprus, and 
other countries bordering on the Levant, as thus indicated 
by Dr Gladstone's researches, naturally prompts us to inquire 
if there had been a corresponding period in Europe when 
copper implements and tools had been in use before the in- 
vention of bronze. The late Von Pulszky, Drs Much and 
Gross, and, more recently. Professors Hampel and Montelius, 
have advocated the afifirmative side of this problem, chiefly 
on the grounds that in Hungary, and on the sites of a few 
lake -dwellings, a large number of copper relics have been 
found ; and, moreover, that in many countries the lowest 
type of metallic celt was made of copper in imitation of the 
stone celts previously in use. But none of these arguments 
are, in my opinion, applicable to Britain, as the simplest 
form of the bronze celt is precisely similar to the earliest 
copper celts. That copper was known in Europe prior to 
the knowledge of the art of converting it into bronze is 
likely enough ; but as the pure metal was inferior to flint for 
cutting purposes, it produced no perceptible change on the 
social industries of the period. It was the art of hardening 
copper which first stirred up the slow channels of industrial 
progress in the ancient world and raised mankind to a higher 
mechanical platform. The finding of so many of these 
primitive copper celts throughout Europe is, no doubt, sug- 
gestive of a Copper period; but at the same time it must 
not be forgotten that flat axes of the best quality of bronze 
have also been found in circumstances which render it prob- 
able that they are as old as the former. Dr Montelius, one 
of the most recent advocates of this theory, figures in his 
brochure, ' Findet man in Schweden Ueberreste von einem 

1 Brit. Association Report, 1896, p. 930. 


Kupperalter,' two metal celts, found together in a cultivated 
field at Pile, in Sweden, which could be used as an argument 
to prove that bronze was known and utilised in Sweden before 
copper. One of the celts is a large well-shaped implement, 
over 8 inches in length, with perpendicular borders and raised 
edges, and ornamented with a series of curved lines running 
across its surface. The other is smaller (6 inches in length) 
and has no raised border, nor indeed any specific character 
which in appearance would differentiate it from the most 
primitive type known. But the former is described as being 
made of copper, and the latter of bronze. The use of pure 
copper in the manufacture of some of the axes, even sup- 
posing that it had been so utilised before the introduction of 
bronze, could have lasted only a very short time in Western 
Europe — so short, indeed, that during its prevalence not a 
single progressive change or improvement is to be noted in 
respect of any specimen that can be shown to be older than 
the Bronze Age. No advocate of the Copper-Age theory 
holds that all the objects made of copper found in Hungary 
are actually earlier than the Bronze Age — many of them being 
similar in style and pattern to objects regarded as character- 
istic of that period. The existence of these Hungarian 
copper implements, like the ornamented copper celt from 
Pile, must, therefore, be explained on other grounds than the 
chronological priority of the discovery of copper over bronze. 
As soon as the metallurgic art had taken root among the 
prehistoric people of Scotland, they began to manufacture 
their cutting implements and weapons of bronze, modelling 
them, in the first instance, after the analogous objects of the 
Stone Age, or the imported metal specimens which already 
had passed through the stage of imitation in some outside 
area. I have elsewhere ^ shown that a similar derivative 
^ Prehistoric Problems, p. 330. 


connection can be traced between not only the flat axe, 
whether of bronze or copper, and the stone celt, but also 
between the knives, saws, sickles, daggers, &c., of the two cul- 
ture periods. By-and-by, however, all these objects under- 
went progressive modifications, probably in proportion as 
their makers had gained greater knowledge and experience in 
the art of working the metal. But as no remains of any kind 
of buildings, excepting sepulchres, have as yet been discov- 
ered on the Scottish area which can with certainty be assigned 
to either the Stone or Bronze Age, we are deprived of the 
best source of evidence regarding the evolutionary phases 
through which these objects passed in their transitions from 
stone into metal. The relics at our disposal have been for 
the most part discovered accidentally, either as concealed 
hoards or as stray objects in the soil. Such hoards have been 
found in various circumstances, as, for example, by peat- 
cutters, and by workmen engaged in digging drains, foun- 
dations of houses, gravel-pits, &c. The dredging for marl 
in lake-beds — an occupation which was very common at 
the beginning of this century — has brought to light some 
valuable antiquities. The plough has played no mean part 
in such discoveries ; nor must we neglect to mention the 
services of the poacher, the mole, the rabbit, and other 
burrowing animals. Occasionally evidence of chronological 
sequence is to be derived from the contemporaneity of ar- 
ticles thus associated. Evolutionary changes, indicating pro- 
gressive improvements in the various parts of a composite 
object, are sometimes of much value in this respect, as, for 
example, the development of the different parts of a fibula. 
Now it can be clearly demonstrated that the original safety- 
pin occupies an intermediate stage between the primitive 
straight pin and the highly ornamental brooches of later 
times, such as were in use among the Celts, Saxons, and 

1 82 


Scandinavians. The connection between such derivative ob- 
jects is often obscure until all the intermediary links of a 
series are exhibited side by side. No better illustration of 
this can be given than Dr Hans Hildebrand's description of 

Fig. 82. — One of five bronze axes found at the "Maidens" Ayrshire (t). 

the successive transformations which connect the Roman 
iibula with the boar's-head brooch of Scandinavia, so char- 
acteristic of Viking burials and hoards in this country.^ 

' See Scandinavian Arts, pp. 22-30. 



I. Axes, Chisels, 6^f. 

The division of axes into flat, flanged, winged, and socketed, 
not only sufficiently defines these implements, so far as any 
classification is necessary, but also describes the chronological 
order of their development. The flat celt (figs. 82 and 83) was 
the first to spread over Europe, and it is the form most com- 

Fig. 83. — Bronze celt found on Bog Farm, near Kilwinning (^). 

monly met with in the British Isles. In the course of time, 
probably owing to improvements in the manner of hafting, 
the first alteration was made by raising a flange on each 
side ; then these flanges became larger and curved inwards 
(fig. 84) until the two nearly met, thus forming two im- 
perfect sockets, one on each side. Coincident with these 

1 84 


changes a stop-ridge appears between the flanges, and a loop 
on one of the edges of the axe to fasten the handle more 
securely (fig. 85). Finally, we have the single socket, which 
is the culmination of previous adaptations, all of which now 
disappear or become merged into this more perfect mode of 
fastening the handle. Nothing remains to show these evol- 
utionary stages except the direction of the socket and the 

Fig. 84. — Bronze winged celt found 
near Largs (^). 

Fig. 85. — Bronze palstave found on the 
' farm of West Glenbuck, Ayrshire (|). 

side loop (fig. 86). It is only in the Iron Age that we meet 
with the transverse socket, and even then the change seems to 
have been effected very gradually, as both in Hallstatt and La 
Tfene the prevailing type of axe retained the vertical socket. 

As to the methods of hafting these various formSjOf the 
implement, it may be observed that the first three types were 
inserted into slits in the wooden handle, and hence, when in 



use, the wood was apt to split ; whereas the fourth had, in- 
stead, the handle inserted into the socket in one solid piece. 

The flat axes vary greatly in size, from a few inches up to 
13^ inches in length, this latter being the largest known 
in Scotland. They were cast in open stone moulds, several 

Fig. 86. — Socketed bronze axe-head foztnd on ike farm 0/ Knock and Maize, 
Leswalt, Wigtownshire (^), 

specimens of which may be seen in the National Museum. 
The socketed axes are generally shorter than the intermediate 
flanged types, but they vary considerably both in size and in 
the shape of the blade. The bronze celt represented in fig. 
87, and included in the collection of antiquities presented by 

1 86 


Sir Herbert Maxwell to the National Museum, is referred to 
by Sir Herbert as "a very delicate little article, and, so far as 
I have seen, there is none similar to it in any collection in 
Great Britain or on the Continent. Mr Evans assigns it to 

a late period of bronze manu- 
facture, but it is difficult to 
say whether it has been in- 
tended for an ornament or 
for use as a small glyptic 
tool or chisel." ^ 

Chisels and gouges are 
generally socketed or tanged, 
and differ from the axes only 
in being elongated and more 
slender. The simplest form 
is a bar of metal sharpened 
at one end and blunt at the 
other so as to receive the 

Fig. S,T.—Miniatu!-e ornament in the blows of a hammer. When 
form of an axe-head found on the farm 

of steiioch. Giasserton, Wigtown- tanged there is usually a 
''"" 't)- projecting rim or bar of the 

metal about its middle so as to act as a stop-ridge for the 
wooden handle. 

So far as I know, no bronze hammer has yet been discovered 
on Scottish soil ; but a few specimens of this most essential 
tool have been recorded from England and Ireland, all of 
which have a socket for the handle at one end. A few of 
these are figured by Sir John Evans.^ On the site of the 
lake-dwelling of WoUishofen, near Zurich, six hammers of 
this same type were among the remains dredged up, two of 
which, along with a bronze anvil from the same place, are 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxiii. p. 221. 
'•^ Bronze Implements, &c., p. 178. 

KNIVES.- 187 

figured by me.^ It is remarkable that the principle of hafting 
the stone hammers and axes by a transverse perforation for 
the insertion of the wood — if these implements are really to be 
regarded as products of the Stone Age — should have been so 
thoroughly discontinued during the Bronze Age, while in 
the Iron Age, especially within the British Isles, even at a 
comparatively early period, the perpendicular socket was al- 
most entirely superseded. 

2. Knives, Saws, Sickles, and Razors. 

One of the most noteworthy facts in connection with the 
Bronze Age in Scotland is that neither knives, in the proper 
sense of the word, nor saws of bronze have as yet been dis- 
covered among its remains. The small hand-dagger with 
riveted handle, found occasionally in graves, may have served 
the purposes of a knife. The objects described by Sir John 
Evans as a knife is a dagger-like blade with a socket for the 
insertion of a handle ; but specimens of these implements 
are rare in Scotland (fig. 100). In England they are more 
frequently met with ; and in Ireland they are fairly abundant, 
not less than thirty-three having been recorded in Sir W. 
Wilde's catalogue. One of the Scottish specimens found at 
Kilgraston, Perthshire, is engraved by Sir John Evans,^ and 
another by Sir D. Wilson.^ Fragmentary specimens have 
been found at Clova and a few other localities.* 

A flat bronze blade with a perforated tang, found in the 
lands of West Cairns, is figured and described by Mr M'Call 
in his ' History and Antiquities of the Parish of Mid-Calder.' 

1 Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 4, Nos. 8, 18, and 21. 

* Bronze Implements, &c., fig. 243. 
^ Prehistoric Annals, vol. i. p. 390. 

* Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvii. p. 12 ; vol. xxviii. p. 239. 



As may be seen from the accompanying outline (fig. 88) 
taken from Mr M 'Call's illustration, this blade has sloping 
edges, a feature which, gives it a unique character among 
the Bronze Age relics of Scotland. A few similar blades 
have been found in English barrows, one of which is figured 
by Sir John Evans.^ Daggers with a rivet-hole in the 


Fig. 88. — Bronze 
knife • blade 
found in the 
parish of Mid- 
Calder (|). 

Fig. 89. — Two large 
bronze knives of rare 
forms (about J). 

butt-end of the tang are known in Scotland, but they 
differ from the above in having a strongly marked mid-rib. 
The paucity of these so-called knives, and the entire absence 
of the typical knife-blade, are in striking contrast to what we 
find on the Continent, especially in the Swiss lake-dwellings. 
There the knives are one-edged blades and extremely elegant 
in form, being always more or less curved, and frequently 
' Bronze Implements, p. 223. 



Fig. 90. — Bronze sickle, parish 0/ Do res, liwer- 
nesS'Sliire (sJ^ inches in length). 

ornamented with parallel or wavy lines, concentric circles, 
dots, &c. They were hafted either by a tang or socket, 
unless, as it sometimes happened, the blade and handle were 
cast together. In regard to their distribution over the lake- 
dwelling area, it may 
be interesting to note 
that the socketed 
knives are very rare 
in eastern Switzer- 
land, while in the 
west they are the 
rule and not the ex- 
ception. Sir Daniel 
Wilson ^ describes as 
bronze reapers two 
knives (fig. 89) of 
the same characters as those from the lake-dwellings of the 
Bronze Age — one tanged and the other socketed. The 
former (14 inches in length) is. stated to have been found 
on the farm of Moss-side, in the vicinity of Crossraguel 
Abbey, Ayrshire, and the latter 
was then in the collection of Sir 
John Clerk at Penicuik House. 

I am not aware that a specimen 
of a bronze saw has yet been 
found within the British Isles, 
but among the remains of the 
Continental lake -dwellings and 
hoards saws are not unfrequently met with. One small file 
has been found in Lake Bourget. Sickles have been found 
in considerable numbers in Englaijd, Scotland, and Ireland. 
Those from the two latter countries (figs. 90 and 91) are all 
^ Preliistoric Annals, vol. i. p. 102. 

Fig. 91. — Bronze sickle found in 
Ireland (6J^ inches long). 



socketed — a statement which is also applicable to those from 
England, with the exception of one or two specimens from 
Somersetshire, which appear to have been imported, as they 
are of Continental types. 

Implements supposed to have been used as razors have 
been discovered in England, Scotland, and Ireland. Three 

92 93 94 

Figs. 92-95. — Scottish ornamented bronze blades (all §). 

92 found in a tumulus at Rogart, Sutherlandshire ; 93 found in a cairn at Balblair, 
Creich, Sutherlandshire ; 94 found in an urn at Magdalen Bridge, Musselburgh, Mid- 
Lothian ; 95 found with burnt bones at Shanwell, Milnathort, Kinross-shire. See Proc. 
Soc. A. Scot., vii. 475 : X. 431-447 ; xvi. 424 : xix. 115. 

specimens (PI. I. 3) are recorded as having been found in 
urns dug out of a tumulus at Bowerhouses, near Dunbar. 
Two specimens found in Sutherlandshire, one in a tumulus 
at Rogart, and the other in a large cinerary urn at Balblair, 
are ornamented as shown in figs. 92 and 93. A similarly 
ornamented blade was among cremated bones in an urn 
found at Magdalen Bridge, near Musselburgh (fig. 94) ; and 
another (fig. 95) was associated with urn burials at Shanwell, 


i m 

) \ 




EUROPE.-Al, K. (For d.tai,. see Us, of Illustrations.) 



Kinross-shire. All the Scottish specimens are tanged, with 
the exception of the one found at Kinleith, which has a loop 
at the end of a stem, corresponding to the tang in the others 
(fig. 39). The British specimens have all a family likeness, 
but do not differ materially from the Continental types, as 
represented in the lake-dwellings and the Terremare of Italy.^ 
For a number of various forms of razors from different parts 
of Europe, see Plate I. 

3. Weapons. 

Bronze daggers are usually of two kinds — viz. : (i) those 
with a thin, flat, triangular, or oval-shaped blade, and gener- 

96 97 9« 99 

Figs. 96-100. — Scottish bronze weapons (all J). 
96, Bronze blade found at Pitkaithley, Perthshire ; 97, Bronze dagger found near 
Gretna, Dumfriesshire ; 98, Bronze dagger-blade and gold mounting of the hilt found in 
a cist in a cairn at Sketraw, Dunbar ; 99, Bronze socketed spear -head found near Forfar ; 
100, Dagger-knife with oval socket and rivet-holes in side. See Proc. Soc. A. Scot., 
xvii. 8 ; xiv. 97 ; xxvii. 8 ; xvii. 95 ; xxiii. 16. 

ally known as knife-daggers ; and (2) those with a blade larger 

and heavier than the former, and having a thick mid-rib. As 

^ See figs. 63, 83, and 85, ' Lake-Dwellings of Europe.' 



a rule, both varieties are hafted by rivets to a wooden or horn 
handle; but there are a few exceptions in which the tang 
takes the place of the rivets. For further illustrations and 

Figs. 101-105. — Bronze weapons (^). 

101, Spear-head with side loops, locality unknown; 102, 
" Scythe-shaped " blade found in Galloway ; 103, " Scythe- 
shaped " hlade found in a moss on the farm of Whitleys, 
Stranraer ; 104, Spear-head from Barhullion, found jammed 
between two rocks; 105, Spear-head found near Denhead, 
Coupar- Angus. See Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vii. 423; xvii. 
93-98, 200-232 ; xxiii. 224. 


details of daggers, spear-heads, &c., consult figs. 96-105. Mr 
A. Hutcheson has recently described a dagger -blade, along 
with fragments of others, apparently of the same type, in 



which a couple of notches have taken the place of the rivet- 
holes (fig. 106). It was discovered in a cairn on the farm 
of Gilchorn, near Arbroath, associated with urns.^ The 
dagger represented by fig. 107, showing a large rivet-hole in 
the butt-end of the tang, is one of two specimens discovered 
on Scottish soil. It was found in Whitehaugh Moss, Ayrshire, 
at a depth of about 6 feet, and is described and figured by 
Dr James Macdonald." The other was found on the Crawford 
Priory estate, Fife, and is figured and described 
by the Hon. John Abercromby.^ These dag- 
gers, whether the blades were flat or ribbed, 
were sometimes ornamented as shown on figs. 
96 and 107. 

Another class of weapon occasionally found 
in Scotland, and allied to the strongly ribbed 
dagger, is that which Sir W. Wilde calls the 
broad " scythe-shaped sword." It differs from 
the dagger in having the two edges unsym- 
metrical with the mid-rib — which is sometimes 
slightly curved — and also in being attached at 
right angles to the shaft, which gives it the 
appearance of a scythe. These weapons are 
largely found in Ireland, but sparingly in Eng- 
land and Scotland. One found in Galloway 
is outlined in fig. 102, which suflSciently shows the peculi- 
arities of this class of weapon. 

Spear- heads are perhaps the most abundant of weapons 
of oifence found among the rehcs of the Bronze Age in all 
countries. The Scottish examples are socketed, almost with- 
out an exception, and gracefully proportioned, but very 

Fig. 106. — Knife 
or dagger-blade 
of bronze found 
at Gilchorn^ 
near Arbroath 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxv. p. 459. 

2 Arch, and Hist. Collections of Ayr and Wigtown, vol. iv. p. 53. 

* Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxviii. p. 219. 



Fig. 107. — Tanged dagger or 
spear-head found in White- 
hmigh Moss^ Ayrshire (^). 

variable as regards dimensions. 
The larger specimens have some- 
times a crescentic vacancy in the 
blades on each side of the socket, 
intended probably to lighten the 
weapon, as shown in that repre- 
sented by fig. 105. Similar seg- 
mental apertures have been noted 
on the La Tene iron spear-heads. 
Another feature occasionally ob- 
served on the Scottish bronze 
spear-heads (common also in Eng- 
land and Ireland) was a loop on 
each side of the socket for the 
purpose of fixing the blade more 
firmly to the handle (fig. loi). 
Stone moulds for casting the 
spear-heads have been found in 
Scotland, as well as in most 
countries of Europe. 

The bronze swords found in 
Scotland are leaf- shaped blades 
with sharp points, and a flat pro- 
jection at the hilt ' containing 
several rivet-holes, by means of 
which plates of bone, horn, or 
wood were fastened on each side 
so as to form a handle (figs. 108- 
115). These weapons have no 
guard ; and although both edges 
have been hammered out thin 
and sharpened by grinding-stones, 
they appear to have been better 



adapted for thrusting than for parrying or striking. The 
blades vary considerably in size, the largest in the National 

112 113 114 lis 

Figs. 108-115. — Some Scottish sword-blades of bronze (all \). 

Museum being 30^ inches in length, while the smallest 
measures scarcely 20 inches. Sheaths of bronze, or wood 


with bronze mounting, were used to protect the blades, but of 
their remains in Scotland only a few of the bronze tips have 
been found. There is a considerable difference in the shape 
of the fiat portion which formed the handle, as well as in the 
disposition of the rivet-holes, as shown in the illustrations. 

Along with a number of flat-hilted sword-blades found in 
1869, while workmen were engaged in digging the foundations 
of a house in Grosvenor Crescent, Edinburgh, was one (fig. 
113) which had the handle and pommel cast in bronze in 
the same mould as the blade. With regard to this sword Dr 
Joseph Anderson makes the following remarks : " It is a short 
sword, its whole length being only 20 inches. The blade is 
leaf-shaped, the hilt without a guard, but with a grip of 4 
inches in length, terminating in a rounded pommel 2 inches 
diameter, and i ^ inch in height. The grip is ^ inch thick, 
and I inch in width at the centre, widening to i ^ inch at its 
junction with the blade. A break in the pommel at one side 
reveals the fact that the core of hardened clay on which it was 
cast is still within it. Both hilt and pommel are pierced by 
holes, which at first sight suggest the rivet-holes in the handle- 
plates of the swords from which the mountings of the grip 
are wanting. But the holes in this hilt do not pass through, 
and they are not opposite each other. Some other explan- 
ation of their purpose is therefore necessary. I have stated 
that the clay core on which the handle was cast is still within 
it. When the core was placed within the mould, it was 
necessary that it should be supported in its true position in 
the cavity of the mould, and this could not be more conveni- 
ently accomplished than by pins or projections which would 
leave corresponding holes in the casting of metal." ^ 

■* Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 140. It is satisfactory to find that this 
sword is now in the National Museum, having been recently acquired by 
purchase. For the distribution of this variety of sword, see article by Dr 
Anderson (Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xiii. p. 320). 




There is another rapier-shaped blade occasionally found in 
Scotland, the peculiarity of which is that it has no extension 
of the metal into the perishable material of the handle, but 
merely a flattened base to which the handle was attached by 
rivets like the knife-daggers (figs. 116 and 117). On Plates 

Fig. -Li6.—Rafier-sword Fig. 117.— Dagger-blade found near 

found in a feat moss, Crossraguel Abbey (J). 

Kirkoswald, Ayrshire 

II. and III. I have reproduced photographic illustrations of 
the principal objects of bronze included in the antiquarian 
collection (now in the Belfast Museum) of the late Canon 
Grainger, from which the characteristics of the various types 
of axes, swords, daggers, &c., may be readily perceived. 



Fig. iiS.~Br 

(26 V ,•*/,. . ■^ """^ '"'"'• Front view ,uid section 
I20>i i7ickes III dtameter). 



Figs. 119, 120. — Handle and part 0/ the shield found at Lugtonridge. 


The most common type of shield found in the British Isles 
consists of a circular plate of thin bronze having a central 
boss about 31^ to 4j^ inches in diameter, surrounded by a 
series of concentric raised rings with circles of small studs in 
repoussd between each. Two of these shields were discovered 
in a marshy place, near Yetholm, in 1837, by labourers dig- 
ging a drain. They measure respectively 23^5^ and 24 inches 
in diameter, and in both specimens the handle was riveted 
across the hollow of the boss. A third shield of like character 
was ploughed up near the same place in 1870. 

In the year 1779 four or five bronze shields of the same 
type were discovered by peat-cutters at Lugtonridge, in the 
parish of Beith, Ayrshire, but of the entire hoard only one 
(figs. 1 18-120) has been preserved. 

Sir John Evans makes the following observations on the 
chronology of British shields: "The shields first in use in 
Britain were probably formed of perishable materials, such as 
wicker-work, wood, or hide, like those of many savage tribes 
of the present day ; and it can only have been after a long 
acquaintance with the use of bronze that plates could have 
been produced of such size as those with which some of the 
ancient shields and bucklers found in this country were 
covered. They would appear, therefore, to belong to quite 
the close of the Bronze Age, if not to the transitional period 
when iron was coming into use. There are, indeed, several 
bronze coverings of shields of elongated form, such as those 
from the river Witham (' Horse Fer.,' pi. xiv.) and from the 
Thames (ibid., pi. xv.), with decorations upon them, in which 
red enamel plays a part, that have been found associated with 
the iron swords of what Mr Franks has termed the Late 
Celtic Period. Those, however, which appear to have a better 
claim to a place in these pages are of a circular form." ^ 
^ Bronze Implements, &c., p. 343. 



The use of war - trumpets among the Celtic races of 
Western Europe has been often referred to by classical 
authors, but only a few instruments which can be classed 
in this category have hitherto been found in Britain. In 
Ireland, however, they are more numerous, as we learn from 
Sir W. Wilde's Catalogue of the Museum of the Royal Irish 
Academy. These instruments were made either in a solid 
casting of bronze, or in sections by riveting tubes of sheet- 
metal together. The well-known large Danish trumpets are 
of this description. But besides the difference in their mode 
of manufacture, they may be classified into two varieties. 

Fig. 121. — Portion of a side-blast trumpet found at Ijinermessan^ 
Wigtownshire (y). 

according as the aperture of blowing is at the end of the 
tube or at the side. 

Among the objects in the collection of antiquities presented 
to the National Museum by Sir Herbert Maxwell, there is a 
portion of a bronze side-blast trumpet, showing the mouth- 
piece, which had been found at Innermessan, Wigtownshire 

(fig. I2l). 

A bronze horn or trumpet (fig. 122) made in one solid 
casting (preserved in Caprington Castle) was found, some 
time prior to 1654, on the estate of Coilsfield, in the parish 
of Tarbolton, Ayrshire. It measures 25 inches in length, 



nearly 4 inches across the end 
aperture, and nearly 8 inches in 
circumference at the lowest band.' 
It is probable that some of 
these trumpets belong to the 
early Iron Age; and this opinion 
is strengthened by the character 
of the ornamentation on the disc 
at the distal extremity of one of 
them (fig. 123), which unmistak- 
ably shows Late Celtic work. In 
regard to this object Sir W. Wilde 
makes the following remarks : ^ 
"In 1794 four brazen trumpets 
were found in a bog on the 
borders of Lough-na-Shade, near 
Armagh. One of these figured 
by Stuart, in 'his ' History of 
Armaigh,' is the large riveted 
trumpet with a decorated disk, 
and central globular connecting 
portion, and which is joined with 
rivets ; whereas all those previ- 
ously noticed were cast. . . . 
The decorated disk below, the 
details of the punched or ham- 
mered-up ornament on which are 
shown in the accompanying illus- 
.f ^f tration (fig. 123), measures 7^ 
Coihfieid, Ayrshire (25 inches inches across. Its Style of decor- 

in length), 

ation much resembles that of the 
large shield-like plates represented by fig. 533, page 637. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xii. p. 565. - Catalogue, p. 625. 

Fig. 122. — Bronze horn foi 


Its present mode of attachment to the trumpet-mouth is 
evidently modern." 

Besides the notices of these trumpets in the Academy's 
'Catalogue,' in 'Ancient Bronze Implements,' &c., and in 
' Horiie Ferales,' some additional notes and illustrations will 
be found in the 'Reliquary,' &c., for April 1S99, by Mr J. C. 
Prcetorius and the Editor. 

Arrow-heads made of bronze have not as yet been found 
in Scotland, and their 
existence in England 
and Ireland seems 
somewhat doubtful.^ 
But they are occasion- 
ally found among the 
remains of lake-dwell- 
ings in Central Europe, 
where they assume vari- 
ous forms, sometimes as 
miniature spear - heads 
with a tang or a socket, 
and sometimes as tri- i- 
angular pieces ot thin ,n^if.,.\ 
bronze. The latter 

contain two or more small holes by means of which the)' 
could be fastened to the stem with a string. In Southern 
Europe, Greece, and Eg5-pt, a small triple-edged arrow-point 
was used, specimens of which may be seen in many of the 
Continental museums. Flint arrow-heads are so common in 
Bronze-Age burials that it is quite evident that the intro- 
duction of metal into general use did not supersede these 
weapons, so that they are not peculiar to the Stone Age. 

2 Arch. Journal, vol. iii. p. 47; vol. vii. p. 2S1 ; vol xiii. pp. 20, 27; 
vol. xxi. p. 90 ; vol. xxii. p. 6S. 


Disc ornament of a bronze trumpet 



4. Objects of Toilet and Personal Ornament. 

That the use of bone and bronze pins survived in the 
British Isles to medieval times is amply proved by the dis- 
covery of numerous specimens on the sites of Romano- 
British towns, as well as among the debris and refuse-heaps 
of the Scottish and Irish crannogs. Hence it would be 
rash to infer that a bronze pin belongs to the Bronze Age, 
merely because it is made of bronze, unless its association 
with typical relics of the period would justify that conclu- 
sion. A slender bronze pin with a circular cup-shaped head 
was found in a moss in the island of Skye, associated with 
a leaf-shaped bronze sword and two socketed bronze spear- 
heads.^ Another pin 
(fig. 124) having a flat 
circular head, orna- 
mented with concen- 
tric circles, and bent 
over so as to bring 

Figs. 124, 125. — Head of bronze pin and button- , ^ f u j' 

like mounting found in Edinburgh (f ). "^^^ plane Ot the dlSC 

parallel with the stem, 
was found in the Grosvenor Crescent hoard already referred 
to. Two bronze pins with similar disc-shaped heads were 
found at Tarves, Aberdeenshire, associated with leaf-shaped 
swords and a scabbard-end of bronze. Specimens of the 
same type of pin, with the heads highly ornamented, have 
been found in Ireland and on the Continent. Small pins 
with round heads are not unfrequently found in urns among 
the cremated bones, and in graves after inhumation, having 
been used to fasten the clothing on the body previous to 
the interment. But they are often so much corroded that 
it is difficult to determine whether they were intended for 
• Pioc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. iii. p. loi. 


pins or awls. Canon Greenwell found bone pins more 
common than bronze pins in the Bronze -Age barrows 
of Yorkshire. The bronze pins hitherto discovered within 
the British Isles are very inferior to those from the lake- 
dwellings of Switzerland as regards size, variety of form, and 
beauty of ornamentation. 

Buttons of bone and jet have already been described as 
relics of the Stone Age, but they are more commonly found 
among remains of the Bronze Age. A curious object of 
bronze, supposed to be a button, ^ formed part of the Gros- 
venor hoard (fig. 125). It is a hollow circular ring, ij^ 
inch in diameter, having two loops on one side by which 
it could be attached to clothing. The common present- 
day button — viz., that of a disc, with a loop on one side 
— was also known in bronze.^ 

Needles of bone and bronze have been found in Scotland, 
but not often in circumstances which enable us to classify 
them as Bronze-Age relics.^ Both sewing and netting needles 
of bone are among the relics from the crannogs in Ayrshire. 
Combs of bronze have been found both in the Swiss lake- 
dwellings and in the Terremare, but they are not among 
the relics of the Bronze Age hitherto collected in Scotland. 

The knowledge of bronze gave a great impetus to the 
development of personal ornaments. Being an attractive 
metal to the eye, it was readily seized upon for the manu- 
facture of armlets, necklaces, diadems, rings, pendants, 
earrings, &c. 

Of the Scottish armlets a few can be assigned to the 
Bronze Age, owing to their having been found in associa- 
tion with other relics of that period. Dr J. Alexander 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xiii. p. 322. 
^ See Evans, ' Bronze Implements,' p. 400. 
3 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv. p. 273. 



Smith describes three bracelets, with fragments of others, 
found, along with a number of bronze objects (a celt with 
socket and loop, two spear-heads, and four broken bits of 
tin), by a man ploughing a mossy field at Wester Achtertyre, 
in Morayshire^ (fig. 126). Two penannular bronze armlets, 
tapering a little towards their extremities, were found, along 
with nine bronze celts, near the hill of Benachie, in Aber- 

Another armlet of thin beaten bronze was found, along 
with a necklace of beads and plates of jet, in a cist contain- 

Fig. 126. — Bronze penannular armlet 
found at Achtertyre, i\Iorayshire 

Fig. 127. — Bronze ring-armlet, one of 
a pair found with an urn at Kin- 
neff, Kincardineshire (f ). 

ing an unburnt skeleton, at Melfort, Argyleshire^ (fig. 128). 
A penannular bracelet with expanded ends, and some plain 
rings, were part of a hoard found, near Killin, by a man 
trenching an uncultivated knowe. This hoard is described 
by Mr Charles Stewart. Besides the bracelet and rings it 
comprised the following objects : portion of the hilt-end of 
a small leaf- shaped sword; a socketed spear -head; two 
socketed celts ; a socketed gouge ; and a circular hollow 
ring, " similar to one found, with two spear-heads, at Inshoch, 
in Nairnshire, and to a smaller one found, with a bronze 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 436, 
'^ Ibid., p. 436, and vol. i. p. 138. ^ Ibid., vol. xix. p. 135. 



sword, in Edinburgh." ^ Dr Joseph Anderson describes two 
ring-armlets of solid bronze (fig. 127) which were found by a 
man trenching ground near the Castle of Kinneff, in Kin- 
cardineshire, associated with a highly ornamented urn and 
a spear-head of bronze. Other armlets of the same type, 
also associated with burials, are recorded from the parish 
of Crawford, Lanarkshire, and from near Stobo Castle in 

Another form of armlet is a penannular ring with cup- 
shaped ends — a type more frequently met with in Ireland 
than in Scotland. One, de- 
scribed by Mr Jolly (fig. 129), 
was found, along with a 
number of socketed celts and 
other bronze objects, 6 feet 
below the surface, by a man 
digging peats at Poolewe, Ross- 
shire.^ Bracelets of this type 
are more frequently made of 
gold. Sir Daniel Wilson * 
figures and describes a very 
fine example found by a 
labourer while cutting peats in the parish of Cromdale, 
Inverness-shire (fig. 130). Two gold armlets "were found 
in association with an interment of an unburnt body in 
connection with a group of burials at Alloa, of which the 
larger number were burials after cremation." The armlets 
lay on the top of a large flat stone, underneath which was 
an entire skeleton.* Gold bracelets were generally made of 

Fig. 128. — Bronze bracelet found in a 
cist at Melfort^ A rgyllshire (f ). 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvi. p. 27. 

^ Ibid., vol. xvii. p. 450; vol. ii. p. 277. 

■* Prehistoric Annals, vol. i. p. 460. 

° Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvii. p. 44S. 

" Ibid., vol. xiv. 

p. 47. 


solid rods, cylindrical or quadrilateral on section, with slightly 
enlarged or expanded extremities. Three penannular gold 
armlets, showing a quadrilateral section, were found together 
in Stonehill Wood, parish of Carmichael, Lanarkshire, and 
exhibited at a meeting of the Society of Antiquaries of 
London on the i8th April 1864. 

Another variety of the gold bracelets found in Scotland 
is a flat band twisted like a corkscrew, the ends passing 
gradually into hook-like knobs which can be made to clasp 

Fig. 1 29. — Bronze ■penannular ring with cup-shaped ends found in peat at 
Poolewe, Ross-shire (j). 

each other. Specimens of this type are sometimes so large 
that they must have been used as torques for the neck. A 
hoard, consisting of four of these ornaments, was discovered 
in 1848 in loose earth at Lower Largo, in Fifeshire, and 
others have been found in several other places throughout 

Of the many coiled bracelets or arm-bands, so common in 
Central Europe, none made of bronze has been found in 
Scotland, and only one of gold. This solitary specimen was 
found at Slateford, Mid-Lothian, in 1846, during the con- 
struction of the Caledonian Railway.^ It is made of three 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot, vol. xviii. p. 238. ^ Ibid., p. 239. 



rods of gold twisted together and uniting at the ends into 
one rod, which is then bent sharply back so as to form a 
long hook. Like many other valuable relics it found its 
way into the melting-pot, and only a model of it now remains 
(%■ 131)- 

Penannular bracelets, with or without expanded ends, are 
common all over Europe. The large, hollow, and highly 
ornamented bracelets, so characteristic of the Swiss lake- 
dwellings, are not represented in the British Isles. 

Fig. 130. — Geld armlet found in feat in the 
Inverness-shire (^-). 

of Cromdale^ 

The torque or twisted neck - ring made of bronze, and 
found so largely in Central and Northern Europe, appears 
to be unknown both in Scotland and Ireland ; but a few 
specimens have been found in the southern and western 
counties of England. Those which reverse the twist one 
or more times, and also those terminating in broad expansions 
or free spirals, are only to be found on the Continent. Upon 
the whole, torques are rare among the remains of the true 
Bronze Age in Europe, as only some half-dozen specimens 
have been collected on the sites of the lake - dwellings of 



Europe. These are all of one type, and adapted to hook 
at the back of the neck.^ The torques and spiral bracelets 
of this kind hitherto discovered in Scotland are made of gold, 
of which specimens have been recorded from Belhelvie, Aber- 
deenshire,^ Lower Largo,^ Moor of Rannoch* (fig. 132), and 
parish of Urquhart, near Elgin.^ 

The Gaulish torques, so famous in Roman times, were not 

Fig. 131. — Gold armlet found at Slateford, Mid-Lothian (|). 

of this type. They consisted of two symmetrical portions 
fastened at the back by a movable joint, the other ends 
terminating in an expanded bulb like some of the large 
penannular bracelets. Several portions of such torques have 
been found in the Oppidum La Tene, and so far they ap- 
pear to be precisely similar to those represented on Roman 

^ See ' Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' fig. 10, No. 3, fig. 63, No. 19, and 
fig. 98, No. 9. 

* Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. .wiii. p. 237. ^ Ibid., p. 234. 

Ibid., p. 238. » Ibid., vol. ii. p. 530. 


Statuary, such as the one on the neck of the Dying Gladiator, 
which is distinctly seen to be twisted spirally above the 
terminal bulbs. 

Beads of glass, amber, and jet are only sparingly found 
among remains of the Bronze Age. Dr Joass states that a 
blue glass bead, ornamented with three volutes in yellow, 
was found in a cist, with burnt bones and small pieces of 
bronze, in the parish of Eddertoun, Ross-shire.^ In a cist at 

Fig. 132. — Gold armlet found on the Moor of Rannoch (f ). 

Moan, Harray, Orkney, eight amber and a large number of 
glass beads were associated with objects of the Iron Age.^ 

Glass beads are largely found on the Continent along with 
remains of the Early Iron Age, as, for example, the cemetery 
of Hallstatt. In the necropolis of Jezerine, in Bosnia, sev- 
eral hundreds of these beads — blue, yellow, white, and green 
in variously mixed patterns — have been recorded by the late 
Mr Radimsky.3 

Perhaps the most characteristic ornaments of the Bronze 

' Proc, Soc. A. Scot., vol. v. p. 313. ^ Ibid., vol. xxi. p. 345. 

^ Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, &c., p. 166. 



Age are those beautiful necklaces made by stringing together 
a combination of beads and plates of jet, the latter being 
generally ornamented with geometrical patterns of dots and 

Fig. 133. — Necklace of jet beads and plates found in a cist at Moiintstuart 
House, Bute, 

lines. Several specimens of these handsome neck ornaments 
may be seen in the National Museum. The one here figured 
(fig- 133) was found at Mountstuart, Bute, in a cist of the 



Bronze Age, which also contained a piece of bronze, an urn 
(fig. 134), and a trepanned skull (fig. 135). Other jet 
necklaces have been dis- 
covered in the following 
localities in Scotland : 
Assynt, Ross- shire ;^ 
Torrish, Sutherlandshire;^ 
Balgay, near Dundee ; ^ 
Lunan Head, Forfar ; * 
Balcalk, Tealing.^ 

Similar necklaces were 
also made of amber, as 
shown by the following 
discovery in Orkney. A 

large barrow, 30 feet in Fig. 134- — Urn from, cist at Mountstuart, 

diameter and about 11 

or 12 feet in height, was opened in 1858 at Huntiscarth. 

Fig. 135. — Trepanned skull from cist at Mountstuart, Bute {^). 

Near the centre, and some 5 feet from the surface, a large 

1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot, vol. iii. p. 47. ^ Ibid., vol. viii. p. 409. 

* Ibid., p. 412. ■* Ibid., vol. xii. p. 296. ^ Ibid., vol. xiv. p. 262. 


flagstone was exposed, which, on being removed, disclosed 
a stone cist, 2j^ feet long, formed in the usual way of 
stones set on edge. On each side of the cist there were 
two upright stones, the tops of which reached within 2 feet 
of the summit of the mound. Some fragments of bones, 
supposed by the farmer to have been burnt, were found 
in the cist, together with the following ornaments, which 
lay at one corner on a flat stone : four discs of thin gold, 
each 3 inches in diameter, pierced in the centre with a 
round hole, and ornamented with a series of concentric 
circles and bands of zigzag and oblique lines in repousse ; 
a collection of rudely formed beads of amber — circular. 

Fig. 136. — One of t-wo gold earrings found in a stone cist at Orton, 
Morayshire (^). 

triangular, and curved — pierced with small holes like those 
of the jet necklaces.^ 

But the most remarkable objects of antiquity ever known 
in Scotland are a pair of gold ornaments, supposed to be ear- 
rings (fig. 136), which were found in a stone cist on a gravelly 
hillock at Orton, near Fochabers. The cist was exposed in 
the course of making the railway between Elgin and Keith, 
in the year 1863, and the two ornaments lay one on either 
side of a " ridge of black dust," about a third from one end. 
Sir Noel Paton, who records this unique find, says : " The 
ornaments were retained by the navvies by whom they were 
discovered ; but they ultimately came into possession of 
the daughters of the sub-contractor for that section of the 
line, by whom they were transferred to the hands of a jeweller 

^ See coloured plate in the ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. iii. p. 183. 


in Aberdeen, in exchange for certain objets de luxe of less 
obsolete fashion. From this person the one now before us 
was bought by Mr Walker, barely in time to save it from the 
melting-pot." ^ 

That these ornaments were earrings there seems no reason 
to doubt, as similar objects in bronze have been found in the 
Yorkshire barrows along with female skeletons.^ 

No fibulae constructed on the safety-pin principle have 
hitherto, to my knowledge, been discovered within the British 
Isles which can be dated earlier than the Late Celtic period. 
The simplest forms of this type ^ show clearly their evolution- 
ary descent from the straight pin. 

Canon Greenwell, whose experience in such matters is 
unrivalled, makes the following remarks on the subject of per- 
sonal ornament as it affected the barrow folk: "Ornaments 
and objects of personal decoration are sometimes found 
associated with burials in the barrows. They are, however, 
much less frequently discovered than weapons and implements, 
and appear to be confined to those of women, at least in the 
barrows of the wolds. They accompany burials after crema- 
tion, as well as those by inhumation. When met with in 
association with a burnt body, in many cases they have not 
been burnt with it, but have been placed amongst the calcined 
bones, after they were collected from the funeral pile ; and 
the same may be said of certain implements of flint. I have 
found three burnt bodies which had jet beads placed amongst 
the bones, and they showed by their perfect condition that 
they had never been subjected to the action of fire. It will 
give some idea of the rarity of ornaments when I state that 
out of the whole number of 379 burials, only ten possessed 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 29. 

2 British Barrows, fig. 47, p. 52. 

3 See Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 64, Nos. 22-25. 


anything of the kind ; and out of these, two, in barrows of 
Cowlam, belong to the Early Iron Age — a period later than 
that of the ordinary barrows, which are alone taken into con- 
sideration in these introductory remarks. The eight burials 
which had ornaments associated with them were as follows : 
One on Langton Wold, where a woman had been buried 
with a humble necklace consisting of a single jet bead, two 
shells, a piece of deer's tooth pierced, and the vertebrae of a 
fish, &c. One at Cowlam, where a woman was interred with 
two bronze earrings ; and another on Goodmanham Wold, 
where what appear to have been two bronze earrings were 
found close to the head of a woman, one on each side of it. 
Two, each with a jet necklace, one being at Weaverthorpe, 
the other on Goodmanham Wold. One on Flixton Wold, 
where a young girl had four beads of bone, three of which 
were ornamented on each side ; and a woman on Good- 
manham Wold, with a pierced pig's -tooth. Besides these 
instances, there were found in a disturbed barrow at Helper- 
thorpe two flat beads of jet, which had formed part of a neck- 
lace. They are ornamented with a pattern, consisting of 
minute punctured holes on the surface, and are similar to 
many which have been discovered in other parts of Britain, 
as in Wales, Derbyshire, Northumberland, and Scotland." ^ 

5. Art of the Bronze Age. 

The elements of decoration used in the Bronze Age in 
Scotland, and indeed within the British Isles, so far as they 
have been disclosed on objects of metal, bone, jet, and 
pottery, consisted of a combination of incised or dotted 
lines arranged in herring-bone, chevron, saltire, cross, and 
other rectilinear patterns, so as to produce a variety of geo- 
^ British Barrows, p. 51. 


metrical figures. Circles, spirals, and curved lines also occur, 
but they are generally confined to stone-work. No repre- 
sentation of an organic or inanimate object has been dis- 
covered in Scotland, so far as I know, which can be assigned 
to the Stone or Bronze Age. With regard to sepulchral 
pottery, it may be observed that in addition to incisions in 
the soft clay, impressions were very often made by stamps. 
From an inspection of the decorated urns, of which there is 
such a splendid collection in the National Museum in Edin- 
burgh, it will be readily observed that various kinds of stamps 
had been used by the potters of the period, such as a piece 
of wood or bone notched into dots, small triangles, squares, 
&c., the teeth of a comb, twisted thongs in two or three plies, 
the finger-nail, &c. These different patterns were generally 
arranged in horizontal bands round the body of the vessel, 
especially on its upper and middle parts, in such a variety of 
ways that no two vessels have ever been found alike. A few 
socketed celts have been discovered,-' in different localities, 
which are decorated with concentric circles in relief, the in- 
cised pattern being in the mould ; but otherwise, neither in- 
cised circles nor spirals are to be seen on the metal-work 
found either in England, Scotland, or Ireland — presenting in 
this respect a marked contrast to the bronze implements and 
weapons of the Scandinavian archseological area. A beautiful 
specimen of the socketed celt ornamented with concentric 
rings was found in a peat-moss on the farm of Knock and 
Maize, in the parish of Leswalt, Wigtownshire, and is now 
preserved in the cabinet of the Earl of Stair (fig. 86). 

Of archaic sculpturing on stones and solid rock-surfaces in 

the form of cups, cup-and-rings, concentric circles, spirals, 

and irregular geometrical figures, there is no lack of examples 

in Scotland ; but although much has been written on the 

1 Evans's Bronze Implements, figs. 137, 140, 142, and 144. 


subject, none of the theories advanced to explain their mean- 
ing has met with general acceptance. That they had a sym- 
bolic meaning in the religious conceptions of the people is 
evident from the frequency with which they are found on 
sepulchral monuments, but any interpretation hitherto ad- 
vanced on the subject, beyond the general religious idea, 
seems to me to be pure conjecture. Readers interested in 
these mysterious memorials will find much solid matter in 
the writings of George Tate,'"^ Sir James Simpson,^ Charles 
Rau,^ and George Coffey,* as well as in a number of articles 
in different publications, references to which will be found in 
one or other of those works. 

On analysing the various decorative elements in these 
lapidary sculpturings they readily fall to be classified as fol- 
lows : (i) Simple cups. (2) Cup-and-rings. (3) Cup-and- 
rings interrupted by gutter channels. (4) Concentric circles. 
(5) Semi-concentric circles. (6) Spirals. (7) Stars, wheels, 
and enclosed spaces. (8) Zigzag, wavy, or parallel lines. 

I have represented on Plate IV. a few specimens of rock- 
sculpturing, as depicted on some of the prehistoric monu- 
ments of Western Europe, which may be compared with those 
figured in the text on this important subject. The first 10 
figures are mere diagrammatic illustrations, after the classifica- 
tion of Sir James Simpson. Some explanatory notes on the 
other figures will be found in the list of illustrations. 

Nearly all these elements in one or more combinations are 
to be found on sepulchral or memorial stones in Scotland. 
Cups vary greatly in size, from about one to several inches in 
diameter, and from half an inch to about one and a half inch 

^ Sculptured Rocks of Northumberland, 1S65. 

2 Ancient Sculpturings of Cups and Concentric Rings, &c., 1868, 

^ Contributions to N. American Ethnology, vol. v., 1881, 

■* Jour. R. Soc. Antiq. of Ireland, 1894-97, 

FOUND IN WESTERN EUROPE. (For details see List of Illustrations.) 


in depth. They occur sometimes singly, but generally in 
groups — often forming the only ornament on a stone — and 
occasionally in combination with some of the other forms 
above defined. Simple cups have a wide distribution in 
Western Europe, comprising Portugal, the British Isles, Den- 
mark, Sweden, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and France. On 
the same stone they may be seen in different sizes scattered 
irregularly over its surface, or in groups of threes and fours. 
Rings are not so deeply cut as cups, and they may be either 
complete circles or interrupted by grooves running from the 
centre cup to a distance beyond the outer circle. The radial 
grooves, or gutter-channels, are found occasionally to end in 
cups belonging to adjacent groups of cup-and-rings. It is 
noteworthy that the cup-and-ring with gutter-channels has 
not been found outside the British Isles. Both cup-and-rings 
and concentric circles have also a much more limited area 
of distribution than the simple cup, being, with one or two 
exceptions, limited to Sweden, Great Britain, and Ireland. 
The distribution of spirals, which is remarkable in many 
ways, has lately attracted much attention throughout Europe. 
The great development of this ornament in Mycense is now 
generally accepted by archaeologists as the result of direct 
intercourse between Egypt and the shores and islands of 
the ^gean Sea, during the eighteenth dynasty (i 580-1 320 
B.C.) From these regions there is reason to suppose that 
it spread into Europe by the Danube route. That this was 
the route by which the spiral ornament was introduced into 
Bavaria, North Germany, and Scandinavia, is proved by the 
fact that it is non-existent as an ornament on the bronze 
remains of North Italy, France, and Britain. Mr Coffey 
{loc. cit) has recently advanced the theory that the spiral was 
copied in Ireland from bronze implements introduced into 
that country from Scandinavia, in consequence of commercial 



intercourse between the two countries, and that Ireland was 
the centre from which this ornament spread into the adjacent 
coasts of England and Scotland. He also adopts the theory, 
advocated by Montelius and others, that concentric circles are 

Fig. 137. — Stone with spirals at the entrance to the Great Cairn, Neio Grange, 
Ireland. (From a photograph by Jf. Welch.) 

debased spirals, ^nd that, consequently, in countries where 
both spirals and concentric circles exist together, the latter 
are chronologically later than the former. 

At New Grange beautiful spirals are to be seen both out- 



side, as on the stone immediately below the entrance passage 
to the chamber (fig. 137), and inside ; but there are no con- 
centric circles, or cups with spiral gutters. On the other hand, 
at Dowth and Loughcrew all these forms are common. From 
this, and other suggestive considerations, Mr Coffey thinks 
that the simple cup is the oldest symbol; next comes the 
spiral, which, by a process of degeneration, gives place to the 
concentric circles and cup-and-rings, with or without gutter- 
channels. But, however much of truth may be in these 
opinions, we have satisfactory evidence to show that the spiral 

Fig. 138. — Cover-stone of a cist at Coilsfield, Ayrshire {about Sfi^^ 2« 

was used in Scotland during the Bronze Age as an ornament 
on sepulchral slabs. It was found at Coilsfield, Ayrshire, on 
the cover-stone of a cist which contained portion of a cinerary 
urn^ (fig. 138). Another cist with a cover, having its under- 
side decorated in the same way as the one at Coilsfield, was 
exposed in the course of constructing a road which leads to 
Queensferry through the Craigiehall estate.^ A slab from a 
cist in Carnban, near the Crinan Canal, though not a cover- 
stone, had five concentric lozenge -shaped sculptures.^ In 
187 1 a cist near the village of Carnwath, Lanarkshire, was 

^ Wilson's Prehistoric Annals, vol. i. p. 480. 

^ Ibid., p. 482. ^ Simpson, loc. cit., p. 29, PI. xiii. 


discovered, which contained an ornamental urn of the drink- 
ing-cup type, and which had the underside of its covering 

Fig. 139. — Cover of stone of cist at Carnwatk {^feet 3 inches long). 

Stone decorated with three groups of concentric circles and 
two triangular markings ^ (fig. 139). Finally, in 1894, near 

Fig. -Lip.— Sculptured stone at Monsil Castle, Perthshire {6 feet 8 inches long). 

or on the site of a stone circle in the vicinity of Tillicoultry 
— the stones having been removed for draining purposes 
some forty years previously — a cist covered with a large stone 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. x. p. 62. 



was discovered which contained an urn of the food-vessel 
type with pierced ears. The sides and surface of this cover- 

1*1' H'J 

%^^^^' ■■'■ 


Fig. 14T. — Stone in K?io{kmany Cairn, Co. Tyrone, Ireland [-^Yz feet aheree 
ground). [From a photograph by R. Weleh.) 

Stone were observed to have been sculptured with a series 
of concentric circles, spirals, and lines. ^ 

A stone close to a small stone circle within the grounds of 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. .\.\ix. p. 193. 



Monzie Castle, Perthshire, shows a number of circles and 
cups. It is a whinstone boulder presenting a tolerably 
smooth surface sloping a little to one side. It measures 
6 feet 8 inches in length and s feet in breadth; and the 
largest group measures 12 inches across, while its central 
cup is 3 inches in diameter. The following sketch (fig. 140), 

Fig. T42. — Cup-marked rock surface at High Banks, Kirkcudbrightsliire. 

taken on September 23, 1891, gives a general idea of the 
size and arrangements of the other markings. ■"■ 

Fig. 141 represents a photographic view of cup-and-rings, 
&c., on one of the stones of the ruined chamber in the de- 
molished cairn of Knockmany, Co. Tyrone, recently described 
by Mr George Coffey.^ 

Cup-and-ring markings are often observed on exposed rock- 

' For a list of the cup-marked stones of Scotland see the appendix to a 
paper by Mr Romilly Allen on "Some undescribed Stones with Cup- 
markings in Scotland " in ' Proc. of the Society of Antiquaries of Scot- 
land,' February 13, 1882. 

^ Journ. R. Soc. Antiq. of Ireland, 1898, p. 93. 



surfaces, such as those at Carnban, Auchenbreach, &c., in the 
valley of the Crinan Canal, illustrated by Sir James Simpson 
{loc. cit, plates xxi., xxii., and xxiii.) Since the publication of 
this author's well-known monograph on the subject some curi- 
ous examples have been described by Mr George Hamilton.^ 



Fig. 143. — Cup-marked rock sin-face at High Banks, Kirkcudbrightshire. 

They were discovered on the top of a glaciated knoll at High 
Banks, Kirkcudbrightshire, and having been for a long time 
protected by a natural covering of turf, they are unusually 
well preserved. Two of these groups are shown on figures 
142 and 143. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxiii. p. 125. 




HE advantages of substituting iron for 
bronze in cutting implements would 
not be so apparent to people long 
conversant with the multifarious bronze 
objects already in use, as to induce 
them to make such an innovation per 
saltum. Although, in the metallic state, iron is rarely found 
naturally, it must have been sufficiently common, as meteoric 
iron, to have attracted the attention of the Stone Age people 
who, from long practice, had an observant eye for all natural 
products, had they recognised in it properties superior to 
those of their ordinary stone materials. But, even should 
they have failed to discover the utilitarian value of meteoric 
iron, it is not likely that their successors, when they became 
skilled in the manufacture of bronze — involving the reduction 
of copper and tin ores — would remain ignorant of the method 
of smelting iron from some of its more common ores, such as 
bog ore and hfematite, both being readily recognised and 
widely distributed. Some archseologists, on these general 
grounds, maintain that iron was among the earliest known 


of the metals, although for various reasons it was the latest 
to come into general use. According to the late M. G. de 
Mortillet/ iron was first discovered by some of the savage 
tribes in Africa, probably, as he suggests, from such an inci- 
dent as a polished axe of haematite (a natural form of the 
ore abundant in Africa) having fallen into the fire — a degree 
of heat which would be sufficient to disclose its metallic 
basis. The same authority states his behef that the metal 
was known in Egypt some 7000 years ago; nay more, that it 
was with steel implements that the beautiful Egyptian statues 
of syenite and porphyry had been sculptured. He also holds 
to the frequently expressed opinion that bronze and iron (or 
steel) are represented on the wall-paintings of the Egyptian 
tombs by the colours red and blue ; that the name baa, by 
which iron is designated, occurs in the most ancient inscrip- 
tions ; and that the actual metal has been found in the 
pyramids of the earliest dynasties. He agrees with M. 
Chabas and others in ascribing the restricted use of iron, 
in Egypt, to religious motives. 

Bronze was, at all times, an expensive material, owing to the 
rarity of its ores, and the delay and difficulty of transporting it 
from foreign lands. During the initiatory stages of the com- 
petition between iron and bronze it is probable that the result 
of the struggle would depend on the comparative expense 
in the production of the respective metals, — the former, in 
the first instance, being possibly the dearer of the two. It 
cannot, however, be supposed that, in face of the abundance 
and wide distribution of iron ores, the economic problem 
would long stand in the way had there been no other diffi- 
culty to be surmounted. It seems to me that the real hind- 
rance to the adoption of iron in the manufacture of cutting 
implements was the softness of the metal itself, as, until the 
1 Formation de la Nation Fran9aise, 1897, p. 260. 


method of tempering it, by suddenly plunging it when heated 
into cold water, became known, implements and weapons 
made of it would be actually inferior to those of bronze. 
Polybius (book ii. c. 33) incidentally records a striking in- 
stance of the comparative uselessness of untempered blades. 
In describing the victory of Flaminius over the Insubres 
inhabiting Cisalpine Gaul (b.c. 224) he thus writes: "The 
Romans are thought to have shown uncommon skill in this 
battle ; the Tribunes instructing the troops how they were to 
conduct themselves both collectively and individually. They 
had learned from former engagements that Gallic tribes were 
always most formidable at the first onslaught, before their 
courage was at all damped by a check ; and that the swords 
with which they were furnished, as I have mentioned before, 
could only give one downward cut with any effect, but that 
after this the edges got so turned and the blade so bent, that 
unless they had time to straighten them with their foot 
against the ground, they could not deliver a second blow. 
The Tribunes accordingly gave out the spears of the Triarii, 
who are the last of the three ranks, to the first ranks, or 
Hastati ; and ordering the men to use their swords only, 
after their spears were done with, they charged the Celts 
full in front. When the Celts had rendered their swords 
useless by the first blows delivered on the spears, the Romans 
closed with them, and rendered them quite helpless, by pre- 
venting them from raising their hands to strike with their 
swords, which is their peculiar and only stroke, because their 
blade has no point. The Romans, on the contrary, having 
excellent points to their swords, used them not to cut but 
to thrust; and by thus repeatedly hitting the breasts and 
faces of the enemy, they eventually killed the greater number 
of them." 1 

^ Translation by E. S, Shuckburgli. 


Those who deny the existence of a Bronze Age as distinct 
from that of Iron, are in the habit of accounting for the 
entire absence of iron reHcs in graves and early habitations 
by the theory that they have disappeared in consequence 
of the natural law of decomposition — it being well known 
that iron is more liable to oxidation than copper or bronze. 
But this is not an adequate explanation of the facts, as there 
are many natural conditions in which iron may for a long 
time resist atmospheric action. It is difficult to believe 
that steel implements, in such a dry climate as that of Egypt, 
could have been in use from the earliest times without having 
left some traces of their existence. Professor Flinders Petrie 
exhibited at the Loan Collection of the British Association 
at Liverpool, in 1896, an interesting set of iron tools, in- 
cluding files and saws, which had been found in Egypt. 
They were catalogued as belonging to the seventh century 
B.C. ; but it was added that they were of Assyrian origin, as 
such tools were quite unknown in Egypt till later times. 

Professor Rolleston, while advocating the view that the con- 
tents of the British barrows clearly prove the priority of 
bronze relics to those of iron, thus notices the oxidation 
theory : " It will be said by some in answer to this that 
iron is oxidisable and perishable in an eminent degree, and 
that it would disappear, whilst the bronze would remain 
This suggestion I will not characterise as one of the study 
as opposed to one of the Barrow, but as one of the labora- 
tory, and the laboratory with its strong reagents supports it 
in a way that the slow and weak or wholly inert chemistry 
of the deep sand, or rubble, or gravel-filled grave does not. 
Of course, if you conceive a stream of water, acidulated even 
slightly with nitric acid, to pass constantly over an iron spear- 
head, there is no difficulty in estimating the time which will 
be necessary for the entire disappearance of an implement so 


tested. But no such agent is available in many, I might 
say most, Bronze Period graves. In some such graves you 
may find the objects they contain encrusted with a deposit 
of carbonate of lime, which would have protected an iron 
weapon of the Bronze Period if there had been any to pro- 
tect; or you may find, as I am happy often to have seen, 
the bones in a capital state of preservation, and contrasting 
to great advantage with the corroded and " perished " bones 
of Saxons, whose iron weapons were, nevertheless, very 
present with them ; or the grave itself may contain a con- 
siderable quantity of free carbonic acid, as other sunk wells 
do, and yet may be so dry from conditions of superjacent 
and subjacent rubble and soil as to have afforded no means 
for the removal of any results of any slight erosion which 
its contents might have suffered. The phenomena disclosed 
by the spade must be compared with those disclosed by 
the test-tube ; and there is here a makro — as well as a 
mikro — chemistry." ^ 

Mr Engelhardt, in his work on the remarkable hoards of 
the Early Iron Age found at Thorsbjerg and Nydam, in 
south Jutland, makes the following remarks on the differ- 
ence between these two peat-bogs as regards their corrosive 
action on iron : " Iron is almost entirely consumed by the 
water of this peat-bog [Thorsbjerg moss]. In many places 
vestiges of corroded iron were seen in the black peat, indi- 
cating that iron articles had been thrown in along with 
the others, but only very small fragments of iron objects 
had been preserved, and these were almost exclusively found 
in the upper layer, about a foot above the other remains. 
It is fortunate that the tannic acid of the Nydam moss has 
not this corrosive quality in the same degree as that of the 

^ Trans, of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Arch. Soc, 1878 ; Reprint, 
P- 5- 


Thorsbjerg moss. Numbers of iron weapons and implements 
of about the same period have been preserved in Nydam, 
and this deposit, in connection with that of Thorsbjerg, 
presents a vivid picture of the civilisation of the Early Iron 
period, in so far as it may be inferred from the remains of 
dress, weapons, household utensils, horse furniture, and ship- 
building." 1 

Dr Schliemann also very pointedly directs attention to the 
total absence of iron remains in the prehistoric cities of Troy, 
while relics of copper and bronze were abundantly present. 
" Nothing," he writes, " could better testify to the great an- 
tiquity of the prehistoric ruins at Hissarlik and at Mycenae, 
than the total absence of iron. It is true that Hesiod dis- 
tinctly states that iron was discovered later than copper and 
tin, for, in speaking of the peoples who were ancient even in 
his day, he says that they used bronze, and not iron. But 
still, in order to show how old the knowledge of iron and 
steel was, he represents Gaea as making a sickle for Kronos 
of greyish glittering steel, and he gives to Herakles, besides 
armour of gold and greaves of bronze, a sword of iron and 
a helmet of steel." ^ 

We may therefore safely conclude that, had iron been in 
use to any great extent contemporaneously with the imple- 
ments and weapons generally recognised as characteristic of 
the Bronze Age in Europe, we would, by this time, have 
found some archaeological evidence of the fact. But there 
appears to be none. Whatever may have been the causes 
which kept this useful metal so long in the background, there 
are indications that, on its first introduction into Europe, it 
was a scarce commodity, as we find it used in small encrusted 
bands to decorate bronze objects. It was thus occasionally 
used among the Swiss lake-dwellers at the stations of Moer- 

' Denmark in the Early Iron Age, pp. 25, 26. ^ Ilios, p. 252. 


ingen, Cortaillod, Auvernier, and Corcelettes, to ornament 
bronze swords and bracelets.^ From these considerations it 
is evident that the mere knowledge of iron as a metal is not 
to be regarded as synonymous with its general introduction 
into the arts and industry of human civilisation. 

The evolutionary stages through which the iron industry 
has passed, in its struggle for the mastery over bronze, may be 
regarded as only distantly connected with Scottish archaeology, 
as there is ample evidence to show that a fully developed 
Iron Age obtained in Central Europe, long before the metal 
was utilised in the British Isles and other parts of north- 
western Europe. But although these metallurgical changes 
were perfected outside the archfeological area with which we 
are here specially concerned, it is incumbent on us to show 
whence these finished products of the Iron Age, or the skill 
which produced them, reached our shores. 

The culture elements — industrial and warlike — to which 
one gets familiarised by a study of the archsological remains 
found at Hallstatt and La Tene, are the greatest landmarks in 
the history of early European civilisation. They radiated 
around these centres in successive waves from about the 
eighth to the second century B.C., and their influence 
ultimately became felt throughout the largest portion of 
Europe. La Tene civilisation, being a later development 
and geographically nearer to Britain, naturally affected the 
social organisation of the inhabitants of the British Isles more 
deeply than that of Hallstatt ; but, however widely apart its 
products may be found, whether in Illyricum or in Ireland, 
they disclose a remarkable similarity, apparently due to unity 
of origin. The repeated intrusion of the Gauls into the valley 
of the Po, some centuries before the Christian era, is attested 

' For illustrations of some of these objects see 'Lake-Dwellings of 
Europe,' figs. i86, No. 6, and i88, No. 6. 


on the most explicit historical and traditional statements, but 
had history been altogether silent on these warlike episodes 
of the people who used La Tene weapons and armour, the 
archaeological evidence alone would have been sufficient to 
establish their truth. 

As the result of repeated peregrinations on the trail of the 
Iron Age in Europe, I have come to the conclusion that the 
introduction of iron into the British Isles was due to the 
continuance westwards of the advanced culture elements 
which successively flourished at Hallstatt and La Tene. To 
epitomise the evidence on which this opinion could be 
satisfactorily substantiated would necessitate a deviation into 
a wide field, involving not only • a considerable amount of 
writing but also a large number of illustrations. Had there 
been space, a short account of the civilisation and social 
conditions which flourished respectively at these two centres 
of the early development of the iron industry would be 
pertinent to the object and scope of this book, and all the 
more so as there is no work in the English language which 
deals with the subject. Nor, indeed, with the exception of 
one or two special monographs on the Oppidum La Tene 
and the cemetery of Hallstatt, is there any Continental work, 
known to me, which gives a general description of these two 
civilisations, and their relation to each other ; nor of the 
archsological remains found on the wider areas to which 
objects analogous to those of Hallstatt and La Tene ex- 
tended. The works of MM. Bertrand and Reinach,i Dr- 
Hoernes,^ and Dr Undset ^ may, however, be read with 
advantage on this subject. 

' Les Celtes dans les Vallees du P6 et du Danube. 
- Urgeschichte der Bildenden Kunst in Europa. 
' Erstes Auftreten des Eisens in Nord-Europa. 



We now come to the investigation of the early Iron Age in 
Britain, for it is not yet possible to eliminate Scotland from 
the wider area. The effect of the foreign influences emanating 
from Central Europe on the civilisation of these " barbarians 
in the ocean " was to develop a new school of art, which, 
though retaining the primary features of its Continental proto- 
types, presented so many deviations, both in design and execu- 
tion, that it is now regarded as a third and final stage in the 
evolution of the Celtic art of Europe. Among the first to 
clearly define this remarkable group of antiquities in Britain 
was the late Sir A. W. Franks, who, as one of the editors of 
Kemble's ' Horae Ferales,' named it "Late Celtic" — an 
expression which has since become common in archaeological 
literature. His description of the principal objects in that 
group, so far as they were then known to him, is prefaced by 
the following remarks : — 

" In the peculiar class of antiquities now to be considered, 
the British Islands stand unrivalled ; a few ancient objects, 
analogous in design, may be found in various parts of the 
Continent, and more extended researches in local museums 
may bring many others to light, but the foreign contributions 
to this section are scanty when compared with those of our 
own country. 

" The antiquities under consideration consist of shields, 
swords, and daggers, horse-furniture, personal ornaments, and 
a number of miscellaneous objects, some of iron, some of 
bronze, and frequently decorated with enamel. All these 
antiquities exhibit a style of decoration remarkable for its 
peculiar and varied forms, and testify to extraordinary skill in 
working metals." ^ 

' HoiEE Ferales, p. 172. 


On finishing his descriptive details of the objects in 
question — the more perfect and highly decorated being 
delineated on seven plates of beautiful illustrations — he pro- 
ceeds to show that their original owners could be no others 
than the Celts. By a process of analytical elimination he 
rejects the claims of the Romans, Saxons, and Danes, to be 
regarded as the owners and founders of this unique style of 
art. " We have, therefore," he writes, " only the Celtic races, 
or some branch of these races, to fall back upon. Moreover, 
the only designs at all similar, of which the origin is certain, 
are to be found in early Irish manuscripts ; though there 
intermingled with patterns of a very different kind, and 
derived probably from a different country. For if we examine 
carefully the illuminations of Irish MSS., we shall observe 
that the designs are of two kinds : one composed of the 
singular wavy or trumpet patterns which occur also on these 
bronzes, but which, in the hands' of the illuminator, become 
still more intricate and singular ; the other exhibiting inter- 
laced patterns of great variety both as to form and as to 
their component parts. The interlacings may possibly have 
been introduced with the Christian religion ; in a simpler 
form we find them in Anglo-Saxon designs, and even occa- 
sionally in the later Roman mosaic pavements. They are 
seldom, however, combined with the wavy pattern in England, 
and then generally in the North of England, or in those 
places where the influence of the Scoti or Irish monks 
prevailed ; we may name as an instance, the famous Gospel 
of St Cuthbert. Another peculiarity worthy of remark is the 
greater frequency of the trumpet patterns in the earlier MSS., 
and the gradual superseding of them by the interlaced patterns 
in the later MSS. and works of art." ^ 

In briefly noticing some of the Late Celtic remains found 
^ Horse Ferales, p. 184. 


within the British Isles, I shall first deal with the more 
isolated examples, with regard to which the circumstances 
of the discovery count for little, their archaeological value 
being determined by some special features in their manu- 
facture or style of ornamentation. Afterwards some of the 
more important objects found in association with collateral 
remains, such as the contents of graves, camps, hoards, &c., 
will be considered. As most of the Late Celtic remains 
described in ' Horse Ferales ' belong to the former category, 
it will be convenient to follow, as far as possible, the order 
of classification adopted in that work. 

Shields. — Two entire shields and portions of six others 
are described in ' Hor» Ferales.' One of the entire speci- 
mens was found in the river Witham, and the other in the 
Thames. They are both oval or oblong in shape, and dec- 
orated with raised designs of Late Celtic character. The 
boss of the former contains five studs of red coral, and its 
surface is clearly defined with the stained space on which 
the figure of an " exaggerated " boar, with very long legs, had 
been riveted. The second is also ornamented with several 
groups of studs of red enamel. Some idea of the style of 
art and perfection of the workmanship on these shields may 
be gained from the accompanying pencil sketch of the speci- 
men from the river Thames (PI. V.) Of the other frag- 
mentary portions two bosses are also from the Thames, 
three from Polden Hill (p. 247), and one from a barrow 
in Yorkshire. " These," writes Sir AV. Franks, " are the only 
remains of shields of the kind with which I am acquainted. 
It will be seen that they have not been found out of England ; 
their form seems to have been oval, and they varied in length 
from 3 feet 9 inches to 2 feet 6 inches." 

Every one interested in this class of antiquities should 
find an opportunity of inspecting these very remarkable re- 

British Museum (length 2 feet 6^4 inches). 


mains, now preserved in the British Museum ; or at least 
the coloured illustrations of them in ' Hor» Ferales,' pi. 

I may observe that the shields represented on the Gundes- 
trup silver vase ^ are oblong, while those on the bronze situlas 
found in the Illyrico-Venetic province are either round, oval, 
or oblong. Various portions of shields have been found in 
Oppidum La Tene, including handles, bosses, and circular 
ornaments, generally of bronze, but sometimes of iron, which 
were fastened on the wooden framework of the shield.^ 

Helmets. — No British helmet earlier than Roman times 
was known to Sir W. Franks when he wrote his notes in 
1863, and only one or two German specimens. He refers 
to one remarkable specimen, found in an ancient channel 
of the Seine, and figures a number from Greece and Italy. 
Since then, however, our knowledge of pre-Roman helmets 
in Europe has greatly increased. They have been found 
in Gaulish tumuli, in the cemeteries of Hallstatt, Watsch, 
Ambras, and other localities in the Illyrico-Venetic archaeo- 
logical area. A very remarkable helmet, found in a tomb at 
St Margarethen, was made of a kind of basket-work, over 
which there was a leathern covering. Outside the cap thus 
formed there were fastened six circular discs of bronze, sur- 
rounding a larger central disc which formed the summit, 
and from the middle of which an iron spike projected. It 
is now surmised that similar discs, many of which were 
formerly regarded as shield ornaments, were really parts of 
helmets of the same type as that at St Margarethen. A 
helmet of a decidedly Grecian character was found in one 
of the tumuli of Glasinac.^ 

' See Sophus Miiller : Nordiske Fortidsminder, 2 Hefte. 
- See group fig. 89 of the ' Lake-Dwellings of Europe.' 
' Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, &c., fig. 36. 


Some of the warriors figured on the famous situlae from 
Bologna, Watsch, &c., wear helmets. One scene represents 
two pugilists with a crested helmet between them, apparently 
the prize contested for. Actual specimens of these helmets 
have been found without a crest, and others with one or two 
crests. It may also be mentioned that the helmets on the 
mounted figures on the Gundestrup vase are ornamented by 
various devices, probably badges, such as a crescent, two 
horns, a boar, and a bird. The officer in command of the 
infantry has also a helmet crowned with the figure of a boar. 

Two fragmentary portions of bronze found on Scottish soil, 
which are justly regarded as parts of helmets, have a close 
resemblance to those horned and boar-headed helmets figured 
on the Gundestrup vase. They are described by Dr J. 
Alexander Smith in one of those exhaustive monographs by 
which he has so greatly enriched Scottish archseology.^ 
One of these objects (fig. 144) was found, about the year 
1820, in a morass, on the farm of Torrs, in the parish of 
Kelton, Kirkcudbrightshire, and, having passed into the pos- 
session of Sir Walter Scott, is still preserved at Abbotsford. 
It is made of thin beaten bronze like a mask, with eye-holes 
an inch in diameter, and two curved hollow horns rising from 
between them. The ornamentation on the body is in re- 
poussi, in the form of divergent spirals ending in volutes, &c., 
all highly characteristic of Late Celtic work. The horns are 
also ornamented with "a continuous series of corresponding 
curvilinear lines and scrolls of finer character, the patterns 
being less prominent, and formed rather by their outline 
being depressed or indented in the metal." 

The other analogous relic, which takes the shape of a boar's 
head, was found, at a depth of 6 feet, in m.ossy ground resting 
on the underlying clay, at Liechestown in the parish of Desk- 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 334. 


ford, Banffshire. It was discovered about the year 18 16, 
and is now preserved in the Banff Museum. Though not 
so elaborately decorated as the former, it is clearly of the 

Fig. 144. — Bronze with liorns found at Torrs, Kirkcudbrightshire 
{16% inches in greatest length). 

same style of work, and probably of the same period. Dr 
Joseph Anderson illustrates his account of these objects in 
his Rhind lectures by a woodcut of a bronze plaque, found 
in Oland, representing two warriors with remarkably similar 


helmets. This plaque is one of four, with similar quaint 
figures, found in a cairn, and classified by Montelius as be- 
longing to the third period of the Iron Age — i.e., seventh to 
eleventh centuries.^ 

Mr Llewellynn Jewitt describes ^ a remarkable grave at 
Barlaston, in Staffordshire, in which were a number of enam- 
elled discs which he believed to have been portions of a 
helmet. Although this grave was regarded by the author as 
Anglo-Saxon, the ornamentation on some of the objects is 
so pronounced that there can be little doubt that it is Late 
Celtic work. The grave, which was 7 feet long by 2 feet 
wide, was partly cut out of the solid stone, and contained a 
basin-like cavity for the helmeted head. It was in this 
hollow that the relics now in question were found. " The 
fragments in the cavity," writes Mr Jewett, "consisted of 
several pieces of curved bronze, highly ornamented, which 
had probably, with other plain curved pieces, formed the 
framework of the helmet ; some thin plates of bronze ; a flat 
ring of bronze, beautifully ornamented (fig. 434), which is 
conjectured to have been the top of the framework of the 
helmet ; and three enamelled discs of a similar character to 
what have been elsewhere found, with hooks for suspension 
or attachment to leather or other substance. One of these 
is engraved, of its real size (fig. 435). The centre is of 
enamel mosaic work, ground down level with the metal, as 
in the old Chinese enamels." Similar relics (figs. 436, 437) 
were not unfrequently met with in other localities, as for in- 
stance in a barrow on Middleton Moor, Derbyshire, where 
they were associated with the iron umbo of a shield, and a 
thin vessel of bronze, which probably, according to Mr Jewett, 
formed portion of a helmet.^ 

' Antiquites Siiedoises, p. 150. 
^ Grave-Mounds, p. 258. " Ibid., p. 261. 

SWORDS. 241 

Swords. — Some twenty iron swords with bronze sheaths, 
or the bronze sheaths without the swords, are recorded in 
' Horse Ferales ' as having been found in widely separated 
districts in Britain ; also about an equal number of La Tene 
types, which are introduced for the purpose of comparison. 
The same author, writing in 1880,^ states that to his know- 
ledge the geographical distribution of these swords or their 
sheaths in England was as follows : Bed of the Thames, 8 ; 
Yorkshire, 5 ; Lincolnshire, 4 ; Dorsetshire, 2, besides frag- 
ments ; Hertfordshire, Cumberland, and Lancashire, i each. 
Since then a few more specimens have come to light, notably 
two in Hunsbury Camp, near Northampton (fig. 145), one in 
Ayrshire (fig. 146), and four in the bog of Lisnacroghera in 
Ireland (fig. 147). The Hunsbury Camp and its relics will be 
described later on, but meantime the more perfect of the 
sword-sheaths may be noticed, as it is one of the most typical 
of the class yet known. It has already been figured and de- 
scribed by Sir Henry Dryden,^ along with the other remains 
found in the camp, and also by Mr C. H. Read.^ "This 
beautiful specimen," writes Mr Read, "is formed of a thin 
bronze plate on one face, the other face being open, and pro- 
vided only with transverse ornamented plates ; the edge is of 
the usual character — that is, a rounded recurved plate, the two 
edges of which clasp the plates forming the face and back of 
the sheath. The end of the sheath is of thicker metal, and of 
the usual heart-shaped form which characterises other sheaths 
of the same period. Towards the lower part, 8 inches from 
the point, is a pair of ornamental bosses formed of curves and 
circles, resembling birds' heads. At the back of this part is 
an engraved plate with scrolls and circles, and two lower 

' Archseologia, vol. 45, pp. 251-266. 

' Associated Architectural Societies' Reports, vol. xviii. 

^ Archjeologia, vol. 52, p. 762. 



bands, also engraved, which do not correspond with anything 
on the front. The upper end of the front of the sheath has 
an elegant pattern of scrolls and circles of the usual Late 

Fig. 145. — Bronze sword-sheath found at Hunsbtiry Camp, Northampton (|). 

Celtic type, very like the engraved ornaments on the bronze 
mirror from St Keverne, in Cornwall.^ As a type, it is quite 
characteristic of Late Celtic work, and in no part has it any 

' See fig. 174, p. 266. 



resemblance to, or connection with, the production of Saxon 
times, as has been suggested." 

The Ayrshire specimen (fig. 146) was found many years 
ago in the course of draining, near Bargany House on the 
banks of the river Girvan, and presented to the Museum of 
St Andrews. Here I saw it in 1893, and subsequently con- 


k «s 


Fig. 146. — Bronze sword-sheatk found in Ayrskire (^}. 

tributed a description of it to the ' Archaeological Collections 
of Ayrshire and Galloway ' (vol. vii. p. 48, pi. i.) Although 
not decorated on its surface with the characteristic scrolls of 
spiral and curved spaces, like most others of its kind, it bears 
in all its structural details unmistakable evidence of belonging 
to the same class of work. It has an elegant form, slightly 



tapering towards the point, and measures 24 inches in length 
by I ^ inch in breadth. It is made of two plates of bronze, 
one sufficiently large to be bent round at the margins so as to 

overlap the other. The 

plates were then riveted 
and soldered together. 
The point is strengthened 
by a stout chape, from 
which a marginal mould- 
ing runs for several inches 
on both edges, and from 
which again an ornamental 
band extends across the 
body of the sheath. 

The only other speci- 
men of Late Celtic sword- 
sheaths found in Scotland, 
known to me, is that in 
the National Museum in 
Edinburgh (fig. 148). 
There is no history of the 
circumstances in which 
this sheath was discovered, 
beyond an inscribed label 
to the effect that it was 
found on the Mortonhall 
estate, at the foot of the 
Pentland Hills. It meas- 
ures 23^ inches in length by i ^ inch in breadth, and, 
according to Dr Joseph Anderson, "is formed of thin beaten 
bronze ; the ornamental cup-shaped expansions at the lower 
end are solid castings, and the ornamental strap carrying 
the loop in front is fastened on with pins. The back of 

Fig. 147. — Bronze sword-sheath found in 
the hog of Lisnacroghera, Ireland ^. 



the sheath is a thin slip of bronze shding 
in grooves in the inner margins of the two 
sides." 1 

Another bronze sheath of this type was 
found by fishermen in the river Tweed, near 
the village of Carham, now preserved in the 
collection of Qanon Greenwell. It is 21 
inches long and i ^ inch broad. " It con- 
sists of the front of the sheath with a raised 
line in the centre, terminating in a triangle 
and with a solid end ; of the back only the 
lower part remains, the rest having been 
probably made of leather." ^ 

A very fine iron sword, still in its bronze 
sheath, was found, in 1868, in a barrow 
at Grimthorpe, associated with the bronze 
mountings of a wooden shield and a small 
disc decorated with raised trumpet -shaped 
ornaments — all of Late Celtic work.^ Near 
the same locality, at a place called Bugthorpe, 
a body was discovered with which an iron 
sword in a bronze sheath and an enamelled 
bronze brooch were associated.* 

For additional illustrations of these sword- 
sheaths in England, I would refer my readers 
to ' Horje Ferales ' ; ' Collectanea Antiqua ' 
(vol. iii. pi. xvi., and vol. iv. pi. xxxiii.) ; 
and ' Catalogue of Antiquities in Alnwick 

^ Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 120. 
^ Archseologia, vol. 45, p. 256, pi. xvi. 
' Reliquary, vol. ix. p. 180; and Grave-Mounds, 
pp. 238, 245, and 263 
^ British Barrows, p. 3O. 








Daggers. — Of six specimens of iron daggers with bronze 
sheaths described by Sir W. Franks, five were found in the 
Thames and one in the Witham. This latter (fig. 149), one 
of two which still retained their bronze handles, is remark- 
able for the two horn-like projec- 
tions on its hilt. Weapons with 
this type of handle have been 
found at Hallstatt and several 
places throughout Europe, ex- 
tending in a narrow band from 
Bologna to the Pyrenees, but 
reaching northwards only to the 
southern limits of Belgic Gaul. 
MM. Bertrand and Reinach ^ 
enumerate no less than twenty- 
five localities within this area, 
chiefly graves after incineration, 
which have yielded one or more 
specimens. According to these 
eminent authorities, the horned 
weapons {//^es a antennes) are 
products of the proto - Celtic 
stratum which, chronologically, 
lies between the earlier megalithic 
chambers and the later Gaulish 
Fig. 149. — Iron dagger -with tumuli — both these, be it observed, 
browse sheath foimd in the ^^ characterised by burials after 

river Witham (J). ° ' 

the rites of inhumation. Their 

bronze sheaths were constructed and ornamented after the 

fashion of those of the short swords of the period, with 

which the larger specimens are sometimes confounded. 

One of the sheaths from the Thames, figured in ' Horse 

1 Op. cit., p. 68. 




Ferales ' (pi. xviii. fig. 3), and in the ' Archaeological Journal ' 
(vol. X. p. 259), has a strong resemblance to another found 
in the Thames, and figured in ' Archaeologia ' (vol. 54, p. 497). 

Horse-traf pings. — The mountings of horse-harness, rings, 
bridle-bits, &c., are of much importance in illustrating the 
Late Celtic culture of Britain, more especially the art of 
enamelling, which is known historically to have been prac- 
tised by the Celts of Western Europe. But as it would 
greatly exceed my limits to give a detailed rhumi of the 
numerous discoveries of this kind which have been put on 
record, I must confine myself to a bare statement of a few 
of the more important. 

At Polden Hill, near Bridgewater, the following objects 
were turned up by a man ploughing a field : three bosses 
of shields, fourteen bridle-bits, a nose ornament for a horse, a 
torque of iron with bronze wire, a large number of rings 
and ornamented plates of bronze, some being decorated 
with enamel.^ 

At Hagbourn Hill, Berkshire, several oblong pits were ex- 
posed at a depth of about 4 feet, and in one of them there 
was a circular excavation containing two bronze bridle-bits, 
some rings with bronze knobs on an iron plate, a bronze 
celt, and two javelin-heads. Two silver coins are also said 
to have been found with these objects.^ 

In a pit \yithin the intrenchments at Stanwick, Yorkshire, 
at a depth of about 5 feet, were found bridle -bits, rings, 
plates, fragments of repoussi work, portions of iron chain- 
mail, a sword-sheath, and other fragments having traces of 
enamel on them. Adjacent to these were the tyres of chariot 

On the opening of a barrow at Arras, Yorkshire, the 

' Archseologia,- vol. 14, p. 90. "^ Ibid., vol. 16, p. 348. 

' Arch. Institute, York Vol., p. 10. 



following objects were found in a circular cist cut down 
to a depth of i ^ foot in the chalky rock : two chariot 
wheels, one on each side of a human skeleton lying supine, 
the heads of two wild boars, and some horse bones, near 
which were two bridle-bits made of iron, and plated with 
bronze. The diameter of the wheel tyres was 2 feet 

1 1 inches. Another 
barrow in the same 
group at Hessleskew 
contained the remains 
of wheels, a bridle-bit, 
a fibula, and other 
objects. 1 

At Saham Toney, in 
Norfolk, five rings and 
two enamelled orna- 
ments were discovered.^ 
At Westhall, near 
Halesworth, Suffolk, a 
number of rings, some 
being enamelled, were associated with " a bronze lamp of 
good Roman workmanship." ^ 

At Hamden Hill, Somersetshire, several human skeletons, 
tyres of wheels, lance- and arrow-heads of iron, and some 
bronze objects were found.* 

As examples of the enamelling of these harness ornaments, 
I have given a couple of pen - and - ink sketches from the 
coloured illustrations in ' Horse Ferales.' One (fig. 150), from 
Westhall in Suffolk, shows the enamelled portion darker, so as 
to bring out at a glance the elegant spiral scrolls. The other 

^ Arch. Institute, York Vol., p. 26 ; and Crania Britannica, pi. vii. 

'•^ Norfolk Arch,, vol, ii. p, 400, 

' Archfeologia, vol, 36, p. 454, ■* Ibid., vol. 21, p, 39, 

Fig. 150. — Enamelled ringj Wesihallj 
Suffolk (J). 



(fig. 151) was found at Norton, also in Suffolk, and shows 
two coloured enamels, the small circles being bright yellow 
and the dark portion 

These harness mount- 
ings, both with and with- 
out enamelling, are not 
unknown in Scotland. 
Sir Herbert Maxwell 
describes one specimen, 
found by a drainer at 
Auchendolly, Kirkcud- 
brightshire, which shows 
a design in yellow and 

red enamel not unlike ^^^" "^5^" — Enamelled ornament for harness^ 
' Norton, Suffolk (J). 

that from Westhall just 

mentioned.^ A round button-like object, ornamented with a 
setting of red enamel, was found in the broch at Torwoodlee, 
associated with a bronze har- 
ness ring and some Roman 
pottery and glass." A circular 
ornament picked up on the 

exposed bed of the Loch of h-r^^^^^^^^iJ^^) \^^l 
Do Walton (fig. 152) has 
trumpet-shaped spaces which 
appear to have been filled 
with enamel. 

Bridle-bits of Late Celtic 

workmanship have been re- ^'-^g- -^i^-— Ornament found in Loch of 

Do-walton (2 inches diameter). 

corded from various localities 

in Scotland and Ireland. One well-known specimen, found 

in a moss at Birrenswark (fig. 153) more than a century 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot, vol. xx. p. 396. - Ibid., vol. xxvi, p. 81. 



ago, and now preserved in 
the National Museum in 
Edinburgh, exhibits this 
style of art both in enamel 
and metal work. It is 
figured and described by 
Dr J. A. Smith, along with 
a couple of bronze rings 
from a cairn at Towie, 

In the year 1737 two 
bridle-bits, rings, and other 
ornaments, apparently the 
harness furniture for a 
couple of horses, were found 
in a moss at Middlesby, 
Annandale. The find is 
described by Sir D. Wilson,^ 
who compares them with 
the analogous antiquities 
found at Stanwick, in 
Northumberland, with which 
" they are nearly identical 
in type." "The bridle- 
bits," he remarks, "though 
plainer than the one found 
at Birrenswark, are of the 
same type, and one of them 
corresponds to it in the 

1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv, 

p. 320- 

IT- r, ■ „ ,-, ^ J ■ ^ Prehistoric Annals, vol. ii. P- 

V\g. \z^-^.—Bndle-bit found m a moss i'c"" > 

at Birrenswark, Dumfriesshire (6^ ^S"- 

incites in length). 


want of uniformity of the two rings : designed, as has been 
suggested, for use by the charioteer with a pair of horses, 
where the more ornamental ring would be worn on the 
outside, and fully exposed to view." 

While discussing the subject of ancient enamelling, I may 
as well dispose of the few remaining specimens of this art 
found in Scotland. A hollow bronze disc, i}i inch in 
diameter, apparently some kind of mounting, having a central 
dot of yellow enamel surrounded by concentric circles in red 
enamel, was found by Dr Angus Smith while excavating in 
the vitrified fort of Dun Mac Uisneachan.^ 

Perhaps the finest specimen of enamelled work known to 
have been found in Scotland is a bronze cup, or patera, 
from Linlithgowshire, and described in the Proceedings of 
the Society of Antiquaries (vol. xix. p. 45). The form is 
that of an ordinary Roman patera in bronze, ornamented 
in enamel of blue, red, and green colours, and forming a 
combination of elegant patterns of a wreath, a floriated scroll, 
and bands with serrated edges. It carries a flat handle, 3^ 
inches in length, and the bowl measures 4j^ inches in diam- 
eter and 2j^ inches deep. Similar vessels have been found 
only in the Celtic area of Western Europe; and of three 
other specimens known to exist, two were found in England 
— one at Braughing, in East Herts, and the other at Bart- 
low, in Essex. The third specimen was dug up in a moss at 
Malbeck, in Denmark. 

Personal Ornaments. — Torques of Late Celtic art, or frag- 
ments of them, are recorded in .' Horse Ferales ' as having been 
discovered in the following localities in England : a bronze 
torque formed of two portions united by iron tenons, one flat 
and the other composed of eleven wreathed beads, found in a 
stone quarry in the parish of Rochdale, Lancashire ; another 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xix. p. 248. 


of a similar type was found between limestone flags on a moor 
above Embsay, near Skipton, Yorkshire ; a portion of a bronze 
torque resembling the vertebrae of a fish is recorded from 
Perdeswell, near Worcester ; a bronze torque weighing 2 lb. 
12^ ounces, ornamented with wavy patterns and sockets for 
gems, found near Tower House, Wraxal, Somersetshire ; 
fragments of a bronze collar similar to the last -mentioned, 
found at Trenoweth, in Cornwall. 

A few torques of Late Celtic art have also been discovered 
in Scotland. A beautiful specimen of the Beaded Torque was 
found, enclosed in a bronze bowl, by a labourer while cutting 
turf in Lochar Moss, Dumfriesshire. As shown on figure 4, 
it consists of (i) a soHd piece highly ornamented, and (2) 
fourteen ribbed beads, with a smaller bead separating each 
pair, like the vertebral bones of a fish. " The beads," writes 
Sir Daniel Wilson,^ " are disconnected, having apparently 
been strung upon a metal wire, as was the case in another 
example found in the neighbourhood of Worcester. A waved 
ornament chased along the outer edge of the solid piece 
seems to have been designed in imitation of a cord, — the last 
tradition, as it were, of the string with which the older neck- 
lace of shale or jet was secured. Altogether, this example of 
the class of neck ornaments styled Beaded Tores furnishes 
an exceedingly interesting illustration of the development of 
initiative design, in contradistinction to the more simple and 
archaic funicular tore, which, though continued in use down 
to a late period, pertains to the epoch of primitive art." 

Another torque of the same.type, but in fragments, has been 
recently found on a crannog near the town of Lanark (fig. 
154). The back portion, which was apparently an iron rod, 
is almost entirely decomposed, and only small fragments of 
it remain ; but several of the beads, which are enveloped in 

^ Prehistoric Annals, vol. ii. p. 141. 



rust of iron and bronze, have been recovered. They were 
strung together by means of an iron wire which passed 
through a small rectangular hole in the centre of each bead. 

Fig. 154. — Portion of beaded torque found on the Hyndford Crannog (f). 

The ribbed beads have alternating with them thinner and 
smaller beads precisely similar to the Lochar moss specimen. 

A bronze collar (fig. 155) was discovered in 1747, about 
7 feet below the sur- 
face, while digging a 
well, at the east end 
of the village of 
Stitchel, in Rox- 
burghshire. Its or- 
namentation, which 
is highly character- 
istic of Late Celtic 

art, is analogous to F\g. t^c,.— Bronze collar found near Stitchel. Rox- 
1 , 1 bitrghshire [greatest diajneter, 7^ inches), 

armlet found in 1826, near Plunton Castle, Kirkcudbrightshire 
(fig. 156). Both these relics open by means of a hinge and 
are closed by a pin clasp. '^ 

Two massive bronze armlets, found on the farm of Pit- 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. pp. 348, 351. 



kelloney, near Muthill, Perthshire, and now in the British 
Museum, show a broad coiled pattern with oval medallions of 
red and yellow enamel at both ends.^ 

The Pitkelloney armlets belong to a type which is peculiar 
to Scotland, and of which many specimens have been found 
in different parts of the country. They consist of a solid 
casting of bronze, smooth on the inner surface and embossed 
on the outer by running scrolls in high relief. They are pen- 
annular and more or less oval in shape, with ends rounded, 
slightly expanded, and perforated with a circular opening for 

Fig. 156. — Bronze armlet found in tJie parisk of Borgue^ Kirkcudbright (^). 

an enamel disc, The decoration usually takes the form of 
three convex and parallel bands ornamented with trumpet- 
shaped elevations, and connected by oblique ridges. 

Dr J. A. Smith, who has written an elaborate account of 
these remarkable armlets,^ recognised some differences in 
their ornamental details sufficient to entide him to classify 
them into two varieties, which he distinguishes as the "oval" 
and the " spiral " patterns. In the former the outer band is 
a continuous link which closely surrounds the central band, 

' Archnsologia, vol. 28, p. 435. 

- I'roc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv. p. 316. 



except at the vacant end spaces (fig. 157). In the other 
"the design is a spiral starting from one side and passing 
round the opposite medallion, then recurved back and passing 

Fig. 157. — Bronze armlet found at Auchenbadie, Alvah, Banffshire (J). 

round the other medallion and then back again, and termin- 
ating as at the other end." 

To the latter class the Pitkelloney specimens belong, as 
well as one of two reported to have been found many years 
ago at Bunrannoch, Perthshire. Another armlet of this 
variety was found by a man while digging a field near Sea- 
field Tower, between Kinghorn and Kirkcaldy, in Fife (fig. 



158). To the same group also belong some fragments of 
an armlet preserved in the Perth Museum, as well as the only 
specimen discovered out of Scotland. This latter was found 
near Newry, Co. Down, Ireland, by a man digging into a 

Fig. 158. — Bronze armlet found near Seafield Tower, Fife (^). 

bank of earth, and is now in the Museum of the Royal 
Irish Academy. 

Specimens of the oval pattern have been found in the 
following localities : a pair was discovered in an earth-house 
in the garden of Castle-Newe, Aberdeenshire (fig. 159); one 
was ploughed up in a field on the farm of Mains of Auchen- 
badie (fig. 157), parish of Alvah, Banffshire, and presented 
to the National Museum in 1864. A pair was found about 
6 feet under the surface on the links of Drumside, parish of 



Belhelvie, Aberdeenshire. Three were found near Aboyne, 
while ploughing ground which apparently had not been be- 
fore broken up. But perhaps the most important discovery 
was in 1876. Mr Lindsay, the tenant of the farm of Stan- 
hope, Peeblesshire, while searching for a rabbit beneath a 

Fig. 159. — Bronze armlets found at Castle-Kerwe, Aberdeenshire 
{5^ inches in greatest diameter). 

large flat stone, found an armlet, of the kind now under dis- 
cussion, which is of special significance, inasmuch as it was 
associated with two other bronze relics — viz., a buckle and a 
Roman saucepan. 

The spiral variety of these armlets is regarded as a transi- 
tion link between the oval pattern and the spiral snake-like 



armlets, which are of the same style of art but showing a 
more decided zoomorphic character. A magnificent armlet 
of this latter class was picked up in 1827 on the Culbin 
sands. Another was found as long ago as 1 7 3 2 at Pitalpin, 
near Dundee, but unfortunately no history of the discovery 
has been transmitted — a remark which applies to a third 
example now in the National Museum. With regard to a 
fourth, however, the circumstances of the discovery are most 

instructive (fig. 160), It 
was found in an earth- 
house at Grange of Conan, 
near Arbroath, a fact 
which brings it on the 
chronological horizon of 
the massive bronze arm- 
lets, a pair of which, as 
already mentioned, was 
found in a similar under- 
ground dwelling at Castle- 
Newe, Aberdeenshire. Dr 

Fig. z6o.-B>-on.e spiral armlet jound at j_ ^^ gj^^j^^, in his deSCrip- 
Grange of Conan, near Arbroath (2K 
inctus internal diameter). tion of the snake - like 

armlets,! comments on it 
thus : " It is of the same general form and style of orna- 
ment as the others, — a snake -like creature, terminating 
in zoomorphic or conventional style of head at each of 
its extremities, with well-marked transverse lines crossing 
the body, the rest being ornamented by a double cord 
pattern running along the centre of the spiral band, in 
a groove, towards the heads; where there are also longi- 
tudinal and stronger oblique and transverse projections or 
terminal ornaments." This specimen has one of the heads 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xv. p. 350. 


broken off, but in all other respects it has the special char- 
acters of the group. In the same locality were found the 
following objects : a bronze ring 3 yl inches in diameter, a 
needle of bronze 2 inches long, some broken stone and 
earthen vessels, bones of animals, &c. To this class may 
also be assigned the fine bracelet (fig. 161) found at Barhullion, 
Wigtownshire, and included in the valuable collection of 

Fig. 161. — Snake-headed armlet from Barhullion, Wigtownshire {^). 

antiquities presented to the National Museum by Sir Herbert 

Harp-shaped and other characteristic fibulae of the Late 
Celtic period have been occasionally met with both in Britain 
and Ireland. Three from the latter country are engraved in 
'Horae Ferales' (PI. xxi. figs. 1-3), and others in Wilde's 
Catalogue of the Royal Irish Academy, of which three speci- 
mens are here figured (figs. 162, 163, and 164). One fine 
example from a Yorkshire barrow, and associated with the 
remains of a chariot, is figured in ' Crania Britannica.' A 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxiii. p. 151. 



few have been found in Scotland, and are now preserved in 
the National Collection — notably two from the valley of the 

Forth, one of which, found 
near Falkirk (fig. 165), clearly 
discloses its relationship to 
Hallstatt types. 

Some bowl - shaped bronze 
dishes were found in one of 

Y\g.^b^.-Bronze fibula found in ^^^^^ ^^ ^j-^g^. inhumation 

Ireland (|). ° 

at Birdlip, near Bristol,^ which, 
judging from the objects associated with them, leave no doubt 
that they belong to this period. A bronze bowl, 9 inches in 

Fig. 163. — Bronze fibula -with snake's head found in Ireland (^ 

diameter, lay inverted over the face of a skeleton ; and among 
the other contents of the cist were a smaller bowl of bronze, 

Fig. 164. — Bronze fibula found on crannog of Ardakillen, Ireland {^. 

a mirror ornamented with characteristic Late Celtic designs, a 
harp-shaped fibula of silver plated with gold, a bracelet, a key- 

■^ Proc. Bristol and Gloucester Arch. Soc. , vol. v. p. 137. 


handle, some beads of jet and amber, &c. The smaller bowl 
is very similar to one found in the Glastonbury lake-village. 
In regard to the other bowl which is described as covering 
the face of the skeleton, it may be of interest to mention that 
similar instances of covering the head have been noticed in 
the tumuli of Glasinac in Bosnia.^ 

Late Celtic ornamentation has also been noticed on a series 
of spoon-like objects found in England and Ireland. A pair 
of these peculiar objects was found in excavating a quarry at 
Weston, near Bath ; and another pair was disinterred in a 
railway cutting in the parish of Llanfair, Denbighshire. One 

Fig. 165. — Bronze fibula found near Falkirk {§). 

found in London is in the British Museum, two found near 
Cardigan are in the Ashmolean Museum, and two pairs are in 
the Museum of the Royal Irish Academy. These and others 
of the kind are described, and their purpose discussed, by Mr 
Albert Way ^ and the Rev. E. L. Barnwell.^ 

Among sporadic finds of Late Celtic art may be noticed a 
curious ornament of bronze, with inlaid encrinite stem, found 
in Northamptonshire, and preserved in the Museum of North- 
ampton (fig. 166). To the same period, but probably of 
earlier date, may be referred the bronze caldrons found es- 
pecially in Scotland and Ireland. See figs. 1-3, pp. 38-40. 

1 Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, &c., p. 142 and fig. 37. 

^ Arch. Journal, vol. xxvi. p. 52. 

^ Archaeologia Cambrensis, vol. viii., 3rd Series, p. 208, and vol. x. p, 57. 



Fig. 166. — Front, dack, and side views of a Late Celtic bronze ornament 
found in Northa^nptonshire (^). 



Special Fitids of the Late Celtic Period. 

Four parcels containing a number of bronze objects 
wrapped in cloth were turned up in draining a bog half a 
mile from the manse of Balma- 
clellan, Kirkcudbrightshire. The 
drains were from 2^ to 3 feet in 
depth, and the objects appear to 
have been found at the bottom of 
one of them, associated with an or- 
namental upper stone of a quern- 
mill (fig. 167). Among the bronze 
objects were a circular mirror (fig. 
169), 8 inches in diameter, with 
a handle 3 inches long, and a 
number of peculiarly shaped plaques. The lower end of 
the handle of the mirror contains three semilunar openings, 

Fig. 167. — upper stone of a 
qitern found at Bahnaclel- 
lan, Kirkcudbrightshire (i 
inches in diameter). 

Figs. 168, 169, — Bronze mirror a7id crescent-shaped ornavuntj Bahnaclellan. 

and at its junction with the disc there is a highly orna- 
mented plate (fig. 170). A large crescentic collar-shaped 
■object, 2 inches wide, is decorated with incised scrolls of the 




usual Late Celtic patterns (fig. 168). Of the smaller plaques 
some are plain bands, others are triangular in shape, with 

Fig. 170. — Ornamental plate of tliin bronze at the Junction of the handle to the 
mirror found at Balniaclellan {^), 

one straight and two concave sides, and they contain small 
holes as if they had been pinned on to something.'- 

A cemetery was investigated in 1865 at Mount Batten, near 

Plymouth, which yielded 
Late Celtic remains. The 
graves were dug to a depth 
of 4 to 4j^ feet, three- 
fourths of which had been 
excavated in the rock un- 
derlying the surface soil. 
Among the relics found 
in them were fragments 
of wheel-made pottery and 
of glass vessels, bronze 
ornaments — fibulae (fig. 
171), armlets (fig. 172), 
and rings — a pair of iron shears, an iron dagger in a bronze 
sheath, a bronze mirror 8 inches in diameter, and portions 
of the handles of other similar mirrors (fig. 173). The 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. iv. pp. 294, 417. 

Fig. 171. — Back and side views of a bronze 
fibula^ Moicnt Batten^ Plyviouth {§). 


back of the mirror had been decorated with engraved designs 
of spiral scrolls formed by diverging and converging lines, the 
spaces thus enclosed being filled with hatching. ^ 

Another series of graves was encountered in the course of 
making a road at Trelan 
Bahow, in the parish of 
St Keverne, Cornwall, in 
which similar remains 
were discovered. In this 
case the graves were stone 
cists made of six slabs 
set on edge, one at each end and two on either side, and 
covered with large stones. In one of these cists a bronze 
mirror, some rings, fragments of fibulae, beads of variegated 

Fig. 172. — Bronze arinlet opening by a 
hinge, Mount Batten {§). 

Fig. 173. — Handles of bronze mirrors, Mount Batten (§). 

glass, and other ornaments were found. The mirror (6 
inches in diameter) retains its handle, and is ornamented 
on the back with Late Celtic ornamentation of the same 
style as that on the other mirrors (fig. 174)-^ 
1 Archseologia, vol. 40, p. 500. - Arch. Journal, vol. xxx. p. 268. 



In 1894, during excavations on the site of ^sica — one of 
the camps on the Roman wall about half-way between New- 
castle and Carlisle — two remarkable fibulae were found among 
the rubbish accumulated within the western guard-chamber 

Fig. 174. — Bronze mirror from St Keverne, Cornwall [6 btclies in diajiieter). 

of the south gate, which Mr Arthur Evans claims to be 
products of Late Celtic work of the second century of 
our era.^ 

To the ready pen of the same author we are indebted 
for the description of another remarkable hoard found by 
' Archceologia, vol. 55, p. 179. 


a man ploughing near the sea on the north-west coast of 
Ireland. "The objects, which are all of gold, consist of a 
small boat with rowing benches and a place for a mast, 
miniature yards, oars, a grappling-iron, and other implements ; 
a bowl, apparently intended for suspension from four rings ; 
two chains of very fine fabric ; two twisted gold neck-rings, 
one of them broken ; and a hollow gold collar with repouss^ 
work designs, beyond question the most magnificent object 
of its kind ever discovered." This hoard Mr Evans assigns 
to the first century of our era." ^ 

Canon Greenwell ^ explored a group of four barrows in the 
parish of Cowlam, Yorkshire, which proved to be of the 
Early Iron Age, and of about the same period as those 
previously opened at Arras and Hessleskew, already referred 
to. These graves and their contents are of extreme in- 
terest as showing the method of interment and general 
culture prevalent in Late Celtic times, of which hitherto no 
parallels have been found in Scotland. They contained un- 
cremated bodies ; and, associated with a female skeleton in 
one barrow, were a bronze armlet, a fibula, and seventy glass 
beads of a blue colour with a zigzag pattern in white. The 
original pin of the fibula, which seems to have been of 
bronze, had been replaced by an iron pin. In another barrow 
there was a beautiful armlet like those found at Arras.^ All 
these ornaments belong to types which are represented at 
Hallstatt or La Tene. 

"There was nothing in these four barrows," writes Mr 
Greenwell, "to show that they belonged to a period different 
from that of the ordinary class, so many of which have been 
already described, except the glass beads, the fibula, and the 
armlets ; the occurrence of the bones of the horse is also 

^ Archseologia, vol. 55, p. 397. ^ British Barrows, p. 208. 

' See British Barrows, figs. 1 10- 1 13. 


unusual, though it has occasionally been met with in the bar- 
rows. The bodies were in the contracted position so universal 
throughout the burials of the wolds ; the usual accompani- 
ments of charcoal, flint chippings, and potsherds were found 
here also ; and, although the pottery was of a different ware 
from that of which the common cinerary urns, ' food vessels,' 
and ' drinking-cups ' are made, yet I have met with the same 
kind of hard, well - baked, dark - coloured, plain pottery in 
barrows of the ordinary kind. The holes, too, were like 
those which have been so often noticed, except that one 
had been made use of for lighting a large fire in, and that 
they contained more animal bones, potsherds, and chippings 
of flint than perhaps is common. Had the bodies occurred 
without the necklace, fibula, or armlets, I should not have 
hesitated the least about classing these four barrows with 
the other barrows in the immediate vicinity, which were of 
the time of Stone, or more probably of Bronze, and con- 
tained implements of flint and earthenware vessels of the 
ordinary round barrow type." ^ 

In 1886, in the course of removing the surface-earth above 
a gravel and sand pit at Aylesford in Kent, the following 
relics were discovered : a wooden pail or situla, with a bronze 
band ornamented with Late Celtic designs ; a bronze jug 
cenochoi ; a long-handled pan and two fibulae, also of bronze, 
together with calcined bones and fragments of pottery. " These 
objects were discovered in what had been a round burial-pit, 
about 31^ feet deep, the sides and bottom of which had 
been coated with a kind of chalky compound. The bronze 
sihila contained burnt bones and the fibula, the bronze vase 
and pan lying outside it, while around were the remains of 
several earthenware urns, some of which had been used as 
cineraries." The discovery, fortunately, came under the 

^ See British Barrows, p. 211. 


notice of Mr A. J. Evans, who, recognising the arch^ological 
importance of these objects, lost no time in making a full 
inquiry into the circumstances. The result of his researches 
was a comprehensive paper " On a Late Celtic Urn - Field 
at Aylesford," which appeared in 1890. ^ The conclusion 
to which Mr Evans comes, after a wide comparison of 
Continental ceramics, is that the Aylesford urns are " the 
derivatives of North Italian, and, in a marked degree, old 
Venetian prototypes." 

The ornamentation on the upper of three bronze bands 
or hoops, which encircled the wooden staves of the pail, 
was almost identical with designs on sword-sheaths found 
in Oppidum La Tene, especially the famous one with three 
fantastic animals, like those so frequently represented on 
Gallic coins, and so well known to readers of lake-dwelling 
literature.^ Th&JibuIce (figs. 175 and 176) were also La Tene 
types. Another relic found in one of the graves at Ayles- 
ford was a double- handled tankard, which, in its art and 
style of manufacture, can be precisely paralleled, not only 
with the pail above referred to, but with another tankard 
(fig. 177) discovered in a cremation burial at Elveden, Essex. 
The bronze plates of the latter are ornamented with medal- 
lions in repoussi, containing triquetral designs of unmistakable 
Late Celtic art. But for further details of these remarkable 
discoveries I must refer readers to Mr Evans's elaborate 
article on the subject. 

Hunsbury, or Danes' Camp, is situated about two miles 
south-west of the town of Northampton, on elevated ground 
commanding extensive views of the surrounding country. 
Close by it runs an ancient road or trackway connecting 

^ ArchjEologia, vol. 52. 

'^ See Lee's 2nd ed. of Keller's Lake-Dwellings, PI. cxxviii., No. 6 ; and 
Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 87, No. 9. 



it with the camp at Arberry Hill, and other British camps. 
The camp is oval, or rather egg-shaped (560 feet by 445 feet), 
and covers about 4 acres of arable land, besides the " scarp. 

f * 



Fig. 175. — T%m views of a fibzcla from Aylesfordj Kent (^). 

fosse, and counterscarp, which together occupy about i^ 
acre." The ditch is 50 to 65 feet wide, and on an average 
1 5 feet deep, but it has got filled up to the extent of 5 feet 




Fig. -L-jt.— Fibula from urn-f,eld at Aylesford, Kent {\). 

from its bottom. The dyke, which lies on the inner side of 
the ditch, looks loftier than it did previous to the excavations, 
as the ironstone bed, from 10 to 14 feet deep, has now been 



removed from its inner area. It was during this industrial 
operation that the antiquities hereafter referred to were discov- 
ered. Sir Henry Dryden, in his excellent account of these 
discoveries, with eight plates of illustrations, ^ thus describes 

/ '-.If ! -■' ' 1 

I '/zi-^ 




Fig, 177. — Tankard with bronze mounting frovi Elveden, Essex 
(6% inches in diameter). 

the circumstances under which the rehcs were found : — 

" Over the whole area of the camp were found, at a few 
feet or yards apart, pits sunk to the bottom, or nearly to the 
bottom, of the 6 feet or 7 feet of soil. These pits varied from 

' Associated Arch. Soc. Reports, vol. xviii. pp. 53-61. 


5 feet to I o feet in diameter, rudely circular in form, and nearly 
perpendicular as to their sides. They were distinguishable 
by being full of black mould. In them most of the remains 
hereafter described were found. In scarcely any instance did 
they penetrate the ironstone. In all there must have been 
over 300 of these pits. About six or seven of these pits were 
walled with small flat stones, chiefly limestone. The enclosed 
diameter of them was about 5 feet. These pits were evidently 
for the reception of refuse of various kinds. When a pit had 

been used for a time it was filled 

JiSSS^TTTTTT^^yy^ "P ^"^^ another one made ; so 
.4^«S^><^ ^~;:1 that only a small portion of those 

/rx \ -^ \ found were open at any one 

;';■ •" ' ■■• - I time. 

/> - i. y' / "There is no reason to sup- 

,,^ , - ,. ( f < f_f<-,-.'^ --~/ pose that the remains found at 

'* ' y Hunsbury differ widely in date 

X from each other, and, if so, 

' -...,^,,,.1*^ probably the occupiers were also 

Fig. 178. —Fragment of pottery the constructors of the camp. 

from Hunsbury Camp (about Unfortunately we have no coins 

for guides. The pottery is not 

decisive. The scabbards are of forms said to be Saxon, 

whilst the ornament is said to be Celtic." 

For the privilege of inspecting these antiquities I am in- 
debted to the courtesy of Mr T. J. George, who freely exposed 
the objects I was interested in. In glancing over the collec- 
tion, I found it contained fragments of pottery representing a 
large number of vessels of different forms and sizes — some 
fragments (fig. 178) having a strong resemblance to Late 
Celtic pottery from the Glastonbury lake- village — portions 
of 150 querns, some charred corn, a few glass beads, bronze 
fibute and rings, spindle whorls, long-handled combs, clay 



supports, perforated loom weights and triangular bricks, sawn 
portions of deer-horn, bone and horn handles, &c. (fig. 1 7 9). 
A considerable quantity of bones was found, chiefly in the 

Fig. 179. — Various objects found in Hunsbury Camp^ Northampton. 

I, Iron dagger ; 2 and 3, Long-handled combs of bone ; 4, Iron saw with portion of 
handle ; 5, 6, and 7, Fibulae more or less fragmentary (all J). 

pits, comprising those of human beings, shorthorn cattle, 
red and roe deer, goat, pig, and sheep. 

Prior to the discovery of the remarkable relics at Lisna- 
croghera, there were only a few fragments of scabbards rec- 
ognised in Ireland as belonging to weapons of Late Celtic 



work, among them being two chapes of sword- sheaths, one 
of which is said to have been found in County Galway.^ 
The rehcs of special interest from Lisnacroghera consist of 
four more or less perfect bronze sheaths, ornamented with 
characteristic Late Celtic designs (fig. 147^); four iron 
swords, only one being in good condition (PI. VI. No. i), 
1 9 J4 inches long, and another still in its sheath ; an iron 
spear-head i6J^ inches long (No. 3); the bronze knobs 

Fig. 180. — Bronze caldron foitnd in Carlingwark Loch. 

of seven or eight lance-shafts (Nos. 28, 29, 30) and their 
ferrules (Nos. 23, 24, 25); various bronze mountings, one 
ornamented with the triskele and another with the swastika, 
supposed to be shield ornaments ; also various beads and 
a coiled bracelet (No. 15). 

The only important hoard of the Iron Age as yet found in 
Scotland was a collection of implements and tools contained 
in a bronze caldron (fig. 180), which was dredged up in 1866 
from Carlingwark Loch, Kirkcudbrightshire. This caldron 

^ Hor«e Ferales, PI. xvii. 

^ For designs on tlie othei- sheaths, see ' Lake -Dwellings of Europe,' 
p. 381. 

Nos. 4, 5, and io=K, the rest=K real size. 



is of the same type as the caldrons previously noticed and 
assigned to the late Celtic period, but its clouted appearance 
would suggest that it had been long in use. In it were found 
the following articles (fig. i8i): an adze, 7 inches in length 

Fig. 181. — Objects in the caldron found in Carlingwark Loch. 

(fig. i); three axe-heads, 4^ to 5^ inches in length (2, 
3, 4) ; four small picks or hammers from 6 to 7 ^ inches 
in length (5) ; a broken portion of a hammer - head, and 
another with flattened ends (6); portion of a small saw, 6^ 


inches in length, with part of the wooden handle still riveted 
to the iron (7); portion of a fine cut saw, 2^ inches long; 
nine portions of double-edged blades, with pointed extrem- 
ities resembling sword-points ; nails of various lengths, one 
with a square head and a cross marked on each side (8); 
a small chisel, 5 inches long, and portion of another ; three 
punches about 5 inches in length (9) ; four split bats with 
eyes (10 and 11); two large holdfasts; six hooks, varying 
in size from 2^^ to 5 inches in length (12); an iron buckle 
(13); two handles with loops, apparently of a bucket (14, 
15, and 16); wooden handle (17); an iron implement (18); 
an iron tripod (19); an iron frame with numerous bars like a 
gridiron, having two feet, the other two apparently awanting ; 
five pieces of iron handles (20); a snafHe horse-bit, with 
check-ring 3 inches in diameter (21); a file, 9^ inches in 
length ; and fragments of iron plates and hoops ; portion of 
a bronze vessel, 4 inches in diameter and 3 inches in height ; 
ornamented bronze handle (2 2) ; portions of chain-mail formed 
of small rings ; portions of green glass — one piece, 3 by 2 
inches, has in relief the letters A and I, which may be a 
portion of M or some other letter.^ 

Among objects which do not readily fall under any system 
of classification may be mentioned an ornamental bronze ball 
(fig. 182) found in Lanarkshire. Its surface is divided into 
six discs, each of which is decorated by a spiral groove with 
a zoomorphic ending, and separated from each other by 
deeply hollowed grooves. This object is usually paralleled 
with the ornamented stone balls previously noticed. 

In casting the eye over the distribution of Late Celtic 
remains, as shown in the previous sketch, the following 
deductions may be noted : — 

I. The presence of querns and long -handled combs in 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 7. 



the Glastonbury lake-village and in the Hunsbury camp, asso- 
ciated with the dibris of continued occupancy in which no 
characteristic Roman remains are found, points to a pre- 
Roman civilisation probably due to an immigration of Belgic 
or Gaulish tribes. 

2. Such relics (querns and long-handled combs) are found 
in crannogs and brochs in North Britain associated with 
sporadic remains of both Late Celtic and Roman civilisations, 
thus indicating a later or post-Roman date. 

Fig. 182. — Bronze ball found at IValslon, Lanarkshire ( j). 

3. Objects characteristic of the Late Celtic civilisation in 
Southern Britain, such as enamelled horse-trappings, articles 
of military equipments, mirrors, brooches, bracelets, and 
torques, are but sparingly found in Scotland and Ireland. 
And as no settlements or cemeteries of the period have been 
found in Britain farther north than Yorkshire, nor in any part 
of Ireland, it is suggested that the products of this special 
culture and civilisation spread to these regions by means of 
commercial and social intercourse, rather than by an immigra- 
tion of a new race. 




HEN man's thoughtfulness reached the 
stage of his being able to realise, by 
the power of reflection and experience, 
that physical death is the fate of all 
living things, nothing seems more natural 
than that he should come to regard the 
mysterious manifestations of his material surroundings as the 
work of the shadowy agents of an unseen world, the reality 
of which was so forcibly and frequently brought before 
him in dreams and other psychological phenomena. In the 
supernatural system thus conjured up, the momentous ter- 
mination of his own earthly career became the central pivot 
of a religious cult which presaged the continuation of his 
spiritual existence — his alter Ego or ghost — in the world 
of spirits. The idea that death was a severance, for ever, 
of all social ties and friendships formed on earth would be, 
probably, more repugnant to Neolithic man than to some 
of the philosophical minds of the present day. To him, 
death seems to have been nothing more than the mere portal 
which conducted into the community of departed heroes and 
friends, and to which he looked forward, across the span 


of human life, with hopeful anticipations of a more perfect 
state of existence. When, and by what means, this higher 
phase of humanity, which led him on to the rails of religios- 
ity, assumed the mastery over the mere animal propensities 
which he inherited from the organic world, are questions which 
it would be out of place here to discuss. But, whatever these 
influences and moulding agencies may have been, we have strong 
presumptive evidence for believing that when prehistoric man 
first appeared within the geographical limits of what is now 
called Scotland, he was in the true sense of the word a reli- 
gious being. Already his belief in the supernatural and in 
his own future destinies had powerfully moulded his conduct 
in life. When a great man died we have reason to believe 
that his favourite wives, slaves, and pet animals were sacrificed 
on his grave so as to accompany him in his journey to the 
future world. His weapons, ornaments, and other cherished 
objects, as well as suitable viands for the journey, were laid 
in his tomb — all of which facts are incompatible with 
any other theory than that it was then the current opinion 
that life in the world beyond the grave varied little from that 
on earth. Consequently, in actual life the abodes of the dead 
came to be of far more importance than those of the living. 
In support of this we have the singular fact that whilst 
hundreds of the former are found scattered over Europe, there 
are but the faintest indications of the latter. The houses, 
generally built of such perishable materials as wood, turf, or 
clay, soon crumbled into dust. On the other hand, the tomb 
was constructed of the most durable materials, and placed on 
an eminence, so as to be seen from afar, and to be a lasting 
memorial among succeeding generations. Thus we see pre- 
historic man inspired with hopes and convictions which 
carried his mental vision beyond the affairs of this life. The 
grave was, therefore, to a large extent, a reflex of current 


civilisation, and, as a tribute of respect to the departed, there 
were occasionally deposited in it the choicest art products of 
the age. The most natural method of protecting the remains 
of the dead, and of commemorating their deeds while in life, 
was by rearing a mound of stones or earth over the grave. 
To this custom we owe some of the most striking and lasting 
monuments in the world's history — the pyramids of Egypt, 
the topes and dagobas of India, the mighty mounds of Silbury 
and New Grange, the megalithic circles of Stonehenge, Ave- 
bury, and other hoary monuments which are so abundantly 
found scattered on the outskirts of Western Europe from 
Scandinavia to Africa. 

Sepulchral memorials are found under such varying condi- 
tions, as to structure and composition, that it is difficult to 
appropriate their physical characters as a basis of description. 
Another element which adds to the difficulty is the custom 
of cremation, which appears to have spread over the British 
Isles towards the close of its Stone Age, and to have initiated 
considerable changes in the manner of disposing of the dead. 
The body, reduced to a few handfuls of ashes and burnt bones, 
was sufficiently preserved in a clay urn, there being no longer 
any necessity for constructing great chambers. Hence sprung 
up a tendency to diminish the size of the abodes of the dead, 
even by those who still adhered to the earlier method of 
burial by inhumation. Some of the problems thus raised will 
be subsequently discussed. All I wish at present to emphasise 
is, that we have indisputable archseological evidence to show 
that, during the whole of the Bronze Age, both methods 
of disposing of the dead were practised within the British 
Isles apparently at the same time. 

Burials may, therefore, be classified in various ways, as, for 
example, according to whether the body had, or had not, been 
cremated. The unburnt body was deposited, either within a 


chamber constructed of stones and covered by a cairn or 
mound, leaving a permanent passage for future access to the 
chamber ; or in a stone cist, without an accessory passage, 
generally formed of slabs set on end, but only of dimen- 
sions sufficiently large to admit of the body in a doubled-up 
position, and then covered over with a mound of stones or 
earth ; or in a wooden coffin formed out of the trunk of a 
tree, similar to a dug-out canoe ; or simply in the bare earth, 
without any protecting envelope between it and the materials 
of the mound ; or, indeed, without a mound at all or any other 
external indications to mark the site. 

On the other hand, when the body was cremated the 
remains were usually placed in an urn, and deposited some- 
times in a chamber, sometimes in a cist, and sometimes in 
the bare earth. When no urn was used the incinerated re- 
mains were generally laid in a little heap, either in a chamber 
or on the floor of the tumulus. 

The external form of the mound or barrow has also given 
rise to a number of qualifying epithets, such as long, round, 
oval, or bell-shaped barrow, &c. 

Burial mounds, it may be noted, are called cairns when 
their material consists of small stones, and barrows when it 
consists of earth; but not unfrequently both materials were 
used in combination — a small cairn being often inside the 
earthen mound. Sometimes the mound was surrounded by 
a ditch, or a stone circle, or both ; and instances are on 
record in which one or both of these features were found 
within the area covered by the mound. Also an interment, 
whether by inhumation or cremation, may be found beneath 
the natural surface without any superincumbent mound, or 
any surface indications whatever. At other times, when the 
mound or cairn is absent, a standing stone, or a circle of 
stones, or a ditch, may indicate the site of a burial. 


The theory that long and round barrows contain respect- 
ively the remains of a long-headed and a round-headed race, 
which somehow has taken a singular hold on the minds of 
archffiologists since Dr Thurnam's time, seems to me too fan- 
ciful to have much significance attached to it. The idea 
appears to be based on an observation which has been fairiy 
well established as a fact — viz., that the skulls found in 
long barrows in England are those of a long-headed, or 
dolichocephalic, race (i.e., when the antero-posterior diameter 
stands to the transverse diameter in the proportion of about 
IOC to 75 or less), which preceded a brachycephalic race (i.e., 
when these diameters are as loo to 76 or more). But this 
is a mere coincidence arising from the structural character- 
istics of the grave, which, being generally a compound cham- 
ber, necessarily assumed an elongated form. These mega- 
lithic chambers could only be made of a certain breadth, not 
exceeding the length of stones available for covering them, 
and hence extension of the sepulchral chamber was most 
conveniently attained by adding to its length. The shape 
of the chamber generally determined the form of the barrow ; 
but whatever that might be, the skulls were usually those of 
the long-headed race. In chambers with cremated burials 
there are, of course, no means of determining the cranio- 
logical characters of the race. At any rate, the idea cannot 
for a moment be entertained that, in the construction of their 
sepulchral abodes, these people were in any way influenced 
by the shape of their heads, for in that case there would be 
no round barrows at all, as there is not, and never was, a 
human race with actually round heads. Nor is it a fact, as 
we shall afterwards see, that dolichocephalic and brachy- 
cephalic skulls are confined to long and round barrows 
respectively. The probability is that the constructors of 
dolmens and other chambered cairns, being the first on 


the field, continued- their sepulchral methods after they 
were joined by other races practising different methods, 
such as cremation, and that consequently a certain amount 
of intermingling of the various systems took place. 

As a rule the size of the mound, as well as the value of the 
grave-goods, was in proportion to the distinction of the in- 
dividual. This deference to social position accounts for the 
occasional isolation of sepulchral memorials, some of which 
may be seen here and there on conspicuous eminences com- 
manding extensive views of the surrounding neighbourhood. 
But, more frequently, cairns and mounds are found grouped 
together in the form of cemeteries, among which those repre- 
senting persons of distinction may be recognised by their 
greater dimensions. 

Thus, the concomitant circumstances through which we 
have to investigate the abodes of the dead are various, mak- 
ing it extremely difficult to trace any chronological sequence in 
their structural characteristics, independent of the character of 
the grave-goods. And this difficulty is increased by the over- 
lapping of different customs of burial due to the persistence 
of old methods in some out-of-the-way localities. Before, 
therefore, proceeding further with the general discussion on 
sepulchral remains, it will be necessary to give a few descrip- 
tive details of the characteristic methods of burial found with- 
in the Scottish area. 

In 187 1 Dr Angus Smith ^ explored a large chambered 
cairn on the farm of Achnacree, in the vicinity of Loch Etive. 
The cairn appeared to have been interfered with at some 
former time, when some of its stones had been removed and 
possibly an entrance to the chamber effected ; but, as it then 
stood, it was nearly circular in form, and measured 75 feet in 
diameter and 15 feet in height. A hole was dug from the 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ix. p. 396. 



top until a large stone was reached, which proved to be one of 
the roofing stones, and thus 'an entrance was effected. The 
interior consisted of a passage, 2 8 feet long, 2 feet wide, and 
2,% feet high, extending in a southward direction. Continu- 
ous and in line with this passage were three compartments, 
separated by walling, but connected by low doors. The first 
measured 6 feet in length, 4 feet in breadth, and 7 feet in 
height. Its lower part was constructed of massive slabs set 
on edge, and above this was dry-stone walling converging, on 
the beehive principle, till the diminished space (3 feet 4 
inches by i foot 10 inches) was closed in by one large cover- 
stone. The other two compartments were smaller, and 

Fig. 183. — Section of the cairn of Achnacree {7$ feet in diameter). 

covered over by lintels, as shown in the accompanying section 
(fig. 183). On the floor some fragments of urns and several 
groups of white pebbles were found.^ One urn was nearly 
entire, and measured 7 inches in diameter and 4 inches in 
depth. Its substance was hard, well baked, and of a darkish 
colour, and presented the peculiarity of having a wide mouth 
and a round bottom. Faint traces of perpendicular fluting 
were to be seen on its surface, but otherwise it had no 
ornamentation. These vertical scorings were more decided 
on some of the other fragments, all of which appear to be 
portions of vessels having round bottoms. One standing- 
stone close by suggested that the cairn had originally been 

^ On the occurrence of white pebbles in graves see a paper by Sir 
Arthur Mitchell (Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xviii. p. 286). 


surrounded by a stone circle, and about 30 feet beyond 
there were traces of an encircling ditch. 

A circumscribed district of Argyllshire, situated on the 
border of the Crinan Canal and including the parishes of 
Kilmartin and Kilmichael, is one of the richest in Scotland in 
prehistoric remains. Here are to be found several groups of 
standing stones, some bearing cup - marks and concentric 
circles ; various rock-surfaces sculptured with similar symbols ; 
numerous sepulchral cairns, stone circles, and cists with and 
without external mounds; a vitrified fort, &c. In 1864 
Canon Greenwell, the distinguished author of ' British Bar- 
rows/ explored several of the more prominent antiquities of 
this district,! among them being a large and very remarkable 
cairn on Largie farm, situated about 300 yards north-east of 
one of the series of standing stones. Originally this cairn was 
very large, having a diameter of 134 feet; but the greater 
part of the stones had been removed for making drains and 
walls many years ago, during which three cists were partially 
laid bare. These cists had been constructed in the usual 
way, by slabs set on edge with a large stone cover, and placed 
at considerable distances from the centre. In one of them 
there was found a globular urn, highly ornamented over the 
whole of its surface, except the bottom, and measuring 3^ 
inches high, 4}^ inches wide at the mouth, and 5^ inches at 
the middle ; but there were no remains of the body, " which 
had, no doubt, been an unburnt one." 

The chief interest of the investigation lay in a chamber, 
divided into four compartments, which occupied the centre of 
the cairn ; but whether or not it had an accessory passage was 
not ascertained, owing probably to its then dilapidated condi- 
tion. It measured 1 9 feet in length, 3 ^ feet in breadth, and 
9j^ feet in height, and had its long axis directed nearly north 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vi. p. 336. 


and south. Its sides were made of large slabs of chlorite 
schist, with portions of walling of smaller stones, roofed over 
with long slabs. The south end was entirely closed with one 
large slab, but the north end had two upright stones placed 
transversely to the walls of the chamber, forming "a rude kind 
of portal." The two compartments next the supposed passage 
had been previously disturbed, as well as the third, which 
included among its contents some fragments of ornamental 
urns, " of the so-called ' drinking-cup ' pattern," and several 
bones of unburnt bodies. The remaining compartment (6 
feet 8 inches by 3 feet 9 inches) and its contents are thus 
described : " This compartment, like all the rest, was filled 
to a certain extent with a considerable quantity of stones and 
rubbish, which had fallen or been thrown in through holes in 
the roof since the mass of the cairn had been removed. On 
clearing this out we found a small cist placed in the south- 
east corner. This, which was 2 i^ feet long and 2 feet wide, 
was made of four stones, resting upon another flat one, and 
had once possessed a cover, which had been taken off, and 
which was lying by the side of the cist. We found nothing in 
it, the persons who first rifled the chamber having lifted the 
cover and thrown out the contents ; but I think we may refer 
some unburnt bones and fragments of pottery, which were 
afterwards met with, to the burial in the small cist. . . . 
To the north of the cist, and lying close to the side of 
the chamber, was an urn sadly broken and decayed, but of 
a very novel and peculiar type, both as regards its material 
and ornamentation (fig. 184). It has a round bottom, 
from the centre of which run shallow and narrow flutings, 
reaching to the lip, which is broad and thick, and turns 
over with a convex surface, that also being fluted like the 
side. The ware is dark-coloured, almost black, like some 
of the Anglo-Saxon pottery, well worked and thin, with no 


broken stone amongst the clay, but apparently with a good 
deal of sand worked into it. It is 6% inches high, i2|^ 
inches wide at the mouth, the rim being i ^ inch wide. 
From the way in which this urn was deposited amongst the 
undisturbed layer of dark earthy matter and burnt bones, 
I cannot hesitate to attribute it to the primary interment, 
novel as its type is, and though it partakes much more of 
a late than of an early character. The introduction of the 
secondary interment and of the small cist had probably 

Fig. 184. — Urn from a chambered cairn at Largie, Kilmartin, 
Argyllshire (65^ inches in height). 

caused it to be broken, but it had certainly been deposited 
as a whole vessel at the time when the layer of dark matter 
was placed in the chamber." ^ 

In commenting on the archsological facts disclosed by 
the Largie cairn, Canon Greenwell thus expresses himself: 
" We learn from it that, in this part of Scotland, at all events, 
the earliest interments in the large megalithic chambers are 
of burnt bodies. The original and undisturbed layer, with 
burnt bones in it, at the bottom of the two most southern 
compartments — the only ones which contained any primary 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vi. p. 342. 


burials — proves this most distinctly. The examination of the 
similarly constructed chamber in a cairn at Kilchoan, by my 
friend the Rev. R. J. Mapleton, of which a detailed account 
is appended, has produced very strong corroborative evidence 
of this. The remains of unburnt bodies which were found 
in this chamber in the cairn at Largie farm, and also in that 
at Kilchoan, belong most unquestionably to a later, it may 
be to a considerably later, period than the deposits of burnt 
bones in the same chambers. These unburnt bodies belong 
most probably to the same period as that during which the 
corpse was frequently placed in a cist sunk below the surface 
of the ground, and where apparently no mound was ever 
raised over it. With these interments were buried beautifully 
made urns, and in some cases bronze daggers, and of such 
cists numerous examples have been found in the district." 
Another cairn, explored by Canon Greenwell, on the glebe 
land of Kilmartin, measures no feet in diameter and i3j^ 
feet in height. It was made entirely of rolled stones, with 
occasional slabs of the schist of the neighbourhood, and con- 
tained within its area two concentric circles of standing-stones, 
the inner 27 feet, and the outer 37 feet in diameter — the 
latter being about 16 feet from the centre of the cairn. 
Within the central area there was a short cist composed of 
four slabs set on edge and a fifth lying over them as a cover. 
The interior of the cist was nearly filled with gravel, and in 
it were found a highly ornamented globular urn with four 
pierced ears, and a necklace of jet beads which lay above 
the urn ; but all traces of the body had disappeared. This, 
however, was not the primary interment, but another cist 
formed in a hollow sunk in the ground in the centre of 
the cairn and lined with rounded boulders, and having a 
large slab of schist (9 feet by 4 feet 7 inches) for its cover. 
This cist, which was 7^ feet long, 3 feet wide, and 3 feet 



deep, was filled to within a foot of the cover with gravel. 
" At the south-west end was a flat stone laid across the cist 
about a foot from the bottom, and upon this was a quantity 
of black unctuous matter and charcoal. About a foot from 
this stone, on the south-east side, and 9 inches higher than 
it, was an urn, much broken and in part decayed, placed 
amongst the gravel. At the north-east end of the cist was 
a flat stone, similar to that at the opposite end. Upon it 
was a small, and below it a large, quantity of dark unctuous 

Figs. 185, 186. — Urns found in cists at Ballytnenach and Kilviartin, 
Argyllshire (f). 

matter. No trace of bone was found in the cist ; the body, 
or bodies — for it is probable, from the separate masses of 
unctuous matter, that more than one were interred — had gone 
entirely to decay, leaving no further trace than the dark sub- 
stance which was found upon and under the flat stones. The 
urn (fig. 186) is one of a type similar to many of the Irish 
urns, and is very characteristic of those which have been 
found with unburnt bodies, and sometimes with bronze dag- 
gers, in this part of Scotland."^ 

Another interesting exploration, conducted under the super- 
vision of the same investigator, was that of the sepulchral 
1 Pioc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vi. p. 340. 


circle at Ballymenach. This circle consists of an earthen 
mound with stones placed on it at intervals, and having 
a ditch within it. It measures 66 feet in diameter inside 
the ditch, and 95 feet to the outside of the mound, 
and has two entrances on opposite sides. Two cists were 
found within the circle, one south-east of the centre and 
the other nearer the centre. The former was a short cist 
formed of four side stones and a cover (previously removed), 
and contained some mixed sand and gravel, above which were 
the broken remains of an urn of the "drinking cup" type 
(fig. 185). The other cist was much larger, the side stones 
being 9 feet long. A portion of the cover had been broken 
off at some former period when the cist was probably rifled, as 
nothing was found in it. 

Canon Greenwell suggests that facts disclosed by these 
investigations indicate that there was an early relationship 
between the people of Argyllshire and the neighbouring coast 
of Ireland. " The urns," he writes, " which occurred in the 
cairns and burial circles are, in shape, material, and style of 
ornament, very similar to those which have been found on the 
opposite coast of Ireland, and from this it may be inferred 
that the two countries were, in prehistoric times, occupied by 
the same race. That a constant intercourse was kept up 
between the two shores is evidenced by the Argyllshire imple- 
ments, which are made from a chertose flint coming from 
Ireland. The identity of the people who inhabited the west 
of Scotland and the north-east of Ireland, in historic times, is 
certain, and that can scarcely have altogether arisen from the 
later Scotic occupation from Ireland, which was indeed only 
the migration of tribes to places already occupied by others 
related to them. This earlier and prehistoric relationship 
is quite borne out by the evidence which the burial mounds 


We now pass on to another remarkable series of sepulchral 
cairns, whose special peculiarities were first clearly brought 
to light by Dr Joseph Anderson.^ An excellent rhumd of 
these investigations is given in ' Scotland in Pagan Times,' 
pp. 229-268. The situation and general appearance of two 
of these cairns are thus described : " On the crest of a con- 
siderable eminence overlooking the south end of the loch of 
Varhouse, on the estate of Thrumster, in Caithness, are two 
cairns of great magnitude within a short distance of each 
other. They are not circular, but elongated in form ; they lie 
across the crest of the hill from east to west ; they diminish in 
breadth and height from east to west ; and they have at both 
ends curved horn-like projections of their structure, falling 
gradually to the level of the ground." 

The larger of the two cairns was 240 feet in length, and 
12 feet in height at its east end, with a base configuration 
as outlined in the accompanying plan (fig. 187). The 
chamber, which was reached at the end of a short passage, 
was found to be small in proportion to the gigantic size 
of the cairn, being only 1 2 feet long by 6 feet wide. The 
roof had fallen in, but the side walls, to the height of 7 
feet, still remained, and showed signs of convergence indi- 
cating a beehive structure. The ground-plan of the chamber 
was roughly quadrangular, and divided into three compart- 
ments by two pairs of divisional stones projecting from the 
side walls, and leaving a passage of about 2 feet between 
their edges. These divisional stones did not reach the roof. 
The most novel feature of the investigation was the dis- 
covery that the cairn had originally been constructed with a 
well-built double walHng of dry stones along its entire 
perimeter. In some places the foundation stones only were 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot, vol. vi. p. 442, and vol. vii. p. 480; Memoirs of 
Anthrop. Soc. Lond., vol. ii. p. 226. 



in situ, but in others as much as 4 feet remained. No relics 
were found in the chamber, but its floor was a compact mass, 
about 5 inches thick, of " earthy clay, plentifully intermixed 
with ashes and charcoal of wood, and calcined bones, in a 
condition of extreme comminution. Although the amount of 

Fig. 187. — Ground-plan of 
cairn at Yarliouse (240 
feet in length). 

Fig. 188. — Ground -plan of 
cairti at Camster ^\<)^ feet 
in lengt/i). 

bone-ash which entered into its composition was very large, no 
single fragment of bone was discovered exceeding an inch in 
length. The fragments that afforded definite indications, 
such as portions of teeth, jawbones, and phalanges, were un- 
mistakably human in character. About a dozen chips of flint 
— mere chips, and mostly small — and two fragments of 


pottery, of a well-made, hard-baked, thin, and black paste, 
were all the manufactured relics that were obtained." 

The second " horned cairn" was 190 feet in length, and its 
structural details closely resembled those of the former. The 
chamber was divided, in its lower part, into three compart- 
ments, and covered over by one beehive roof, which, however, 
had collapsed. On the floor of the first compartment, to the 
left of the entrance, there was a cist, 4 feet 4 inches long, 20 
inches wide, and 9 inches deep to the level of the floor. " At 
this level in the dark earthy clay which filled the interior of 
the cist there was a whitish layer of softened bones in a con- 
dition of extreme decay. In the east end of the cist were the 
fragments of an urn, ornamented with the parallel bands of 
impressions of a twisted cord, showing the fibrous texture of 
the strands. A necklace of small beads of lignite had been 
deposited with the urn, and by washing the clay removed from 
the cist seventy of these were recovered." 

The floor in all the compartments consisted of clay, ashes, 
and charcoal with burnt bones, human and animal, forming a 
compact layer some 6 inches in depth, and on its surface there 
were some greatly decayed fragments of unburnt human bones 
and teeth. But no relics except the urn and the beads already 
mentioned were found. 

Dr Anderson describes a third cairn, of the same character 
as the two at Yarhouse, on a ridge on the Moor of Camster, 
some three miles distant. It differed, however, from them in 
having two chambers with entrance passages on the south side 
as shown on fig. 188. One of the passages terminated in a 
small beehive cell, the lower part of its walls being composed 
of five slabs set on edge. The floor consisted of two rough 
flagstones lying on the undisturbed subsoil, and neither above 
nor underneath them was there any trace of sepulchral de- 
posits. The other chamber was 50 feet from the former. 




The entrance to it (some 4 feet high) was partly covered 
over by Hntels and partly arched by the overlapping of the 
stones. The roof of the chamber had fallen in, but its con- 
struction appeared to be similar to those already described. 
The floor was also the same as at Yarhouse — a compact mass 
of clay, ashes, and burnt bones — human and animal. Among 
the loose layers on its surface were a few fragments of skulls 
and of other human bones, mingled with splintered bones of 
the horse, ox, deer, and swine. 

Fig. 189. — Ground-plan of cairn at Ormicgill [66 feet in lengtk). 

Another variety of the " horned " cairn presents the same 
characteristics in external form and internal structure as those 
at Yarhouse and Camster, with the exception that the body of 
the cairn is greatly shortened, as shown in fig. 189, which 
represents the ground-plan of a chambered cairn at Ormiegill, 
near Ulbster. The contents of the chamber in this cairn are 
thus described ; " On the floor of the chamber a quantity of 
unburn t bones of human beings and animals lay, mingled with 


the debris of the upper part of the cairn, with which the cham- 
ber was filled. The floor itself consisted of a layer of ashes 
fully a foot thick. A pavement of slabs had been laid in some 
parts of the chamber, and this layer of ashes extended both 
over and under the pavement. The natural subsoil beneath 
was in some places deeply pitted, the pits being filled with the 
same compacted layer of ashes and bones. The quantity of 
burnt bones in the ash-bed was very great. We recognised 
about thirty fragments of skulls, which, from their varying 
size and thickness, we judged to have been those of different 
individuals. The bones were very irregularly burned, some 
being merely charred in part of their length, and others 
completely calcined. Besides the human bones, there were 
a very large number of bones of animals, among which were 
those of the horse, the ox, the deer, the dog, the swine, and 
some leg and wing bones of fowls. Fragments of pottery, 
many of them indicating that they had been portions of round- 
bottomed vessels, made of a thin dark-coloured paste, hard and 
smooth, and without ornament, and a great quantity of chips 
and flakes of flint, were intermixed with the ash-bed through- 
out. In the central compartment of the chamber, embedded 
among the compacted ashes of the floor, there were found 
a finely polished hammer of grey granite, 4 inches in length, 
pierced with a hole for the handle ; the point end of a finely 
finished flint knife, with a ground edge ; an arrow-head of 
flint, triangular in form, but lop-sided, and hollowed at the 
base ; an oval and pointed knife of flint formed from a flake 
trimmed to an edge all round ; several flakes, serrated on one 
side, which seemed to have been used as saws ; and a number 
of well-made scrapers of flint of the usual form. In the first 
compartment of the chamber another arrow-head of the same 
triangular form was found." ^ 

^ Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 244. 


The cairn of Get, near Bruan, which in form resembles 
that at Ormiegill, has only two chambers, but Dr Anderson 
draws attention to the curious and suggestive fact that " the 
divisional stones, which would have formed the partitions be- 
tween the second and third compartments, are in their places ; 
but, instead of being set across the iloor as divisional stones, 
their faces are set flush with the walls, so that the second and 
third compartments are thrown into one." On the surface of 
the floor of the outer compartment, and on the right of the 
entrance, were four unburnt human skeletons, with the skulls 
lying close to the wall. The floor of the chamber was a mass 
of compacted ashes and bones fully 1 8 inches thick, both man 
and beast being represented — the latter comprising " horse, ox, 
dog, deer, swine, and probably the sheep or goat." Flint 
flakes and chips were found in abundance throughout the 
mass, as well as fragments of " pottery of a blackish colour, 
some of which retained indications of their having been por- 
tions of round-bottomed vessels, thin, hard-baked, well made, 
and mostly unornamented." Three small but finely worked 
leaf-shaped arrows were the only other articles found in the 

A third variety of the chambered cairn differs from the 
two former varieties by not having the horned projections 
(fig. 190), but the structure of the internal chamber remained 
much the same as already described. One of these cairns — 
viz., that at Bruan — disclosed a slight deviation which, as we 
shall afterwards see, became a highly specialised feature in 
another group. This was a small side-chamber, opening from 
the second or innermost compartment of the bipartite cham- 
ber, which was enclosed in this cairn (fig. 191). 

The district between Stromness and Kirkwall is particularly 
rich in the remains of primitive times, especially those of an 
imposing character, such as brochs, Picts' houses, chambered 



cairns, tumuli, stone circles, &c., some of which may still be 
said to defy all efforts to fathom the secret of their origin and 
meaning. A few years ago 
I visited the locality, and 
in driving from the Picts' 
house of Skaill to Maes- 
howe, traversed lengthways 
the peninsula which separ- 
ates the Lochs of Stennis 
and Harray. My first halt 
was at the Ring of Brogar 
(PI. VII.), situated on a 
bleak moor about a quarter 
of a mile from the bridge 
which crosses the narrow 
strait connecting the two 

lochs. Of the great circle Fig. igo. — Ground -plan of chambered 

— for there are a few 
smaller ones and six or 
seven tumuli scattered over the district — only fourteen stones 
were standing and fifteen lying in the heather, out of the 
sixty which originally completed 
it. Some of the stones might be 
about 15 feet high, but others do 
not rise above the surface more 
than 6 or 7 feet. Outside the line 
of the stones there is a ditch from 
20 to 30 feet wide, and 6 feet 
deep. The area enclosed by the 
ditch measures no paces in dia- 
meter, and access to it is got by 
two unexcavated portions of the ditch, like roads entering it 
on opposite sides. On the way to the bridge we pass a few 

cairn at Yarhouse {about 55 feet in 

Fig. 191. — Ground -plan of 
chambered cairn at Bruan 
{about 40 feet diameter). 


Standing stones and mounds, and immediately after crossing 
it there stands on the roadside a splendid monolith some 
17 feet high. About 150 yards farther on are three great 
monoliths — two standing and one fallen — near the ruins of 
a dilapidated dolmen, which appears to have been enclosed 
by the stone circle when in its original condition (PI. VIII.) 
In a field, about a mile to the east of this ruined circle, 
at the base of low hills, rises the green grassy tumulus of 
Maeshowe (PI. IX.) 

PYom the account of the excavations conducted by Mr 
Farrer and other antiquaries in 1861,^ and from my own 
note-book, I have compiled the following short account of this 
remarkable monument. The mound, 92 feet in diameter and 
36 feet in height, is surrounded by a trench 40 feet wide and 
4 to 8 feet deep. During Mr Farrer's investigations, entrance 
to the interior was effected by driving a shaft from the top, till 
the chamber was reached through its previously fallen roof 
(fig. 193). When, or in what circumstances, the collapse 
of the roof had taken place it was impossible to say. 
When cleared, the chamber was found to be 15 ft. square and 
1 3 feet high to the top of the remaining walls. Behind three 
window-like openings, about 2 ^ feet square and 3 feet above 
the floor, one in each of the north, south, and east sides, are 
three small vaults or cells; the fourth side contained a sym- 
metrical opening, but larger — viz., the inner end of the entrance 
passage. These cells vary a little in size, but they are all of the 
same height (3 feet), and have their back walls and roofs made 
of single slabs. The walls and roof of the chamber are made 
of large stones from the hard claystone of the neighbourhood, 
which, readily splintering into rectangular masses, present clean 
cut surfaces well adapted for building purposes. The roof was 
formed by the overlapping of each successive layer, and only 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. v, p. 247. 









differed from the beehive structures by having this converg- 
ence on two opposite sides — viz., north and south — the other 
two being continued perpendicularly, like the gables of a 
house. The four corners of the chamber were buttressed by 
tall slabs and some dry-stone walling, covering about 3 feet 

Fig. 192. — View of the central chamber in Maeshowe looking towards 
the entrance passage. 

square at the base, and reaching to the commencement of the 
overlapping stones of the roof — peculiarities which are well 
seen in the accompanying illustration (fig. 192). 

The entrance passage was 54 feet in length, and at its 
inner end measures 4 feet 8 inches in height and 3 feet 4 
inches in width; but the space gradually diminishes till at 



the outer end it would probably be not more than 2 feet 4 
inches square (the cover-stones in the outer half had fallen 
in). The sides of the passage are formed of huge flagstones 
with smooth even surfaces, one of them measuring over 18 
feet in length. See plan and section (fig. 193). 

No sepulchral or industrial relics were found in the interior 
of Maeshowe, but there are indications in favour of the 

Fig. 193. — Gi'ound-plan and section of Maeshowe. 

common opinion that it had been previously rifled of its 
contents. One of the arguments in support of this is that 
on the walls there are some runic inscriptions dating back 
to the middle of the twelfth century. These inscriptions 
consist of names and short sentences, such as might be 
scribbled by a party of visitors. One inscription is of im- 
portance, as it specifically states that the " Orkahaug " was 
broken open by a party of Christian pilgrims on their way 



to Jerusalem, with the expectation of finding treasure ; but 
that none was found, as it had been previously carried 
away. From this Professor Munch infers that the intruders 
were part of the expedition organised by Earl Rognvald 
when he made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 11 52 a.d. 
But this episode has no bearing on the date of its construc- 
tion. On one of the buttresses there is an engraving of a 
dragon and a serpent-knot of Scandinavian character (figs. 194 
and 195), which Dr Fergusson ^ thinks were original decora- 

Figs. 194, Tgs.—Dragon and ' ' Wurm-knot " engraved on a pillar in Maeshowe. 

tions of the tomb, and hence he argues that Maeshowe is 
the work of Scandinavians who conquered the Orkney islands 
in the ninth century. If so, these northern invaders must 
have learned the art and plan of building it from the native 
inhabitants, as there never existed at any time in Scandinavian 
lands a structure of the peculiar character of Maeshowe. On 
the other hand, analogous structures are found within the 
British Isles — especially among the tumuli (fig. 196) of the 
great cemeteries on the banks of the Boyne, and at Lough- 
^ Rude Stone Monuments, p. 245. 



crew, in Ireland. But without entering into the controversy 
as to the origin and purpose of Maeshowe, it can be readily 
shown that it differs only in some minor details from numer- 
ous other chambered cairns in the Orkneys. In its vicinity 
there are several examples which illustrate the developmental 
features and phases through which these chambers passed 
prior to the construction of Maeshowe. 

The "knowe of Unstan," situated on a piece of land 
jutting out into the Loch of Stennis, a few hundred yards 

Fig. 196. — View of the great cairji at K^w Grange, Ireland. 

to the north - east of the Bridge of Waithe, was excavated 
by Mr R. S. Clouston in the year 1884, and yielded a 
most interesting collection of relics, besides disclosing struc- 
tural features of importance. "The knowe," writes Mr 
Clouston, 1 " prior to excavation, presented the same appear- 
ance as the usual Orkney tumulus, having an unbroken 
slope to the ground. This, however, is due to the slipping 
down of the stones of which the cairn is composed, as there 
is an external wall surrounding the whole structure, which, 
in the parts where we found it tolerably entire, was some 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xix. p. 341. 



feet in height, and built of larger stones than those used 
in the interior." 

The entrance passage, which was still partly covered, ter- 
minated in a chamber 21 feet long by 5 feet wide (over 
which the roof had fallen), divided into various compart- 
ments by large flagstones set on edge, as shown on the 
accompanying ground-plan (fig! 197). The side compartment 
opening from the main chamber may be closely paralleled 
with that in the cairn of Bruan previously referred to. " Un- 

Fig. 197. — Ground-plan of chambered cairn at Unstan^ Orkney 
{about op feet in diameter). 

like the rest of the building, with the exception of the passage, 
the roof is here entire, its height being 3 feet 6^^ inches. A 
rude floor is made by a flagstone small enough to have been 
introduced after the chamber was completed, and supported 
on blocks of stone. There were two distinct burials here 
in the contracted posture, one of the skulls being the most 
complete of any of those found, though scarcely half 

Like the Caithness chambered cairns, burials took place 
here both by cremation and inhumation, and the facts point 


to cremation being first practised. " The whole structure, " 
writes Mr Clouston, " is irregular in shape, none of the 
walls being quite straight, and the wall at one side of the 
dividing flagstone rarely coinciding with that of the other. 
At the side of the south-west flagstone in this compartment 
(second) there was a small space, not covered with white 
clay, and in this we found several fragments of different 
urns. A more striking instance of how the relics must 
have been scattered is the fact of a piece of pottery, found 
in the fourth compartment, fitting into an urn, the rest of 
which was dug up in this second compartment of the 
chamber. By far the greater portion of the relics found 
in the chamber were in this compartment. Overlying its 
clay floor was a stratum of black ashy or earthy matter, 
largely composed of charcoal, in which great quantities of 
pottery and several flint chips and flakes were found. . . . 
Several fragments of bones were found in the floor of this 
compartment, but none which showed any trace of burning. 
Curiously enough, however, the flints present indubitable 
indications of the action of fire. Upon the black stratum 
there were laid several burials in the contracted posture, as 
in the Caithness cairns." 

The relics found scattered throughout the chambers consist 
of fragments of pottery, representing about thirty different 
shallow vessels, with round bottoms and wide mouths, and 
having the sides ornamented with scorings generally arranged 
into triangular spaces. With the exception of an oblong 
stone or " pounder," all the stone implements were of flint — 
viz., a flaking tool ; four leaf-shaped arrow-points, and one 
with barbs and a stem ; a finely finished scraper, and a knife 
with a ground edge. 

On the farm of Quanterness, near Kirkwall, may still be 
seen another structure of the same type (fig. 198). It is 


close to the farm-house, and presents the appearance of a 
green mound, 128 feet in circumference, with, now, two 
openings leading to the interior. The central chamber 
measures 21^ feet long, 65^ feet wide, and 11^ feet high, 
and is closed in by a roof on the beehive plan. From this 
chamber there are 6 openings, about 2 feet square, two on 
each side and one at each end, which lead into correspond- 
ing cells, differing, however, from the analogous ones in 

Fig. 198. — Groiind-f Ian of chambered cairn at Quanterness , Orkney 
[^0-^0 feet in diameter'), 

Maeshowe, not only as regards number, but in being on 
the same level as the floor of the chamber, instead of being 
raised 3 feet above it as in the latter. The floor is described 
as being composed of dark earthy clay, containing fragments 
of unburnt bones both of man and beast ; and in one of the 
cells there was found a human skeleton.^ 

Another underground structure, described as a " Pict's 
house," and situated on"the other side of Wideford Hill,^ was 
explored by Mr George Petrie, in 1849. The chamber was 
10 feet long, 5 feet broad, and -jyi, feet high, and from it 

^ Barry's History of Orkney. 

^ See Archseologia, vol. xxxiv., PI. xv., p. 136 ; and Wilson's Prehistoric 
Annals, vol. i. p. 116. 


there were three lateral cells opening at irregular distances. 
The peculiarity of this structure is that there were no human 
bones found, but only those of domestic animals in great 
quantities— horse, cow, sheep, boar, &c., and also some 
supposed to be those of deer. In the absence of any evid- 
ence of a sepulchral character it was regarded as an under- 
ground dwelling, and a connecting link between sepulchral 
cairns and such dwellings as the remarkable habitation at 
Skaill Bay, described at page 344. 

Other chambered structures are to be found in the Ork- 
neys which present the same characters without evidence of 
having been used for sepulchral purposes. One is described 
by Captain Thomas,^ on the Holm of Papa Westray, which 
presented the appearance of a cairn, 115 feet long, 53 feet 
broad, and 10 feet high. The internal arrangements con- 
sisted of a long chamber, entered by a passage, and sur- 
rounded by a dozen or so of small side cells averaging 
4 or 5 feet in length, 3 feet wide, and from 3 to 5}^ feet 
in height. There were no relics to indicate its age or pur- 
pose, but from its structural details — long entrance passage, 
central chamber, and lateral cells — it must be classified archi- 
tecturally with the sepulchral chambered cairns. 

Another sepulchral chamber at Quoyness, in the island of 
Sanday, was excavated by Mr Farrer and Mr Petrie, in 1867.^ 
The entrance passage was 24 feet long, 3 feet high, and 21 
inches wide (slightly widening and increasing in height as it 
approached the chamber). The chamber was i2j^ feet long 
and 5j^ feet wide, with wall still standing to the height of 
12 feet, but the roof had fallen. Branching ofif it were six 
cells of an irregular oval shape. A bone dagger and two 
curiously shaped stone implements were found together along 
with unburnt human remains, including fragments of twelve 
' Archssologia, vol. xxxiv. p. 127. ''■ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 398. 


or fifteen skulls, male and female, some being young persons. 
According to Dr Thurnam, to whom the bones were sent for 
examination, both long and short skulls were represented. 

Before passing on I may observe that unburnt human re- 
mains have been found in another sepulchral cairn on Papa 
Westray. The chamber (fig. 199), 12 feet long by 6 feet wide, 
was rendered tripartite by pairs of projecting flags set on 
edge and opposite to each other, but with a space between 
their edges. It was excavated by Mr Petrie in 1853,^ and 
its contents are so remarkable that I give his description 

Fig. 199. — Ground-plan of chamber in sepulchral mound hi Holm of Papa 
Westray^ Orkney {zzfeet long), 

verbatim : " We commenced by digging in the compartment 
A, and found it filled with stones and earth, mixed with ani- 
mal remains, amongst which were fragments of deer's horns, 
the horn core of the ox, and a jawbone of the boar, together 
with portions of a human skull. In the compartment b, the 
crowns and other portions of ten pairs of deer's horns were 
found lying on and between layers of stones, intermixed with 
bones of the ox, deer, sheep, &c., the wing-bone of a swan, 
or other large bird, and the lower part of the bill of the cur- 
lew, with bones of various kinds of birds. And underneath 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ii. p. 62. 


a layer of deer's horns, and lying amongst others, part of a 
human skull face downwards was discovered at a. A human 
skull, or rather a part of one, was lying on its side at 6, resting 
on a portion of a deer's horn. The face was towards the 
south-west. In the compartment c, fragments of at least 
two pairs of deer's horns were found. The remains of a 
human skeleton lay at c, the ribs in tolerable order, not 
apparently having been previously disturbed ; but no part of 
the skull was found except the lower jaw. The remains of 
another skeleton, without the skull, were found at d. Two 
skulls, one of them in good preservation, were found placed 
vertically at e, with the face towards the east. Another skull 
was lying on its side at g; with its face towards the backs of 
the two skulls at e. . . . 

"The general appearance of the place, as far as it was 
opened, was that of an immense grave of double the ordinary 
dimensions, but divided into three compartments by the large 
upright flags or stones marked t, whose tops were above the 
surface of the mound. The sides of the grave were formed 
by stones built in the shape of rude walls, but how much 
of these may have been removed before we examined the 
place we could not even conjecture, as the whole mound was 
more or less covered with loose stones." 

On the west coast of the island of Lewis, at the head of 
Loch Roag, there are four stone circles within about a mile 
of each other, all of which in the course of time had become 
deeply buried in peat — a fact which probably accounts for 
their preservation. In 1858, under the instructions of Sir 
James Matheson, the largest, known as the Stone Circle of 
Callernish, was cleared of the peat which had accumulated 
on its site " down to a rough causewayed basement in which 
the stones were imbedded." The depth of peat averaged 5 
feet, and in the course of its removal the workmen came upon 


the ruins of a chambered cairn, occupying the space between 
the centre stone and the east side of the circle. It contained 
a bipartite chamber with a passage leading to its outside. 
Nothing was found in the chamber except some minute 
fragments of burnt human bones. 

The accompanying view (PI. X.) shows the general arrange- 
ment of the circle and its alignments. According to meas- 
urements, taken by Mr Kerr, clerk of works to Sir James 
Matheson, the following are their dimensions : ^ diameter of 
circle about 40 feet; length of west line 43 feet; length of 
east line 38 feet; length of south hne 69 feet; length of 
avenue 270 feet; breadth of avenue 27 feet; average height 
of stones 6 to 8 feet ; height of centre stone 1 2 feet. To 
the height of the stones 5 feet must now be added to give 
their actual height after the removal of the peat. There are 
thirteen stones in the circle, including the centre one. 

In 1884 Mr James Fraser communicated to the Society 
of Antiquaries of Scotland ^ a detailed account of the stone 
circles of Strathnairn and neighbourhood of Inverness, from 
which it appears that such remains, in various states of pre- 
servation, arp found from the lower end of the strath to a 
point twenty-five miles farther up. There were twenty-five of 
these circles within the drainage area of the river Nairn, and 
twelve or fourteen between its western watershed and the 
river Ness. "Wherever the structures are sufficiently pre- 
served," writes Mr Fraser, " they exhibit the following char- 
acteristics in common : — 

1. "They consist of three concentric, or nearly concentric, 
rings of boulder -stones, or of flagstones, fixed on end in 
the ground, and without hewing or dressing of any kind. 

2. "There is an outer ring of stones, varying from 60 to 

^ Prod. Soc. A. Scot., vol. ii. p. 383, and vol. iii. p. in. 
' Ibid., vol. xviii. p. 328. 


126 feet in diameter outside, and consisting of long stones, 
from nine to twelve in number, standing at nearly regular 
intervals,— the tallest being on the south side, and their size 
gradually diminishing towards the north. 

3. "A smaller interior, and concentric, or nearly concentric, 
ring, varying from 32 to 88 feet in diameter outside, made 
of smaller boulders (very few, if any, flags being used in this 
ring), the stones being set on end, close together, with a 
slight slope inwards, and with the best, or flattest and broadest, 
face outward. As in the outer ring, the large stones are on 
the south side, and the smaller stones to the north. 

4. "A third, and still smaller, concentric ring, from 12 to 
about 32 feet in diameter inside, and consisting of stones set 
on end, close together. 

5. "They are all built on flat or low-lying ground, some- 
times in a slight hollow or amphitheatre (with perhaps some 
not very decided exceptions on slight eminences)." 

One part of the geographical area traversed by Mr Fraser 
is of special interest — viz., the plain of Clava, a flat "haugh" 
along the east bank of the Nairn, and near the battlefield of 
Culloden, because it contains within the distance of one mile 
the remains of eight cairns (two of which at least contained 
chambers) associated with stone circles. Besides the cham- 
bered cairns the surrounding district is studded with tumuli 
of various kinds, so that we may regard the Clava group as 
the remains of an important pagan cemetery. 

One of the chambered cairns still remaining was opened 
about the year 1828, under instructions from Mrs Campbell, 
Kilravock, the result of which is thus described by Sir 
Thomas Dick Lauder in his book on the ' Moray Floods ' : ^ 
" I received a most interesting communication from Miss 
Campbell, informing me that the fragments of two earthen 
^ Appendix vii., p. 338. 






















H-. 1 



Vj fi 














vases were found in the chamber in the interior of the 
Druidical circle opened at Clava by Mrs Campbell's orders. 
' It was about 18 inches below the earth,' says Miss Campbell, 
speaking of the more perfect of the two, ' exactly in the 
centre of the circle. It was found in a broken and very 
mutilated state, the whole body of the stones having lain 
upon it. A quantity of calcined bones were in it and about 
it, all of which we have. The clay is of the coarsest kind, 
and the vase is of the rudest make. It has, apparently, had 
no cover, but is rounded at the top like a garden-pot, which 
it resembles more than anything else. The bottom is flat, 
the inside very black from having been burned, the outside 
red; across the exterior of the bottom it measures 6^ inches, 
and across the interior exactly 5 inches, and the height, in its 
fractured state, is 4}^ inches. After clearing away the stones, 
the interior of the cairn was found to be composed of gravel, 
but the vase and bones were enclosed in a portion of clay 
quite distinct from the natural soil.' " 

Cosmo Innes visited the locality in 1857, and made two 
sketches of the Clava group — one showing the interior of this 
cairn — which are here reproduced (PI. XI. and XII.) 

The following dimensions of the cairn and its various 
adjuncts are taken from Mr Eraser's measurements. The 
outer ring is 108 feet in diameter, and consists of eleven stones, 
there being a vacant space for a twelfth. The intermediate 
ring, which forms the boundary of the cairn, is 53 feet in 
diameter. The inner ring (which forms the wall of the 
chamber) is 12^ feet in diameter (inside). It is built of 
more carefully selected stones (of which seven or eight feet 
still remained), and this wall supported the beehive roof of 
the chamber; but it would take four or five feet more to 
complete the dome. The passage, which lies at the south- 
west side, was about 18 feet in length, 2 feet wide at the 


outer end, 3 feet at the inner end, and about 4^ feet in 

It will not be necessary to dwell at great length on the 
unchambered sepulchral cairns, as the interments are either 
in stone cists in the substance of the cairn or deposited in 
the earth beneath it. One of the most instructive of this 
category was at Collessie, in Fife, the investigation of which 
was superintended, and the results recorded, by Dr Joseph 
Anderson.'^ The cairn was a mass of stones and boulders, 
120 feet in diameter and 14 feet in height. A large central 
segment of the stones was cleared away down to the level 
of the ground, during which the following discoveTies were 
made : — 

1. Within a few feet of the margin there was exposed a 
portion of a circle of upright slabs which the explorers con- 
sidered to be part of the original boundary of the cairn. 

2. Within this ring the whole area of the cairn was covered 
with a layer of fine clay i to 3 inches thick, and on its surface 
were marks of fire in spaces several feet in diameter, with 
abundance of black ashes and wood charcoal. Charcoal was 
also found in the gravel beneath the layer of clay. 

3. Near the centre of the cairn there was a stone cist 4^ 
feet by 3 feet, resting on the ground, and containing gravel, 
from which an urn of the drinking-cup type was extracted. 
The floor of the cist was paved with pebbles, and underneath 
this pavement the soil was loose, and mixed with fragments 
of charcoal to a depth of 2 feet. 

4. Some distance within the margin of the cairn, at a depth 
of 4 feet in the gravel, the remains of a cremated burial 
were found, among the bones of which lay a small bronze 
dagger - blade, and a gold fillet which had encircled the 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xii. p. 439. 


5. A second deposit of burnt bones and a broken drinking- 
cup were found near the centre, at a depth of 6 feet in the 

A cairn on the farm of Gilchorn, near Arbroath, was explored 
by Mr Alexander Hutcheson, which yielded a bronze dagger 
(fig. 106) and fragments of at least two others, associated with 
burials both by inhumation and cremation. ^ On comparing 
the results of this investigation with those of the cairn at 
Newton of Collessie, Mr Hutcheson thus states the points of 
resemblance and difference : " The features in which they 
agree are-^(i) the layer of clay underlying the site of the 
cairn ; (2) the appearance of wood ashes all over this surface ; 
(3) the existence of a cist of stone slabs containing an unburnt 
burial ; and (4) the presence of cremated urn-burials asso- 
ciated with implements of bronze. On the other hand, the 
points in which they differ are as follows : (i) In the Collessie 
cairn the cist stood on the natural surface, in the Gilchorn 
mound the cist was sunk below the subsoil; (2) at Collessie, 
the burnt remains and the associated urns were found sunk 
in the subsoil, whereas at Gilchorn the urns rested on the 

Burials are often found in groups or cemeteries with or 
without stone cists. 

A few years ago a cemetery, with and without urns, was 
discovered in a sand-pit at Kirkpark, near Musselburgh 
Station, in Mid-Lothian, the results of which have been 
described by the Rev. George Lowe and Dr Joseph Ander- 
son.2 The urns were merely buried in the sand, at a depth 
of from 3 >^ to 6 feet, along with burnt material which seemed 
to have been thrown into the graves when they were de- 
posited. The urns were sometimes inverted; and some of 
them were full of burnt bones and others empty. One grave 
1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxv. p. 447. ^ Ibid., vol. xxviii. p. 62. 



contained no less than four (Nos. 6 to 9). No actual bronze 
was found, but in two instances the cremated bones were 
" extensively dyed, as it were, with a brilliant green colour," 
supposed to be due to the oxidation of bronze. Besides these 
graves there were some discoloured spaces which had the 
appearance of burial by inhumation. Mr Lowe adds that 
" in this same field many stone coffins containing bodies have 
been found at different times." 

Dr Anderson, after giving a technical description of the 
urns from this cemetery, thus describes its general charac- 
teristics : " In its general character it closely resembles 
another cemetery also found in clearing away a natural 
deposit of sand at Magdalen Bridge, a little nearer the 
present sea-shore, and about a mile nearer Edinburgh, in 
which there were at least ten urns found, seven of which are 
now in the Museum, along with a small thin oval tanged 
bronze blade "• (fig. 94) found in one of them. The urns from 
the two cemeteries have much the same character, the orna- 
mentation on two of those from the Kirkpark cemetery 
being composed of the same patterns distributed in the same 
way as that on two of the urns from Magdalen Bridge. In 
both cemeteries there was the same variety in the manner of 
burial, mostly after cremation." 

Two cemeteries found on the estate of Pitreavie, near 
Dunfermline, and described by Henry Beveridge, Esq. of 
Pitreavie,^ present some features of special interest. One, 
near the summit of a gentle rising ground in cultivated lands, 
was without any evidence of a tumulus. There were seven 
cists nearly in a row within a space of 30 feet, but none of 
them was more than 1 2 inches below the surface. One had 
neither cover nor urn ; another, without a cover, contained 
some handfuls of incinerated bones. Four cists contained 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvi. p. 424. ^ Ibid., vol. xx. p. 240. 


urns of the food-vessel type, measuring from 4^ to 5^ 
inches in height. Near one of the urns was found a small 
flint flake, and beside another a disc-shaped flint scraper. 

The second cemetery was close to the north margin of 
Calais Muir, on the summit of a natural rising ground, and 
surmounted by an artificial tumulus, 40 feet in diameter and 
4 feet in height. Near the centre of the tumulus was a cist 
covered by a large stone 2^4 feet below the surface of the 
mound. In this cist was found an ornamented urn of the 
food - vessel type, 5 inches in height, which presents the 
peculiarity of being surrounded above the shoulder by a row 
of four projecting knobs perforated horizontally. 

" Pursuing the excavation," writes Mr Beveridge, " around 
the central cist, ten other urns were recovered in a more or 
less imperfect condition :' besides which were found numerous 
fragments of urns, and also several deposits of burned bones, 
as well as vegetable charcoal in considerable quantities. The 
urns lay at different points, but chiefly upon the west side of 
the cist, and at distances from the cist varying from 3 to 
6 feet. These urns were all of the cinerary type ; they stood 
for the most part upon their bottoms, and were deposited at a 
level somewhat higher than that of the cist, thus suggesting a 
later date of interment. These urns were all more or less 
filled with incinerated bones and other remains of cremation. 
In one or two of the urns were observed pieces of calcined 
bone bearing traces of the peculiar green stain which always 
accompanies the presence of bronze ; but although careful 
search was made, not the smallest fragment of bronze could 
be detected." 

It has been estabhshed beyond doubt that most of the 
stone circles, as well as single standing stones, scattered more 
or less in groups over the country, so far as they have been 
subjected to practical investigation, are mere external ap- 


pendages of burials both by inhumation and cremation, but 
more commonly the latter. These interments are either 
in cists, urns, or grave-pits, differing in no respect from those 
under cairns or tumuli. This important generalisation was 
first clearly shown by a series of explorations made by Mr C. 
E. Dalrymple, the result of which is given in an Appendix 
to Dr Stuart's ' Sculptured Stones of Scotland. '^ Mr Dal- 
rymple's investigations included a number of circles in the 
counties of Aberdeen and Kincardine — Crichie, Tuack, Sun- 
honey, "The Standing Stones of Rayne," Ardlair, Ardoyne, 
Auchorthie, &c. 

At Crichie the stone circle, which originally consisted of six 
stones, and one in the centre (fig. 200), was surrounded by a 
ditch except at two opposite points. Beneath the centre stone 
there was a pit, 1 5 feet in diameter and 5 feet deep, filled with 
stones, under which was a cist with the remains of a skeleton. 
Burnt burials, with and without cinerary urns, were also ex- 
posed within the area, in one of which, among some burnt 
bones, close to a standing stone, was found a fine specimen of 
a perforated stone hammer (fig. 48). 

At Tuack seven burials, all after cremation, were discovered 
within a circle which also originally consisted of six stones. 
The cremated remains were in pits, and in three instances 
inverted cinerary urns covered them. Fragments of a small 
bronze blade were found among the bones in one of the 

The publication of Mr Dalrymple's discoveries by Dr 
Stuart (1856) induced Dr James Bryce to undertake a 
similar investigation among the stone circles of Arran, especi- 
ally those on Mauchrie Moor. One of this group, 15 yards 
in diameter, still retains in position three huge sandstone 
slabs 16 to 18 feet in height, but originally there would 
'■ See also Proc. Soc. A, Scot., vol. xviii. p. 319. 



be seven or eight stones in the circle. About the centre of 
the enclosed area, and 2 feet below the surface, the stone 
cover of a cist was exposed. This being raised with much 
difficulty, there was found an ornamented urn of the food- 
vessel type and four flint arrow-heads of rude construction. 


(0 /J' 2o is' 

je jttf 

Fig. 200. — Ground-plan and section of stone circle at Crichie, 

In another circle, 4^ feet from the surface, a cist was 
exposed which also contained an urn of a similar character 
and two rude flints. Analogous results were obtained in six 
or seven of the circles, but only in one instance was there 
any trace of metal discovered — viz., a portion of a pin or 
awl. All the burials thus examined within the Mauchrie 


Stone circles appear to have been after inhumation, as the 
two urns preserved are of the food-vessel type.-' 

Remnants of stone circles and " standing stones," often in 
groups of twos, threes, or more, sometimes arranged in lines or 
avenues, but more frequently as solitary hoary pillars, abound 
in almost every district of Scotland. Of such megalithic 
monuments history is almost silent, and the associations which 
still hover about them in local folk-lore are of little value in 
determining their origin or purpose. They are rough blocks 
or boulders from the natural rocks of the neighbourhood, pro- 
bably selected because of their pillar-like forms. Only two of 
these unsculptured monuments bear inscriptions — viz., the Cat 
Stone, near Edinburgh, and the Newton Stone, in Garioch. 
Many of them, however, show cup-and-ring marks and other 
symbolical incised sculptures. That many of these megaliths 
are mere external settings of graves has been proved by 
actual investigation ; whilst others, especially the solitary 
specimens, or menhirs, were no doubt intended to com- 
memorate other important events, as indicated by the tra- 
ditionary names assigned to some of them, such as Cat Stone, 
Hawk Stone, King's Stone, Tanist Stone, Stone of Odin, &c. 
Such memorials are common in Scotland, and good examples 
must be familiar to visitors of the islands of Bute and Arran, 
and many of the more frequented Highland glens. Stone 
circles are numerous throughout the counties of Aberdeen, 
Perth, Kincardine, and Forfar ; and they are also met with 
in the south-west of Scotland. As an illustration I repro- 
duce from a photograph a view of the Stone circle of Auqu- 
horthies near Inverury (PI. XHI.) 

Groups of upright stones arranged in rows, sometimes 
parallel, but more frequently converging at one end, occur 
within the Scottish area only in Caithness and Sutherland, but 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. iv. p. 49, and vol. xvii. p. 458, figs. 19 and 20. 






Fig. 201.— Cmerary urn found at MoatkiU, Ochiltree, Ayrshire i:^). 

Fig. ■202.— Cinerary urn found at Seamill, Ayrshire (J). 


analogous remains have been observed outside this area, as at 
Ashdown, in Berkshire,^ and especially at Carnac, in Brittany. 
The Caithness group, described by Dr Anderson ^ and Sir 
Henry Dryden,^ are regarded by the former investigator as 
having sepulchral associations. 

Before concluding our observations on sepulchral memorials, 
a few words must be said on the contents of the graves. The 
most common objects deposited with the dead were pottery, 
personal ornaments, and weapons. 

The pottery consists of a variety of vessels, collectively 
called urns, but as they were deposited both with burnt and 
unburnt burials, it is manifest that they could not all have been 
used for cinerary purposes. Vessels associated with inhumed 
bodies are supposed to have originally contained food or drink, 
to supply the needs of the departed on the journey to the 
unseen world of spirits. Hence archaeologists are in the 
habit of classifying them into "cinerary urns" (figs. 201 and 
202), "food-vessels" (figs. 186, 203-205), and "drinking- 
cups" (figs. 185 and 206). Very small cup -shaped urns, 
often pierced with two or four holes on the sides, and gener- 
ally found inside the large cinerary urn, are called " incense 
cups" (fig. 207). But there is no evidence to support this 
suggested use of them, and they are now more generally 
regarded as cinerary urns for infants. 

Cinerary urns vary in size, form, and ornamentation, being 
from 10 to iS}4 inches in height. They are coarsely made 
vessels, wide-mouthed and narrow-based, and having a broad 
overhanging rim to which the ornamentation is generally con- 
fined ; or they may be ornamented by transverse ridges as in 
fig. 208. They are found often inverted over the cremated 
remains, or in an upright position covered with a flat stone. 

1 International Congress of Prehist. Arch., 1868, p. 37. 

^ Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 125. ' Rude Stone Monuments, p. 529- 


The food-vessel, smaller, more globular, and more highly 
ornamented than the cinerary urn, is also wide-mouthed and 

Fig. 203. — Food-vessel from Sheldon, Ayrshire (^). 

narrow-based. It is commonly found with an unburnt body, 
and generally placed near the head. 

Fig. 204. — Food-vessel found in levelling a sandbank at Content, Ayrshire (^). 

Drinking-cups are tall, highly ornamented vessels, narrow- 
ing from the mouth to near the middle, then bulging out and 



Fig. 205. — Food-vessel found at Law, Tarbolion {^). 


Fig. 206. — Urn from Cainigaan, Kirkmaiden, Ayrshire {i^. 



again narrowing at the base. A few specimens have been 
found with a handle like a jug. They are commonly associ- 
ated with burials after inhumation — only two out of twenty- 

Fig. 207. — Incense cup^ with lid of baked clay^ found at Genoch, Ayrshire {\). 

four having been found by Canon Greenwell in the wold- 
barrows with cremated burials. 

The objects classified as personal ornaments found in these 
graves include buttons of jet, stone, 
or bone ; pins of bone and bronze ; 
necklaces made of plates and beads 
of jet. With regard to the latter, 
there are several instances in which 
the plates and scattered beads have 
been recovered and reconstructed 
so as to present the entire neck- 
lace. The plates are either tri- 
angular or trapezoidal, and often 
ornamented with incised or dotted 
lines arranged in groups of geo- 
metrical figures. These relics are among the most interesting 
evidences of the culture of the Bronze-Age people which have 
come down to our day. (See fig. 133.) 

Fig. 208. — Urn found near 
Eglinton Castle, Ayrshire (7 
inches in height'). 


Ornaments of gold and bronze — rings, armlets, earrings, &c. 
— are also not unfrequently met with ; but those of amber, 
perforated teeth, and shells, are comparatively rare in the pre- 
historic burials of Scotland. 

Among implements and weapons the most noteworthy are 
arrow-heads, knives, and- scrapers of flint; wrist-guards (fig. 
76), perforated stone-hammers (figs. 48 and 49), and whet- 
stones ; and small thin blades of bronze in the form of 
daggers and so-called razors attached to handles with rivets 
or tangs (figs. 92-95). Records of the finding of bronze 
axes of any kind, socketed spear-heads, and leaf-shaped 
swords, in association with sepulchral remains, are almost 
unknown not only within the Scottish area but within the 
British Isles. 

Dr Anderson, who has reconstructed for our National 
Museum, often from the merest fragments, a typical col- 
lection of urns unsurpassed by that of any other country, 
thus refers to the contents of Scottish prehistoric burials of 
the Bronze Age: "We find the typical burials, of which these 
associated objects are characteristic, extending over the whole 
of the mainland of Scotland, and into many of its outlying 
isles. But we do not find — at least I have been unable to 
discover — any obvious or noticeable distinction between the 
forms or the workmanship of the different examples of the 
same classes of objects found in widely separated portions of 
the country. The urns from Ross-shire and Mull are as well 
made and as highly decorated as those from Mid-Lothian. 
The bronze blades and jet necklaces from Sutherlandshire are 
precisely like those from Forfarshire and Mid-Lothian. The 
gold ornaments from Banffshire are similar to those from the 
southern districts of Scotland. There may be among the 
various examples some that are finer and some that are 
ruder than others, but, taking them collectively, it is evident 


that the objects fashioned in these various materials usually 
exhibit shapeliness of form, fitness of purpose, and tastefulness 
of decoration." ^ 

In the above short review of the sepulchral phenomena 
prevalent in Scotland during prehistoric times, it will be 
observed that there is no mention of burials of the Early 
Iron Age. The reason for this is that archaeologists have 
not yet found any mounds or graves in Scotland, with the 
exception of burials of the Viking period, which can with 
certainty be assigned to this period ; and those explored in 
England have been already sufficiently described in the chap- 
ter dealing with the Late Celtic period. Considering the 
abundance of burials of the Early Iron Age throughout 
France, Germany, Austria, and Italy, it is somewhat re- 
markable that they should be so sparingly represented 
within the British Isles. The same remark is almost appli- 
cable to burials of the Stone Age. Although many graves 
have been examined which contained implements and weapons 
of stone and nothing of bronze, it does not follow that these 
graves were earlier than others in which bronze articles were 
found. It seems to me that the vast majority of the sepul- 
chral memorials, hitherto explored within the Scottish area, 
date from the introduction of bronze and the custom of 
cremating the dead. . Moreover, evidence is not wanting 
to suggest, if not to prove, that the same customs and 
civilisation continued to a much later period in North 
Britain than in the southern parts of the island. Some 
of the ordinary burials, whether after inhumation or crema- 
tion, which in all respects might be regarded as of the 
Bronze Age, may in reaHty be as late as the Roman 

The following categorical notes on the relation between 
^ Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 95. 



the various Scottish forms of burial and their analogues in 
Western Europe are noteworthy : — 

I. The series of chambered cairns, extending through the 
counties of Argyll, Inverness, Sutherland, and Caithness to 

Fig. 209. — Dolmen at Ballymascanlan^ Dundalk [total height 12 feet), 
{F)-ot}i photograph l>y R, Welch.) 

the Orkney Islands, do not cover a sufficiently wide area to 
entitle them to be regarded as the representatives of the 
Stone-Age burials of Scotland. 

2. These same chambered cairns disclose a progressive 



amplification as regards structural details in the northern 
part of the area of their distribution ; and in all of them 
from the very beginning both cremation and inhumation were 
practised by the people who constructed and owned them. 
3. In the south-west of England (Gloucester, Wilts, Somer- 

Fig. 210. — Spinsters^ Rock, Chagford, Devonshire [supports 6% feet high). 
{From a photograph by Hudson. ) 

set, and some neighbouring localities) there are chambered 
cairns analogous to those in the Scottish area, including 
even "Horned Cairns," but in the former all the primary 
burials were by inhumation, and the skulls were those of a 
dolichocephalic race. 

4. Sepulchral chambers with beehive roofs are met with 


in all parts of the British Isles, but they are not found in 
the Scandinavian archaeological area, and only very rarely 
in France. Dr Fergusson,i in describing the existence of two 
dolmens, associated with a circular chamber constructed on 
the beehive principle, in the long barrow called Moustoir- 
Carnac, in Brittany, gives expression to the opinion that this 
method of construction is more modern than the simpler ceil- 
ing of single blocks, as was the custom in the earlier mega- 
lithic chambers. The beehive method of roofing was prac- 
tised by the early inhabitants of Sardinia (Nurhags), Malta, 
Greece (tombs of Mycenae), and Egypt (the Pyramids). 

5. Dolmens — i.e., sepulchral monuments constructed of 
huge stones set on end and covered over with similar mega- 
liths so as to form a chamber with, or without, an entrance 
passage — are rarely, if at all, met with in Scotland. But on 
the other hand, they abound in Ireland (fig. 209 and PI. XIV.), 
England (fig. 210), south of Sweden, Denmark, North Ger- 
many, the Drenthe, west of France, Spain, Portugal, and 
North Africa. 

^ Rude Stone Monuments, p. 359. 




AVING in previous chapters discussed the 
mechanical skill of the prehistoric inhabi- 
tants of Scotland, as manifested in their 
stone and bronze industries, and expati- 
ated on the strong evidence in support 
of the theory that they were greatly 
influenced in all their actions by religious principles, we 
now proceed to the consideration of the general phenomena 
of their domestic and social life. The first and paramount 
element in the attainment of domestic comfort is the dwelling- 
place, more especially in a country where the climate necessi- 
tates bodily clothing, shelter from a frequently inclement sky, 
and often a supply of artificial warmth. And on this point, 
also, I have to premise that the evidential materials within 
the Scottish area are so scanty and fragmentary that they 
have to be supplemented by foreign gleanings. 

It was when dealing with the topographical modifications of 
the country due to changes in the relative level of sea and 
land that we caught the first glimpse of our prehistoric fore- 
fathers. We saw them hovering about the Carse of Stirling, 
when that stretch of now richly cultivated soil was the bed of 


a land-locked bay of no mean magnitude ; at one time attack- 
ing and hashing up the carcasses of a number of stranded 
whales with instruments rudely fashioned of deer-horn, and at 
another feasting around extemporised hearths on the shore, 
on various edible molluscs which they had transported thither 
during the ebb-tide of the now vanished sea. Then again we 
had a peep of an interesting group of Troglodytes in a cave 
situated at the foot of a cliff in the present town of Oban, 
then washed by the Atlantic waves, but now over a hundred 
yards from the shore. From this place of abode these early 
colonists plied their avocations both by sea and land, culling 
from the products of each the ingredients of a substantial and 
varied meal. The accumulation of shells and broken bones in 
the form of a refuse-heap suggests a long sojourn in the cave, 
while the harpoons, bone chisels, and stone implements suffi- 
ciently attest the character and occupation of their owners. 
An inspection of the organic remains shows that they pos- 
sessed some of the ordinary domestic animals, such as the 
dog, ox, and pig ; and thus they combined with a pastoral 
occupation that of hunting and fishing. The absence of the 
sheep and horse from the fauna in this early period suggests 
that these animals were a later addition to the domestic ani- 
mals of the neighbourhood. 

We also noted some further evidence of the presence of 
an industrious population at this period {i.e., when the 25-feet 
raised beach was being still laved by the tidal waves) in the 
canoes, stone implements, and camping-ground exposed in 
these ancient sea-margins along the shores of the Firths of 
Tay, Forth, Clyde, and Solway, localities now more or less 
inland. But with the exception of the Oban cave, and one 
or two rock-shelters, there is no reliable evidence to show 
what means they adopted to shelter themselves from the 
vicissitudes of a variable climate. The remains of pit- 


dwellings and hut - circles, so frequently chronicled by 
archaeologists, afford few data for determining either the 
nature of these structures or the age to which they be- 
longed, although it is quite probable that some of them 
may date to the incoming into Scotland of the earliest 

At Spiennes, near the town of Mons, Belgium, may be 
seen, thickly scattered over a plateau of 50 or 60 acres, 
a large number of circular pits, 2 to 3 feet in diameter 
and 25 to 38 feet in depth.i The chalk formation in this 
locality lies underneath quaternary and tertiary deposits, and 
these pits had been excavated by the Neolithic people for 
the purpose of extracting the flint nodules which it contains 
in great abundance. From the bottom of the shafts galleries 
were driven in all directions, until the whole district became 
actually riddled with subterranean passages. The shafts are 
now either fallen in or filled up with debris ; but a few of 
them were cleared, and thus some interesting relics have come 
to light. The walls of the underground passages showed the 
marks of the flint and horn picks by means of which the chalk 
was excavated. In the vicinity of these pits MM. le Baron 
A. de Loe and E. de Munck have discovered the remains 
of flint-factories and dwelling-huts.^ These sites were in the 
form of circular depressions, 2 to 5 paces in diameter, but of 
no great depth. In the huts were found beds of charcoal, 
various kinds of implements of stone, horn, and bone, broken 
bones, land-shells, and other remains of food-refuse. The 
factories were distinguished from the huts merely by the 
quantity of flint-refuse and tools which they contained. The 
hammer-stones were round balls of hard sandstone — this sub- 
stance being apparently preferable to a flint nodule. Flint- 
mining on similar methods has also been carried on in Britain, 

^ Congres International, &c., 1872, p. 279. ^ Ibid., 1889, p. 569. 


as at Grime's Graves, near Brandon,^ and at Cissbury Camp, 
near Worthing.- 

Foundations of dwelling-huts of a still earlier period have 
been discovered in several localities in Europe. The most 
important station of this kind is that at Campigny, near the 
picturesque village of Blangy (Seine Inferieure), France. The 
sites of these dwellings were circular pits, excavated in quater- 
nary gravels, and measuring a few yards in diameter and about 
4 feet in depth, which in the course of time became filled up 
with deiris and so preserved their contents. The industrial 
remains collected consist of hearths, remains of stone industry, 
and fragments of a coarse pottery. The pottery shows various 
kinds of vessels, some with perforated handles or ears, and 
others rudely ornamented with cross lines in quadrilateral 
spaces. Among the stone relics are small axes {franchets), 
precisely simihar to those found in the Danish Kjokken- 
moddings, knife-flakes, scrapers, &c., but no polished objects. 
It would thus appear that the invention of pottery preceded 
that of the art of polishing the edges of cutting implements. 
There are also a few large flat sandstones showing marks of 
rubbing, as well as the smaller hand-rubbers, which are sup- 
posed to have been used for grinding grain and seeds. The 
number of hearths indicates communal life and a social organi- 
sation of some kind. As to the actual covering of these sites, 
or the kind of hut which these people constructed, there is no 
evidence. Campigny is chronologically on the same horizon 
as the rock-shelter of Mas-d'Azil, and to French archaeologists 
it has supplied a name to the period of transition between 
Palaeolithic and Neolithic times. ^ 

Nor is the evidence to be gathered from collateral sources of 
a very precise character. Even as regards the actual habitations 

^ Eth. Soc. Journ., vol. ii. ^ ArchEeologia, vol. xlii. 

^ See ' Revue Mensuelle,' 1889, pp. 366-408. 

HUTS. 333 

or huts of the lake-dwellers the details are meagre and frag- 
mentary. The indications from this source consist of portions 
of clay-mouldings, hearth-stones, and a few special commodities 
of domestic life picked up on the sites of the lacustrine settle- 
ments. The faggot castings in clay suggest that the huts were 
made of small timbers and plastered over with puddled clay. 
Such impressions have been found on many stations ; and it 
may be noted that they vary greatly in size, some showing 
merely a kind of wicker-work and others timbers of large 
dimensions. The clay-castings found on the Glastonbury 
lake-village are generally of the former character. 

One important piece of evidence as to the kind of abodes 
constructed by the lake-dwellers of the Stone Age settlement 
of Schussenried, in the Federsee, came to light some years 
ago. This settlement had none of the signs of having been 
destroyed by fire, and it is supposed that its inhabitants 
voluntarily abandoned it on account of the growth of the 
surrounding peat. In this case it is probable that the huts 
would be allowed to fall into natural decay, but before this 
happened there was a chance that some part of the buildings 
would be overtaken by the moss, and so become, as it were, 
hermetically sealed up. That something like this actually 
occurred is now proved by the discovery of the foundations 
and portions of the walls of a cottage deeply buried in the 
moss. As soon as the discovery became known Mr Frank, 
the investigator of the settlement, had the ruins uncovered, 
and before the crumbling materials disappeared there was a 
plan of the building taken, which by his courtesy I had an 
opportunity of inspecting. The structure was of an oblong 
rectangular form, about 33 feet long and 23 feet wide, and 
was divided by a partition into two chambers. On the south 
side there was a door, a little over 3 feet wide, which opened 
into one of the chambers. The other, or inner chamber, was 


somewhat larger, and had no communication with the out- 
side, except through the former by means of a door in the 
partition. There were no relics found in this chamber, 
but in the outer there was a mass of stones which showed 
signs of having been a fireplace. The walls were constructed 
of split stems set upright, and their crevices plastered over 
with clay. The flooring in both chambers was composed 
of four layers Of closely laid timbers separated by as many 
layers of clay. These repeated floorings may have been 
necessary from the gradual rise of the surrounding peat 
which ultimately drove the inhabitants away. 

From the remains of the Scottish and Irish crannogs we 
also gather some reliable evidence as to the kind of dwellings 
that were in use during the early Iron Age. These were con- 
structed of upright timbers placed side by side, the interstices 
being filled in with clay, like that at Schussenried, so that they 
may be regarded, to some extent, as direct survivals of struc- 
tures previously in use. The Lochlee crannog had five distinct 
hearths superimposed one above the other, indicating succes- 
sive, but intermittent, occupation. On the original platform, 
and at the same level as the lowest hearth, were the stumps 
of a wooden wall forming a rectangular enclosure 39 feet 
square. This enclosure was divided near its middle by a 
partition, and on the south side of the southern compart- 
ment were portions of two stout posts which had evidently 
formed a doorway. In front of this door and on the left 
side there was an immense refuse-heap, and a little beyond 
it, the remains of a gangway which stretched to the original 
shore of the lake. 

Another crannog exposed in the bed of a drained loch in 
Argyllshire contained the wooden foundations of a circular 
dwelling-house which clearly showed the method of construc- 
tion. In the centre of the artificial island there was the 


stump of a huge oak pile, and around it a series of flat hori- 
zontal beams, firmly fixed to the surface of the island and 
all pointing towards the centre. At the outer end of each 
beam there was a square-cut hole, apparently for receiving 
the end of an upright post. The distance between these 
holes and the centre was 8 or 9 feet, and that between 
the beams, at their outer extremities, 5 or 6 feet. That the 
uprights which stood in these holes had been connected with 
the central pile was obvious, but whether they converged to- 
wards it like the ribs of an umbrella, or rose perpendicularly 
to meet cross rafters, there was no evidence to show. 

As early as 1833 Captain Mudge, R.N., described a wooden 
hut 1 which had been exposed in the bog of Drumkilin, county 
Donegal. It consisted of a rectangularly shaped framework 
of oak beams, mortised at the corners, and measuring 12 feet 
square by 9 feet in height. It was open on one side, and 
about half-way up there was a horizontal flooring which 
divided it into an upper and a lower compartment. The base 
of the hut rested on a substratum of brushwood, a fact which 
subsequently led to the conjecture that it was the site of a 
crannogj and peat to the extent of 16 feet in depth had 
accumulated above its roof 

Remains of wooden structures, having some resemblance to 
the Drumkilin hut, were discovered in 1880, in the Coal-bog, 
county Fermanagh, also on the site of a supposed crannog. 
Here, at a depth of 2 1 feet below the surface of the peat, an 
artificial mound was encountered, and upon it there was a 
wooden framework formed of rough beams with rudely ex- 
ecuted mortises. This framework measured 11 feet 10 inches 
in length and 6 feet 3 inches in breadth, and associated with 
it were some stone implements and other objects of an archaic 

^ Archaeologia, vol. xxvi. 


As to the materials which covered the roofs of these early 
huts we have but scanty data for forming an opinion. From 
discoveries made at Niederwyl, Mr Messikommer came to 
the conclusion that the roofs of the huts in that station had 
been covered with layers of straw and rushes. That thatch 
of some sort was generally used in proto - historic times in 
western Europe finds some corroboration in the statements 
of classical writers. Strabo asserts that the Belgae lived "in 
great houses, arched, constructed of planks and wicker, and 
covered with a heavy thatched roof" (Book iv. chap. 4). 

Owing to the perishable nature of the constructive materials 
of these wooden houses, we could not expect to find many 
traces of them now, except under such rare conditions as 
are occasionally supplied by lake - dwellings and peat-bogs. 
The supposition that wooden houses preceded the ordinary 
stone buildings in Scotland is also strengthened by the fact 
that the latter have been found only on the later crannogs. 

Beehive Huts. 

There is, however, a method of building huts with dry 
stones which claims a high antiquity, it being actually proved 
to have been practised in Ireland before the introduction of 
Christianity. This is the beehive hut (fig. 211), which consists 
of a circular or oval building constructed of uncemented stones, 
and so arranged that each layer overlaps the one beneath it, 
till the opening becomes so small, at the apex, as to be closed 
in by one stone. Although these structures were comparatively 
rude within the British Isles, yet the architectural principle 
involved is capable of great development both in gracefulness 
of form and perfection of structure. The finest, and probably 
the oldest, examples known are the famous tombs of Mycenae, 
especially that called the "Treasury of Atreus." 



In the simple form beehive houses appear to have been 
planned and laid out without any regard to symmetr)', so 
that, when partially covered with earth or stones, an opera- 
tion which was almost essential for the stability of the roof, 
they looked like a group of tumuli or cairns. These uni- 
cellular structures were not capable of attaining large dimen- 
sions, but by connecting them by means of passages, a 
many-roomed dwelling-house could be readily constructed. 

Fig. 211. — Cljchau-na'Carraige, North Island^ Aran. 

Another method by which the dwelling could be enlarged 
disclosed no small amount of skill and architectural in- 
genuity. Thus, by surrounding a circular chamber with a 
gallery, leaving just the thickness of a wall between them, and 
having this wall interrupted by passages at regular intervals all 
round, a spacious compact building could be constructed. A 
specimen of this kind was discovered by Captain Thomas in 
South Uist, and is thus described by him : " On a small 


flattish terrace, where the hill sloped steeply, an area had 
been cleared by digging away the bank, so that the wall of 
the house, for nearly half its circumference, was the side of the 
hill faced with stone ; while the other side of the house, for it 
was almost gone, was built up from the ground. The interior 
of the house was circular and 28 feet in diameter. Within the 
area were pillars, or rather piers, formed of blocks of dry-stone 
masonry, raised distinct from the wall, and radiating from the 
centre of the house. These piers were about 4 feet high, 4 
feet 6 inches long, and i y^ foot to 2 feet broad ; and there 
was a passage of from i foot to 2 feet in width between the 
wall and them. There were five piers remaining, and five 
more would complete the suite. These piers were evidently 
intended to lessen the space to be covered by overlapping; 
for while the breadth of the house is 28 feet, the central dome 
or beehive had, by this means, only 15 feet to span."^ 

This remarkable house had attached to it a subterranean 
gallery or hypogeum, 14 feet long, which terminated in an 
underground beehive chamber of considerable size, as shown 
on the accompanying plan and sections (fig. 212). 

From the investigations of Captain Thomas ^ it would ap- 
pear that beehive houses continued to be built and used 
down almost to the present day in the islands of Harris, 
Lewis, and St Kilda. Sir Arthur Mitchell, who has devoted 
a chapter to these primitive structures in his most interesting 
book, ' The Past in the Present,' thus writes : " When I had 
seen more of them, I came to the same conclusion as Captain 
Thomas, namely, that they represent an old form of dwelling 
which is now dying out. No other conclusion, in fact, is 
possible. The time of the building of some of them has 
been well ascertained ; one, for instance, was built by a 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 166. 

^ Ibid., vol. iii. p. 127, and vol. vii. p. 153. 



person who was alive in 1858, and there are people living 
who were born in them. They have at one time been very 
common. Captain Thomas saw fifty or sixty in what he 
properly calls a limited area. They are not confined to 
Harris and the Lewis, but I believe are also found in the 
other islands of the Outer Hebrides, and they probably ex- 

Fig. 212. — Ground-plan and section of beehive house {^restored) on line A E, 
Huishinish, South Uist. 

isted at no very distant time in Skye, in Mull, and in some 
of the west parishes of the mainland. Not more, however, 
than from twenty to thirty are now inhabited." ^ 

In Ireland beehive huts, or cloghauns as they are there 
generally called, are very abundant, especially in stony dis- 
tricts, such as the Aran Isles and county Kerry. In June 
1897 I had an opportunity, under the guidance of the 

1 Op. cit., p. 63. 


Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, of visiting the ruins 
of the "ancient city of Fahan," certainly one of the most 
extraordinary archaic remains I have ever seen. Proceed- 
ing westwards from the coastguard station on the slope of 
Mount Eagle, overlooking Dingle Bay, we reached Fahan, 
where may be seen " forts with three, four, two, and one 
huts, a group of seven huts and twelve detached cloghauns, 
a church, and four gallauns." Immediately to the south of 
this is the famous fort of Dunbeg, occupying a projecting 
headland, three-fourths of which require no defence, as it 
terminates in a precipitous cliff. On the landside it is pro- 
tected by a massive stone wall and three earthen ramparts 
which stretch across the entire neck of the headland. There 
is a gate in the wall with a guard-chamber on each side, and 
in the court inside are the remains of a large beehive hut. 
The other forts on the slope of the hill consist of stone 
walls, lo to 14 feet or more in thickness, enclosing groups 
of beehive huts. Some of these huts contained souterrains 
entered by trap-like doors from the floor. 

One of the most interesting of these forts, Caher-Fada-an- 
Doruis (the long fort of the doors), had been recently cleared 
out, and showed a triple - celled dwelling, the central one 
(the largest) measuring i8 feet in diameter. It was con- 
nected with the other two beehive huts by passages 8 feet 
in length. The entrance or outer door faced south-east, and 
communicated with the central chamber by an oblique 
passage, from which a flight of stone steps (in ruins) ran 
spirally to the roof. Another fort was a double-chambered 
cloghaun, which showed a small window — the only one in 
the Fahan group. 

Two theories have been held as to the date of this remark- 
able settlement : (i) that it was a primitive pagan city, 
probably of the period of the Firbolgs (Du Noyer); and (2) 


that it was the abode of Christian monks (O'Curry). Mr 
Stewart Macalister, in his recent monograph on the subject,^ 
comes to the conclusion that it existed both in pagan and 
Christian times : " The clochan period of the settlement," 
he writes, "probably extends from a little before the intro- 
duction of Christianity into Corkaguiney, down to a com- 
paratively recent date in the middle ages. The modern in- 
habitants are for the most part successors, not descendants, 
of the older stock; who probably died out, or else were 
gradually dispersed by political and religious troubles, or by 
the need of seeking other surroundings, more fertile if less 

Remains of beehive huts are frequently found in the great 
stone forts on the west coast of Ireland, as, for example, 
the Black Fort and Dun Conor, in Aranmore. I have also 
observed similar hut - remains in a fort near Cahirciveen, 
which in construction is analogous to Staigue Fort in the same 

There can be no doubt, therefore, that beehive huts were 
erected by the pagan inhabitants of Ireland prior to the in- 
troduction of Christianity, and that the Christians merely 
adopted, in tlie construction of their cells, the architectural 
methods they found already in use. Fig. 211 illustrates a 
perfect specimen of a solitary cloghaun in the north island 
of Aran. It is called Clochan-na-Carraige, and measures 19 
feet by 7}^ feet and 8 feet in height. It is on this primitive 
type of building that the early church architecture, both in 
Ireland and Scotland, was founded. The series of monastic 
buildings on Skellig Michael — church, square, oratory, and 
beehive cells — present, even now, a striking example of the 
early Christian " Cashel." The oratory of Gallerus (fig. 213) 
illustrates the first stage in the development of the beehive 
^ Trans. R. I. Acad., vol. xxxi. part vii. p. 334. 
2 A 



Structure into the subsequent church architecture of the 
Christian period. 

On Eilean-na-Noimh (Island of Saints), one of the Garve- 

loch Isles, on the west coast of Argyllshire, there are two 
ruuied beehive cells associated with a small church ; but such 
remains are by no means numerous in Scotland. 


Picts' Houses, Earth-houses, " Weems," cs^c. 

The comparative remoteness of North Britain and its 
associated islands renders these regions peculiarly favour- 
able for the preservation of antiquities. The disturbing ele- 
ments imported into the more southerly parts of Britain, 
in consequence of progressive waves of foreign civilisation, 
took a long time to reach these distant lands and islands. 
Hence we sometimes meet with the essential elements of 
an archaic civilisation surviving in these parts to a much 
later period than they did elsewhere. Of such survivals 
the so-called "Picts' houses" afford excellent illustrations. 
Dr Traill, in discoursing on these remains, thus writes : 
"The usual form of these buildings is that of a rectangular 
central chamber, with various passages leading into smaller 
chambers or cells ; their shape, however, is variable, and 
one form in particular deserves some attention, as it differs 
so widely from the ordinary chambered tumuli that it appears 
to belong to a different period, and possibly may have been 
constructed by a different race. I allude to the circular 
towers, or ' brochs,' as they are commonly termed, the 
most characteristic example of which is the well - known 
tower of Mousa, in Shetland. ... It has not yet been 
satisfactorily decided which of these very dissimilar types 
of architecture is the oldest. Both kinds are built of rough 
stone, without the aid of mortar or lime, and both seem to 
have been partially banked up on the outside with earth 
and turf, apparently with the object of excluding wind and 
rain. On this point, however, opinions differ; it is not al- 
ways easy to determine how much of the earth and debris 
that surrounds these buildings is artificial, or how much is 
the effect of natural accumulation. In the case of Skerrabrae, 
however, we can speak with tolerable certainty, as enough of 


the outer wall is exposed to show us that earth had been 
heaped against the wall to the height of 6 or 8 feet, and 
the sloping bank thus formed had been coated over with a 
thin crust of clay. There was no clay on the wall itself, or 
between the stones of it, but only on the surface of the 
sloping embankment, and the deposit of earth above that, 
consisting of broken shells and vegetable mould, is, I be- 
lieve, chiefly the result of drifting sand, with successive 
growths of vegetation on the top of it. It is remarkable 
that bones and horns of red-deer are generally found in 
both kinds of houses, and this circumstance is, I think, 
important in trying to arrive at some approximate date as 
to the age of these buildings ; for, while we have undoubted 
evidence that these islands were formerly covered with forests 
abounding in deer and other wild animals, yet the writings of 
Cassar, Diodorus Siculus, Solinus, and others, lead us to be- 
lieve that at a time prior to the Christian era the forests had 
entirely disappeared, and we may justly conclude that the 
deer also had then ceased to exist. Assuming, therefore, as 
an established fact, that these early races of men were con- 
temporaneous with the deer, we cannot bring them nearer to 
our own times than 2000 years ; indeed, when we see how 
many links are wanting in the chain that connects them 
with our earliest recorded history, it is far more probable 
that we must assign to them an older date by some centuries." ^ 
One of the most instructive of the former class of dwellings 
is that at Skerrabrae, referred to in the above quotation. It 
is situated on the south side of the bay of Skaill, in Orkney, 
and consists of a series of underground chambers connected 
by long winding passages. I visited these ruins during the 
summer of 1896, and had the good fortune to have them 
explained to me by Mr Watt, who for many years has taken 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. pp. 427, 428. 


a great interest in everything pertaining to this singular place. 
The explorations conducted by him from time to time have 
been so extensive that the exposed ruins look almost like a 
small village; nor was Mr Watt, even then, certain that its 
full extent had been exposed. Through his courtesy I had 
also an opportunity of examining the relics which for the most 
part are preserved at his private residence. Mr George Petrie, 
who first gave publicity to the existence of this remarkable 
dwelling, thus records its discovery : " About fifteen or six- 
teen years ago, the drift-sand, which had accumulated to a 
great height at a place called Skara, on the south side of the 
bay above named, was undermined and swept away by the 
wild waves of the Atlantic, and an immense ' kitchen-midden,' 
apparently of great antiquity, was exposed to view. It was at 
some points 15 or 16 feet high, and consisted chiefly of ashes 
thickly studded with bones, shells, pieces of horns of the ox 
and deer, and fragments of charred wood. The discovery was 
communicated to me by Mr William Watt, Skaill, who showed 
me various bone and stone implements which he had picked 
out of the mound, and informed me of the existence of the 
ruins of buildings at the same place. . . . Mr Watt, after- 
wards, from time to time, collected a variety of stone and bone 
relics from the mound, and ascertained that a great mass of 
ruins lay buried there. He also came upon a stone kist 
or box containing about two dozen large oyster- shells, all 
perforated in the middle with a hole about an inch in 
diameter." ^ 

These structures, as now exposed, consist of four or five 
groups of chambers and cells, placed on both sides of a 
common gallery or passage which runs nearly parallel to the 
shore-line. The entrance to each group is by a secondary 
passage branching off to right or left from the main gallery. 
^ Proc. Soc. A. .Scot., vol. vii. pp. 201, 202. 


When discovered, all these chambers and passages were filled 
with sand and stones fallen from the roof, so that the labour 
of clearing them out was very great. 

The first chamber, that on the left of the main entrance, 
was approached through a passage 1 2 feet long, 2 J^ feet wide 
at outer end, but widening to 3^ feet at inner end, and 2% 
feet high. " About 8 feet from the entrance two jambs pro- 
ject slightly into the passage, and on the inner side of these, 
in the side walls, were bar holes, and extending across the 
passage with its ends in these holes a long stone was found, 
which had evidently been used as a bar to support or barri- 
cade a door." When the sand had been cleared out the 
chamber was found to measure 11 feet wide and about 21 
feet long, transversely to the line of the entrance passage. 
The walls were built of dry-stone masonry, 5 or 6 feet of 
which still remained. The floor was flagged and marked out 
into compartments by stones set on edge, varying in height 
from a few inches to 2^ feet. The hearth occupied the 
centre, and was clearly defined by stones placed rectangu- 
larly, and the space so enclosed contained ashes and burnt 
bones. On one side of the wall there was a small cell, 4 feet 
in diameter and 4 feet in height, the entrance to which was 2 
feet 7 inches high and very narrow. 

It would occupy too much space to describe the details of 
all the chambers, passages, and recesses. They were, how- 
ever, all built on the same general plan. The roofs converged 
on the beehive principle, and there were also flags set on 
end which probably formed supporting pillars. In one place 
some large portions of whale ribs were found which, Mr Watt 
thought, had been used for this purpose. 

Mr Petrie describes the following curious discovery in one 
of the chambers : " Beneath this wall a very thick rude clay 
urn was found. This discovery naturally suggests the ques- 


tion, When and why came tlie urn to be placed there? I am 
not sufficiently acquainted with the circumstances in which 
it was found to enable me to form any decided opinion as to 
the time when it was deposited on the spot in which it was 
discovered ; but I think that it has been buried there either 
by the original occupiers of the building, or by those who at 
a later date seemed to have appropriated the dwelling, and 
made alterations and additions, including, apparently, the rude 
wall beneath which the urn was found." ^ 

With regard to a human skeleton reported to have been 
found in the sand inside one of the chambers, and about 
3 feet above the fireplace, the same authority says: "The 
skull of the skeleton found in the chamber L is of a type 
with which I am familiar. The forehead is rather low and 
receding, and the nasal bones are very high. In the last 
respect it closely resembles other skulls which I have ob- 
tained from ancient graves in Orkney, but the notch at the 
root of the nose is deeper than any of the skulls I have 
hitherto met." 

Among the relics collected during a prolonged series of 
investigations the following may be noted : A few polished 
stone celts ; stone cups, mortars, and one large stone with 
a cavity which might have been used for rubbing or pounding 
grain ; a round stone ball ornamented with knobs, and another 
shaped like a ship's block ; a few large vessels made of whale- 
vertebra, and a small piece of whalebone fashioned into a 
rude idol; a large assortment of pins, beads (over 1000), and 
a variety of implements made of bone, including pointers 
such as might have been used as daggers ; also a few pronged 
implements of bone or red-deer horn precisely similar to those 
from the Mondsee, in Austria ; ^ several implements made by 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 206. 

^ Lake-Dwellings of Europe, fig. 39, Nos. 9 and 12. 


perforating the articulating ends of the leg-bone of the sheep ; 
a few teeth perforated and probably used as ornaments ; some 
knives and cleavers of clay-slate ; a few stone vessels con- 
taining red and white pigments, &c. 

Although not a trace of either bronze or iron has yet come to 
light, we should be disposed, judging from the character of these 
relics, to regard them as belonging to the Early Iron Age. 

The underground buildings known as " eirde houses," 
weems, and sometimes as Picts' houses, have a wide distribu- 
tion in Scotland, especially in the counties bordering on its 
eastern shore, and attain their greatest development in the dis- 
trict stretching between the Tay and the Moray Firth. They 
are generally met with as single chambers concealed below the 
level of the surface, but sometimes they occur in groups, as on 
the muir at Kildrummy, in Aberdeenshire, where nearly fifty 
have been discovered, extending over an area of less than a 
couple of square miles. They are long, low, narrow galleries, 
always more or less curved, and gradually expanding, both 
laterally and vertically, till, towards the inner extremity, they 
may measure as much as lo or 12 feet in width and 6 or 7 in 
height. They are most frequently built of undressed dry 
stones, with convergent walls bearing heavy lintels ; but oc- 
casionally the walls are made with flags set on end. The 
narrow entrance, probably concealed by a stone door, slopes 
down to the floor level of the chamber, but before reaching 
the latter there is sometimes a second door, often placed at 
the point where the direction is changed. Sometimes a 
passage branches off from one side of the gallery and leads 
to another chamber, usually of a circular or oval shape. 
These chambers are frequently roofed in a dome fashion, on 
the beehive principle, much in the same manner as those con- 
structed in the walls of the brochs and in the chambered 
cairns. Though all built on a uniform plan, they vary greatly 


in dimensions, that at Tealing, Forfarshire, measuring 80 feet 
in length, 5 feet 8 inches in height, 2 feet 6 inches in width at 
entrance, and 8 feet 6 inches next the inner end ; while the 
corresponding measurements of one at Kinord are only 21 
feet, ij4 foot, 3 feet, and 2}^ feet. 

The structure at Tealing is described under the name of a 
" Pict's house " by Mr Andrew Jervise,-' and is remarkable, not 
only for its size, but for the quantity and variety of relics found 
in it. A rough undressed boulder on the north side of the 
doorway was sculptured with cup-marks, and a cup with five 
concentric rings and a gutter-channel. Among the relics 
found scattered throughout the debris were the following : A 
piece of Samian ware, a bracelet, bronze rings, coarse pottery, 
ten querns (some broken), a number of whorls, stone cups, 
and an article made of iron slightly mixed with brass. On 
the surface, close to the entrance to the underground chamber, 
there was a macadamised circular space, 6 feet in diameter, 
with much ashes, probably a hearth or cooking-place. 

It is the general opinion of archasologists that these sub- 
terranean chambers were associated with surface habitations, 
whose structural materials have disappeared through natural 
decay and changes due to the cultivation of the land. 
Striking evidence of such an association was observed in 
1859, at Cairn Conan,^ near Arbroath, Forfarshire. Here 
an underground structure (see plan and sections, fig. 214) 
presented the peculiarity of having, in addition to the usual 
long curved gallery, a circular beehive chamber attached to 
it by a low passage, and to which there was also a second 
entrance. About six or seven paces north of the under- 
ground gallery a circular space, 20 feet in diameter, and 
rudely paved with flagstones, was detected a few inches 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. x. p. 287. 

^ Fbid., vol. iii. p. 465, and vol. iv. p. 492. 



beneath the surface soil. This, upon examination, was re- 
cognised as the site of a habitation of which, however, noth- 
ing then remained except the floor, and a few relics which 
its occupants had left behind them. These relics are im- 
portant in supplying some clue to the age of the structures ; 
for there seems to be no doubt that both the surface and 
underground remains were parts of the same homestead. 
Among them were the upper stone of a quern, two whorls 

Fig, 214. — Ground-plan and sections of earth-house at West Grange of Conan^ 

of lead, a portion of a bronze ring, some rudely hollowed 
stones, and fragments of iron cutting implements. Those 
from the underground chambers comprised fragments of 
various kinds of pottery, some wheel-made, a bronze needle, 
part of a quern, horses' teeth, calcined bones, and a large 
spiral bracelet of the snake-like pattern — all of which point to 
Romano-British times. 

Another interesting feature of this settlement was that, a few 
yards to the north-west of the underground chamber, a cluster 
of six full-length coffins, composed of rude stone slabs with 


Stone covers, was discovered at no great depth in the soil. 
Some of the graves contained skulls and other portions of 
decayed bodies and a few coloured pebbles, but the only 
manufactured object was a portion of a ring of cannel coal. 
These graves were considered to have been the family burial- 
ground of the people who inhabited the adjacent dwellings. 

Dr Stuart describes the " eirde " houses at Kildrummy as 
having been discovered "by the occurrence near the entrance 
of low foundations, which seem to have supported the frail 
summer- or daylight - houses of the early population." A 
similar association of surface and underground dwellings has 
been observed in several places elsewhere, as at Strathdonan, 
in Sutherlandshire, where two " eirde " houses were near a 
group of hut circles. 

Earth-houses occur in the Scottish area singly or in groups 
of half-a-dozen or so, but rarely in such numbers as at Kil- 
drummy. At Airlie, in Forfarshire, a group of five has been 
noted, but only one of them has been explored. Among its 
debris were found a bronze pin, charred wood, querns, and a 
piece of sandstone containing a cup-like hollow. An iron pad- 
lock was among the contents of one at Alvey, in Inverness- 
shire. So far, therefore, as relics give indications of the age 
of these structures, they must be classified as belonging chiefly 
to the Early Iron Age. That many of them were utilised in 
post-Roman times is placed beyond doubt by the discovery of 
red Samian ware, as in those at Tealing and Fithie in Forfar- 
shire, and Pitcur, near Coupar-Angus. Moreover, the investi- 
gation of one at Crichton Mains, Mid-Lothian, 1 has revealed 
the fact that its walls contain stones dressed with diagonal and 
diamond markings, after the manner of Roman workmanship. 

With regard to their distribution it may be observed that 
none have been found in Galloway, and only one in Berwick- 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 105. 



shire — viz., that near Broomhouse described by D. Milne 
Home, Esq.i This earth-house is interesting as showing the 
peculiar curved shape so commonly met with in Scottish 
examples (fig. 215). 

In Ireland underground chambers, generally known as 
" souterrains " or " coves," are to be found all over the 
country. In structure, and in the occurrence of side-cham- 

Fig. 215. — Ground-plan and sections of earth-kouse near Broomhouse, 

bers opening from the main passage at irregular distances, 
they are very similar to the Scottish examples, the only 
slight difference between them being in the extent of cur- 
vature of the main gallery, which appears to be less pro- 
nounced in the Irish souterrains. Although usually iso- 
lated, they sometimes occur in connection with the earthen 
forts or raths ; differing in this respect also from the Scottish 
examples, among which only one instance is known inside a 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 20. 


fort — viz., that in the ancient fort known as Macbeth's Castle, 
on Dunsinane Hill. In the valley of Glenshesk, county 
Antrim, there is a good specimen of the souterrain locally 
called " Gobar Saer's Cave." It is situated on the hillside, 
about a mile and a half south of Ballycastle, and consists of 
two chambers, measuring respectively 31 and 24 feet in leiigth.^ 

The only other locality in which subterranean dwellings, 
of the type now under consideration, are found is Cornwall 
— a district abounding in ancient British remains, such as 
beehive houses, dolmens, menhirs, stone circles, forts, &c. 
A stay of a few days at Penzance enabled me to visit a 
number of these interesting remains with no other assistance 
than the ' Official Guide to Penzance.' The antiquarian 
notes in this little volume, being by Mr W. C. Borlase, 
are thoroughly to be depended on. 

One excursion was in a north-west direction, occupying a 
circular journey of about fifteen miles. Following the Morvah 
road, we first came to " Lanyon Cromlech," a free standing 
dolmen with a cover-stone, 17 feet long by nearly 9 feet broad, 
and resting on three pillars 5 feet in height. But this was not 
its original height, as in the year 1815 the cover-stone fell and 
was broken, as well as one of its supports. The cover in its 
damaged condition was subsequently replaced, and the other 
two pillars were cut down to the same level as the broken 
one. In its original condition it is said that a man on horse- 
back could ride under the cover-stone. 

Turning to the left, we reached Chun, where there is a 
group of remarkable antiquities, including a hill -castle, a 
dolmen, and an ancient British village. Chun Castle is of 
an oval shape, 180 feet long by 170 feet broad, and differs 
from the ordinary hill-forts of the neighbourhood in being 
entirely built of stones in their rough state, but without any 
^ Guide to Belfast, by the B. Nat. Field Club, p. 212. 


cement. It consists of two concentric ditches alternating 
with two walls. The inner wall is 20 feet thick, and before 
it was plundered of its stones in the last century "it was at 
least 10 feet in height." The entrance is on the west side, 
and the two gate-posts, each 5 feet in height, still remain. 
These are placed at the inner margin of the wall at a distance 
of only 6 feet, but this interval gradually widens to 12 feet 
at the outer margin of the wall. It is noteworthy that the 
corresponding gateway in the outer wall is not opposite to 
the former, but twelve paces to the south of it. The central 
area is partially occupied with ruins of dry-stone buildings 
which appear to have been divided into structural compart- 
ments. Chiin Castle is regarded by antiquaries as a con- 
necting-link between the ancient British fort and the Norman 

The dolmen, whose stones are covered with a thick coating 
of lichens, stands in solitary grandeur about 250 yards to the 
west of the castle, and consists of a large cover supported on 
four pillar stones, enclosing a chamber 7 feet in height. A 
tumulus of earth and stones formerly covered these megaliths, 
and it was surrounded by a ring of stones set on edge. 

A quarter of a mile to the east of the ruined castle is the 
site of the ancient British village of Bosullo, which appears 
to have been connected with the former by a paved way. 

About a mile to the south there are the ruins of another 
ancient hut-village on the slopes of a hill at Bodinar, in which, 
"within the memory of man," there were beehive huts to be 
seen, but they are all now in ruins. However, I had the 
satisfaction of seeing one of the Cornwall beehive huts at 
Bosporthennis, now the only remaining specimen of a large 
British settlement. This consists of two chambers, one 
circular and the other rectangular. The former is 13 feet 
in diameter, and has no less than three small doors. The 


roof has unfortunately collapsed, but enough of the wall 
remains to show the converging system on which the dome 
was constructed. Connected with the beehive chamber by 
a low square door there is another chamber 9 feet long by 
4 feet broad, which is regarded as a later appendage to the 

The ancient British village of Chysauster, situated in the 
vicinity of the hill-fortress of Castle-an-dinas, has been partly 
cleared out, and in the course of these operations evidence 
of tin -smelting and fragments of Romano- British pottery 
were discovered. But without dwelling further on these 
ancient British remains, we must pass on to notice the 
characteristics of the subterranean dwellings which are 
associated with these villages. 

A good specimen of them is the " Fogou " at Boleit, on the 
lower Buryan road, near the ruins of the ancient manor-house 
of Trewoof. It consists of a subterranean gallery 40 feet long, 
from which another chamber, at present about 13 feet long, 
branches off, but whose full dimensions have not been ascer- 
tained. The convergent walls are of unhewn stones and 
covered with large granite slabs. 

Another and still more interesting specimen is at Chapel 
Euny, parish of Sancreed, about four and a half miles from 
Penzance. Its main features consist of a gallery 60 feet 
in length, 6 feet wide, and from 6 to 7 feet high. At one 
end it gives access to the surface by a small trap-door closed 
by a stone, with holes in the sides apparently for barring it, 
and at the other there is a low passage 10 feet long which 
leads to a beehive chamber 16 feet in diameter. The floors 
of the gallery and chamber were paved with flagstones and 
provided with drains beneath the pavement. During the 
excavation of these underground structures evidence of tin- 
smelting and various relics were found, among the latter 


being whetstones, hammer-stones, various kinds of pottery, 
an iron spear-head, a " pot-hook," and a piece of red Samian 
ware. On the surface above these chambers there are the 
remains of a British hut-village — thus showing, like all the 
■other examples in this district, a relationship between the 
surface and underground dwellings. 

These subterranean dwellings, like their Irish analogues, 
do not manifest so strongly the single or, sometimes, double 
curvatures which are so constantly met with in the Scottish 
examples ; but in all other respects they are so similar over 
the three special areas of their development, that they can 
hardly be accounted for except on the supposition of a unity 
of origin. The almost trivial differences manifested in their 
plan of construction can be readily explained by their geo- 
graphical isolation, consequent on the occupation of Central 
Britain by foreign immigrants, and their continued occupancy 
after the old British associations became permanently broken 
up by the Roman occupation. 

Outside the British Isles the beehive underground dwell- 
ings seem to be unknown, although the statement of Tacitus 
suggests the prevalence of such hiding-places among the 
Germans. In discussing the manners and customs of this 
people (chap. i6), he writes as follows: "They also dig 
subterraneous caves, and cover them over with a great quan- 
tity of dung. These they use as winter-retreats and gran- 
aries ; for they preserve a moderate temperature ; and upon an 
invasion, when the open country is plundered, these recesses 
remain unviolated, either because the enemy is ignorant 
of them, or because he will not trouble himself with the 

The special purposes thus assigned by Tacitus to under- 
ground retreats among the Germans, whatever may have been 
their mode of construction, are precisely those indicated by 


the results of the latest archaeological investigations of the 
"eirde" houses, " souterrains," and " fogous " of the British 

Indications of Social and Industrial Life. 

The unequal distribution of the raw material used in the 
manufacture of stone implements, contrasted with the wide- 
spread use of the latter, suggests that a system of trading 
or barter was prevalent amongst the prehistoric people of 
Scotland. This view is supported by the occasional discovery 
of the remains of flint factories — anvils, hammers, fabricators, 
cores, splinters, chips, and other broken and disused materials. 
Remains of this character have been usually found on the 
indurated subsoil of sand - dunes, such as those at Culbin, 
Glenluce, and Irvine, and in localities where flint nodules 
abound in the natural gravels. At Skelmuir, already referred 
to, a remarkable hoard, consisting of thirty-four flints worked 
roughly to a leaf shape, was found concealed under a flat 
stone. They were evidently a consignment of unfinished 
goods possessing a certain commercial value, and it is 
possible that they were laid aside in concealment till such 
time as the warrior or huntsman had leisure to give them 
the final finishing touches ; or, what is more probable, they 
might have been intended for transport to a locality where 
there was no natural supply of flint. Hoards of bronze 
objects, which are by no means uncommon, point to the 
same conclusion. 

The principle of the division of labour, here dimly shadowed, 
is more forcibly indicated by the disposition and localisation 
of some of the materials found on the sites of lake-dweUings. 
From the uniformity with which grain, quantities of apple- 
cores, bundles of flax, yarn, cloth, &c., were found strictly 
confined to separate areas at Wangen, Mr Lohle came to 

2 B 


the conclusion that the different trades had been kept apart. 
At one of the stations in the Lake of Geneva, near the present 
town of that name, Dr Gosse fished up stone moulds together 
with a number of crucibles, ingots of bronze and tin, scorife, 
and other materials of the founder's art — all within an area of 
ICO square yards. Other researches have proved a still wider 
generalisation, and it is probable that not only were the special 
trades kept apart in each village, but that some villages had 
already established a monopoly of certain industries. It is 
only on such a supposition that the extraordinary number 
of implements and chips of jade found at Maurach, and 
the equally striking predominance of flint refuse at Wall- 
hausen, can be explained. 

The late Mr Radimsky came to a similar conclusion with 
regard to the inhabitants of the Neolithic station of Butmir, 
in Bosnia. On dividing the seventeen different kinds of stone 
used in the manufacture of implements into two groups, 
according as they were, or were not, found in the vicinity 
of Butmir, he observed that all came under the first cate- 
gory, with the exception of the perforated hammers and 
two objects of gabbro, and that not a splinter or core of 
the foreign material of which the latter had been made had 
been detected on the station. Hence he inferred that the 
Butmirians manufactured the objects made from the rocks 
readily accessible to them, and imported, ready made, those 
represented by raw materials found only at a distance.^ 

But, indeed, the manipulative skill necessary to carry on 
these stone industries is suggestive of some kind of division 
of labour among the prehistoric folk, as the art could only 
be acquired by long experience and careful training. 

I have already adduced evidence to show that the early 
immigrants into North Britain were hunters and pastoral 
^ Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, p. 107. 


farmers, who probably paid no attention to the cultivation 
of the land. It was only as the population increased, and 
permanent communities gradually took root in the glens and 
straths, that agriculture became the mainstay of their sub- ■ 
sistence. From the investigations of Canon Greenwell it 
is proved that during the Early Bronze Age the people of 
the wolds of Yorkshire were possessed of domestic animals, 
cultivated grain, and manufactured cloth, pottery, and im- 
plements. But it was probably several centuries later before 
people, with an equivalent civilisation, brought the primeval 
forests and marshes of Scotland under cultivation. The 
testimony of classical authors might also be adduced in 
support of this view. Csesar (Book v. chap, xiv) categori- 
cally states that most of the inland inhabitants of Britain 
did not sow corn, but lived on milk and flesh, and were 
clad with skins. The speech which Tacitus puts into the 
mouth of Galgacus on the eve of the battle of Mons 
Graupius contains the following : " For we have neither 
cultivated lands, nor mines, nor harbours, which can induce 
them to preserve us for our labours." In a sentence, how- 
ever, almost immediately preceding this, the Caledonian chief 
is made to refer to the land and its yearly produce — apparently 
corn. Thus it would seem as if the inhabitants occupying the 
greater part of the country to the north of the Firths of Forth 
and Clyde were a purely pastoral people in the first century 
of the Christian era. 

That the prehistoric people of Scotland were in the habit of 
using canoes on the lakes and firths which so abound in and 
around the country, is amply attested by the facts already 
recorded in chapter iii. Another kind of boat used by them 
was the currach (Celt, curach), or coracle, the invention of 
which must also be relegated to the remotest time of which 
we have any historical knowledge. It was made of a slender 



frame of wood, or basket - work, and covered with skins. 
Adaranan, in his Life of St Columba, describes long voyages 
made in skiffs of this description ; and they are referred to by 
several of the classical authors. PIiny,i writing of the inven- 

Fig. 216. — Curracli or coracle used on the Boyne, Ireland. (From photograph 
by S. Welch.) 

tion of ships, says : " Even at the present day they are made 
in the British ocean of wicker - work covered with hides." 
Currachs still continue to be used on many parts of the Irish 
coast— one recently seen at work on the river Boyne being 
here figured (fig. 216). Those now constructed by the people 
' Nat. Hist., book vii. chap. 57. 


of the Aran Isles, in the bay of Galway, are like ordinary row- 
boats, and covered with tarpauling instead of skins. Coracles 
are reported to have been employed on the river Spey at the 
end of last century. 

But however far our gaze can penetrate the prehistoric 
arcana in search of evidence to elucidate the social life of 
our Scottish predecessors in the ages of stone and bronze, 
the story elicited is but an imperfect and fragmentary record. 
No structural habitation or building of these times, with the 
exception of the tomb, has ever been discovered, to my 
knowledge, within the Scottish area ; so that in formulating 
general deductions we are largely dependent on the stray 
objects made of the more durable materials which have 
been gathered from the dustbins of time. Scarcely a particle 
of clothing — be it skin or woven stuff — has reached us across 
the long waste of forgotten ages, and yet the jet button, the 
bone or bronze pin, and other objects used for fastening the 
dress, unmistakably tell us that the prehistoric inhabitants of 
Scotland were not destitute of that essential commodity of 
life. On the other hand, if we judge of their social con- 
dition by that of their contemporaries, the lake- dwellers of 
the Stone - Age settlement at Robenhausen, who, by a 
mere coincidence of natural conditions, have bequeathed 
to us a great variety of woollen fabrics, plaited mattings 
of bast, and other fibrous materials, and a whole series of 
domestic utensils made of wood, we may legitimately infer 
that they were equally well equipped for the struggle of 
existence. In Scottish archseology the grave and its contents 
supply the most valuable evidential materials at our disposal. 
Here we find many objects which the hands of loving friends 
laid beside the body of the deceased — indicating by this very 
act social and religious traits which would do honour to the 
highest phases of modern civilisation. Mental conditions 



disclosing taste, refinement, and culture, are also traceable 
in the personal ornaments the people wore ; and as to their 
skilled efficiency in handicraft manipulations, we have already 
seen that the evidence in support of this is overwhelming. 

That the people of Scotland, from the earliest times, were 
governed by laws emanating from some central authority is 
suggested by various circumstances, as — the honour paid to 
persons of distinction on their demise, by the construction of 
tombs intended for perpetuity ; the persistence of the same 
religious obsequies for many centuries ; the indications of 
commercial intercourse with distant lands ; the adoption 
of the principle of the division of labour in the prosecution of 
many of their industries ; and the distribution of forts, camps, 
and other military remains throughout the country, — all of 
which, in my opinion, disclose a system of social organisation 
which contained within it the germs and main elements which 
are still paramount in European civilisation. 




T is more than probable that during the 
earlier stages of human civilisation the 
uninhabited portions of the earth were 
gradually peopled by nomadic families 
of hunters who lived on wild fruits 
and the produce of the chase. Their 
daily avocations thus led them to penetrate farther and 
farther into the primeval forests, mountain recesses, and 
other haunts of wild animals. In these circumstances there 
can be no doubt that they found congenial homes in such 
caves and rock-shelters as they came across in their way- 
ward wanderings. As evidence of the presence of these 
early colonists in Scotland, we have the remains of the 
Oban Troglodytes and the whale-hunters of the Carse of 
Stirling, already referred to. When, however, more settled 
communities began to arise, these natural retreats, even if 
always conveniently situated, would not suffice as means of 
defence, and hence the necessity of resorting to artificial 
methods of protection. The sites selected for this purpose, 
in the first place, would be those whose natural features 
facilitated their speedy conversion into places of strength 
and safety, such as rocky eminences with precipitous es- 


carpments, and promontories more or less surrounded by 
water or impenetrable bogs. For it must never be forgotten 
that, during the whole period of man's career on earth, the 
principal enemies with which all struggling communities had 
to contend were their fellow-creatures. 

I. Forts, Camps, Motes, &c. 

Throughout nearly the whole of Scotland there are numerous 
remains of strongholds and works of defence in the form of (i) 
enclosures, of various sizes, fortified with ditches and ramparts 
of earth and stone ; (2) mounds of earth, often terraced, 
and surrounded with a ditch or moat ; (3) stone-built forts, 
generally situated on commanding eminences and defended 
by intrenchments. These different monuments are not uni- 
formly distributed over the country, some parts being thickly 
crowded, while other parts are entirely destitute of them ; nor 
is this irregularity in their distribution altogether accounted for 
by the disposition of land capable of cultivation, so that there 
is more than a surmise that the element of strategy had some- 
thing to do with their erection. The hill-forts, being con- 
structed of stones, have their materials still lying upon their 
sites (except in localities where the stones have been removed 
for agricultural improvements), so that their structural peculi- 
arities are hidden under a mass of ruins. As a rule, their 
outlines and dimensions were determined by the contour of 
the summits of the hills on which they were built. If placed 
on the brink of a precipice, the assailable sides only were 
usually fortified with walls and ramparts. Those situated 
on the plateaux and lower grounds were almost invariably 
circular or oval. Some covered only a few yards in diameter, 
while others were of great extent, often occupying the whole 
top and flanks of a hill. 


From historical evidence we know that Scotland, since its 
occupation by the Romans, has been inhabited by various 
races — Picts, Scots, Danes, Anglo-Saxons, and Scandinavians 
— all of whom must have left some traces of their respective 
habits and customs. In no class of antiquities could such 
traces be more readily preserved than in forts, camps, battle- 
fields, and the sites of warlike operations. But all these 
remains have become reduced in the course of time to a 
uniform state of dilapidation, so that from their external 
aspect it is now impossible to form a correct idea either 
of their original appearance or of the period to which they 
belonged. Careful excavations might, however, be the means 
of determining their origin by bringing to light stray relics 
of their inhabitants, or some special features in their structure. 

In Scotland the large majority of forts are circular or oval, 
except where the local peculiarities of the site necessitated an 
irregular form. The Romans, however, were in the habit of 
making their camps square or rectangular, and were always 
guided in their construction by precise rules and measure- 
ments. Although the dimensions varied according to the 
number of men to be accommodated, the interior arrange- 
ments, and the relative proportions of the buildings, were 
generally the same. When an army took the field it never 
halted, even for a night, without throwing up an intrench- 
ment consisting of a ditch and a rampart, the earth from the 
former being thrown inwards to form the latter, over which 
was then placed a palisade. This uniformity in the construc- 
tion of the Roman camp has been of some service to archs- 
ologists, as it furnishes them with 2. prima facie clue to Roman 
camps as distinguished from those of native races. Thus, in 
Britain, all rectangular encampments are usually regarded 
as the work of the Romans. But, of course, this rule can- 
not be accepted as infallible, since the Romans themselves 


sometimes utilised native camps — a fact proved to have 
been of frequent occurrence in Illyricum.^ and even in 
Scotland there are indications that the hill-fort of Birrens- 
wark, which has a very irregular perimeter, was occupied 
by the Romans. 

After eliminating from the category of works of defence 
the artificial islands called crannogs, and the peculiar stone 
towers known as brocks, both of which, being construc- 
tions of a sui generis character, will be separately described, 
there remain in Scotland upwards of looo monuments which 
fall to be included in the list of prehistoric forts. Tradi- 
tionally and locally they are known under various designations, 
often descriptive of some special feature in their structure 
or appearance, such as mote or moat, burh, dun, rath, lis, 
caer, &c. — words whose etymology can be readily traced 
to one or other of the languages now, or formerly, spoken 
in the country. Many of them, being conspicuous objects 
in a landscape, have been visited, described, and illustrated 
in numerous articles and special works, the most important 
among the latter being those of Miss C. Maclagan ^ and of 
Dr David Christison.^ 

The most natural division of the subject, and that which 
lends itself most conveniently for our present purpose, is 
into earth-works and stone-works ; between which, however, 
there are no well-defined boundaries, as some are constructed 
of both materials. To throw up an intrenchment, as a ready 
means of defence, was not a monopoly of any people at 
any time ; but it could only be most advantageously used 
in localities where wood for palisades was abundant. So 
common was the practice of palisading among the Romans, 

^ Rambles and Studies in Bosnia, p. 365. 

- The Hill Forts and Stone Circles of Scotland, 1875. 

^ Early Fortifications of Scotland, 1898. 

MOATS. 367 

that each soldier on the march carried a certain number 
of wooden stakes along with his intrenching tools. It is 
not likely, however, that stakes used in these intrenchments, 
owing to their liability to decay under the vicissitudes of 
a British climate, would survive to the present day ; for 
it is only when wood is immersed in water, or embedded 
in bogs, that it is preserved for any length of time. 

The numerous earthworks scattered over the country, chiefly 
in the south-western counties, vary greatly both in size and 
structure. They are usually called motes or moats, and moot- 
hills. But the latter, which are mere artificial mounds without 
any fortifications, may be at once eliminated from the category 
under discussion, as they do not appear to have much, if any- 
thing, to do with military works. They were places of meet- 
ing for the transaction of public business, the administration 
of justice, and the punishment of criminals. Whatever may 
be the origin of the word moothill, as used in the Lowlands 
of Scotland, its exact equivalent in Gaelic is dun a mhoid, 
from the word mod, a meeting or court. Moothill has also 
a parallel in the Tynwald Hill in the Isle of Man, which isi 
still used on the occasion of the promulgation of new laws. 

The mote consists of an artificial mound of earth, generally 
in the form of a truncated cone, flanked with terraces at lower 
levels and a circumambient ditch at its base. Adjacent to 
the mound there was often a court surrounded with an 
intrenchment. That these earthworks are the foundations of 
wooden fortresses and castles which, according to Chalmers, 
must be relegated "to the Scottish period when stone and 
lime were not much used in building," is rendered probable 
from collateral evidence, such as the illustration from the 
Bayeux Tapestry of the fortification of Dinan, reproduced 
by Dr Christison.^ These motes are found in considerable 
1 Op. cit, p. 6. 


numbers in various parts of England and Ireland. In 
Scotland their distribution is almost exclusively confined to 
the counties of Ayr, Wigtown, Kirkcudbright,^ and Dumfries 
— a fact which suggests their Irish origin, since they are very 
numerous on the opposite coast of Ireland. One of the most 
perfect motes I have ever seen is near the town of Ballymena, 
county Antrim. 

Under the name motte or mothe such remains are abundant 
in France, as shown by the frequency with which these words 
enter into the composition of French place-names. M. G. de 
Mortillet^ gives a tabulated list of 167, distributed over nearly 
the whole of France. According to him they dated from the 
fifth century, but they greatly increased in number in the 
middle ages. French archaeologists have excavated many of 
their mottes, the results of which leave no doubt that they are 
the remains of habitations constructed for military purposes. 
Heaps of broken bones and other remains of food, together 
with Roman and medieval pottery, were invariably found 
in the excavations. In low -lying places the surrounding 
ditch, or ditches, contained water, so that they were veri- 
table moated castles. The area of the distribution of motes 
extends into Belgium, Germany, and part of Austria. 

But besides the motes there are other circular intrench- 
raents, enclosing areas of different dimensions, which have no 
artificial mound — the essential characteristic of a mote — and 
between which and some of the stone forts there seems to be 
no difference except that the one is of earth and the other of 
stone. What kind of inner structures they possessed, or what 
was their special function, there is little evidence to show. 

^ Mr F. R. Coles classifies the vaiiovis fortifications in Kirkcudbright- 
shire as follows : Motes 27, forts 34, doons or doonhills 18, doubtful and 
fragmentary 19. (Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvii. p. 92.) 

^ Revue Mensuelle, 1895, pp. 261-283. 


Some of the hill-forts are among the grandest ruins of our 
country, reminding one of the giant's tales of olden times. Of 
this description the two Caterthuns, in the highlands of 
Forfarshire, are striking examples. The White Caterthun, 
occupying the southern spur of an isolated ridge, is of an 
oval form, and encloses a central area 470 feet long by 210 
broad. Beyond this there is a succession of stone ramparts 
and ditches, surrounding the height at lower elevations, which 
gives the fortress the appearance of great strength. The 
Black Caterthun, occupying a rival eminence about a mile to 
the north, contains an inner enclosure measuring 280 feet by 
190 feet. The surrounding defences are nearly circular, and 
extend down the slopes in a series of concentric intrench- 
ments of earth, but if they ever contained stones these have 
been removed long ago. 

Another very remarkable specimen is on the summit of the 
Barmekyne of Echt, a conical hill in Aberdeenshire. The 
inner enclosure, which was apparently reduced to a uniform 
level, is nearly circular, and measures about 300 feet in 
diameter. It is surrounded by five concentric ramparts of 
stone walls, with intervening trenches. Five entrances can 
still be traced, three on the south and two on the north. 
In their vicinity the walls appear to have been more strongly 
built, and so arranged as to have each a narrow opening 
(about 3 feet) commanded by the rampart immediately 
above it. 

But perhaps the most striking of all the hill-forts is the East 
Fort on Bennachie, Aberdeenshire, which is perched on the 
top of a rugged granite hill, some 1400 feet above the plain. 
The summit consists of a small natural plateau 100 feet long, 
70 feet wide, and 70 feet high, which has its almost perpen- 
dicular sides strangely scarred into deep chasms. No arti- 
ficial ruins are on the plateau itself, but at its base there 


are some remains of fortifications and round huts. It is not 
until we descend about 120 feet that the main rampart shows 
itself, stretching from cliff to cliff for 690 feet, with an average 
breadth of 24 feet. On a terrace continuous with a portion 
of this wall may be seen the ruins of some more round 

As a characteristic example of the pure earthworks, in the 
form of a fortified camp on an elevation among cultivated 
lands, that on the Midhill Head, Mid -Lothian, described 
and measured ^ by Mr W. Galloway, may be noted. Here 
are four earthen ramparts, still retaining a height of 4 or 
5 feet, with intervening ditches, enclosing a central area 
410 feet in length, from east to west, and 284 feet in breadth. 
There are three entrances to the interior, one at each end and 
another on the south side. Mr Galloway, who made a careful 
plan of this fortification, gives expression to the opinion that 
its constructors had no theoretical considerations to guide 
them in determining its form beyond the natural conformation 
of the hill. " This strict adherence to the natural formation 
of the ground," he writes, " combined in several points with 
a careful adaptation of its special features, clearly indicates 
that to whomsoever, or to whatever period, the origin of the 
camp may be attributed, beyond the necessity of enclosing 
a given area on a selected site, with fortified lines, its con- 
structors were guided by no more formal or preconceived 
principles of castrametation." 

But however interesting and precise such superficial details 
may be, they add little to the kind of knowledge archseologists 
are mainly in search of. Hitherto the range in time of these 
structures and the racial affinities of their builders have been 
absolutely guesswork. As a more important part of the 
subject, I shall now select for description a few specimens 
' Proc. Sec. A. Scot., vol. xiv. p. 254. 


which, owing to their having been subjected to a partial 
exploration in recent times, have yielded some evidence of 
chronological value. 

Last summer I visited a fort, situated on a spur of the 
Ochil range, some 600 feet above the carse-lands, which was 
then being investigated under the auspices of the Society of 
Antiquaries. The fort occupies the summit of Castle Law 
Hill, overlooking the town of Abernethy, and commands 
an extensive view across the Firth of Tay and the lower 
reaches of the Earn. The defensive works consisted of a 
dry-stone wall, from 18 to 25 feet thick, having a well-built 
outer and inner facing, with rubble-work between, and en- 
closing an oval space, 136 feet in length and 51 in breadth. 
Portions of these walls, from 6 to 8 feet in height, remained 
in situ, but prior to the excavations they had been so com- 
pletely buried in the debris that the surface had the appear- 
ance of a grassy knoll, over which a few trees found a 
congenial habitat. In one of the outer facings it was observed 
that the dry-built wall had been strengthened by logs of wood 
running both longitudinally and transversely : the wood, how- 
ever, had completely decayed, and the row of empty spaces, 
some 2 feet apart, left by the transverse beams, looked like 
the port-holes of an old man-of-war. At a short distance 
along the most accessible part of the hill there was a dila- 
pidated portion of an outer wall or tower ; but, strange to 
say, there was no evidence of a gateway, which, if it existed, 
could only have been at this part of the fort. 

Within the enclosed area the natural rock cropped up here 
and there, and the hollows were occupied with ashes, broken 
bones, &c. In one place a circular rock cistern, 7 feet in 
diameter and 7 feet deep, was discovered, and among the 
rubbish cleared out of it there were numerous bones of the 
ox, the goat, and the pig, together with some blades of iron 


much corroded. The principal relics found in the course of 
the excavations are as follows : A bronze fibula of late La 
Tfene type, remarkable as showing that the pin, with one coil 
attached to it, had been broken, but subsequently made ser- 
viceable by passing a bit of bronze wire through all the coils ; 
so that, as found, it had the pin moving loosely on the in- 
serted piece of bronze wire. In this form it might have been 
taken for one of those fibulae of later times, so frequently 
associated with Roman and Romano-British remains (fig. 218). 
A spiral finger-ring of bronze (fig. 217). Portion of a bracelet 
of lignite; also a ring (fig. 219) and a polisher of the same 
material. Two stone lamps with nicks for the wick ; a well- 
shaped stone axe (fig. 220), and a few rudely worked flints. 

Figs. 217, 218. — Bronze finger-ring and fibula foundiii the fort at 
Abernethy (§). 

Two portions of wooden dishes ; a deer-horn handle ; two 
pellets of burnt clay (supposed to be sling-bolts), like those 
found at Ardoch and the Glastonbury lake - village ; a few 
fragments of hand-made pottery, like that of the cinerary urns. 
The fort at Forgandenny, also situated on a commanding 
eminence, some 900 feet in height, was partially excavated 
during the summer of 1892 by the late Mr E. Watson Bell.^ 
On the summit, beneath a grass-grown surface, excavations 
exposed the bases of two oval-shaped walls, an inner and an 
outer. The former was 18 feet thick and the latter 15 feet, 
and between them there was an intermediate zone, varying in 
breadth from 16 to 52 feet. The entire length of the fort is 
456 feet, from east to west, and the breadth, from north to 

■^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvii. p. 16. 



south, 190 feet. At the east end there was an entrance from 
a causewayed road into the intermediate zone, and from the 
south corner of the gateway a short wall ran across the latter 
to the inner wall, so that any one entering had always to turn 
to the right. There was no evidence of a gateway leading 
through the inner wall to the central enclosure, a feature which 
was also noticed in the Abernethy fort. The slope of the 
hill, especially on the south, was traversed by a number of 
ramparts and ditches in the usual manner. 

In course of the excavations portions of the fort walls, from 

Fig, 219. — Ring of lignite, 
Abernethy fort (^). 

Fig. 220. — Stone axe, 
Abernethy fort (^). 

2 to 6 feet in height, were found in situ, showing inner and 
outer well-built facings with rubble-work in the interior. Some 
empty square holes, like those observed in the Abernethy fort, 
were supposed to have originally contained logs of wood. 
The relics found are a few whetstones and stone hammers, 
part of a jet bracelet, and a few fragments of coarse pottery. 
Bones of the ox (abundant), pig, and roe-deer were found 
along with charcoal and ashes. 

The peculiarity presented by a wall, constructed of logs 

2 c 


of oak alternating with layers of stone, was first noticed 
in this country by Dr James Macdonald, while conducting 
excavations at Burghead nearly forty years ago. This 
structural feature is thus described by Dr Macdonald : 
"The wall is built of unhewn stones, some of them of 
considerable size, carefully laid, but without mortar. It 
has only one face ; but to strengthen it, beams of solid 
oak, still measuring from 6 to 12 feet in length, take here 
and there the place of stones ; and similar beams, inserted 
endways, pass into the mass behind." 1 During the summer 
of 1890 Mr Hugh W. Young, the present proprietor of 
Burghead, made some further explorations into the old 
walls of the fort. He penetrated the rampart, from where 
Dr Macdonald left off, till he reached the outer facing 
at no less a distance than 24 feet. " The two facing-walls," 
writes Mr Young, "are joined and strengthened by oak 
logs. The logs cannot be measured, as the state of decay 
is very great. Some of them I traced fully 12 feet into the 
rampart. These logs were joined across by oak planks and 
logs, riveted together by iron bolts," &c.^ 

A similar method of constructing ramparts by stones and 
beams is described by Csesar (book vii. c. 23) as peculiar 
to the Gauls — a statement the truth of which has been 
confirmed by the discovery, in modern times, of the actual 
woodwork in several of the ancient forts of France in the 
department of the Lot.^ The special advantages of the 
method are thus described in the Commentaries {loc. cit.) : 
" This work, with respect to appearance and variety, is 
not unsightly, owing to the alternate rows of beams and 
stones, which preserve their order in right lines; and, 
besides, it possesses great advantages as regards utility and 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. iv. p. 350. - Ibid., vol. xxv. p. 436. 

' Congres Arch, de France, 1875, p. 427. 


the defence of cities ; for the stone protects it from fire, and 
the wood from the battering-ram, since it [the wood] being 
mortised in the inside with rows of beams, generally 40 
feet each in length, can neither be broken through nor 
torn asunder." These Gaulish methods of binding together 
loose stones and earth by means of mortised beams may 
be paralleled with those used by the crannog-builders for 
consolidating the composite materials of which the artificial 
islands were composed, as described on p. 431. 

General Roy, in his ' Military Antiquities of the Romans 
in North Britain,' identified Burghead as the Ftoroton of 
the now discredited De Situ Britannim, which is described 
in that treatise as the capital of a Roman province of 
Vespasiana. For a review of this question, and of other 
interesting problems in connection with the history of Burg- 
head and its remarkable promontory, I would refer my readers 
to an able article by Dr Macdonald, entitled " Burghead as 
the site of an Early Christian Church ; with Notices of the 
Incised Bulls and the burning of the Clavie." ■■• See also 
Sheriff Rampini's ' History of Moray and Nairn,' chap. i. 

From behind the town of Ardrossan there extends north- 
westwards an elevated plateau, presenting towards the sea a 
steep escarpment, which overlooks a narrow strip of sandy soil 
lying between it and the sea-beach. The geologist at once 
recognises here an ancient sea-cliff, which in the course of 
time has become moulded into a succession of deep gullies, 
rounded knolls, and bluff headlands, around which nature has 
thrown a variegated garb of the richest vegetation. The tops 
of some of these commanding knolls have been converted 
into a series of forts, but as to the period of their occupancy, 
or the military exigencies that necessitated their erection, both 
history and tradition are silent. 

1 Trans. Glasgow Arch. Soc, vol. ii., N.S., pp. 63-115. 


One of these forts, situated on a grassy mound at Seamill, 
was explored in 1881,^ the result of which may be thus epito- 
mised : The oval contour of the mound supplied the design 
for the outlines of the ramparts, which on the sea-side con- 
sisted of two walls 5 or 6 feet thick. These walls, which 
were only a few feet apart, coalesced into one at the ends 
and on the north side. In their construction large un- 
dressed stones were used, without any cementing element, 
and the interstices were filled with smaller stones and earth. 
An ordinary partition wall along the shorter axis of the 
enclosure divided it into two unequal 
compartments, the smaller of which, 
next a projecting ridge from the main- 
land, was found to have been partly 
paved with stones. The stuff lying 
over the area of this rude pavement 
Y^z.^^^.-^spindle -whorl ^^s nearly all trenched over, in the 
of cannei coal, Seamill course of which were found some char- 
coal and ashes, bones, horns, sea-shells, 
and all the following relics except the hammer-stone, which 
was dug up near the centre of the outer enclosure : — 

Stone. — Hammer-stone of a flat oval pebble ; globular ball 
artificially rounded with rubbing marks ; two fragments of 
granite querns; a spindle whorl of cannei coal (fig. 221), and 
several other portions of this material showing cutting marks. 
Bone. — A pointer made of a splinter of a leg bone 5 inches 
long ; portion of bone perforated at each end and cut with a 
sharp instrument (fig. 222). 

Iron. — Numerous portions, greatly oxidised, probably of 
blades and socketed spears or daggers. 

Bronze or Brass. — A perforated bronze disc (fig. 223), and 
a wheel-like object attached to an ornamental stem (fig. 224). 
^ Collections of the Ayr and Gal. Arch. Association, 1882, p. 59. 



Pottery and Glass. — Two small fragments of green glass, and 
a small bit of reddish pottery faintly showing three parallel 

Organic Remains. — Bones of ox, pig, sheep, and deer ; 

Fig. 222. — Bone implement, Seamill fort {^). 

horns of the deer ; and shells of several species of edible 

In 1827 Dr John Jamieson, in describing the fortifications 
on the top of the Laws, Forfarshire, says : — 

" This fort consists of two walls of vitrified matter which 
surround the hill. The 
outer wall runs along its 
slope, and forms a kind of 
circle, although by no means 
perfect. . . . The circum- 
ference of the outer wall, 
including the angular part, 
is, according to my measure- 
ment, 500 paces. . . . The 
inner wall surrounds the 
summit of the hill, at the 
distance of several paces 
from the outer. This varies, 
however, according to the nature of the ground. At the 
north-east corner, and round in that direction towards the 
north-west, are seen the foundations of several houses within 

Fig. 223. — Bronze disc, Seamill fort (^). 



Fig. 224. — Bronze object, Sea7nill fort (^). 

the inner wall, which here seems to have formed the back 
wall to these houses. On the west side of the hill, the 
interstice between the two circular walls has been filled up 

by buildings of a small 
size. A wall runs nearly 
through the middle of 
the fort, extending from 
the south to the north 
side of the inner wall. 
The design of this has 
undoubtedly been to 
form a separation be- 
tween the defenders and 
their cattle ; for in the 
eastern division we ob- 
serve no foundations of buildings, except a few on the wall 
itself . . . 

" Besides the gate formerly noticed, there seems to have 
been one on the west side. The vitrifaction here is as perfect 
as that of the fort of Finhaven, and assumes the very same 
appearance. Here, as well as there, the stones have been so 
completely fused, as in many places to seem as if they had 
been connected by some cement resembling melted ore; but 
this can be viewed only as the scoricB forced from the stones 
themselves when in a state of fusion." ^ 

In 1859, when these ancient structures were again examined 
by Mr James Neish,^ the fort was in a ruinous condition, 
owing to the removal of its stones for agricultural purposes, 
and no definite conclusions could be drawn from the remains 
then extant. Dr Stuart, in a supplementary note on Mr 
Neish's paper to the Society, thus writes : " I have twice 

' Transactions of tlie Royal Society of Literature, vol. ii. p. 274. 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. iii. p. 440. 


carefully examined the remains, and have found it difficult 
to form any feasible opinion as to their original shape, or 
to account for the arrangements of those walls which still 
remain. It seems obvious, however, from what we hear of 
the great quantities of stones which have been carried away 
from the hill, and the enormous masses of ruined walls still 
scattered over its top, that the buildings, when complete, must 
have been of great size and height." 

Mr Neish collected a number of relics in the course of the 
excavations, most of which were subsequently sent to the 
National Museum in Edinburgh,^ among which the following 
may be noted : — 

Stone. — Small cup, whorls and discs of sandstone, two flint 
chips, portions of vitrified sandstone with impressions of 
charred wood, stone with concentric circles. 

Bone. — Double-edged comb and an implement with one 
end perforated. 

Bronze. — Pin of a fibula, spiral finger-ring with four twists, 
a flat circular band of brass, an armlet with a pattern, and a 
copper coin. 

Iron. — A small buckle, a pin with a ring-head, some large 
axes and an adze-head, portion of a single-edged sword, nails, 
needles, and fragments of implements. 

Organic Remains. — Two bottles containing charred wheat 
and barley; a cowrie, and some land- and sea-shells; teeth of 
the horse, horn of a roebuck, and bones of domestic animals. 
Human remains were also found in stone cists, as well as 
elsewhere in the excavations. 

One or two other excavated forts might be mentioned which 

have yielded a few relics, but their value, with regard to 

the question of chronology, is of no significance. I exclude 

the Dunbuie Fort, described by the late Mr Adam Millar,^ 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xvii. p. 300. ^ Ibid., vol. xxx. p. 291. 


because the strangely ornamented objects found in its dtbris 
appear to me not to be relics of any phase of Scottish civil- 
isation. The presence of a couple of upper quern-stones 
among the relics vitiates the whole argument that this was 
a pre-Celtic fort of the Stone Age, as suggested by Mr 

Forts perfectly analogous to the ordinary fortifications in 
Scotland are met with throughout the larger portion of Central 
and North-western Europe, and extend eastwards as far as the 
southern parts of Russia and the shores of the Black Sea. 
In Germany they are called Burgwdlle or Rundivdlk, and are 
distinguished as Vorslavisch, Slavisch, and Spdtslavisch — a 
distinction which has been suggested by the character of the 
pottery. Slavish pottery is always well burnt, and when it is 
decorated the ornamentation is in wavy lines running parallel 
to the rim — the well-known Wellenlinie. Wooden sub-struc- 
tures are sometimes met with on the sites of the Burgwalle, 
especially in those situated in marshy localities, and also the 
remains of gangways in the form of a double row of the stumps 
of piles. The superstructures, of which nothing now remains, 
are supposed to have been of wood, agreeing in this respect 
with the motes of Scotland. 

Vitrified Forts. 

The variety of Hill- Forts known as "Vitrified Forts," on 
account of a peculiarity in their structure, has gathered 
around it an extraordinary amount of literature, chiefly of a 
controversial and speculative character. Mr John Williams 
started the discussion by the publication, in 1777, of a work 
entitled, 'An Account of some Remarkable Ancient Ruins, 
lately discovered in the Highlands and Northern Parts of 
Scotland,' in which he enumerates six or seven vitrified 


forts around the head of the Moray Firth, and two in other 
districts (Finhaven and Bochastle). 

In his account of the fort on Knock Farril he describes 
the whole wall as having been run together and vitrified into 
a solid mass by the action of fire. Writing generally of 
these forts, he says: "But what is most extraordinary, these 
walls have been vitrified, or run and compacted together 
by the force of fire, and that so effectually that most of 
the stones have been melted down, and any part of the 
stones not quite run to glass has been entirely enveloped 
by the vitrified matter ; and in some places the vitrifaction 
has been so complete that the ruins appear now like vast 
masses of coarse glass or slag." Since Mr Williams's time 
nothing has been written or discovered which, to my mind, 
in the least impugns the correctness and scientific value of 
his observations. That he did not excavate the whole wall, 
or that he mentions in one place a few stones which were 
not included in the vitrifaction, cannot surely be advanced 
as sufficient evidence to discredit his general statement that 
the whole wall was "less or more vitrified." Would it be 
possible under the ordinary circumstances then available, 
whatever the process or object may have been, to vitrify 
the walls of a fort so thoroughly as to leave no portion or 
stone unaffected ? The fact is that none of the forts, even 
those which disclose in the clearest manner that their vitri- 
faction was the work of design, has been completely vitrified. 

The real problem at issue is to account for the vitrifaction 
which, to a greater or less extent, is, or rather was, to be seen 
on the surrounding walls of some fifty stone-built forts scattered 
throughout the northern and south-western districts of Scotland, 
and covering a broad band stretching from the shores of the 
Moray Firth to the counties of Argyll and Wigtown. Of the 
various hypotheses advanced to account for this phenomenon 


some may be at once ruled out of court, as, for example, 
that it is of volcanic origin, or that a liquid slag was poured 
like mortar between the stones when the fort was being 

Looking at the problem from a practical point of view, 
the first observation to which I would direct attention is 
that the vitrifaction was effected by the external application 
of a great fire to the wall after it had been erected. Of the 
truth of this statement there can be no reasonable doubt. 
I have satisfied myself of its accuracy by a careful inspec- 
tion of the more important vitrified forts in Scotland. On 
that at Carradale there is an uninterrupted portion of the 
eastern wall, extending for upwards of 100 feet, which is 
absolutely consolidated for a depth of 3, 4, and 5 feet from 
the top. In one or two places where previous visitors had 
picked a hole right through the wall it was clearly seen that 
the vitrifaction was less in the lower and central parts, and 
disappeared altogether towards the base, which consisted of 
small, flat, and mostly water-worn stones. If this be so, the 
only point on which there is room for a difference of opinion 
is, whether the vitrifaction was due to incidental causes arising 
from the action of beacon-fires, &c., or to fire kindled for the 
express purpose of fusing and thereby consolidating the mater- 
ials of the wall. Present writers seem to range themselves as 
advocates of one or other of these alternative theories. For 
my own part, I see no reason for accepting either as a rigid 
dogma, to the exclusion of the other. Effects produced in- 
cidentally could be repeated designedly, so that vitrified forts 
may owe their peculiarity partly to the one and partly to the 
other. Nay more, it is even probable that it was the striking 
effect produced by beacon-fires on the wall which first sug- 
gested the idea of treating the entire wall in the same manner. 
At the same time, I hold firmly to the opinion that the vitri- 


faction in many of the forts examined by me was the work of 
design, the special object being to consolidate into a mass the 
small stones of which the walls are usually composed. 

All trap-rocks are readily fused under a moderate heat 
without a flux ; and with the addition of an alkali, such as 
might be supplied by wood-ashes or dried seaweeds, most 
of the ordinary stones could be converted into the pudding- 
stone appearance and consistency presented by the walls 
of vitrified forts. Dr M'CuUoch ^ makes an important 
observation, to the effect that the stones readily fusible 
were selected and carried from a distance by the fort- 
builders, and hence he justly argues "that they designed 
from the beginning to vitrify their walls." It is also 
noteworthy that vitrified walls are scarcely half as thick as 
those great stone walls with well-built double facings, such 
as we have seen in the forts of Burghead, Forgandenny, 
and Abernethy; so that, without some cementing element, 
the small stones of which they are composed could hardly 
be kept together or be of any use as a protective barrier. 
The economy in utilising collections of small stones by 
vitrifaction might also be an element in the construction 
of these forts, as the materials, being close at hand, could 
be easily carried to the tops of the hills on which they are 
generally situated. 

As to the modus operandi by which vitrifaction was pro- 
duced, the conclusion to which I came is, that the fire was 
laid over the entire wall, both sides and top being covered 
with the combustible materials. In a section of the wall 
at Beregonium, near Loch Etive, I noticed that, while the 
top and sides had a crust of vitrified materials over them, 
the interior was only partially affected. Some of the stones 
in the interior had large drops of slag adherent to them, 
1 Highlands and Western Isles of Scotland, vol. i. p. 292. 


evidently due to the trickling of the stuff while in a liquid 

Mr John Honeyman ^ has recorded some careful observa- 
tions on the structure of the vitrified walls of several forts in 
the west of Scotland. In a portion of the wails at Rhufresean 
and Dunagoil he describes the vitrified mass as a wedge, the 
thin edge penetrating downwards through the interior of the 
wall ; and hence he forms a theory that the heat was applied 
to the top of the wall and not to the sides. But the facts he 
has recorded are, in my opinion, quite compatible with the 
supposition that the combustible materials were heaped both 
on the sides and top of the wall. If a flux were needed to 
produce vitrifaction it would be placed on the top of the wall, 
and here then fusion would first begin to take place, and so 
the liquid stuff, if in abundance, would readily flow down 
through the centre of the wall. I confess, however, that the 
phenomenon noted by Mr Honeyman has not come within 
my own experience, but, on the other hand, I have fre- 
quently noticed vitrifaction greatest at the sides and top, 
as at Carradale, already referred to. In regard to this fort, 
Dr Christison appears to have come to a similar conclusion, 
as he states that the masses are " much less vitrified below, 
particularly in the centre, than in the upper part." ^ This was 
clearly the case with the wall at Arka Unskel at Arisaig, de- 
scribed by Dr E. Hamilton,^ who' also maintains that the fire 
was applied on all sides. "This is proved," he writes, "by 
the internal part of the wall being unvitrified, solely because 
the heat did not extend so far, leaving the stones in their 
original condition, or only partly agglutinated, and only not 
fused because unable to be affected by the fire applied 

' Trans. Glasgow Arch. Soc, vol. ii. p. 29, ancl vol. i., N.S., p. 340. 
'•^ Op. cit., p. 182. 3 Arch. Journal, vol. xxvii. p. 227. * Ibid., p. 241. 


Mr James Macdonald's excavations on the Tap o' Noth 
conclusively showed that in this case the vitrifaction was con- 
fined to the upper part of the wall. This is one of the largest 
of the vitrified forts in Scotland, being 345 feet long and 126 
feet broad, and still shows great masses of vitrifaction here 
and there all along its circumference ; so that if the occurrence 
of beacon-fires is to be accepted as the incidental cause of 
this phenomenon, the fires must have been placed at regular 
intervals along the entire circuit of the wall.i 

Eilean Buidhe (the yellow island), one of the Burnt Islands 
in the Kyles of Bute, has been long known as the site of a 
vitrified fort.^ This fort, occupying the summit of the rocky 
islet, stands 21 feet above sea-level, According to the Rev. 
Mr Hewison,' it is in the shape of a "complete circle, 67 feet 
in diameter from crest to crest of the ruined wall, which in 
many parts is quite levelled and overgrown with rough grass, 
through which the fragments of the vitrified work appear. At 
other points the wall is in good preservation, showing at the 
north-east a face 4 feet high and 5 feet thick, and also on the 
south-east a solid mass of vitrifaction over 5 feet thick." Mr 
Hewison directs attention to a remarkable feature of this fort 
— viz., "the apparent stances of four towers at the cardinal 
points of the compass," each 14 feet in diameter. 

It is a very rare occurrence to find the wall vitrified to its 
base, and when this is the case the vitrifaction generally rests 
on the solid rock, as at Dun Skeig and Craig Phadrick. On 
the other hand, at Dunagoil there was to be seen a few years 
ago a large portion of the vitrified wall reposing on a basis of 
loose stones — a fact which readily accounts for the large 
masses, some tons in weight, which now lie at the base of the 

' See Trans. Huntly Field Club, July 1887. 

^ Trans. Roy. Soc. of Edinburgh, vol. x. p. 79. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvii. p. 292. 


Dun on its sea side. Large fragments may also be seen at the 
foot of Dim Skeig, but in this case it requires some searching 
among the long heather to find them. At Dunideer the base 
of the sow-back hill on which the fort stood — for there is little 
of it now remaining — is strewn with pieces of slag, and, 
strange to say, some of them may be seen in the ruins of the 
old castle of stone and lime which had been subsequently 
built within the walls of the vitrified fort. 

I have not observed any facts to indicate that, as regards 
the dimensions of the area enclosed, the vitrified differ from 
the non-vitrified forts. In this respect they are both alike 
in showing a wide range of variability, as may be gathered 
from the following notes : — 

Carradale stands on a detached portion of a rocky promon- 
tory on the east side of Cantyre which, at high water, becomes 
an island. The surface, a small plateau some 70 feet above 
the sea-level, is almost entirely occupied by the fort, leaving 
little more than space to walk round it on the outside. Large 
portions of the walls, 3 to 5 feet thick and about the same in 
height, enclosing an oval space 60 paces in length and 26 in 
breadth, still remain in situ. Among the rocky debris at the 
base of the plateau, on the west side, I observed several 
portions of vitrified materials which had evidently fallen from 
the fort. 

The fort of Dunagoil occupies the surface of a precipitous 
ridge of porphyritic trap, extending along the sea-shore at the 
south end of the island of Bute. This ridge, rising to the 
height of about 100 feet, presents a perpendicular face on the 
north and west, an accessible slope on the east, and an uneven 
plateau on the top. It is only on the south side and east end 
that the remains of vitrified walls are now to be seen. The 
area thus fortified by walls and cliffs is about 90 paces in 
length, and varies in breadth from 26 yards at the west end 


to 12 yards at the east end, where there was an entrance. The 
wall followed the bow-shaped contour of the south margin of 
the ridge, and near its middle there was a short transverse 
wall dividing the enclosed space into two nearly equal 

The vitrified fort of Dlin Skeig stands on the summit of a 
high conical hill on the south side of the entrance to Loch 
Tarbet. No position could be more suitable as a signalling 
station than this spot, as it commands extensive views both 
towards the mainland and the islands, including on clear days 
the north of Ireland. The ruins of the fort occupy the highest 
point of the hill, being only a few paces from the brink of the 
precipice. It has an oval shape, measuring 28 paces from 
east to west, and 18 from north to south. The vitrifaction 
would appear, from the traces still remaining, to have extended 
continuously along the entire wall. Here and there bits of 
slag might be seen resting on the natural rock, where it 
crops up, and others lying on a basis of loose stones. It 
was difficult to estimate with accuracy the original thickness 
of the wall, but, so far as I could judge, it would not be 
more than 6 to 8 feet. What its height may have been there 
is no evidence to show. 

The famous vitrified fort which crowns the picturesque hill 
of Knock Farril, some two miles west of Dingwall, Ross-shire, 
overlooks the richly cultivated valley of Strathpeffer. My last 
visit to it was in the summer of 1896. The summit is an elon- 
gated oval, some 200 paces in length by 40 in breadth, nar- 
rowing, however, at both ends. The remains of the walls of 
the fort are still considerable, enclosing a space 126 paces 
long by 30 broad ; but at the ends there are other remains 
of walls which, though now detached from the central division, 
were probably part of the original fort. Along the lines of 
these walls several masses of vitrified materials, two of them 


measuring about 9 feet in length, may still be seen cropping 
up through the greensward which clothes the summit. 

Neither do the relics found on the sites of vitrified forts 
suggest that they differ chronologically from the ordinary forts. 
Dr Angus Smith,i in the course of his excavations at Bere- 
gonium, found a single-edged dagger-blade of iron, 10 inches 
long, having a thick back and a tang for insertion into a 
handle ; a finger-ring of bronze ; and an enamelled disc of 
bronze ornamented with a series of concentric circles of red 
enamel of Late Celtic character. The structure on the top 
of the Laws in Forfarshire is the only other vitrified fort 
which has yielded relics, and, as already seen (p. 379), these 
do not carry us back beyond the Iron Age. 

Outside the Scottish area the distribution of vitrified forts is 
somewhat remarkable. Four are stated, on the authority of 
Dr Petrie, to be in Londonderry ^ and one in Cavan.^ I am 
not aware of their existence in England, unless we accept as 
such some calcined walls found in British camps at Bristol. 
In the vicinity of the Clifton Suspension Bridge there are, or 
rather were, three great intrenched forts occupying promon- 
tories on the precipitous cliffs on both sides of the Avon. One 
is at the Clifton end of the bridge, and the others — " Bower 
Walls" and "Stoke Leigh" — on the opposite side. It is 
stated * that when the ramparts of the Bower Walls were de- 
molished the innermost, which stood 22 feet above its ditch, 
contained a central core of a hard material like cement. 
Quantities of a similar material may be seen on the remains 
of the Clifton fort near the end of the bridge. The calcifica- 
tion appeared to me to be the result of exposure of the 
materials of the wall to great heat ; but the stones being lime- 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vols, ix., x., xi., and xii. 

- Stokes's Life of Petrie, p. 223. " Trans. R. I. Acad., vol. xiii. p. 123. 

■* Proc. .Somerset. Arch. Soc, vol. xv. p. 27. 

BROCHS. 389 

stone, the effect was a calcination rather than a vitrifaction. 
This phenomenon is worth looking into, as camps with simi- 
larly constructed walls have been described in France.^ 

Of the ordinary vitrified forts, several have been noticed in 
Brittany and Normandy,^ Saxony, Bohemia, Silesia, Thurin- 
gian Forest, and the Rhine district.^ 

II. Brochs. 

Like the vitrified forts, those massive tower-like buildings 
known as Brochs, and found nowhere else but in Scotland, 
have given rise to a considerable amount of controversial 
literature. Before they succumbed to the ravages of time, 
which have now reduced the great majority of them into an 
unrecognisable heap of ruins, some 400 might have been seen 
conspicuously dotting the more fertile lands along the shores 
and straths of the counties of Caithness, Sutherland, Ross, 
Inverness, Argyll, the islands of Orkney, Shetland, Bute, and 
some of the Hebrides. Outside this area only seven examples 
have as yet been recognised as true brochs — viz., two in 
Forfarshire, and one in each of the counties of Perth, Stirling, 
Mid-Lothian, Selkirk, and Berwick. The special characters 
of these remarkable buildings are so uniformly alike that, 
except in regard to a few minor differences — chiefly dimen- 
sions — it may be asserted, as literally true, that what applies to 
one applies to the whole — so much so, indeed, that it has 
been seriously maintained that they were all built at the same 
time and from one plan. 

The most perfect now extant is the broch of Mousa 
(PI. XV.), situated on a small island in Shetland. It is built 

' Camps vitrifies et Camps calcines. Barthelemy. 

''■ Mem. de la Soc. Antiq. de France, vol. xxxviii. p. 83. 

' Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 332 ; Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. viii. p. 145. 


of dry-stone masonry, 50 feet in diameter and 45 feet high. 
At some distance it looks like a truncated cone, but closer 
inspection shows it to be a circular wall, 15 feet thick, and 
enclosing an open court 20 feet in diameter. The outside 
wall-face slants a little inwards from base to top, but the 
inner is nearly perpendicular. An entrance passage, 5 feet 
3 inches high and 2 feet 1 1 inches wide, with jambs and 
lintels of flagstones, forming a kind of tunnel right through 
the wall, is the only access to the court. Four door-like 
openings may be seen in the wall facing the court near the 
ground-level, and about equidistant from each other. Three 
of these openings lead into oval-shaped beehive chambers, 
constructed in the solid wall and having their major axes 
in the direction of the curve of the wall. The other opens 
into a small recess from which a spiral stair made of un- 
dressed flagstones ascends to the top. On mounting the 
stair for about 10 or 11 feet we find that the surrounding 
wall, which up to this point is solid, with the exception of 
the beehive-chambers already referred to, now becomes spHt 
into two walls, leaving a vacancy, about 3 feet in breadth, 
between them. At successive intervals upwards this inter- 
mural space is bridged over with flagstones, thus dividing it 
into a series of galleries running round the entire building. 
The lower galleries are from 5 to 6 feet high, but as we 
ascend they diminish in lieight. The stair continues its spiral 
course to the top, intersecting these galleries, and thus gives 
access to them all. They are lighted from the interior by 
shallow openings, or windows, which look into the court. No 
access to any part of this curious structure can be got except 
by the passage on the ground-level, about the middle of which 
there is evidence to show that it had been protected by a 
stone door barred from within. In other brochs there is 
usually a guard-chamber on one or both sides of the entrance 

BROCHS. 391 

passage, constructed in the solid wall, after the manner of the 
beehive chambers. 

Of the other brochs there are now only a few which show 
any considerable portion of their walls above the fallen debris, 
the rest looking like dilapidated tumuli or cairns. Sometimes, 
indeed, a cultivated hillock, over which the plough has regu- 
larly passed for centuries, conceals beneath it the well-defined 
foundations of a broch. Of their present ruined condition 
the broch at Ousdale, Caithness, excavated by Mr James 
Mackay^ in 1891, furnishes a good example. The situation 
and general appearance of the ruins are thus described : " It 
stands on a prominent eminence near the confluence of the 
Ousdale and Borgue burns — one mile from the Ord of 
Caithness, four miles from Berriedale, and about 400 yards 
from the sea, commanding a good sweep of the latter. On 
one side it is protected by the steep precipice of the Borgue 
burn, and on the remaining sides by ramparts consisting of a 
well-built wall about 8 feet thick, and faced apparently with a 
dry ditch. The outworks surround the tower on three sides, 
and show signs of a second occupancy by a later and inferior 
race. The style of building of the hut-circles, of which the 
outworks are composed, is to a certain extent copied from that 
of the original broch in so far as the overlapping of the stones 
for the purpose of forming arches consist, and they were prob- 
ably bulk with material taken from the tower after it had 
fallen into ruins. 

"The broch presented the usual appearances of a grass- 
covered mound with stones cropping up over the surface. 
The entire diameter of the tower is 50 feet, and the diameter 
of the inner area or court 24 feet. The walls are 14 feet thick 
at the entrance, and 12 feet thick at the other side. The 
highest part of the wall remaining is 14 feet ; and although 
1 Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvi. p. 351. 



this hardly shows sufficiently the traces of galleries, the presence 
of stairs shows their former existence. The inner court was 
completely filled up with stony detritus to a depth of lo feet, 

Fig. 225. — Ground-plan and sections of broch of Ousdale, Caithness. 

and the remaining 4 feet consisted of charcoal and what ap- 
peared to be ashes of peat in alternate layers." 

As will be seen from the plan and sections (fig. 225), the 
broch contained an entrance -passage, with wall -checks for 

BROCHS. 393 

two doors and a guard-chamber between them ; a chamber in 
the wall entering from the court ; and a third chamber from 
which the stair ascended. All these chambers were con- 
structed with beehive roofs, and the doorways heavily linteled. 
In the guard-chamber " was found a cist, 2 feet square, covered 
over with a ilag, and containing ashes, charcoal, and a dark 
unctuous clay. ... At a height of 8 feet from the floor a 
scarcement or ledge, nearly a foot in width, ran round the entire 
inner court ; but, unlike that in most brochs, it is undoubtedly 
part of the original building, and not a secondary construction." 
In clearing out the chamber at the foot of the stair a human 
skeleton was discovered, head downwards, roughly built in 
and covered with small stones and earth. Of the interior and 
its contents Mr Mackay gives the following account : " At 
about 4 feet above the real floor were found traces of a second 
occupation, probably after the tower may have been partly in 
ruins, several partitions of large slabs set on end being found 
at this level. The real floor of the central court consists of 2 
feet of fine puddled clay laid on the natural bed. This floor 
was covered with layers of ashes and charcoal, which contained 
large quantities of animal bones, many half burnt, and some 
split for the purpose of extracting the marrow. Large quan- 
tities of shells of the limpet and periwinkle were also found, 
and a considerable quantity of wild-hazel nuts. The following 
articles were also found amongst the ashes on the floor and 
throughout the building : A damaged stone hatchet, with a 
slight groove round the centre ; a granite mortar carefully 
hollowed out, the hollowing being i foot in diameter and 10 
inches deep ; several very rude mica-schist querns, some 
of which are broken ; stone mullers ; stone hammers or 
'pounders,' generally much abraded at one end, and some- 
times at both ; three mica-schist discs, eight inches in diameter, 
with holes two inches in diameter through the centre ; several 


whorls in sandstone and steatite ; a large quantity of fragments 
of very coarse hand-made pottery, fire baked, some composed 
of a layer of black clay inside and a layer of red outside, — the 
shapes appeared to be globularly bulging, with everted rims ; 
part of a small cup of a finer blue clay, with flat bottom and 
slightly bulging sides; several specimens of whetstones; part 
of a wooden dish or scoop with everted rim, apparently about 
5 inches in diameter and 2 inches in depth ; a piece of pol- 
ished lignite, which may have formed part of an armlet." 

The animals represented by the osseous remains, as identi- 
fied by Dr R. W. Reid, Professor of Anatomy in the Univer- 
sity of Aberdeen, were deer, ox, sheep, hare, and a large bird. 

From historical evidence we know that many of these brochs 
were formerly much higher than they are now. Dun Carloway, 
on the west coast of the island of Lewis, is said to have been 
40 feet high in the end of last century ; and it is still, next to 
that of Mousa, the best preserved. Pennant describes the 
broch at Glenelg as being in his time (1776) 30^^ feet high, 
and he adds that 7 J^ feet had just been removed. Mr Low, 
in his 'Tour through Orkney and Shetland' (1774), states 
that the " Pight's " castle at Burraness, in the island of Yell, 
was 20 feet, and that at Cullswick 23 feet, in height. The 
natural inference is that formerly they were all sufficiently 
lofty to prevent an attacking party from climbing over the 

As regards the structural peculiarities and special design of 
brochs, Dr Joseph Anderson, one of our most distinguished 
investigators of brochs, thus expresses himself: "The design 
of the whole structure and the arrangements of all its separate 
parts exhibit a careful and laborious adaptation of means and 
material to the two main objects of shelter and defence. The 
clever constructive idea of turning the house outside in as it 
were, placing its rooms within its walls, and turning all their 

BROCHS. 395 

windows towards the interior of the edifice, implies boldness 
of conception and fertility of resource. The height of the 
wall, which effectually secured the inmates against projectiles, 
also removed its essentially weak upper part beyond reach 
of assault, while the pressure of its mass knit the masonry 
of the lower part firmly together, and its thickness made it 
difficult to force an entrance by digging through it — if such 
a wall could be approached for this purpose when the whole 
of its upper materials were deadly missiles ready to the hands 
of the defenders. The door, securely fastened by its great 
bar, is too strong to be carried by a rush. Placed 4 feet or 
more within the passage, it can only be reached by one man 
at a time, and the narrowness of the passage prevents the use 
of long levers. In all probability the door itself is a slab of 
stone, and impervious to fire. But even if it is forced, and 
entrance gained to the interior court, the enemy finds himself 
as it were in the bottom of a well 30 to 40 feet in diameter, 
with walls 50 feet high, pierced on all sides by vertical ranges 
of windows, or loopholes, commanding every foot of the same 
space below, and rising to the number of twenty or more, 
immediately over the door which gives access to the galleries. 
In short, the concentration of effort towards the two main 
objects of space for shelter and complete security was never 
more strikingly exhibited, and no more admirable adaptation 
of materials so simple and common as undressed and un- 
cemented stone, for this double purpose, has ever been 
discovered or suggested."^ 

Such being the structural characteristics of the brochs, we 
have now to glance at some of the minor differences and 
peculiarities observed in individual specimens. And, first, 
as regards the more constant characters there may be slight 
variations. For example, the entrance-passage may have 
^ Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 203. 


one or two doors, one or two guard-chambers, or none at all. 
Thus in the broch of Glenelg, Inverness-shire, the entrance- 
passage, at 4 feet from its outer end, has large slabs set on 
end as door-checks, but from this point inwards it widens, 
the roof becomes more lofty, and on the south side there is 
a guard-chamber. In the broch of Kettleburn there are two 
guard-chambers, one on each side of the entrance-passage. 
The broch of Carn-liath, in Dunrobin Park, presents a more 
exceptional deviation from the rule in having no chambers 
in the wall entering from the ground-floor, but instead of 
them there were in the court area two underground chambers 
faced with flags. 

The broch of Kintradwell is described by Dr Joass ^ as 
having check-pieces fixed in the wall for two doors, the first 
6 feet and the second 14 feet from the outer end of the 
entrance-passage, with a guard-chamber between them. Also 
at the side of the central area there was a well, 7 feet deep, 
with some stone steps leading down to near its bottom. On 
one of these steps a stone cup, 5 inches in diameter, was 
found, probably used as a drinking-cup. There were, how- 
ever, some further peculiarities which, in the opinion of the 
explorer, formed no part of the original structure. Round 
the open court there had been constructed a wall, 8 feet 
high and i foot thick, the object of which was to supply a 
ledge or scarcement for supporting a wooden roof. Also, out- 
side the broch proper, the ground was covered for a distance 
of 20 yards with a medley of the foundations of buildings 
of an inferior order of architecture. Among these ruins, at 
a depth of from 2 to 23^ feet from the surface, ten skeletons, 
in a much decayed condition, were discovered. Along with 
one of these skeletons there was an iron spear-head, and with 
another the blade of an iron dagger. Dr Joass considered 
^ Archfeologia Scotica, vol. v. p. 95. 

BROCHS. 397 

these burials to be of a later date than either the broch or its 
secondary buildings. 

Similarly, the broch of Yarhouse, excavated by Dr Joseph 
Anderson, had associated with it, both outside and inside, 
a mass of secondary buildings, among the ruins of which 
human skeletons were found. These Dr Anderson believed 
to have been buried after the broch and its outhouses' had 
already succumbed to the ravages of time to the extent 
of becoming a grassy mound. Near one of the bodies 
lay a flat circular brooch of brass, bearing an inscription 
which identifies it with brooches of the twelfth and thirteenth 
centuries. There were casual interments during Christian 
times, but there is evidence which connects the custom 
with paganism as well. Dr Petrie describes a small ceme- 
tery of stone cists with burials after cremation, overlying the 
ruined broch of Okstrow in Orkney. ^ 

Like that at Kintradwell, the broch of Yarhouse contained 
an interior wall built of inferior masonry against the original 
wall of the broch, and attached to it were remains of par- 
titions. " These partitions," writes Dr Anderson, ^ " were 
partly built, and partly formed of long slabs set on end. 
They rose to about 8 feet — the same height as the scarce- 
ment. The partitions and the inner wall forming the 
scarcement were founded on an accumulation of rubbish 
largely mixed with ashes and food - refuse, which covered 
the original floor of the broch to the depth of 12 to 14 
inches. They were therefore clearly secondary constructions, 
made to adapt the broch to the purpose of a secondary occu- 
pation." Similar proofs of later adaptations of the brochs 
to different conditions of life have been observed in many 
other instances, as at Burwick, Kettleburn, Lingrow, &c. 

Many of the brochs were built in positions evidently selected 
^ Arch. Scot., vol. v. p. 76. ' Scotland in Pagan Times, p. 229. 


for natural strength, such as Cole's Castle, near Brora, Suther- 
landshire, which occupies the top of an isolated eminence 
accessible only on one side.^ Others occupied promontories 
or small islands in lakes, such as the brochs of Snaburgh and 
Burraness, both in the island of Unst, in Shetland, which were 
protected by fortifications and ditches on the land side. The 
broch of Clikamin, at Lerwick (PI. XVI.), though on an 
island, was fortified by a thick stone wall which completely 
surrounded the island. Inside this enclosure was the broch 
proper, strengthened in the usual way. The loch is now 
lowered and visitors can approach the ruins on foot, but it 
will take them some time to master the intricacy of the 
structure with its doors, passages, guard-chamber, vaults, &c. 
The broch on Cockburn Law, known as Edenshall, — identified 
as such by the remains of a stair and beehive chambers in the 
thickness of the wall, — is important as being surrounded by a 
double rampart of earthworks in the ordinary manner of the 
British forts. The broch was one of the largest known, its 
wall being lyfeet thick and the area enclosed no less than 
56 feet in diameter. Outside the broch, but within the area 
defended by the earthworks, are numerous ruins of circular 
huts and other buildings, as shown on the accompanying 
plan (PI. XVII.), taken from Mr John TurnbuU's account of 
this remarkable stronghold.^ 

The relics collected on the sites of brochs are not less 
instructive than the buildings themselves, inasmuch as they 
disclose, with tolerable fulness, the culture and social con- 
dition of their occupants. On comparing the various 
collections derived from the very considerable number of 
excavations now recorded, they appear so marvellously alike 
that, with the exception of one or two stray objects from 

' Pi'oc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. XV. p. 310. 
^ Pioc. Berwickshire Nat. Club, 1879-81. 








BROCHS. 399 

foreign cultures, they may be discussed as one homo- 
geneous group. The following may be noted as the most 
common : — 

Stone. — Querns, rubbers, hammer-stones, polishers ; oval or 
circular cups, mortars, pestles, whorls, discs, balls, whetstones ; 
vessels of steatite, 5z:c. 

Born and bone. — Pins, bodkins, buttons, knobs, long- 
handled combs supposed to have 
been used in weaving, toilet combs 
(fig. 226), needles ; handles for 
knives and instruments are largely 

Bronze. — Objects of bronze are 
not numerous, being confined to pig. ^^t.-Bone comh from the 

pins, armlets, and buckle - like Knowe of Saverough, Orkney 

K \ <^)- 


Iron. — Objects of iron are also sparingly represented, and 
they are generally so much corroded that it is difficult to 
identify them. As specific implements and weapons may 
be noted the knife, socketed chisel, spear, and dagger. 

Pottery. — Fragments of pottery are common, showing a 
coarse unglazed ware in the form of globular vessels with 
everted rims. 

The animals used as food by the inmates of the brochs 
are abundantly represented in the accumulated refuse-heaps 
found on almost all the sites hitherto explored. They are 
chiefly the following : Red- and roe-deer, ox, sheep, goat, 
pig, horse, dog, whale, seal, various kinds of fish, and the 
common edible molluscs. 

Among the relics regarded as exceptional and special the 
following may be noted : — 

I. In the broch of Carn-liath there were found rings of 
shale or lignite, some in the process of being manufactured ; 

2 E 



two plates of hammered brass ; and a silver fibula of Roman 

2. At Kettleburn a pair of bronze tweezers, 4% inches long 
and ly^ inch in breadth, elegantly manufactured and orna- 
mented after Late Celtic style.^ 

3. The broch of Dunbeath, excavated by Mr T. Sinclair, 
contained chambers loftier than usual, and among the relics 
were an iron spear-head and a whetstone. A quantity of 
charred grain, bere, and oats was found on the floor.' 

4. In one of the brochs in the parish of Harray an orna- 
mental bronze knob (fig. 227) was found, which is of much 

interest as being almost identical with a 
number of objects found on the crannog 
of Lisnacroghera * (PI. VI., Nos. 28-30). 

5. Fragments of Samian ware were 
found in the brochs of Burray and 
Okstrow, as well as in one at Keiss, 
recently explored by Sir F. T. Barry ; and 
four silver coins of the Roman Empire, in 
the outhouses of the broch of Lingrow. 

6. The broch of Torwoodlee, Selkirk- 
shire, recently investigated by Mr James 

Fig. 227.— Bronze object Curle,^ is remarkable for the preponder- 
found in. a broch in ^^^^ ^f ^.^jj^g emanating from Roman 

Harray (|). 

civilisation found on its site. These 
include Samian pottery, glass vessels of well-known Roman 
types, armlets of opaque glass with enamel, a bronze disc with 
enamel, and some harness-rings in Late Celtic style of art. 

' Arch. Scot., vol. v. pi. xvi. ^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. i. p. 266. 

■* Arch. Scot., vol. v. p. 146. 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. vii. p. 103, and 'Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' 
P- 383- 
^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxvi. p. 68. 



Fig, 228. — Quartz pebble from the brock 
of Kintradwell {^). 

7. Among miscellaneous objects are a stone pebble with 
a hollow streak (fig. 228), supposed to be a strike-light, a 
clay mould for casting bronze pins (Lingrow), disc made 
of bone (Burrian), double- 
edged combs like those 
from the Terp- mounds in 
Holland, a stone with two 
triangles crossed, the meta- 
tarsal bone of an ox with in- 
cised symbols of a crescent 
crossed with a V-shaped 
sceptre, a cross of Celtic 
form, a fish, an ogham inscription, and a cup made of the 
vertebra of a whale. 

This is but a meagre account of the archaeological pheno- 
mena disclosed by the explorations of the Scottish brochs. 
The problem now to be considered is, Who were the people 
who constructed and inhabited them? Their geographical 
distribution coincides so fully with that of the roving Norse- 
men in their excursions to our shores, that in answer to the 
above question two possibilities are suggested : " Either they 
were erected by the Picts or Celtic races who inhabited these 
islands from the earliest times to which history and tradition 
ascend; or they were the work of the Norwegians who settled 
on the islands in or before the eighth century after Christ, 
and finally conquered and extirpated the Celtic inhabitants." 

The problem at issue is fairly well set forth in the above 
statement by James Fergusson, F.R.S., who energetically 
defended the latter alternative, or Norwegian theory of the 
origin of the brochs, in a special treatise entitled ' The Brochs 
and the Rude Stone Monuments of the Orkney Islands' 
(London 1877). As Mr Fergusson's essay had to a large 
extent assumed a polemical character, mainly directed against 


the views of Dr Joseph Anderson, who held the other, or 
Celtic, theory of the origin of the brochs, the latter was con- 
strained to take up the challenge. His reply will be found in 
the ' Proc. Soc. A. Scot.,' vol. xii. pp. 314-356. I cannot recall 
any scientific controversy that repays perusal better than these 
two essays ; but even should I have space to summarise the 
arguments pro et con., it would be an injustice to my readers 
to deprive them of the full effect of the argumentative style 
and methods of two such able and competent controversialists. 
As I agree with Dr Anderson's views in this matter, it will 
suffice here to state, in a condensed form, the conclusions he 
arrived at in regard to the brochs, after a comprehensive sur- 
vey of their structural characteristics, their geographical range, 
and their contents, with special reference to the questions of 
their origin and their relation to other antiquities in Northern 
Scotland. They are as follows : — 

1. The brochs are allied by their structural characteristics 
to the Celtic and not to the Norwegian group of stone monu- 
ments, in which no instance of a vaulted chamber ever occurs. 

2. Their geographical range and local distribution imply 
their native origin, and are incompatible with the theory that 
they were built by the Norwegians. 

3. The Norwegian remains from graves of the Viking period 
in Scotland are wholly similar to the remains of the Viking 
period in Norway, and are thus easily distinguishable from 
the Celtic remains with which they are locally associated. 

4. The general fades of the group of relics found in the 
brochs agrees completely with that of the group of relics of 
the post-Roman period of Celtic Scotland, and this is sufficient 
evidence that their occupants were not Norwegian. 

Among the more recent investigations of brochs the most 
important are those conducted by Sir F. T. Barry, Bart., M.P., 
on his Keiss estate and elsewhere, in Caithness — no less than 

BROCHS. 403 

eight brochs having been excavated by him during the last 
few years, including the " Harbour Mound," partially explored 
by the late Mr Samuel Laing, M.P., and described in his ' Pre- 
historic Remains of Caithness ' (1866). A communication on 
the results of these excavations, by the explorer, was read 
at the Society of Antiquaries, London, on the 8th of June 
last ; and its publication will be awaited with much interest, 
mainly to see if his discoveries have a tendency to shift 
backwards the chronological horizon usually assigned to these 
structures — as was the case with the remains found in the 
broch at Torwoodlee, which point to a period close on the 
Roman occupation of the district. The relics, some of 
which I recently saw at Keiss Castle, are generally of the 
same character as those already found on the sites of the 
northern brochs. Among them may be noted — long-handled 
combs, implements of deer-horn, pottery (including two small 
pieces of " Samian " ware), bone pins and a bone needle, 
whorls, whetstones, stone lamps, mortars and cups ; also 
bones of the great auk, part of the antlers of the elk and 
reindeer, and the tooth of a bear (see p. 91). The broch 
of Nybster was on a small promontory, with precipitous 
sides, jutting into the sea. Before excavations its site was 
a greensward with a ditch across its narrowest part. Parallel 
to this ditch there was a stone wall, 15 feet thick, containing 
an entrance passage with check-pieces for two doors, and on 
each side of its inner end were a few steps of a stair leading 
to the top of the wall. The broch, with its entrance facing 
the south, was immediately beyond this rampart, and in front 
of it were remains of outhouses which, unlike the generality 
of brochs, showed no indications of having been due to 
secondary occupation. Indeed all these structures appeared 
to me to have been the component parts of one original 




EW archaeological subjects have excited 
more general interest in the scientific 
world than the discovery of the remains 
of those strange habitations known 
as Lake ■ dwellings, the investigation of 
which has been steadily prosecuted 
throughout Europe for now close upon half a century. 
The comparative security afforded by natural islands could 
not fail to attract the notice of man from the very dawn of 
his reasoning faculties, and it is probable that he resorted 
to such means of protection as soon as he became acquainted 
with the buoyant properties of a log of wood, and utilised his 
experience by the invention of the dug-out canoe. From the 
natural to the artificial island was but a stage of transition 
which in course of time could be readily bridged over by 
his progress in mechanical skill. But whatever may have 
been the primary object of these structures, or the precise 
circumstances which led to their development, one thing is 
certain, that they continued for many centuries to be the 
characteristic abodes of the early inhabitants of Central 
Europe, in localities where the requisite conditions were 


to be found. The remarkable development of the system 
in Central Europe, during the Stone and Bronze Ages, seems 
to have come to a sudden end within prehistoric times ; and, 
indeed, so completely had the custom fallen into desuetude 
that scarcely a trace of it has survived in the traditions or 
annals of those very countries in which lake-dwellings were 
most abundant. To have rescued so singular a phase of 
human civilisation from oblivion is one of the greatest tri- 
umphs of prehistoric archaeology. 

I. Sketch of Lake-dwelling Researches. 

The actual starting-point of lacustrine research may be 
dated to an incident which took place in Dublin upwards 
of half a century ago. It appears that early in the spring 
of 1839 curiosity was roused at the Museum of the Royal 
Irish Academy by the frequency of the visits of a local 
dealer offering for sale objects of a miscellaneous character, 
many of which were of rare antiquarian value. These objects 
were said to have been found in a peat-bog in the county of 
Meath, and their assortment in such a place seemed so strange 
to Dr Petrie that he resolved to visit the locality. Accordingly 
he and Surgeon Wilde (afterwards Sir W. Wilde) started in 
search of the mysterious find, and were conducted to the 
peat-bog of Lagore, near the village of Dunshaughlin. Here, 
within the boundaries of a drained lake and under a thick 
covering of peat, was an artificial mound then partially 
exposed by peat-cutters. This mound had been well known 
to bone collectors for upwards of ten years, during which 
time, it is said, they had dug out, and exported to a factory 
of bone-manure in Scotland, no less than 150 cart-loads of 
bones. The mound was of a circular shape, slightly raised 
above the surrounding plain, and measured 520 feet in cir- 


cumference. Along its margin were " upright posts of black 
oak, measuring from 6 to 8 feet in height; these were 
mortised into beams of a similar material, laid flat upon 
the marl and sand beneath the bog, and nearly i6 feet 
below the present surface. The upright posts were held 
together by connecting cross-beams, and fastened by large 
iron nails." 

That the nature of this mound was correctly interpreted 
by Irish archaeologists may be gathered from the abstract 
of Sir William Wilde's paper on the Lagore lake - dwelling 
or crannog in the ' Proceedings of the Irish Academy ' for 
1840, from which the above extract is taken, as well as from 
the further discoveries which immediately followed on its 
publication — such as the crannogs in Roughan Lake, Lough 
Gur, Lake Monalty, Loch-na-Glack, Ballinderry, &c. 

But the most important subsequent discoveries were due 
to the workings of the Commission for the Arterial Drainage 
and Inland Navigation of Ireland, which brought to light no 
less than twenty -two crannogs throughout the counties of 
Roscommon, Leitrim, Cavan, and Monaghan. Reports of 
these crannogs by the engineers of the Board of Works, 
along with plans, maps, sections, and a large assortment 
of relics, were deposited at the time in the Museum of 
the Royal Irish Academy. 

While these crannog investigations were thus steadily pro- 
gressing in Ireland, an independent discovery was announced 
in Switzerland, which not only gave a new significance to the 
Irish discoveries, but almost immediately opened up one of 
the most prolific fields of prehistoric research which has ever 
come under the cognisance of archaeologists. This discovery 
was indirectly due to the exceptional cold of the winter of 
1853-54, which caused the water in Lake Zurich to sink to 
a lower level than any previously on record — being one foot 


lower than the celebrated mark on the stone of Stafa, which 
preserves the record of a similar phenomenon in 1674. In 
these circumstances two of the inhabitants of Ober-Meilen, 
whose vineyards came close upon the shore of the Lake, 
began to extend them by enclosing portions of the exposed 
shore with a stone wall, and filling in the space with mud, 
so as to bring its surface above the ordinary level of the 
water. In the course of these operations the workmen ob- 
served, protruding through the mud in the bed of the 
lake, portions of rotten posts, together with stone axes, 
flint implements, and other worked objects, which excited 
their curiosity. Mr Aeppli, the village schoolmaster, heard 
through his scholars of the curious things turned up in 
these diggings, and as soon as his day's duties were over 
he went to see the place. After inspecting some of the 
objects which the workmen had laid aside, Mr Aeppli^ 
thus expressed himself to the interested bystanders : " Hier 
hat die Menschenhand gearbeitet, das sind Werkzeuge und 
Gerathe, die der Mensch einst gebraucht hat ; ihre Form 
gehort menschlicher Thatigkeit an." 

He then wrote a short accoupt of what he had seen, and 
sent it to the Antiquarian Society at Zurich. Within four 
hours of the despatch of his epistle three representatives of 
the Society arrived at Ober-Meilen, among them being the 
President, Dr Ferdinand Keller. 

After careful consideration of the facts, Dr Keller came 
to the conclusion that the piles had supported a platform 
upon which huts had been erected, and that, after a long 
period of occupancy, the entire structures were destroyed 
by a conflagration. 

This important deduction, strengthened by the traditional 
stories of submerged cities long current among the fishing com- 
' F. Staub, Die Pfahlbauten in den Schweizer-Seen, p. 8. 


munity, spread rapidly among the Swiss people, and produced an 
immediate army of explorers, who commenced a vigorous search 
for similar remains in this and the adjacent lakes. Guided 
partly by the recollection of previous finds, the significance 
of which became now apparent, and partly by the knowledge 
of local fishermen, who, from practical experience of disasters 
to their fishing-gear, could at once point to numberless fields 
of submerged woodwork, the efforts of these pioneer lacus- 
treurs were speedily crowned with the greatest success. In 
the spring of the same year the famous station, known as 
the Steinberg at Nidau, was discovered, as well as many 
others in the Lakes of Bienne, Neuchatel, and Geneva ; 
so that before the report of the Ober-Meilen discovery 
could be published in the ' Transactions of the Antiquarian 
Society of Zurich,' Dr Keller had equally interesting materials 
from other stations to record. This report, which appeared 
towards the close of 1854, under the title "Die Keltischen 
Pfahlbauten in den Schweizerseen," at once attracted the 
attention of archaeologists throughout Europe. 

The immediate outcome of the publicity thus given to the 
existence of an ancient lacustrine civilisation in Switzerland 
was a systematic search for similar antiquities throughout 
Europe. Nor was this search in vain, for within a few 
years analogous remains were found in many of the lakes 
and turbaries of France, Germany, Austria, and Italy; and 
more recently the area of their development has been ex- 
tended to Bosnia, Greece, and Asia Minor, and probably 
other localities. 

The merit of being the first to direct attention to Scottish 
crannogs belongs to Dr Joseph Robertson, who brought the 
subject before the Fellows of the Society of Antiquaries of 
Scotland in a paper read on December 14, 1857. The facts 
adduced by Dr Robertson consisted chiefly of historic ref- 


erences to island - forts, and submerged wooden structures 
exposed, in the course of the drainage of loch and marshes, 
during the last, and the early part of this, century. Although 
this kind of evidence conclusively proved the existence of 
crannogs, it gave little information as to their nature and 
function in the social organisation of the times. The first 
great discovery which brought them on the field of practical 
research was made in the Loch of Dowalton, Wigtownshire, 
about thirty-five years ago. In order to drain the extensive 
meadows occupying the western portion of the Dowalton 
valley, the proprietor. Sir William Maxwell, Bart., conceived 
and successfully carried out a project of draining the loch 
by cutting a new outlet through the narrow lip of rock 
which, at a certain portion of its margin, was the only 
barrier between its waters and the lower ground beyond. 
This excavation was completed during the summer of 1863, 
and, as the waters subsided, a group of five or six artificial 
islands gradually emerged, like a scene in fairyland, from the 
bosom of the lake. The antiquarian remains collected on 
these islands ultimately disclosed a picture of early Scottish 
civilisation hitherto unknown to historians or to archaeologists. 
Sir Herbert Maxwell, to whom the event was especially excit- 
ing, on account of the bewilderment of the aquatic birds 
which were in the habit of frequenting the loch, and the 
tragic fate of its fish, gives the following reminiscence of 
the circumstances which led to the recognition of the true 
nature of the islands : " I remember when Lord Lovaine 
was taken down to see the drainage operations in 1863, 
that the islands were then appearing above the subsiding 
waters. His lordship had, I think, just returned from 
Switzerland, where he had visited the lake- dwellings there. 
My father told me that he exclaimed, ' Why, here are just 
the things I have been looking at in the Swiss lakes.'" 



In August of that year the late Duke of Northumberland, 
then Lord Lovaine, read a descriptive account of these cran- 
nogs at the Newcastle-upon-Tyne meeting of the British 

A couple of years later, Dr Stuart, Secretary of the Society 
of Antiquaries, visited Dowalton, and, owing to the more 
complete drainage of the loch, was enabled to examine the 
islands under more favourable conditions. The result of his 
labours was an elaborate paper to the Society, in which he 

Fig. 229. — Bronze patella (5 J^ inches in height) with the letters 
CIPIPOLIEI stamped on handle, Dowalton. 

gave a detailed account of their structure and of the relics 
found on them ; and to which he added all the facts he 
could glean from historical and other sources, including some 
of the contents of the unpublished paper of Dr Robertson. 

Among the industrial remains collected on and around 
these islands were canoes, bronze dishes of Roman origin 
(fig. 229), bracelets and beads of glass (fig. 230), bronze 
brooches and other ornaments, crucibles and iron slag, 
perforated axe -heads and hammers of iron, fragments of 



Samian ware, querns, hammer-stones, a leather shoe stamped 
with a pattern (fig. 232), &c., &c. From the undoubted 
Roman element which characterised a considerable number 
of these relics, the habitable period of the Dowalton lake- 

Fig. 230. — Beads of glass from Dowalton (^). 

dwellings must be relegated back to the early centuries of 
the Christian era. 

After the publication of Dr Stuart's paper in 1866, little 
progress was made in the exploration of Scottish crannogs, 
although traces of them were occasionally noticed throughout 
the country, till the dis- 
covery and excavation of 
the Lochlee crannog in 
1878-79. This was the 
commencement of a series 
of explorations, conducted 
under the auspices of the 
Ayr and Galloway Archse- 
ological Association, which 
culminated in the excava- 
tion of no less than six 
typical crannogs through- 
out the counties of Ayr and Wigtown. From a careful con- 
sideration of the relics thus collected, there can be no ambiguity 
as to the testimony they afford of the peaceful occupation of 
their owners. Indeed, among a very large and varied assort- 
ment of objects indicating the prosecution of various industries. 

Fig. 231. — Bronze fenannular broochj 
Dowalton (-J-). 



the warlike element is but feebly represented by a few iron 
daggers and spear-heads, one or two tips of the crossbow-bolt, 
and a quantity of so-called sling-stones. Among the rarer 
objects the following may be mentioned : Two spiral finger- 
rings of gold (fig. 233), and a crucible containing particles of 

Fig. 232. — Portion of leatJier sJioe ijength 7 inches)^ Dowalton, 

this metal ; a gold coin of Saxon origin (fig. 234) — supposed 
to have been originally a forgery, as it was made up of two 
thin gold plates and a copper core ; an amber-coloured bead 
of glass (fig. 235); two cup-marked stones, one of which has 

Fig. 233. — Two spiral finger-rings of gold, Buston {^). 

the cup surrounded by two concentric circles (fig. 237); a 
pendant of jet in the form of a cross inscribed in a circle 
and ornamented with small incised circles (fig. 238) ; a conical 
object of rock-crystal highly poHshed and having some re- 
semblance to the settings on early book-covers (fig. 236) ; a 


flat piece of ash-wood having both sides ornamented with an 
incised spiral pattern ; a remarkable fringe - like apparatus 
made of the long stems of a moss {Polytrichwn comitiune) 
(fig. 239); a bridle-bit, partly of iron and partly of bronze 
(fig. 240) ; several toilet combs (fig. 241) ; fibulae of Romano- 

234 23 s 236 

Fig. 234-236. — Gold coin [Busiofi), glass bead, and rock-crystal fro-m 
Lochspouts (^). 

British types (fig. 242) ; an ornament of bronze wire coiled 
into a double spiral (fig. 243), &c. 

Since the reports on these various investigations appeared 
in the Collections of the Association, only three genuine 

Fig. i-i-j. —Stone with cuf-and- Fig. 238.— /rf ornament, Loch- 

ring markings, Lochlee (J). spozds (J). 

crannogs have been excavated in Scotland — viz., one in 
Lochan Dughaill, Argyllshire; one at Hyndford, near the 
town of Lanark ; and a third — a stone crannog— in Ashgrove 
Loch, near Stevenston, Ayrshire. As these crannogs were 
investigated subsequent to the publication of my books on 



the Scottish crannogs (1882) and the Lake - dwellings of 
Europe (1890), I shall here give a short account of the archse- 

Fig. 239. — Fringe made from the stems of 
a moss (Polytrichum commune). Loch- 


Fig. 240. — Bridle-bit of bronze 
and iron, Lochlee (J), 

ological results, by way of supplementing the information 
.already before the public. 



The crannog of Lochan Dughaill ^ is interesting, inasmuch 
as it revealed the foundation of a circular wooden house over 

Fig. 241. — Bone comb, Buston (^). 

Fig, 242. — Bronze fibvla, Lochlee (^). 

Fig, 243, — Bronze spiral 
ornament, Lochspouis 

the artificial island, as already described (p. 334). The island 
consisted of timbers and brushwood, arranged in transverse 

' Proc. Soc. A. Scot,, vol. xxvii, p. 211, 
2 F 


layers to a depth of over 4 feet and surrounded by a circle 
of piles, whose surface formed an oval space, 49 feet long by 
45 feet broad. 

All the relics collected in the course of the investigation 
vi'ere found on the surface of the woodwork, and, though not 
numerous, they are of some archasological value. The fol- 
lowing are the principal objects : — 

A small flint scraper of prehistoric workmanship, which 
probably came from a grave of the Stone Age in the 
neighbourhood, was utilised by the crannog inhabitants 
as a strike-light (fig. 244). 
A circular stone disc, 3j^ inches in diameter, and rather 
more than an inch in thickness, having a central per- 
foration half an inch in diameter. 
Four sharpening stones made of a fine-grained sandstone, 

found in the primary rocks in the vicinity. 
Five or six kidney-shaped polishers of a whitish quartz, 

6 to 8 inches in length. 
Half of a bracelet made of cannel coal, showing a diameter 

(internal) of 2^ inches. 
Some fragments of glazed earthenware (wheel-made), found 
together, were reconstructed into a jar 6]4 inches high 

(fig- 245)- 
Among the other relics may be mentioned — a projecting 

handle of the same kind of earthenware as the jar (fig. 

246) ; a crucible i ^ inch in greatest diameter (fig. 247) ; 

and some portions of worked wood having round and 

square holes. 
The Hyndford crannog, discovered and excavated by Mr 
Andrew Smith in 1898, is situated about two miles east of the 
town of Lanark. Some twenty years ago the site of this 
dwelling was a small wooded island, but immediately prior 
to the excavations only the stumps of trees were to be seen 



dotting the surface of a grassy flat mound,- some 70 or 80 
feet in diameter. In winter, and during rainy weather, the 
mound was often completely surrounded by water, but in 


/ *~^ 

'. ' \-' 

( 1 


, ..1 



■ ■■ A 



Fig. 244. — Flint 
scraper (5). 

Fig. 245. —Jar of glazed earthenware 
[6% inches high). 

summer-time there was only a large pond encompassing 
about three-fourths of its circumference, leaving a dry neck 
on the north-east side which connected it with the cultivated 

Fig. 246, — Handle of earthenware vessel. 
(4 inches in length). 

Fig. 247. — A crucible of clay 
(actual size). 

land. The depth of the pond is very considerable close to 
the mound, and indeed it looks as if it had been intention- 
ally deepened. The method of excavating adopted was to 
clear off the entire dkhris down to the original flooring of the 



dwelling, a depth of from 2^ to 3 feet. Underneath this 
there was a layer of much decayed brushwood mixed with the 
clayey silt on which it was originally laid. A circle of piles, 
having a diameter of about 49 feet, was exposed in the interior, 
the stumps of which projected some 2 feet above the floor- 
ing. They were irregularly set, as if two or three rows 
had been placed together, and it is probable that they 
formed part of a wooden house. Towards the centre of 
the circle of piles there were three fireplaces separated from 
each other by an interval of a few yards, each of which 
contained several superimposed hearths one above the other. 
A large quantity of ashes, charcoal, and bones of animals 
— broken and sometimes burnt — was found throughout the 
debris, more especially on the south side, where there was 
an accumulation, suggestive of a kitchen-midden, occupying 
a space partly inside and partly outside the circle of piles. 
The relics, which were not localised in any way but scattered 
throughout the whole ruins, are of special 
interest on account of the number of 
Roman remains among them. The fol- 
lowing are the most important up to 
this date : — 

Stone. — A neatly formed polished celt, 
3 inches long (fig. 248), and a fragment 
of another specimen ; a circular disc 
beautifully polished on both sides, 3 
Fig. zi,^.— stone axe inches in diameter, and rather more than 
jrom e yn jor quarter of an inch thick : another 

stone, 3 by 2j^ inches, had the same 
characters as the former, but differed in being of a rect- 
angular shape ; four small and neatly formed sharpening 
stones; one whorl made of sandstone, \% inch in diameter, 
and two of a light-yellowish shale, one of the latter having 



a circular groove near its margin (fig. 254); several portions 
of querns; a small mortar with traces of gold in it (fig. 252); 
portion of a stone cup (steatite) with a perforated handle (fig. 
251); hammer-stones, pestles, perforated pieces of shale, &c. 

Bronze. — A spiral finger-ring of 3}^ coils (fig. 253); two 
rings \i/z inch in diameter; portions of small tubing, and a 
square rod or wire, 9 inches long; portion of a beaded 
torque (fig. 154, p. 253). 

Glass. — Three melon-shaped beads of different sizes (fig. 

/ '' 

Figs. 249-254. — Various objects found in ike Hyndford crannog. 

I, Glass bead ; 2, Glass bracelet ; 3, Portion of steatite cup (^) ; 4, Stone mortar ; 5, 
Bronze finger-ring ; 6, Spindle-whorl of shale (all § with the exception of No. 3). 

249), an elongated drop, and fragments of glass vessels ; por- 
tions of five bracelets of different patterns (fig. 250). 

Pottery. — Portions of at least six different vessels of red 
" Samian " ware, one with a pattern and figures ; handles and 
portions of four vessels of the grey Roman pottery ; fragments 
of a very hard glazed ware of a bluish-green colour, indicating 
a vessel with a long wide neck, bulging in the middle, and 
ornamented with wavy lines. 


Lead. — A large mass weighing 13 lb. 9 oz., showing cuts on 
its surface, and another small portion. 

Iron. — Axe- and hammer-heads and picks — one axe has 
imbedded in its corroded mass the tooth of a large ruminant ; 
an iron collar, 6 inches in diameter, made of a flat band i to 
I Yi inch broad ; portions of iron slag. 

Miscellaneous. — Portion of a remarkable mould like one 
found in Ayrshire ; ^ a small hemispherical object of red 
enamel about the size of the half of a large hazel-nut, show- 
ing a check pattern on its inner side. 

The stone crannog in Ashgrove Loch, which was partially ex- 
cavated by Mr John Smith,^ consisted of a circular stone wall 
enclosing a space of about 30 feet in diameter. Before its 
excavation it presented the appearance of a mound on the 
margin of the present loch, but in former times it would 
be within its boundaries. Trenches having been dug through 
the interior of this mound, Mr Smith came upon a built 
drain, covered with sandstone slabs, which he regarded as 
a water-tank. The wall, which on the land side had a 
thickness of 9 feet, but less than half this on the other, 
was placed upon a bed of brushwood, and built of " rough 
blocks of sandstone, and a few whinstones, laid in a mortar 
of tough yellow clay." 

A causeway of rough blocks of sandstone slabs leading 
from this wall to the land was discovered about 2 feet 
beneath the present surface. The kitchen-midden was piled 
up outside the wall, and in it were found the following 
relics : — 

I. A large number of bones, both entire and split, of 
red-deer, ox, pig, sheep, and goat. 

■^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. i. p. 45. 

'■^Collections, Ayr and Gal. Arch. Association, vol. vii. p. 56; also 
' Prehistoric Man in Ayrshire,' p. 48. 


2. Several chisels and knife-like objects, a wedge, a large 
needle perforated in the centre, a spoon, and a narrow 
needle — all of bone. 

3. Several hammer-stones and a few smooth stones. 

4. Bit of gas-coal with a round hole bored through it. 

5. A pair of steel sheep-shears. 

6. Numerous specimens of Littorina littorea. 

" From the details given above," writes Mr Smith, " I 
think the history of the spot may be read thus : on top 
of a bluish clay-bed there had accumulated a bed of brown 
moss, possibly entirely from the decay of water-plants, i 
foot in thickness on the land side of the crannog, and 4 
feet thick on the loch side. Then the position was occupied 
by man, who laid on top of the moss a layer of branches, 
and on this built a stone crannog, 43 feet in largest outside 
diameter, with a built water-tank under the floor, the interior 
of the dwelling being possibly divided into compartments, 
roughly paved, and carpeted with heather. 

" All the deers' horns got were divested of the tines, except 
the brow one, and look remarkably like picks, and have pos- 
sibly been used as such. Some of them are pretty well coated 
with vivianite. 

"There are possibly remains of five other crannogs in the 
loch, but nothing has been done to explore them, and the 
place, when in its 'glory,' must have formed a very quaint 
little lake-village, the loch being nearly completely surrounded 
by rising ground." 

The earlier evidence adduced in support of the existence 
of lake-dwellings south of the Scottish Border was in most 
instances too fragmentary to be of scientific value. Of this 
character were the structures in some of the Meres of Norfolk 
and Suffolk, described by Sir Charles Bunbury, Professor 
Newton, and the Rev. Harry Jones; also the reputed pile- 


structure in Cold Ash Common, Berks, noticed by Dr S. 

In 1866 General Pitt- Rivers communicated to the Anthropo- 
logical Society of London a paper entitled "A Description 
of Certain Piles found near London Wall and Southwark, pos- 
sibly the remains of Pile- Buildings." The author began by 
observing that his attention was directed to the locality by a 
short paragraph in the 'Times' of the 20th October, stating 
that upwards of twenty cartloads of bones had been dug out 
of the excavations which were being made for the foundations 
of a wool warehouse. Here, in a bed of peat, 7 to 9 feet 
thick, intervening between the accumulated debris of modern 
London and a bed of gravel, the workmen came upon a 
number of wooden piles whose tips penetrated into the gravel. 
Scattered through this peat were numerous articles of human 
workmanship ; also several kitchen-middens, containing the 
nondescript remains of human occupancy. The majority of 
the relics were of Roman origin, and included coins, tiles, 
pottery, and articles of dress. In addition to these there were 
others of ruder construction, made of bone and horn, such as 
knife-handles, spear-heads, a couple of bone skates, &c. 

In 1870 a circular island, near the shore of the Lake of 
Llangorse, Wales, was shown by the Rev. Mr Dumbleton to 
have been constructed after the manner of the stockaded 
islands or crannogs. In the course of the excavations, remains 
of a log-flooring, charcoal, food-refuse, &c., were turned up, 
but among them there was no relic of sufficient character to 
give a clue to the period when the island was constructed or 

In 1880 the Drainage Commissioners of the Holderness 
found it necessary to deepen some of the drains in that low- 
lying district, and when this was being done Mr Thomas 
Boynton's attention was directed to some prepared woodwork. 


and bones of animals found in the stuff thrown out, which he 
regarded as evidence of a lake-dwelling. Such remains were 
observed at five different localities, two of which have since 
been more or less explored, with the result that there could 
be no doubt that they were the sites of human habitations, 
having some structural resemblance to the fascine lake- 
dwellings of Switzerland. Some very carious implements 
made of the articulated ends of the long bones of some large 
bovine animals, a flint scraper, a stone axe, a bronze spear- 
head, and portions of two jet bracelets, are the chief relics 

Indications of lake-dwellings, discovered on the banks of 
the Costa, near Pickering, Yorkshire, in 1893, by Mr James 
Mitchelson, have been recently described by the Hon. Cecil 
Buncombe, F.G.S., at a meeting of the Anthropological In- 
stitute (vol. i.. New Series, p. 150). As only a partial explor- 
ation of the locality has been made, the author refrains from 
formulating any positive conclusions on these discoveries. 
The evidence adduced in support of lacustrine habitations 
consists of rows of piles, suggesting gangways converging to 
one point where "water always rested or flowed in ancient 

A section of the ground showed — superficial soil, 8 or 10 
inches ; stiff blue clay, 2 feet 6 inches ; peat, 6 feet, resting on 
the Kimmeridge clay. A hole, 12 feet by 9 and 6 to 7 feet 
deep, was dug round some piles, and, near the bottom of the 
peat, relics of human occupancy were found, consisting of a 
cartful of animal bones and a quantity of broken pottery. 

The animals represented were — man (at least four indivi- 
duals) ; horse (small variety), numerous ; ox {Bos longifrons), 
numerous ; sheep (straight - horned), numerous ; goat, one 
skull j pig (both wild and domesticated); wolf, fox, otter, 
beaver (one skull), voles, and birds. 


Portions of deer- horn showed marks of cutting, others 
were worked into rude implements, and one split portion 
contained five small perforations. The pottery was all hand- 
made, formed of " coarse clay mixed with spar and small 
stones." Some fragments indicated vessels of large size, 
reminding Captain Buncombe of those found in the Holder- 

All these remains are, however, quite compatible with Mr 
C. H. Read's opinion that they must be assigned to the early 
Iron Age rather than to an earlier date. The absence of 
metals counts for very little in a mere preliminary investiga- 
tion such as this has been ; but enough has been disclosed to 
show the extreme interest of these early remains of British 
lake-dwellings and the desirability of having the Costa site 
more fully explored. 

These meagre records comprise nearly all the results of 
lacustrine research in England, with the exception of the 
Glastonbury lake -village discovered in the spring of 1892 
by Mr Arthur Bulleid, and since excavated under his care. 
The site of this remarkable settlement occupies some three or 
four acres of a flat meadow, within the boundaries of what is 
supposed, on good grounds, to have been formerly a lake or 
marsh. Before excavations were begun all that the eye could 
discern, on the undisturbed surface, were sixty or seventy low 
mounds huddled in the corner of a field. These mounds 
were the debris of dwelling-huts, and the foundation on which 
they stood consisted of layers of brushwood and trees bound 
together, at least in some places, with mortised beams pre- 
cisely similar to those of the crannogs. A strong palisading 
of piles and brushwood surrounded and protected the village. 
Its marginal boundary was very irregular, probably from the 
fact that enlargement continued to be made by the addition 
of huts projected from different parts of the original nucleus. 



The huts were circular or oval, and varied in size from 20 to 
35 feet in diameter. Each hut contained a central hearth, 
sometimes neatly made of flat stones embedded in the clay 
flooring, but as subsidence, due to the compression and decay 
of the under-structures, progressed, the occupants superadded 
new floorings. These, on being repeated several times, 
showed on section a stratified appearance. In this way 
several hearths, five or six being not uncommon, were ob- 
served superimposed one above the other, precisely in the 
same manner as has been observed on the Lochlee crannog. 
The objects collected form a large and varied assortment, 
made of stone, bone, horn, wood, bronze, iron, lead, glass, 

Figs. 255, 256. — TwofibulcB and portion of handle of bronze mirror' from 
Glastonbury lake-village (^). 

amber, and pottery, besides the osseous remains of man and 
the ordinary domestic and wild animals. These remains 
illustrate, with rare and singular completeness, the life-history 
of the community — its social industries, culture, and civilis- 
ation. Many of the relics exhibit the special characteristics of 
Late Celtic art ; nor does it appear that they have been in- 
fluenced in any way by Roman civilisation, so that this feature 
alone gives to the Glastonbury lake-village an exceptional 
importance among the lacustrine researches hitherto prose- 
cuted within the British Isles. 

Among the bronze objects are many fibulse of La Tbne 
types (fig. 25 s), spiral finger- rings, penannular brooches. 


portions of mirrors (fig. 256), and an elegant bowl. Of bone 
or horn we have needles, pins, handles of instruments, long- 
handled combs, some of the latter being decorated. The 
pottery consists of various vases and dishes, some showing de- 
vices of unmistakably Late Celtic character ; iron weapons and 
implements, generally much corroded ; a fine specimen of a 
saw, still retaining its wooden handle, is of the same character 
as that found on Hunsbury camp, and figured on page 273. 
A leaden weight, shaped like a cheese, and weighing 4 ounces 
229 grains, is the only thing which betrays a suspicion of 
Roman origin. Among the objects of wood are — a canoe, 
the framework of a loom, a decorated stave of a bucket, 
part of the axle and nave of a wheel with a couple of spokes 
in their place, and a ladder ; querns, loom weights, crucibles, 
thousands of sling-bolts, made of clay both burnt and un- 
burnt, &c. 

2. Structure of Lake- dwellings. 

The preliminary problem which had to be solved before 
lacustrine habitation became possible was to construct a level 
platform, sufficiently elevated above the water to be beyond 
the action of the waves, on which dwelling-huts could be 
erected. This had been effected in one or other of the three 
following ways : — 

r. By driving long piles of wood into the bed of the lake, 
leaving their tops projecting at a uniform height above the 
water, and placing over them transverse beams, so as to form 
a platform capable of supporting such buildings as were con- 
sidered necessary for the domestic comfort of their inhabitants. 
The dwellings so constructed are called Pile-structures or Pile- 
dwellings, Pfahlbauten, Palafittes, &c. This was the method 
most commonly adopted in Switzerland, Austria, Savoy, and 
North Italy. 


2. A second method was to construct a series of rectan- 
gular basements of wood in close proximity to each other, 
each basement having its sides formed by a succession of 
horizontal beams lying one above the other like the logs in 
a Swiss chalet, and overlapping at the four corners. These 
compartments measured only a few yards in diameter. Their 
lowest beams rested on the bed of the lake, and when the 
requisite height above the water was attained, the usual plat- 
form was laid across, and so the empty spaces underneath 
became covered over. This plan, selected probably with the 
object of saving material, is analogous to the columnar and 
vaulted foundations of modern buildings. It appears to have 
been adopted chiefly by the founders of the sporadic lake- 
dwellings of the Iron Age. Characteristic examples have 
been investigated in Lake Paladru, France, and in the lakes 
of Persanzig, Arys, Daber, and others, in Germany. 

3. The third method was by constructing an artificial island 
of timbers, laid in layers transversely to each other, and gener- 
ally mixed with stones and earth, so as to afford a substantial 
basis for a building which could be used as a habitation, or as 
a fort. This was the method almost invariably practised by 
the inhabitants of the British Isles, and the ruins of such 
habitations are now frequently met with in the form of sub- 
merged, or partially submerged, islands known as crannogs. 

As regards the pile -structures proper, everything — huts, 
platforms, and piles, except their submerged lower ends — has 
disappeared ages ago, either by natural decay or by the 
accident of a conflagration. Such a catastrophe was by no 
means an uncommon occurrence among the Swiss lacustrine 
villages ; but, strange to say, it was, from an archaeological 
point of view, the most fortunate termination these struc- 
tures could have had. In the hurry and scrimmage of a con- 
flagration not only did many articles of value drop into the 


lake, but some of the most perishable commodities — such 
as grain, fruits, bread, cloth, &c. — and, wliat is not the least 
interesting, portions of the clay mouldings of the hut walls, 
were first charred before they dropped into the subjacent 
mud, and thus became less liable to decomposition. 

When we consider the number and extent of the lake- 
villages which formerly clustered along the sheltered bays 
in the larger lakes of Switzerland, we begin to realise the 
labour involved in their construction. One of the Bronze- 
Age stations at Morges, in the Lake of Geneva, was 1200 
feet long by 150 feet broad; and the whole of this area 
was thickly studded with the stumps of the piles which 
had supported the huts. Mr Lohle, the explorer of Wangen, 
a station of the pure Stone Age in Lake Constance, estimated 
the number of piles used in its construction at 40,000 or 
50,000. Dr von Fellenberg calculated, by counting the 
number of piles in one or two selected spots, that the entire 
number required for the Bronze-Age settlement at Moringen 
could not have been less than 10,000. A more striking and 
realistic phenomenon has rarely come before archaeologists 
than that which the stations of Moringen and Lattringen pre- 
sented, shortly after the Lake of Bienne became affected by 
the results of the Correction des eatix du Jura — an operation 
which lowered its surface from 6 to 8 feet. Photographic 
illustrations of their sites, taken in 1876, show quite a forest 
of black-looking stumps rising a few feet above the muddy 
bottom, which then for the first time became exposed to view. 
A similar sight was witnessed a few years later (the autumn of 
1 884), at Cortaillod, in Lake Neuchatel, and it made such an 
impression on the minds of the country-people that they 
flocked in crowds to behold the novel spectacle. The 
recently emerged piles, as positive evidence of human habita- 
tion, could not be gainsaid, more especially as relic-hunters 



were finding a rich harvest among the debris in the surrounding 
mud. The pile-structures which became embedded in peat 
are, however, still better preserved, as may be seen from the 
accompanying illustration (fig. 257), taken from a freshly exca- 
vated portion of the celebrated station of Robenhausen. 

Contemporary with these pile-dwellings there existed through- 
out the same regions of Central Europe other lake-dwellings 

Fig. 257. — View of files exposed on peat at Robenhausen, Switserla?id. 

which, instead of platforms on tall piles, had sohd substruc- 
tures composed of layers of timbers alternating with beds 
of clay. Such structures are commonly met with in the 
smaller lakes, and their remains are now generally buried in 
peat. Characteristic specimens of this class have been in- 
vestigated at Wauwyl, Niederwyl, and Schussenried. Ex- 
amples of the artificial island or crannog have also occasionally 


been met with on the Continent. In this category are to be 
reckoned a prettily wooded island in the Lake of Inkwyl, near 
Soleure ; also one in Lake of Nussbaumen, which measured 
no by 60 feet, and a third in the Arrasch See, in Livonia, 
which belonged to the Iron Age. 

But it was within the British Isles that the artificial islands 
acquired their greatest development, some 300 having been 
recorded and more or less investigated, of which considerably 
more than two-thirds are in Ireland. The most precise in- 
formation as regards their structure, however, has been fur- 
nished by one or two of the Scottish examples, notably those 
of Lochlee and Buston, in the county of Ayr. 

The construction of a crannog must have been a gigantic 
piece of work, requiring in many cases the services of the 
whole village community. In a lake containing soft and 
yielding sediment it is manifest that any heavy substances, 
such as stones or earth, would be inadmissible, owing to 
their weight, so that logs of wood, provided there was an 
abundant supply at hand, Would be the best and cheapest 
material that could be used. The plan adopted seems to 
have been to make first a floating raft of stems of trees, 
brushwood, bracken, heather, &c., mingled with stones and 
earth, until the mass grounded. When this was effected 
the entire mass was pinned together and surrounded by 
circles of piles, firmly united by horizontal beams with 
mortise - holes to receive the uprights. These horizontal 
beams were arranged in two ways. One set ran along 
the circumference, and bound together all the uprights in 
the same circle, while others took a radial direction and 
connected each circle together. Sometimes the latter were 
long enough to embrace three circles. The external ends 
of the radial beams were occasionally observed to b* con- 
tinuous, with additional strengthening materials — wooden 


props, large stones, &c. — which appeared also to act as a 
breakwater. On one side of the Lochlee crannog there was 
a large accumulation of brushwood outside the stockade. 
The mechanical skill displayed in the construction was 
specially directed to give stability to the island, and to pre- 
vent superincumbent pressure from causing the general mass 
to bulge outwards. 

The internal composition of the Lochlee island was care- 
fully ascertained by cutting a large rectangular hole near 
its centre, which was carried down till the original silt of 
the lake was reached — a depth of 10 feet from the primary 
floor of the dweUing-house, or about 16 feet from the surface 
of the mound. The result of this was to show that the 
solid mass was composed of the unbarked stems of various 
kinds of trees, from 6 to 12 inches in diameter, laid in 
transverse layers over each other. At the very bottom a 
large trunk, 14 inches in diameter, was encountered, between 
which and the lake sediment there were only a few hazel 
twigs. Interspersed among this woodwork, and stretching 
beyond the limits of the cutting, were prepared oak-beams 
pinned at their ends to others of the same kind, as well as, 
here and there, to the ordinary rough logs. This arrange- 
ment probably extended to the marginal stockades, and so 
formed a strong binding framework to the whole island. 
One pin, some 3 or 4 inches in diameter, penetrated through 
no less than four beams in successive layers, and terminated 
ultimately in a large trunk, 13 inches in diameter. One of 
these oak-beams measured 8 feet 3 inches in length and 10 
inches in breadth; and the holes in it were 5 feet apart. 
Another terminated in a small round projection or tenon, 
which evidently fitted into a mortised hole in an adjacent 

Some of the artificial islands have been constructed of dry 

2 G 


stones with, or without, a wooden foundation, and numerous 
examples of them have been recorded both in Ireland and 
in Scotland. According to Mr Kinahan, the largest and 
most characteristic stone crannog in Ireland is Hag's Castle, 
Lough Mask, county Mayo. In Scotland, a specimen in the 
White Loch of Ravenstone, Wigtownshire, explored some 
years ago by the late Lord Borthwick, under my super- 
vision, had the appearance of a mound of stones with a 
level surface 80 feet square. On the surface there were 
ruins of stone buildings, but on excavating a hole near the 
centre, to a depth of 6 or 7 feet, we came on a found- 
ation of large beams and trunks of trees.^ 

Many, if not all, of the lacustrine villages of Central Europe 
were connected with the shore by means of one or more gang- 
ways, supported by a double row of piles, and varying in length 
and breadth according to the situation and requirements of 
each village. Dr Gross informs us that the bridge leading 
to the Bronze-Age settlement at Moringen was about 200 
yards in length, and from 10 to 12 feet in width; while 
that to the Stone - Age station in the same locality was 
considerably shorter, and only 5 to 8 feet wide. The ex- 
tent of the space occupied by piles at Robenhausen was 
about 3 acres, and the nearest point of the old lake-shore 
was some 2000 paces distant ; but yet it would seem, from 
traces of piles found in the peat, that a bridge at one time 
traversed the whole of this distance. Remains of similar 
approaches have been frequently observed in connection with 
the sporadic dwellings in the outlying districts of Europe. Dr 
Conwentz ^ has recently shown that, in prehistoric and early 
medieval times, wooden roads and bridges had been con- 
structed in North Germany across bogs and marshes, the 

^ Collections of Ayr and Gal. Arch. Association, vol. v. p. 121. 
- Die Moorbriicken im Thai der Sorge, 1897. 


remains of which are at the present time occasionally met 
with buried in peat and other superficial accumulations. 

Access was had to the Scottish and Irish crannogs by vari- 
ous means. Some had moles or stone-causeways, the existence 
of which in some instances only became known upon the 
drainage of the lake. Hence it has been conjectured that 
these approaches might have been always submerged, and 
so supplied, on emergencies, a secret means of communi- 
cation with the shore. This idea was suggested by the 
tortuous direction which many of them assumed, as, for 
example, the causeway discovered after the drainage of the 
Loch of Sanquhar, which had a zigzag direction, and so 
could only be waded by persons intimately acquainted with 
its windings. Others were approached by a wooden gangway, 
the evidence of which in some cases still exists in the form 
of a double row of piles. Both at Lochlee and Lochspouts 
it was ascertained that these piles were tightly embraced at 
their lower extremities by a curiously constructed network of 
horizontal beams, spreading from one line of uprights to the 
other. As these structures were buried from 3 to 7 feet 
beneath the lake -bed, my first impression was that they 
might have been used, like the submerged stone causeways, 
as a concealed means of communicating with the shore. 
To test this suggestion, I caused a special excavation to 
be made along the line of a gangway at the Miller's Cairn, 
in Loch Dowalton. After digging through 3 feet of hardened 
mud we came upon a stratum of fine, blue, and extremely 
tenacious clay. The pointed stakes, which penetrated into 
this clay only a few inches, here met with a firm resistance. 
It then occurred to me that the ingenious arrangement of 
the wooden beams at the crannogs of Lochlee and Loch- 
spouts served merely the same end as the blue clay at 
the Miller's Cairn, and that they were to be found only 


in localities where there was a great depth of mud incap- 
able of affording a sufficient basis of resistance to the piles. 
It is curious to note the ingenuity and variety of means by 
which such difficulties were overcome. 

In addition to the ordinary lake-dwellings, ox palafittes, there 
is to be found, in the eastern part of the Po Valley, another 
class of ancient habitations known as terremare, which are so 
closely allied to the former that they may be regarded as land 
palafittes. They date from the Bronze Age, being apparently 
a development of the lacustrine system ; and although long 
known as the source of many interesting antiquities, it was only 
after the lake-dwelling researches came into vogue that their 
real nature was recognised. Nearly one hundred of these 
mounds have now been more or less investigated, with the re- 
sult that there can no longer be any doubt that they are the 
sites of ancient villages constructed on piles, and fortified by 
an earthen dyke and a ditch. In their construction one uni- 
form plan was adopted. Having selected a suitable site, 
always four-sided and orientated, but of course varying in size 
according to the requirements of the community, the construc- 
tors proceeded to surround it with a ditch, the excavated 
material being thrown up in the form of a dyke on the inner 
side. The area thus enclosed was then thickly planted with 
stakes, the tops of which were brought to a common level, and 
over them a wooden platform was laid. On this platform cot- 
tages made of light timbers and clay were erected. Thus, in 
a very simple manner, was constructed a fortified village, ac- 
cess to which was secured by one or more wooden bridges 
spanning the surrounding ditch. The vacant space beneath 
the common platform became a convenient receptacle for all 
sorts of refuse, including lost and worn-out objects of industry. 
When in the course of time this space became filled up, the 
terramaricoli, in order to avoid the labour of having to remove 



the debris which would otherwise accumulate around them, 
adopted the ingenious method of constructing a brand-new 
platform above the former. It seems that a preliminary step 
to the carrying out of this project was to set fire to the entire 
village, thus at one coup getting clear of all sanitary difficulties 
as well as of a number of uninvited guests. Having thus 
started with a clean bill of health, they elevated the dyke to 
the requisite height, and planted stakes, as formerly, for the 
support of the new platform and huts — the stakes in this case 
penetrating only into the accumulated rubbish of the former 
village. This mode of procedure appears to have been re- 
peated over and over again, until in the course of ages the 
successive deposits accumulated to a height of 15 or 20 feet. 

3. Marine Dwellings. 

Before the construction of the great sea-dykes in Holland, 
nearly the whole of West Friesland would have been in that 
hybrid condition described by Pliny, in which it was difficult 
to say whether it belonged to sea or land ("dubiumque terra 
sit, an pars maris"). "Here," says this writer, "a wretched 
race is found, inhabiting either the more elevated spots of 
land, or else eminences artificially constructed, and of a height 
to which they know by experience that the highest tides will 
never reach. Here they pitch their cabins ; and when the 
waves cover the surrounding country far and wide, like so 
many mariners on board ship are they," &c. At the present 
time this region is richly cultivated, and looks as if it were a 
dead level, and it is only on close inspection that certain ele- 
vations of considerable extent, called terpen, scattered irregu- 
larly over the country, can be detected. It is on such eleva- 
tions that villages and churches are generally built, and, till 
they accidentally attracted the attention of agriculturists within 


recent years, no one seemed to have thought anything about 
their origin. They are now proved to have been originally 
constructed as pile-dwellings, precisely similar to the terremare, 
and are probably the actual mounds seen and described by 
Pliny. They might therefore be more appropriately designated 
as marine dwellings. 

Like the terremare of Italy, the terpen are largely excavated 
on account of their rich ammoniacal deposits, which are used 
by agriculturists as guano. The industrial remains found in 
the course of these operations are of a very miscellaneous 
character, and give a vivid picture of the civilisation of their 
inhabitants from Roman times down to the twelfth century. 
Among the relics I noticed such objects as the shells of eggs 
(hen and goose), some of which were unbroken, a flute made 
of the shank-bone of an animal, large casks, canoes, loom- 
weights, toilet-combs, iron bridle-bits, beads of glass and 
amber, Anglo-Saxon, Byzantine, and Roman coins, bronze 
pots, pottery, &c., &c. 

Traces of marine pile-structures are also said to have been 
found in the Bay of Wismar, North Germany.^ 

The only remains suggestive of ancient habitations known to 
me within the tidal shores of the British Isles are — (i) a cairn 
of stones on a substratum of wood near the island of Eriska, 
at the mouth of Loch Crerar; (2) the Black Cairn, in the 
Beauly Firth ; (3) some stumps of piles in Ardmore Bay, 
county Waterford ; and (4) a curious wooden structure re- 
cently discovered at Dumbuck within the tidal area of the 

The Eriska mound, which was dry at low water but sub- 
merged at spring-tides to the extent of 5 feet, was found on 
examination to be composed of clay and stones resting on a 
foundation of logs of wood. The mound was circular in form, 
' Lake-Dwellings of Europe, p. 311. 


about 60 feet in diameter, and in digging a trench through it, 
ashes, charcoal, and the broken bones of domestic animals (ox 
and sheep) were turned up as evidence of human occupancy.^ 
The Black Cairn, which is situated about 400 yards within 
the flood-mark of the Beauly Firth, and nearly opposite to Red 
Castle, is also said to be constructed on a foundation of large 
beams. Miss C. Maclagan ^ thus refers to it : " We visited it 
at low water of the lowest tide of the year, and believe it to be 
a crannog greatly resembling one in the neighbouring ' Loch 
of the Clans,' but resting on larger, stronger piles. Our boat- 
men declared they had often drawn out of it beams 9 or 10 
feet long and 3 feet broad, fresh and fit for use. They had 
great difficulty in pulling them out, which they did by fixing 
their anchors in a log or pile. Tradition says that as late as 
1745 the place was an island, and a refuge to which some of 
Prince Charles Edward's defeated adherents fled after the 
battle of Culloden." 

The " submarine crannog " at Ardmore, discovered by Mr 
R. J. Ussher,^ covers an oval space about 100 feet in diameter, 
and contains piles in a stratum of peat. The present sub- 
marine position of these remains may be reasonably accounted 
for on the strength of the evidence that a submergence of the 
land, since Neolithic times, has taken place along the southern 
shores of England and Ireland, while, during the correspond- 
ing period, the very opposite change has been proved to have 
occurred in Scotland and the north of Ireland.* For further 
references to marine dwellings see 'Lake-Dwellings of Europe,' 
pp. 311, 389, 443, 573, and 574. 

The so-called crannog at Dumbuck is situated between 
high- and low-water marks, and at full tide its site is covered 
to a depth of at least 3 feet. Before it was subjected to the 

■' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xix. p. 192. - Hill Forts, &c., p. 89. 

* Proc. R. I. Acad., vol. ii., 2nd series. * Arch. Journal, Sept. 1898. 


recent excavations conducted by Mr W. A. Donnelly, its dis- 
coverer, I counted the tops of twenty-seven piles of oak, some 
5 or 8 inches in diameter, cropping up through the mud in the 
form of a circle 56 feet in diameter. The. area thus defined 
was occupied by three layers of timbers — apparently the 
trunks of small trees from the forest — laid transversely one 
above the other. The surface of this log -pavement was 
not lower than that of the surrounding mud, so that a little 
scraping with a small hand-shovel was sufficient to reveal its 
extension over the entire area of the circle, with the exception 
of a few yards in the centre, which were then occupied by a 
heap of stones. On the removal of these stones it was ascer- 
tained that the woodwork did not extend over the entire area, 
but left a circular portion, about 2 yards in diameter, in the 
centre free. Another unique feature of this structure was a 
ring of horizontal woodwork, some 8 or 10 feet outside the 
circle of piles, the intervening space being destitute of wood ; 
so that this zone, when cleared of the mud, looked like a 
canal separating the circle of piles, with its enclosed wooden 
flooring, from the outer ring of woodwork. In short, the 
woodwork was arranged in two concentric rings, the inner 
being, however, much broader than the outer. The south- 
east portion of this unpaved zone contained a refuse-heap of 
ashes, charcoal, and broken bones, some of the latter being 
calcined. Among the bones, Dr Traquair, F.R.S., has identi- 
fied those of the ox, sheep, pig, deer, and roe, also some teeth 
of the horse. Several portions of the antlers of deer had 
marks of cutting and sawing implements on them. 

Near the outer margin of the outer ring of woodwork, on 
its north-east side, there was found a single-tree canoe, 33 
feet long, 4 feet wide, and about i J^ foot deep, embedded in 
mud just of sufficient depth to cover it. On the north-west 
border of the central ring of woodwork there was exposed a 


massive beam of oak, some 15 feet long, which contained in 
its middle two-thirds 5 slanting apertures, cut out of the solid, 
like the steps of a stair. 

The whole area occupied with these wooden structures was 
strewn over with stones which, judging from their localised 
grouping and the entire absence of stones in the surrounding 
muddy deposits, must have been carried there by the hand 
of man. One thing is quite evident, that the surface of the 
exposed woodwork was not at any time the habitable level, 
as it is covered every twelve hours by upwards of 3 feet 
of water. Nor was there any evidence whatever to suggest 
that it was a habitation supported on piles, analogous to the 
pile-structures {Pfahlbauten) of the Stone and Bronze Ages Of 
Central Europe. The most probable explanation of the curious 
set of phenomena here disclosed is, that the woodwork was the 
foundation of a superstructure of stones, built sufficiently high 
to be above the action of the tides and waves, over which there 
had been placed some kind of habitation ; but whether it was 
a crannog, fort, or watch-tower, still remains sub judice. , The 
unique arrangement of the woodwork at once suggests that the 
central building was in the form of a round, hollow tower, 
with very thick walls, like the brochs, and that outside this 
there had been a circular wall or breakwater which had the 
outer ring of woodwork for its foundation. Why, when, or by 
whom the stones were removed there is no evidence to show ; 
but were I to make a suggestion it would be that the stone 
causeway, now laid along the bank of the recently made canal 
which stretches from a point close to the "crannog" to the 
railway, accounts for a large number of them. The site of 
the building and its substructures of wood now alone re- 
main to puzzle antiquaries. Similar wooden basements are 
very common among the stone-crannogs of Scotland and 
Ireland, as already explained. 


The most mysterious outcome of the Dumbuck investi- 
gations is that relics, entirely new to Scottish archaeology, 
but almost identical with those recorded as having been 
found on the adjoining hill-fort of Dunbuie, have also been 
found among the debris of this marine site — some in the 
refuse-heap, some in the canoe, and others in the empty 
central space. The account of the Dunbuie fort and its 
extraordinary relics having already been published as evi- 
dence of a Neolithic and pre-Celtic civilisation ^ (not, how- 
ever, without a protest on the part of a few antiquaries), 
the same theories have appeared in current literature with 
regard to the Dumbuck crannog. In dissociating myself from 
these theories, which I regard as utterly untenable, I have else- 
where given expression ^ to the opinion that these strange- 
looking objects, both from Dumbuck and Dunbuie, do not 
belong to any known phase of Scottish civilisation, and most 
certainly not to the Neolithic period. The statement that a 
wooden structure — unquestionably showing the marks of metal 
tools, and exposed on the surface of recent river deposits — is a 
Neolithic monument, is a palpable contradiction in terms. To 
look for Neolithic remains in this locality, one would not go 
to the superficial deposits within the present tidal area of the 
Clyde, but rather to those which formed its shelving shore 
in those earlier times. On the supposition that a crannog, 
or any other analogous structure, had been constructed in the 
Stone Age, near the line of low-vfater mark, its site would be 
now, doubtless, many hundreds of yards inland, and buried 
some 8 to 1 2 feet beneath the cultivated land of the present 
day. The section of the sedimentary deposits on this site, so 
far as I can gather from Mr Donnelly's statements, shows "a 
bed of loam on which the timbers of the structure rest ; then 
a bed of silt which is filled up with brushwood under the 

^ Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxx. p. 291. - Glasgow Herald, 7th Jan. 1S99. 


timbers " ; then layers of sand and gravel ; and finally the 
blue glacial clay into which the tips of the piles penetrated. 
These facts are probably correct, and harmonise with the 
geological phenomena of the locahty. The alluvial deposits 
which have accumulated during, and since, Neolithic times 
in the shallows of Dumbuck, have encroached on the water 
in the form of a wedge, the thin edge being next low-water 
mark. The increase of mud around the wooden structure, 
since it was laid, is probably less than a foot in depth. 

Among the genuine relics found at Dumbuck may be 
mentioned portions of deer-horn sawn across, a quern, some 
pointed implements of bone like those found in the Lochlee 
crannog, and illustrated by fig. 79 in 'Ancient Scottish 
Lake-Dwellings,' and a few polishers of stone — all of which 
unmistakably indicate the medieval character of this curious 
structure. The quern, or hand-mill, was not known in Europe, 
either in the Stone or Bronze Age, and none prior to Roman 
times has been found in North Britain. The shale and slate 
images and weapons, the perforated stone-pendants, oyster- 
shells, and other objects, ornamented with cup-marks, con- 
centric circles, &c., would be as much out of place as sur- 
viving remnants of the prehistoric civilisation of Scotland in 
Romano-British times, as they are now. 

Pile-dwellings are still common in many parts of the world, 
as in the Gulf of Venezuela, in South America, and on the 
shores of nearly all the islands in the East Indies — Borneo, 
New Guinea, Celebes, &c. At Singapore I saw several pile- 
villages situated on the charming Httle bays which are to be 
met with in that neighbourhood. When the tide is full no 
more picturesque sight could be imagined than one of these 
villages, as may be seen from the accompanying photographic 
view of one of them. (PI. XVIII.) 






AVING in previous chapters discussed the 
general civilisation of the prehistoric in- 
habitants of Scotland, we now come to 
examine their physical characteristics, as 
disclosed by such fragmentary remains 
of their bodies as have survived to the 
present day, and the relation of these characters to those 
of foreign contemporaries, with the view of gathering some 
information regarding the part of the world from which our 
ancestors came, and the branch of the human family to 
which they belonged. 

One of the most important facts inculcated by the science 
of anthropology is that racial characteristics are more per- 
sistent than the superficial varnish supphed by a sudden 
alteration in social environments, such as occurs when one 
nation conquers and governs another. In this way the 
interval of a few generations might suffice to bring about 
a complete change in the language and culture of a people ; 
but such influences do not so readily affect the organic 
elements which determine the physiognomy, the stature, the 
conformation and proportions of the body, and the colour 


of the skin, hair, and eyes. In support of this doctrine I 
might refer to the oft-quoted observation that the physical 
peculiarities of the old-world races of the Nile valley, as 
depicted on Egyptian tombs, have not materially altered 
during the last five thousand years. Applying these prin- 
ciples, even should they have to be greatly modified by the 
results of cross-breeding, to the inhabitants of the British 
Isles, we should naturally expect those of the present day to 
preserve some of the typical characteristics of their prehistoric 
forefathers. Although, in this case, we have no pictorial 
representations of the ancient Britons as a standard of com- 
parison, there is still extant a remarkable description of them, 
which for our purpose is equally good. In his Life of 
Agricola, the Roman historian Tacitus thus writes : " Who 
were the first inhabitants of Britain, whether indigenous or 
immigrants, is a question involved in the obscurity usual 
among barbarians. Their temperament of body is various, 
whence deductions are formed of their different origin. Thus, 
the ruddy hair and large limbs of the Caledonians point out 
a German derivation. The swarthy complexion and curled 
hair of the Silures, together with their situation opposite to 
Spain, render it probable that a colony of the ancient Iberi 
possessed themselves of that territory. They w^ho are nearest 
Gaul resemble the inhabitants of that country, whether from 
the duration of hereditary influence, or whether it be that 
when lands jut forward in opposite directions climate gives 
the same condition of body to the inhabitants of both. On 
a general survey, however, it appears probable that the Gauls 
originally took possession of the neighbouring coast. The 
sacred rites and superstitions of these people are discernible 
among the Britons. The languages of the two nations do 
not greatly differ. The same audacity in provoking danger 
and irresolution in facing it when present is observable in 


both. The Britons, however, display more ferocity, not being 
yet softened by a long peace ; for it appears from history that 
the Gauls were once renowned in war, till, losing their valour 
with their liberty, languor and indolence entered amongst 
them. The same change has also taken place among those 
of the Britons who have been long subdued ; but the rest 
continue such as the Gauls formerly were " (chap, xi.) 

The above statement I regard as a valuable landmark in 
British ethnology, as it discloses, at the very dawn of the 
historic period, the existence of two extremely different types 
of people in different parts of Britain. Although the evi- 
dence on which the historian assigns the one (Caledonians) 
to a German and the other (Silures) to a Spanish origin 
may not satisfy modern criticism, it does not follow that 
his conclusions are erroneous. 

With regard to the early ethnology of Western Europe, I 
have elsewhere ^ attempted to establish the truth of the two 
following propositions : (i) that during the Quaternary 
period only dolichocephalic crania have been met with ; 
and (2) that the first appearance of a brachycephalic people 
on the scene was contemporary with the rudimentary de- 
velopment of the Neolithic civilisation of Europe. My con- 
cluding words on the subject were as follows: "From the 
amalgamation of these varied races the highly mixed popu- 
lations of modern Europe can be readily accounted for ; 
but whether the brachycephalic people have been evolved 
from the older dolichocephalic types still remains a contro- 
verted problem. To my mind the glimpses which both 
archeology and human palaeontology have given us of the 
career of man in Europe agree in support of the hypothesis 
that two peoples, long and widely separated, had come into 
contact in Southern France, and perhaps elsewhere, at the 
' Prehistoric Problems, p. 160. 


close of the Reindeer period. Of these the dolichocephahc 
were the oldest, and probably the direct representatives of 
Paleolithic man." 

When these words were written there was no occasion to 
pursue the subject through Neolithic times, my task being 
then restricted to the remains of Palseolithic man, but now 
it forms the starting-point of our inquiry. Considering the 
rapidity with which craniological researches have advanced 
within recent years, and the .large amount of materials now 
available for discussion, it will be necessary in this sketch 
to dispense as much as possible with technical and ana- 
tomical details, and to confine ourselves chiefly to results 
which we consider to be well founded on facts. 

I. Craniology. 

The first to make a definite statement based on anatomical 
data with regard to the prehistoric inhabitants of Scotland 
was Sir Daniel Wilson, who, as early as 1850, read a paper 
at the British Association on "The Existence of Primitive 
Races in Scotland prior to the Celtse." Writing in 1863, 
he makes the following remarks : " The results of my first 
investigations into the physical characteristics of the earliest 
races of North Britain appeared to me sufficient to establish 
the fact that the Aryan nations, on their arrival, found the 
country in the occupation of allophylian races, by whom 
the wilds of Europe had already been reclaimed in part 
for the use of man. Still further, I was led to conceive — 
contrary to the conclusions of Continental investigators of 
the same evidence in relation to Northern Europe — that 
the earliest Scottish, and indeed British, race differed en- 
tirely from that of Scandinavia, as defined by Professor 
Nilsson and others, being characterised by the markedly 



elongated and narrow cranium, tapering equally towards the 
forehead and occiput, already referred to here under the 

Fig. 258. — Two views of a skull from a cairn at Nether Urquhart^ Fifeshire. 

name of kumbecephalic or boat-shaped skull. It is a form 
by no means peculiar to Britain."' As illustrations of the 

Fig. 259. — Two views of a skull from a stone cist at Cockcnzie^ East Lothian. 

kumbecephalic skull. Sir Daniel figures two crania (figs. 

258 and 259), both from the National Museum of 

^ Prehistoric Annals, 2nd ed., vol. i. p. 249. 


Antiquities in Edinburgh. One of these was "obtained 
from a cist discovered under a large cairn at Nether 
Urquhart, Fifeshire"; and the other from one of a "group 
of short stone cists, opened at Cockenzie, East Lothian." 
The cephalic index of the former is 70.7, and of the 
latter 75.7. 

With regard to Professor Nilsson's views on the priority of 
a brachycephalic race in Scandinavia, it may be mentioned 
that he subsequently abandoned them, as at p. 121 of the 
third edition (1868) of his ' Primitive Inhabitants of Scandi- 
navia ' we find the following statement : " Some isolated 
brachycephalous crania have been occasionally found in our 
stone sepulchres ; but it may be taken for granted that the 
people who constructed these sepulchres belonged to one of 
the dolichocephalous races which still inhabit the greater part 
of the country." Sir Daniel Wilson associated the British 
dolichocephalic race with the constructors of the chambered 
barrows in the south-west of England, and maintained that 
they were succeeded by a brachycephalic people, " among 
whom apparently the simple arts of the Stone period still 
prevailed ; though in their later barrows, weapons and im- 
plements of bronze indicate their acquisition of the metal- 
lurgic art." Both these races he regarded as pre-Celtic. 
But, however this may be, it was inferred, from the data 
then collected, that during the later portion of the Neolithic 
period in Scotland there existed two races, differing widely 
from each other in physique, and especially in the form of 
the skull, the earlier of the two being dolichocephalic and 
the other brachycephalic. The tendency of subsequent in- 
vestigations has been not only to confirm the truth of this 
hypothesis, but to extend its application to much wider 
areas, embracing the whole of Western Europe, as will be 
shown in the sequel. 


Through the researches of Bateman,i Thurnam and Davis,^ 
Busk,^ and others, archaeologists have been long conversant 
with the great generalisation that the human crania from the 
chambered cairns of Wiltshire, Somerset, Gloucester, and 
some adjacent localities were, as a rule, dolichocephalic. 
The occasional presence of a brachycephalic skull in some 
of these cairns was easily explained on the supposition 
that the short-headed people appeared on the scene while 
their predecessors were still practising these methods of 
sepulture. The co-existence of these two types of crania 
in the round barrows of the Bronze Age goes far to sup- 
port this view. 

The ethnological doctrine thus formulated has been greatly 
strengthened by the researches of Canon Greenwell among 
British barrows, and the masterly monograph of Dr Rolleston 
on the prehistoric crania thus collected. In a couple of pre- 
liminary sentences Dr Rolleston puts the result of his cranio- 
logical investigations in a very striking light: "A cranio- 
grapher with Canon Greenwell's series before his eyes in a 
coup-d'ail view would be impressed with the fact that out of 
the series, two sets, the one by its length typically illustrative 
of the dolichocephalic, the other by its breadth as typically 
illustrative of the brachycephalic form of skull, could at once 
be selected, even by a person devoid of any special anatom- 
ical knowledge. An antiquary similarly inspecting this series 
with a knowledge of its archsological history would, if he 
separated it into two groups, the one containing all the skulls 
of the Stone and Bone Age, the other containing all those of 
the Bronze period, perceive that, while the latter group com- 
prised both dolichocephalic and brachycephalic crania, and in 

^ Ten Years' Diggings, &c. 

' Crania Britannica ; Mem. Anthrop. Soc. , vols. i. and iii. 

^ Journ. Ethnol. Soc. Lond., 2nd Series, vol. vi. 


very nearly equal proportions, none but dolichocephalic skulls 
were to be found in any set of skulls from the barrows of the 
premetallic period." ^ 

According to Dr Thurnam's cranial statistics, the range of 
the cephalic index in sixty-seven skulls from long barrows 
was 63 to 79, and in seventy from round barrows 74 to 89. 
There was thus no dolichocephalic skull {i.e., one with a 
cephalic index less than 74) in a round barrow, and no brachy- 
cephalic skull in a long barrow. It was on this evidence that 
the famous aphorism, " Long barrows, long skulls ; round 
barrows, round skulls," was founded. Later researches have, 
however, entirely disproved the idea that long skulls were 
confined to long barrows, for of the four typical long skulls 
from Canon Greenwell's collection of crania from the York- 
shire barrows, specially selected by Dr RoUeston for descrip- 
tion and illustration, three were taken out of round barrows. 
But the really important part of the aphorism — viz., that short 
skulls are not found in the earlier long barrows — has been 
confirmed by all subsequent researches. " It is undoubtedly 
an important fact," writes Dr Rolleston, "that in no skull 
from any long barrow, that is to say, in no skull undoubtedly 
of the Stone Age, examined by us, has the breadth been 
found to bear so high a relation as that of 80 : 100 of the 
length ; for this alone would suffice to show that Retzius's 
classification of skulls into two great divisions of dolicho- 
cephalic and brachycephalic cannot, even when taken to 
connote merely the strictest geometrical proportions, be 
summarily set aside as an artificial one." ^ 

Dr Thurnam gives the mean height of the dolichocephalic 

men of the long barrows at 5 feet 5.4 inches, and that of the 

brachycephalic men of the round barrows at 5 feet 8.4 inches. 

As Dr Rolleston's measurements are practically in accordance 

1 British Barrows, p. 627. ^ Ibid., p. 637. 


with those of Dr Thumam, we may accept it as a fact that 
the former were less in stature than the latter by about 3 
inches. "To this I would add," writes Dr Rolleston,^ "that 
whilst this very striking difiference is brought out by taking 
the average length of the two sets of femora, a simple inspec- 
tion of the two sets of bones puts them into even sharper con- 
trast. The longer femora very often are also the stronger in 
a most marked degree, and amongst them are to be seen bones 
with muscular ridges, and processes indicating the possession 
by their owners of strength far exceeding that usually observ- 
able in the skeletons of the earlier race. In like manner 
other bones indicate unmistakably that the earlier was also 
the feebler folk as a whole, though humeri and femora are 
forthcoming from long barrows which show that men of great 
muscular power, even if not of great stature, were not wanting 
amongst the British tribes of the long-barrow period. In 
some cases the muscular ridges on the long-barrow bones are 
so well developed on comparatively ill-developed shafts as to 
suggest the idea of a poorly or only intermittently well-fed 
population which was constantly worked hardly. The large 
size of the deltoid ridge on some small humeri has suggested 
the perhaps fanciful hypothesis that the owners of such bones 
had been employed in lifting the stones of the huge barrows 
in which they were found entombed. The linea aspera on 
the femora of the British long-barrows examined by me never 
attains the enormous development which caused Professor 
Busk and Dr Falconer to call the femora from the Genista 
Cave at Gibraltar ' carinate,' and which has suggested the 
name ' femur a colonne ' to Broca and Topinard, for similar 
femora from early sepultures. In the absence of this 
peculiarity, as also of the fluting of the fibula and of the 
sabre-shape of the tibia which are found to accompany it, 
' British Barrows, p. 654. 


these skeletons contrast with many of the probably earlier 
skeletons described by the authors just referred to." 

The truth of these general conclusions has been more 
recently confirmed by the results of Dr Garson's careful de- 
scription of seven skeletons found in a round barrow (Howe 
Hill Barrow) in Yorkshire.^ The average height of these 
skeletons was calculated to be 5 feet 5.4 inches. One of 
them was remarkable for its size, being, according to the 
lowest computation, 6 feet 3 inches, a height which corre- 
sponds precisely to the tallest long - barrow skeleton in 
' Crania Britannica.' The cephalic index varied from 65.5 to 
79.6, or an average of 74.7. "The skulls," says Dr Garson, 
" are in all respects similar to those of long-barrow specimens 
which have passed through my hands from different parts of 
the kingdom, but I have never examined a series of skulls in 
which there were such a large proportion of hyper-dolicho- 
cephalic specimens." 

I may observe that the Howe Hill Barrow was explored by 
Mr J. R. Mortimer, whose experience in this kind of investi- 
gation is so well known. It measured 125 feet in diameter, 
47 feet across its summit, and 22 feet in height. Inside the 
mound there was a central core, not, however, corresponding 
with its present centre, in which the primary interments were 
found. The portion outside this core contained mixed relics 
— British, Roman, and Anglo-Saxon — and may therefore be 
regarded as an addition to the mound in later times. " This 
inner mound," continues Dr Garson, "consisted of two layers, 
in the outer of which were found seven deposits of burnt 
bones, with flint and bone implements and a piece of a food- 
vase. In the inner or core of the barrow were numerous 
cremated deposits extending to half its thickness, but fewer in 
number below that. Towards the base line of the barrow and 
' Journ. Anth. Institute, vol. xxii. p. 8. 


in the central grave we have the skeletons placed in different 
directions, chiefly lying on one or other side, with the limbs 
drawn up towards the body. With them were found flint 
implements carefully manufactured, worked flints, and flakes, 
bone pins — some of which were burnt. With the primary in- 
terment at the bottom of the grave was a semi-globular vase of 
Kimmeridge clay, but no cinerary urns were anywhere found. 
The animal remains found in connection with the skeletons 
were those of fox (identified as such by Mr Newton), ox, 
deer, boar, and beaver. . . . From these data I think we 
have undoubtedly to deal with the remains of a Neolithic 
people, interred in an age before metal had been introduced 
among them." 

In Scotland some interesting discoveries of human remains 
have been made in the caves at Oban, which have been ex- 
posed from time to time along the foot of the cliff' over- 
hanging the ancient raised sea-beach, on which part of the 
town is built. These have been carefully examined and 
described by Sir William Turner.^ Evidence of human 
occupation was found in four caves, consisting of a few flint 
scrapers and flakes, stone and bone implements, food-refuse, 
&c., all apparently of the same character as the relics found 
in the MacArthur Cave already described (p. 46). In one 
of these caves some fragments of pottery were found which 
Dr Joseph Anderson regards as resembling " in all their 
characteristics the cinerary urns of the late Neolithic period 
and of the Bronze Age." 

Among the human remains, besides those from the Mac- 
Arthur cave, there was only one skull, that of a child, suffi- 
ciently preserved to admit of correct measurements being 
taken. The cephalic indices of these three crania were 
ascertained to be 75.4 (A) and 70.2 (B) for the two adults, 
' Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxix. p. 410. 


and 77.8 for the child. With regard to the physical charac- 
ters of these cave-dwellers, of whom portions of about fifteen 
skeletons were here represented, Sir William makes some 
valuable observations. The skulls A and B " prove them 
to have been people with well - developed crania, dolicho- 
cephalic in form and proportions. . . . The great capacity 
of the skull B (figs. 260-262), which, in its uninjured state, 
had doubtless been capable of containing not less than 

Fig. ido.— Profile view of skidl B, MacArthur Cave, Oban. 

1730 C.C. of water, places it on a level with some of the 
most capacious skulls of modern Scotsmen which I have 
measured." The tibia; of one skeleton at least were platy- 
cnemic, and one of the thigh bones was platymeric. As no 
thigh bone was entire, the data for determining the stature 
were unfortunately imperfect, but from the available materials, 
such as they were, the height of one was calculated to be 
about 5 feet 5 inches. Of course there is one objection to 
the validity of general conclusions drawn from the sepulchral 


remains being applied to the Oban cave-dwellers, because 
we are not certain that they were the same people. In the 
MacArthur Cave the human remains were clearly subsequent 
to the time when the Troglodytes made it their home ; but in 
the other caves this relationship has not been noted. 

Sir William Turner has for many years devoted great 

Fig. 261. — Facial view of skull B. 

attention to Scottish anthropology, and most of the human 
remains found in prehistoric graves, &c., have passed through 
his hands. I am fortunate, therefore, in having in his recent 
Royal Institution lecture (March 26, 1897) the following 
summary of his observations on the prehistoric craniology 
of Scotland : — 

" As similar physical conditions prevailed both in England 



and Scotland during the polished Stone and Bronze periods, 
there is a strong presumption that the two races had, in suc- 
cession to each other, migrated from South to North Britain. 
Unfortunately very few skulls have been preserved which can 
with certainty be ascribed to Neolithic man in Scotland, but 
those that have been examined from Papa Westray, the cairn 


- ; 'eriex z'ic20 of skull B. 

of Get, and Oban, are dolichocephalic, and doubtless of the 
same race as the builders of the English long barrows. 

" Seventeen skulls from interments belonging to the Bronze 
period have been examined by the author. The mean length- 
breadth index of twelve was 81.4, and the highest index was 
88.6. In each skull the height was less than the breadth. 
In the other five specimens the mean index was 74; the 


majority, therefore, were brachycephalic. In only one speci- 
men was the jaw prognathic : the nose was almost always long 
and narrow ; the upper border of the orbit was, as a rule, 
thickened, and the height of the orbit was materially less than 
the width. The capacity of the cranium in three men ranged 
from 1380 to 1555 c.c, the mean being 1462 c.c. In stature 
the Bronze men were somewhat taller than Neolithic men. 
The thigh-bones of the Bronze-Age skeletons gave a mean 
platymeric index 75.1, materially below the average of 81.8 
obtained by Dr Hepburn from measurements of the femora 
of modern Scots. The tibiae of the same skeletons gave a 
mean platycnemic index 68.3 — intermediate, therefore, be- 
tween their Neolithic predecessors and the present inhabitants 
of Britain. Many of the tibiae also possessed a retroverted 
direction of the head of the bone ; but the plane of the 
condylar articular surfaces was not thereby affected, so that 
the backward direction of the head exercised no adverse 
influence on the assumption of the erect attitude." 

An opinion to the effect that two similar races existed in 
Ireland, apparently simultaneously, was promulgated by Sir 
W. Wilde in 1844, and republished in 1851. ■* Though not 
then based on definite anatomical data, this opinion has since 
been more or less confirmed by various writers, among them 
being the authors of ' Crania Britannica ' and Professor 
Huxley. The latter, after placing on record the specific 
points of some Irish skulls which he saw in the Museum of 
the Royal Irish Academy and in the collection of Trinity 
College, Dublin, thus sums up his remarks : " Sir W. Wilde 
speaks of long-headed, dark, Irish (Firbolgs) west of the 
Shannon, and of a more globular-headed, light-haired stock 
north-east of that river. But I imagine that by ' globular- 
headed ' Sir W. Wilde means only that the people in question 
^ Beauties of the Boyne, second edition. 


have broader heads than the others — not that there was any 
really brachycephalic stock in Ireland. At any rate, Sir 
William claims the Uley Barrow skull as that of a ' fellow- 
countryman,' and the cephalic index of this skull is only 71. 
And, according to Dr J. B. Davis, the mean cephalic index of 
fourteen male skulls from the old Abbeys of Mayo, Galway, 
Avonmore, and Kerry, is 7 5 ; that of thirty-two living men in 
Kerry being 77.6." ^ 

" As the evidence stands at present, I am fully disposed to 
identify the ancient population of Ireland with the ' long- 
barrow ' and ' river - bed ' elements of the population of 
England, and with the long-headed, or ' kumbecephalic ' 
inhabitants of Scotland ; and to believe that the ' round- 
barrow,' or Belgic, element of the Britannic people never 
colonised Ireland in sufficient numbers to make its presence 
ethnically felt."^ 

Subsequent writers, though in perfect accordance on the 
main problem, have slightly diverged in their nomenclature. 
Professor RoUeston thus defines his position : " It will be 
convenient to begin by saying that I should speak of the 
crania of the long-barrow period, not as belonging to the 
' Iberian,' as it is becoming the fashion to style them, but 
as belonging to the ' Silurian ' type ; and the brachycephalic 
crania of the round barrow I should similarly speak of, not 
as belonging to a ' Ligurian ' but to the ' Cimbric ' type." ^ 
On the other hand. Professor Boyd-Dawkins adopts the term 
' Iberian ' as applicable to the dolichocephalic skulls of the 
Neolithic tombs of Britain, and regards their owners as a 
branch of the ancient Iberians, of which the existing Basques 
are a remnant.* 

1 Crania Brit., Decade vi. 

^ Prehistoric Remains in Caithness, p. 127. 

' British Barrows, p. 630. * Early Man in Britain, p. 315. 


Many anthropologists have directed attention to the sur- 
vival of these two primary types of crania among the inhabi- 
tants of the British Isles, although mongrels, hybrids, and 
intermediate skull-forms have largely increased owing to inter- 
marriages, a better supply of food, and other modifying in- 
fluences. Dr Beddoe has shown ^ that there is still a black- 
haired race in the west of England which, in their physical 
characteristics, corresponds with the description given by 
Tacitus of the Silures, and that they are shorter in stature 
and feebler in development than the fair races, while their 
skull-forms remain dolichocephalic. 

Turning now to the prehistoric remains of Western Europe, 
we find the same duality of long and short skull-forms re- 
corded by the most competent anthropologists. The cele- 
brated Swedish anatomist Professor Retzius, finding that 
modern Scandinavians were a long-headed people, and that 
one or two skulls, found in graves of the Stone Age, were 
brachycephalic, propounded the theory that the original in- 
habitants of Scandinavia (autochthones) were a brachy- 
cephalic race, and that the dolichocephalic element was 
introduced into these lands by the Indo - Europeans or 
Aryans. This was the view to which Sir Daniel Wilson 
objected, as already mentioned, when advocated by Professor 
Nilsson. A vigorous effort was made at the time to apply 
this theory to the whole of Western Europe, but soon objec- 
tions to it appeared from all quarters. At last, in 1865, 
Professor von Diiben announced a discovery in Sweden which 
gave the final coup de gr&ce to Retzius's views, and brought 
the Scandinavian peninsula into line with the rest of Western 
Europe. This discovery was due to the investigation of a 
dolmen at Lutra, near Falkoping, which contained 145 
interments associated with grave-goods unmistakably of the 

' Mem. Anth. Soc. , vol. ii. p. 350. 


Stone Age. Among the osseous remains in this dohnen 
there were thirteen entire skulls, and seven sufficiently per- 
fect to furnish data for ascertaining the cephalic index. Of 
these twenty crania all but one were dolichocephalic, with an 
average cephalic index of 74.14.1 Subsequently Von Diiben 
announced at the International Congress of Archaeology in 
1874 that out of a hundred crania, found in graves of the 
Stone Age in Denmark and Sweden, examined by him, there 
were .only twelve brachycephalic (five being from Denmark) 
showing a cephalic index of 84.2. In their anatomical char- 
acters they greatly resembled the present skull-forms of the 
Laplanders, but he hesitated to identify the prehistoric race 
with that people. 

According to Professor Huxley,^ the ancient inhabitants of 
Switzerland, North Germany, and Scandinavia were almost 
wholly dolichocephalic, but the south-west Germans were less 
so. At the present time, 75 per cent of the modern Swiss 
and 85 per cent of the south-west Germans are brachy- 
cephalic, while among the Scandinavians few of the latter 
type are now to be met with. Hence it would appear that 
since the dawn of modern European civilisation, dolicho- 
cephaly has increased and brachycephaly has diminished 
with the latitude. 

The earliest inhabitants of the Iberian peninsula were also 
dolichocephalic. The crania discovered in the prehistoric 
caves at Gibraltar, without reckoning one of the Canstatt 
type, supposed to be palaeolithic, have been shown by Mr 
Busk to be not only of this character, but identical with 
those of the Basques, and similar to a series of crania taken 
from various caverns and dolmens in Andalusia.^ Opinions 

^ Corigres Internal., Paris, 1867, p. 380. 

^ Loc. cit., p. 112. 

3 International Congress, Norwich, p. 164. 


tending in the same direction had already been expressed by 
other British anthropologists, as may be seen from the follow- 
ing remarks by Professor Huxley : ^ — 

" But, if it be true, as I believe it is, that close craniological 
affinities unite the Hiberno-British long-heads on the one 
hand with the Scandinavians, is it not equally true that as 
close affinities connect the dolichocephali of our islands with 
a southern type ? On this point I must again quote Dr 
Thurnam : ' During the last summer I had the advantage of 
examining the series of sixty Basque skulls, lately added to the 
collection of the Anthropological Society of Paris. I was at 
once struck with their great resemblance to the dolichocephalic 
skulls from the long barrows of this country, and this impres- 
sion was much confirmed by the perusal of the two memoirs 
on these skulls by M. P. Broca, so rich in details necessary 
for the comparison before us.' 

" And Dr Thurnam is evidently inclined to carry on this 
line of affinity to the ancient Iberians and Phoenicians. I am 
by no means disposed to stop even here. The same form of 
skull appears in the ' type grossier ' of the ancient Egyptian : 
I suspect it will be found in the inhabitants of Southern 
Hindustan ; and it is finally traceable to Australia, the natives 
of which country, as I have already pointed out, in the largely 
developed probole, the wall - sidedness, pentagonal norma 
occipitalis, prognathism, and strong brow-ridges, and even in 
the remarkable vertical depression exhibited by some extreme 
forms of their skulls, come nearest to the ancient long skulls 
of Europe." 

The Kjokkenmoddings near the villages of Salvaterra and 

Mugem, in the valley of the Tagus, Portugal, were described 

by MM. C. Ribeiro and F. de Paula e Oliveira at the Lisbon 

meeting of the International Congress of Anthropology and 

' Loc. cit., p. 130. 


Prehistoric Archaeology in 1880. It had been ascertained, in 
the course of some extensive excavations, that the people 
who amassed these shell-heaps lived in the earliest Neolithic 
period ; but the most interesting feature of the investigations 
was the discovery of upwards of a hundred interments at 
various depths in the dibris. It does not appear that any 
grave-goods had been associated with them, and the relics 
collected were of a very rude and primitive character. The 
osseous remains were much decayed, and the skulls distorted, 
probably by the pressure of the debris ; enough, however, 
remained to show that they represented two races — one 
dolichocephalic and the other brachycephalic. Some of the 
crania were at once recognised by M. de Quatrefages, and 
other anthropologists present at the Congress, as belonging to 
the types of Cromagnon and Furfooz. Of the latter, only two 
specimens were in the series, all the others being dolicho- 
cephalic. One of the former showed a very high cephalic 
index (86.90), and the latter varied from 71. 11 to 75.56. 
From the slender character of the bones in general, these 
primitive fishermen of Mugem were judged to have been of 
small stature. 

On examining a series of skulls found in sepulchral caverns, 
dolmens, and other burial-places of the Neolithic Age, the 
same duahty of type was observed as in those from the 
kitchen-middens of Mugem, in all of which dolichocephaly 
still retained its predominance. Characteristic specimens of 
both long and short skulls were also recognised in a collection 
from the dolmen of Licea, the caverns of Casa da Moura, 
Monte Junto, and Carvalhal. Only one series of skulls — viz., 
those from the caverns of Cascaes — were exclusively dolicho- 
cephalic, with an average cephalic index of 74. 

It is, however, in France and Belgium that craniological 
deductions bearing on the Neolithic races of Western Europe 

2 I 


have attained their highest significance ; and hence it be- 
comes necessary to review the anthropological materials 
within this area more in detail than those already commented 

In 1868 the skeletons of three men, a woman, and a child 
were discovered in the rock-shelter of Cromagnon, in the valley 
of the Vezere, Dordogne. These skulls were all dolicho- 
cephalic, but one of them, known as that of the " old man 
of Cromagnon," was remarkable for its size and fine propor- 
tions, having, according to Broca, a capacity of 1590 c.c. 
(96.99 inches), and a cephalic index of 73.6. This rock- 
shelter had for a long time been a rendezvous for reindeer- 
hunters, who left evidence of their visits in a mass of 
accumulated debris. It seems, however, that these human 
remains were not embedded in this debris, but lay on the 
surface in a recess under the overhanging rock, and that, at 
the time of their deposition, this recess had been concealed 
by heaping up a portion of the palseolithic rubbish which 
had previously accumulated on the site. It would thus 
appear to have been an interment which, possibly, had been 
made long after the reindeer-hunters ceased their visits to the 
locality. Hence there is a diversity of opinion as to the 
chronological horizon of the Cromagnon skull, some regarding 
it as Palseolithic and others as Neolithic. Similar mistakes 
have often occurred, more especially in the earlier stages 
of anthropological research. One well-known instance is 
the Grotte d'Aurignac, which, though long accepted as a 
sepulchral cavern of the Palseolithic period, is now regarded 
as Neolithic. Skulls of the Cromagnon type found on the 
great station of Solutre have also been described by MM. 
Ferry and Arcelin,! and the authors of ' Crania Ethnica,' as 
relics of the Quaternary period, but now the larger portion of 
' International Congress, &c., Norwich, p. 319. 


them are shown to be Neohthic.^ Among eighteen crania from 
this station the cephalic index ranges from 68.3 to 88.3, and 
of these, thirteen are below 80 and five above it. I cannot 
help thinking, therefore, that Solutre, like Mas-d'Azil, the 
Grotte de Reilhac, the hut habitations at Campigny, the rock- 
shelter of Schweizersbild, as well as many others, belongs to 
a transition period which connected the Palseolithic and 
Neolithic civilisations ; so that we can hardly doubt that there 
has been a direct continuance of human life in Europe from 
the first appearance of Pateohthic man up to the present 

One of the most useful of recent contributions to pre- 
historic craniology is a statistical list drawn up by M. Philippe 
Salmon^ of the Neolithic crania of Gaul, recorded up to 1895, 
giving the localities and circumstances in which they were 
found, the names of the anthropologists who measured and 
described them, and the sources of their publication. The 
cephalic indices are arranged under three columns according 
as they are dolichocephalic (76 or under), mesaticephaHc (76 
to 80), or brachycephalic (80 and upwards). The number 
of stations thus tabulated is 140, consisting of sepulchral 
caverns (41), dolmens, tumuli, &c., together with a few 
sporadic finds in the soil. The total number of skulls 
measured is 688, being 397 long, 145 medium, and 146 
short, or 57.7, 21. i, and 21.2 per cent for the three different 
grades into which they were classified. In looking carefully 
into the various details of these crania some striking results 
are brought out, the importance of which can hardly be over- 
rated. Thus there are some large stations, especially among 
the sepulchral caverns, which contained only dolichocephalic 
crania, while others seemed to have been restricted to brachy- 
cephalic types. A large majority of them, however, included 

1 Revue Mensuelle, 1894, p. 113. ^ Ibid., 1895, p. 155. 


long, intermediate, and short types of skulls in various pro- 
portions. The two most remarkable stations which contained 
only long skulls are the caverns of I'Homme Mort and 
Baumes-Chaudes, both situated in the department of Lozere. 
The details of their exploration and osseous contents have 
been recorded by Drs Broca and Prunieres. 

In the cavern of I'Homme Mort there were nineteen 
skulls sufficiently well preserved to furnish the necessary 
measurements. Of these the cephalic indices of seventeen 
varied from 68.2 up to 76.7, and the other two were 78.5 and 
78.8. There were, therefore, no brachycephalic skulls at all 
in this sepulchre, so that the race appeared to have been 
comparatively pure. It may also be mentioned that some of 
the crania had been trepanned — a feature which, though at 
first overlooked, subsequently became the subject of much 
interest to anthropologists. The animal remains were those 
of the Neolithic epoch, but among them were none of the 
reindeer, horse, ox, or stag. Among the relics were a lance- 
head and a portion of a polished stone axe. Drs Broca 
and Prunieres were of opinion that the individuals whose 
remains had been consigned to this ossuary belonged to 
an intermediate race, who flourished in the transition period 
between the Palaeolithic and Neolithic civilisations, and thus 
became connecting links between the people of the reindeer 
caves and the dolmens. 

The crania recorded from the station known as Baumes- 
Chaudes were found in two natural caverns distinct from 
each other, but opening on a common terrace. They con- 
tained a vast collection of human bones, representing some 
300 individuals ; but both were regarded by the investigators 
as the continuation of the same family burying-place, which, 
indeed, had not been altogether abandoned till the beginning 
of the Bronze Age, as one of the skeletons in the upper 


deposits had beside it a bronze dagger. In one of these 
caverns only chipped flints, rude implements of horn, &c., 
were discovered; but in the other there were a few arrow- 
points, a bead, some roundlets of deer-horn, &c., which sug- 
gested some progress in culture. The crania measured and 
classiiied in M. Salmon's list from the Baumes-Chaudes ossuary 
amount to thirty-five, and all of them are dolichocephalic, 
the indices varying from 64.3 to 76.1. The average height 
of this race was calculated to be i.6i"' or about 5 feet 3^ 
inches. As examples of further sepulchres of this unmixed 
race the following may be mentioned : the cavern of Avigny 
(Seine-et-Marne), the Baousse-Rousse caves at Mentone, the 
cavern of Cravanche (Haut-Rhin), the dolmen of " la Justice " 
(Seine-et-Oise), &c. 

On the other hand, in the cavern of Tertre-Guerin (Seine- 
et-Marne) only two skulls were found, and they were of a 
highly brachycephalic type, with cephalic indices of 86.6 and 
91. In striking contrast to the preceding caves, the archaeo- 
logical remains in this sepulchre comprised polished stone 
celts, with and without horn-casings, together with various 
other relics indicating an advanced Neolithic civilisation. The 
people here represented would appear, from the characters 
of the bones, to have been strong and muscular. Only a 
few of the leg-bones were platycnemic, the olecranon fossa 
of the humerus was pierced in the proportion of 24 per 
cent, and the face was prognathous. They also practised 
trepanning, as a portion of an aged man's skull contained 
a round, highly bevelled aperture which bore evidence of 
having been made while the individual was in life. 

As examples of sepulchral caverns in which brachycephalic 
crania formed the majority, a series of caverns at Hastiere 
in Belgium may be mentioned. Of thirty-three skulls from 
this locality measured by Professor Houze, six were dolicho- 


cephalic (7i'6 to 76.9), eleven mesaticephalic, and sixteen 
brachycephalic (80 to 88.4). 

Artificial caves used for sepulchral purposes have also been 
discovered in several departments of France — more especially 
those with chalky formations, as the Marne district. Here, 
upwards of a dozen stations, each containing a number of 
artificial caves excavated in the flanks of low hillocks, have 
been most successfully explored by Baron de Baye. Among 
some hundreds of interments, over 120 crania, including 
various trepanned specimens and cranial amulets, have been 
collected, and are now preserved in the Chateau de Baye. 
Associated with them were a number of implements, weapons, 
and ornaments of Neolithic types — such as stone axes and 
their handles, arrow-points (some chisel-shaped), flint knives, 
bone pointers, polishers, beads and pendants of amber, bone, 
stone (one of callais, like those in the tumuli of Brittany), 
fossil shells, teeth, &c. Of the crania, forty-four were sub- 
mitted to Dr Broca for examination, and are thus classified : 
dolichocephalic (71.6 to 76.7) fifteen, mesaticephalic seven- 
teen, and brachycephahc (80 to 85.7) twelve. Dr Broca 
recognised in these human remains the products of the 
union of two races analogous to those of Furfooz and 
Cromagnon — the latter having already been identified by 
him as of the same type as the dolichocephalic people of 
I'Homme Mort and Baumes-Chaudes. 

I may observe that the interesting caves of Petit-Morin^ 
are supposed to have been constructed in imitation of the 
dolmens, as they were preceded by an entrance passage 
and occasionally a vestibule, from which a low door, closed 
with a stone slab, led to the sepulchral chamber. Baron 
de Baye thinks that some of them had been used as habi- 
tations for the living, before being appropriated to the dead, 
1 L'Archeologie prehistoiique, par le Baron de Baye, 1888. 


as they had sometimes niches and shelves cut out of the 
solid chalk walls, on which various industrial relics had 
been deposited. A rudely executed human figure with a bird- 
like nose, two eyes, a necklet and breasts, together with the 
form of a stone axe in its handle, were sculptured in relief on 
the wall of the vestibule of one of the larger caves. This 
cave appeared to have been much frequented, as the threshold 
was greatly trodden down by the feet of visitors. M. Cartailhac 
explains this peculiarity by supposing that it was a place for 
temporarily depositing the dead before being transferred to 
their final resting-place. All these caves contained abundance 
of relics characteristic of an advanced Neolithic civilisation 
without any trace of metals, and the surrounding neighbour- 
hood is rich in flint objects of that period. 

From a careful study of the geographical distribution of the 
140 Neolithic stations annotated by M. Salmon some interest- 
ing deductions have been drawn, among which the following 
may be noted : ^ — 

1. The departments to the south-west of a line drawn from 
Normandy to the sources of the Garonne are those least 
affected by the brachycephali ; and it is remarkable that the 
area thus circumscribed virtually coincides with that of the 
dolmens and megalithic monuments of France. 

2. To the north-east of this line the brachycephah and 
mesaticephali are in greatest abundance at two points, thus 
indicating that they entered the country by two routes — viz., 
one via Belgium, and the other via Savoy, the Alps, and the 

3. The steady increase in the numbers of mesaticephalic 
crania found in the later Neolithic stations up to the Bronze 
Age, when, of course, the innovation of cremation puts a stop 

1 See articles by M. Georges Herve, Revue Mensuelle, 1894, pp. 105, 


to all such craniological researches, is accounted for on the 
hypothesis that a brachycephalic race, or races, hailing from 
Eastern regions, socially amalgamated with the indigenous 
population of Western Europe. 

Dr Verneau, who has spent some years investigating the 
anthropology of the Canary Islands, has traced the Cromagnon 
race through Spain, Algiers, and Morocco to the Guanches of 
these Atlantic islands. He finds that this people retained 
their racial purity, amidst a Stone-Age civilisation, up to the 
fourteenth century, when, in the course of their struggle for 
freedom against the Spanish and Portuguese, they became 
extinct as a separate race. Sir William Dawson, in a paper 
on " The Physical Characteristics and Affinities of the 
Guanches," associates the Guanches with the Neolithic people 
of Western Europe, " the men of the Polished Stone and early 
Bronze Ages, of the long barrows and cromlechs, and of the 
Swiss lake habitations, as well as with the Iberian races of 
France and Spain and the Berbers of North Africa. The 
crania of those races, as tabulated by Quatrefages, are those 
which most nearly approach to our specimens from the 
Canaries, and their arts and habits and state of civilisation 
in early times are also those which afford the best terms of 
comparison." Of ten skulls of this race from the island of 
Teneriffe, in the Redpath Museum, Montreal, the average 
cephalic index was 76.4, and that of one specimen from the 
Canaries 75.8 — figures which show a considerable amount of 
intercrossing since the Reindeer period in France. 

At the dawn of the Neolithic period there were thus 
two well-defined races — dolichocephali and brachycephali — 
inhabiting Western Europe, not, however, isolated, but mixed 
in different proportions in different localities. The former 
were well built, but somewhat short in stature compared with 
modern Europeans generally. They occupied the western 


shores of the Mediterranean, from which they radiated to 
the Canaries, the British Isles, Sweden, North Germany, 
and Central Europe. Eastwards, on the south of the 
Mediterranean, they embraced the ancient Lybians and 
probably the Neolithic Egyptians (the New Race of Dr 
Flinders Petrie). According to Professor Sergi,i these 
dolichocephali occupied Italy prior to the incoming of the 
Celts and Etruscans. Also Professor Bogdanow, in a paper 
contributed to the International Congress of Archaeology 
held at Moscow in 1892, maintains that the most ancient 
race in Central Russia was dolichocephalic. The results 
of a series of careful measurements of crania collected from 
the Kourganes (tumuli) showed that long, short, and inter- 
mediate were in the proportions of 47, 14, and 39 per cent. 

These dolichocephali in France varied considerably in size. 
The mean height of the men of the cavern of I'Homme Mort 
was 5 feet 3^ inches, that of the old man of Cromagnon 
5 feet 1 1 354 inches, and that of one of the skeletons from the 
Baousse-Rousse caverns at Mentone a little over 6 feet. Of 
course these measurements are only approximations, and other 
anthropologists give them at a little less.^ They had the 
following general characters : the skull dolichocephalic ; large, 
well-developed forehead, and somewhat prominent eyebrows ; 
the limb-bones indicated great strength, being thick and solid, 
with strongly marked muscular impressions ; the tibia was 
generally platycnemic, the fibula grooved, and the femur 
showed a prominent linea aspera. 

The brachycephali were also short, some of the typical 
specimens of the " race of Furfooz " being little over 5 feet. 
The skull was broad and the face long, with well-marked 
prognathism. The flattening of the tibia (platycnemism) was 

^ Monist, vol. viii. p. 161. 

^ Formation de la Nation Fran9aise, p. 319. 


less pronounced than in the long-headed race, but the ole- 
cranon fossa was frequently pierced. Towards the end of 
the Neolithic period tttese anatomical characters (which are 
regarded as indicating a low type) became less frequent. 
Thus out of twenty tibise, or shin-bones, from the artificial 
caverns of Petit-Morin only four were platycnemic, of sixteen 
fibulae only six retained the special groove, and of twenty 
femora only five had a well-marked linea aspera. 

How many different races occupied European lands at the 
commencement of the Neolithic period it is difficult to deter- 
mine. According to Professor Kollmann there were at least 
four types to start with, a number which he arrives at by 
dividing the dolichocephali and brachycephali each into two 
varieties of long -faced and short - faced ^ — types which he 
recognises among the population of Europe at the present 
time. In order therefore to follow with some degree of in- 
telligence the development of civilisation which followed 
the amalgamation of these primary Neolithic races, we have 
to consider various collateral sources of information. 

The contact of these different races was, in the first place, 
by land routes, and the first important result was to spread 
a knowledge of agriculture and of a few domestic animals 
among the autochthones of Western Europe, who, owing to 
a change of climate, had now lost the reindeer and other big 
game on which their livelihood depended. 

2. General Anthropological Data. 

But craniology, though a most suggestive and valuable 
guide in racial investigation, is not alone sufficient to deter- 
mine the ethnical problems which now crowd the Neolithic 
horizon. Skeletons do not reveal to us anything of the 
' Congrfe Internal., 1892, p. 253. 


colour of the skin, hair, or eyes of the individuals who owned 
them ; nor of the language they spoke, nor of the religious 
ceremonies they enacted, nor of the implements, weapons, 
ornaments, and clothing, by means of which they fulfilled 
their destinies in the organic world. Yet, on all these prob- 
lems, important information has been gathered. Through 
successive generations these Neolithic races have transmitted 
their physical characteristics to the inhabitants of the present 
day, probably with little change as regards the colour of the 
hair and eyes. But the puzzling fact is that we find fair 
and dark dolichocephali, as well as fair and dark brachy- 
cephali. If, as has sometimes been assumed, the Troglo- 
dytes of the Reindeer period of France are correctly repre- 
sented by the Esquimaux of the present day, who are small 
and dark, it may be fairly inferred that the former were also 
small and dark ; but among the early dolichocephali of Cen- 
tral Europe there have been found skeletons of men over six 
feet in height. Had we positive evidence that these excep- 
tionally tall men were fair-haired, many of the anthropo- 
logical difficulties now surrounding the prehistoric ethnology 
of Europe would be entirely removed, as the more modern 
Gauls, with their great stature and blond appearance, could 
be thus readily accounted for. 

Of the marvellous results of linguistic research, which 
carries us back through the flotsam and jetsam of a common 
Aryan language to a remote past, I cannot here give even 
a meagre sketch. Since the days when the common belief 
was that the dispersion of mankind was due to the confusion 
of language at the tower of Babel many theories as to the 
origin of the Aryans, their primitive home, religion, and 
civilisation, have been propounded and abandoned. Professor 
Max Miiller, discrediting the Mount Ararat hypothesis of 
Blumenbach and Cuvier, has traced this mythical people to 


"the sources of the Oxus and Jaxartes, the highest eleva- 
tion of Central Asia." Subsequently, after some lively con- 
troversies, based on the phonetic laws of speech and the 
detection of loan words, Professor Penka and other philol- 
ogists have transferred the origin of the Aryan languages 
into Europe, fixing on the Scandinavian peninsula as the 
exact locality of their primary development. Canon Isaac 
Taylor maintains, both on anthropological and linguistic 
grounds, that the Aryans were " an improved race of Finns," 
and so he places their primitive home somewhere in Lithu- 
ania. Their social condition he thus describes : " It appears, 
therefore, that prior to the separation of the Aryan and 
Finnic races they were acquainted with copper and probably 
with gold, but their tools were chiefly of horn or stone. 
They sheltered themselves in huts, and were clad in skins, 
but there is no evidence that they possessed the art of 
weaving. They knew how to kindle fire ; they could count 
up to ten, possibly up to a hundred. They had personal 
names, while family relationship and marriage were fully 
recognised. They were acquainted with the sea, and may 
have been able to cross lakes or rivers in canoes made 
of hollow trees. They caught salmon and used salt, and 
gathered bitter herbs for food, or more probably for con- 
diment. It does not appear certain that they grew grain or 
were acquainted with the rudiments of agriculture, the name 
of the Finnic plough, kar, the crooked branch of a tree, 
being only doubtfully connected with the Aryan plough. 
They collected honey, from which they produced an intoxi- 
cating drink, and made a sort of soft cheese, like curds. 
They possessed herds of domesticated animals, which were 
tended by herdsmen, and were kept in fenced enclosures. 
These animals were probably goats, swine, reindeer, and geese, 
and possibly oxen ; but the dog, the sheep, and the horse 


seem to have been as yet untamed." ^ As the starting-point 
of Neohthic civihsation this is surely primitive enough, but 
yet it is quite in accordance with archsological evidence. 

That philologists have established some kind of radical 
connection between the Indo-European languages, mythology, 
and religion is undoubted ; but how this bond of brother- 
hood has been acquired, whether by migratory races, or 
successive waves of civilisation emanating from one or more 
common centres, seems to me to be still sub judice. How- 
ever this may be, the social and intellectual influences which 
were introduced or developed in Central Europe ultimately 
led to extensive migrations towards the less inhabited por- 
tions of Europe, and these carried with them the rudiments 
of progressive civilisations. Besides the primary land routes, 
the discovery of the means of intercourse by distant sea 
voyages soon disseminated the germs of the earlier civilisa- 
tions of the eastern seaboard lands of the Mediterranean to 
various points on the European coast. Even then, and for 
many centuries later, the British Isles and the entire Atlantic 
coast of Europe were terra incognita, yet we are certain that 
the Celtic language, which was then spreading over these 
regions, emanated from the same fountain-head as Greek and 

But, among the collateral materials bearing on the life- 
history of prehistoric man, those which directly or indirectly 
spring from his religious beliefs are the most important. A 
vague fear of the potency of the unseen powers of nature led 
to the belief in spirits and in a future life, in which the dis- 
embodied spirit after death continued its existence. These 
ideas naturally engendered great reverence for the dead, and 
the earliest evidence of reUgiosity shows itself in the inhuma- 
tion of the dead body, accompanied by such objects as were 

1 Journ. Anth. Institute, vol. xvii. p. 269. 


supposed to be useful on the journey to the unseen world. 
The evolutionary stages from simple inhumation to inciner- 
ation involved, however, a considerable interval of time, 
during which there is evidence to show that funereal rites of 
various kinds were performed in Western Europe which 
disclose a progressiveness in religious ideas. The culmina- 
tion of these rites was the process of cremating the body, 
so as to liberate the spirit more quickly from its earthly 
abode. The practice of depositing the dead body in a 
mortuary till the flesh was decomposed, and then burying the 
bones, seems to have been by no means uncommon in France. 
This is evident from the disconnected manner in which the 
bones were placed in their final resting-place, but yet they 
were often systematically arranged in layers one above the 
other, and separated by beds of ashes or flat stones. For 
these and other curious customs in the cult of the dead, as 
well as for various methods of hastening the natural process of 
removing the flesh from the bones, I refer my readers to M. 
Cartailhac's excellent work, ' La France Prehistorique.' That 
cremation was at first merely used as an adjunct in the later 
stages of natural decomposition is highly probable ; and hence 
it may be argued that it had its development on French 
territory. It is, however, generally regarded by archaeologists 
as the product of a religious custom which emanated from 
Eastern lands. But where it originated is involved in as 
much mystery as the Aryan question itself. During the 
Stone Age inhumation appears to have been practised all 
over Europe, with the exception of a few localities, mainly 
in France, which show traces of cremation. In Petit-Morin 
several of the sepulchral chambers contained bodies that had 
been cremated, and among the pottery there were two vases 
with calcined human bones. More singular still, there were a 
few human skulls stuffed with the bones of apparently young 


children.! Besides the sculptured goddesses, trepanned 
■ skulls, and cranial amulets, it appears that the stone axe was 
an object of worship in these caves. During the Bronze Age 
cremation was more common than inhumation in the east of 
Europe, and this ascendancy was kept up in the early Iron 
Age ; but in the West, inhumation, with a few local exceptions, 
was always the predominant custom. In the early Roman 
period cremation was the rule, both at Rome and in the 
Roman provinces, but later inhumation was restored. The 
introduction of Christianity into Western Europe caused 
cremation to disappear, but it lingered among the Saxons, 
Slavs, North Germans, and Scandinavians till the early Middle 
Ages. (For prehistoric trepanning see ' Preh. Problems,' c. v.) 
In Scandinavia, according to Montelius,^ Worsaae, and 
others, cremation came into use only in the second Bronze 
Age. M. Worsaae thus refers to the introduction of the 
custom : " The mere influence of culture from the south or 
the east, without any accompanying influx of population, 
would hardly have induced the warlike occupants of the 
North to change their funeral customs in every respect, and 
to such an extent. Naturally the old-fashioned interment of 
the unburnt body must have continued simultaneously with 
the more modern cremation. But that the latter custom at 
last generally prevailed is evident from the fact that in the 
grave-mounds smaller graves with burnt bodies are commonly 
deposited in the upper part of the mound, while the larger 
graves with unburnt bodies are found below. Independent 
graves with burnt bodies are, moreover, found throughout the 
North in great numbers. Comparatively speaking, the graves 
from the later Bronze Age are far more numerous in the 
Baltic lands and in Denmark than in the rest of Europe." * 

^ Archeologie prehistorique, p. 120. 
2 La Suede prehistorique, p. 41. ^ Danish Arts, p. 79. 


According to Professor Boyd-Dawkins, cremation was in- 
troduced into Britain simultaneously with a knowledge of 
bronze. " The invasion of Britain by the bronze-using Celtic 
tribes," he writes, " is marked by a striking change in the 
customs of burial, which probably is the sign of the intro- 
duction of a new faith. In the Neolithic age the dead were 
interred surrounded by the implements, weapons, and orna- 
ments for use in the future life. In the Bronze age the dead 
were burned, — were purified by being passed through the fire, 
along with their possessions. Cremation, however, did not 
altogether abolish the older practice of inhumation. It is 
evident that both were carried on simultaneously, from the 
researches of Thurnam in the south of England, Bateman in 
Derbyshire, and Greenwell in the northern counties. The 
one may have been connected, as Dr Fred. Wiberg suggests, 
with the worship of fire, and the other may have been em- 
ployed by the descendants of the Neolithic Britons from the 
force of habit, and from its cheapness by the poorer classes." ^ 

The following remarks by Canon Greenwell on the relative 
frequency with which these different modes of interment were 
practised by the Yorkshire barrow - builders are the most 
authoritative records we have on the subject : " As marking 
the relative general proportion of burnt to unburnt bodies in 
the barrows I have opened on the wolds, it may suffice to 
mention that out of 379 burials, only 78 were after crema- 
tion, whilst 301 were by inhumation, which gives nearly 21 
per cent for burials of burnt bodies. And to show that in 
the wold -barrows bronze is by no means more commonly 
found with burnt bodies than with unburnt, out of fourteen 
instances where I have discovered bronze articles associated 
with an interment, it was only in two that the body had been 
burnt. The proportion, therefore, is that about 4 per cent 

' Early Man in Britain, p. 366. 


of unburnt bodies, and about 2 ^ per cent of burnt bodies, 
had articles of bronze accompanying them. This question 
partly resolves itself into another, whether, in the main, the 
round barrows of the wolds belong to a time before the in- 
troduction of bronze. As the subject will be considered more 
at length in the sequel, it is sufficient to remark here that I 
see nothing to imply that they are the burial-places of a people 
unacquainted with bronze, and my own impression is that, as 
a rule, they date from a time after its introduction." ^ 

But, according to the same authority, these burial customs 
varied in different localities. For example, the extensive in- 
vestigations of Mr Atkinson in Cleveland, and a series of 
barrows near Castle Howard, yielded nothing but burnt 
bodies. " In Derbyshire the proportion is slightly in favour 
of unburnt bodies ; in Wiltshire burnt bodies are as three 
to one unburnt ; in Dorsetshire as four to one ; and in 
Cornwall cremation appears to have been by far the most 
common usage. In the counties of Denbigh, Merioneth, and 
Caernarvon, cremation seems to have been almost universal. 
In Northumberland I have disinterred 71 bodies, and of 
these 45 were after cremation and 26 by inhumation."^ 

As regards Bronze Age burials in Scotland, Sir W. Turner, 
in his lecture at the Royal Institution, writes as follows : 
" From an analysis of 1 44 localities in Scotland of burials 
which may be associated with the Bronze Age, and which 
included about 400 distinct interments, it would appear that 
in 51 of these localities the bodies had all been cremated ; 
in 60 they had been buried in stone cists; in 15 the same 
mound or cemetery furnished examples of both kinds of 
sepulchre; and in the rest the kind of interment was not 
precisely recorded." 

That cremation was a foreign importation into the British 
^ British Barrows, p. 19. " Ibid., p. 21. 

2 K 


Isles cannot be gainsaid. When once introduced it seems to 
have spread among their entire habitable portions with wonder- 
ful celerity— a fact which suggests its religious character. If 
the date of this remarkable movement could be definitely 
ascertained, it would present the nearest approach to a chrono- 
logical datum line that can be found among the different 
elements which the successive waves of Continental civilisa- 
tion have washed to our shores. Its progress from Central 
Europe westwards was so rapid that it overtook, and passed 
by the way, many of the slower influences which were 
travelling in the same direction. Thus when the people of 
the round barrows of Yorkshire lived, both cremation and 
the bronze industry had already extended to that part of 
Britain, for, as we have just seen, Canon Greenwell regarded 
the round barrows, whether they included burials after in- 
humation or cremation, or with or without bronze objects, as 
of the same age. Indeed, so far as available evidence has 
been adduced, it would appear that the only sepulchral 
remains, proved to have been older than the custom of 
cremation, are the chambered cairns in the south-west of 
England. When, however, the analogous cairns of Argyll- 
shire, Caithness, and the Orkney Islands were constructed, 
the religious wave had already enveloped North Britain. 
Hence, though generally destitute of bronze relics, these 
structures were really contemporary with the Bronze Age 
burials elsewhere in Britain. The same thing has occurred 
in several localities in France. Thus M. du Chatellier has 
shown that, out of 145 tombs of the Stone Age in Brittany, 
20 contained inhumed and 72 cremated bodies, while 31 
were associated with charcoal, and 22 were of an indefinite 
character. Finistfere alone yielded 58 burnt out of 69 inter- 
ments. ^ The explanation of these and other similar instances 
' La France pr^historique, p. 272. 


is that in out-of-the-way locaHties, such as the western shores 
of Brittany and the Highlands of Scotland, the Stone-Age 
civilisation lingered longer than in those situated on the 
main routes of commercial intercourse. It was about the 
middle of the Bronze Age (some five or six centuries B.C.) 
that cremation was adopted in Sweden, but as the route by 
which bronze entered that part of Europe was by the Danube, 
and therefore different from that by which it reached Britain, 
there can be no chronological comparison between these 
events in the two countries. 

3. General Conclusions. 

Such is a brief statement, for it is too meagre to be called 
a review, of the different aspects and channels through which 
the early ethnology of the British Isles has to be investigated. 
The latest researches in anthropology, archaeology, religios- 
ity, and Hnguistic science are requisitioned to throw their 
flash-light on the ways and means by which our prehistoric 
forefathers foregathered in various contingents of different 
degrees of civilisation on our primeval shores. But notwith- 
standing the abundance of materials which has accumulated 
around these diversified standpoints, and the conspicuous talent 
of many of the investigators who have entered on this fascinat- 
ing field of research, the conclusions hitherto formulated on 
the subject are still far from being satisfactory. When, how- 
ever, we find distinct currents, though only discernible through 
mere waifs and strays, all tending in the same direction, we 
are encouraged to feel some degree of confidence that in 
following them we are not led by an ignis fatuus. 

It may therefore serve some useful purpose to state more 
precisely and categorically how the general results at which 
we have arrived in regard to Western Europe become appli- 


cable to the prehistoric inhabitants of the British Isles, so 
far as they are known to us at the time of the Roman 

In early Neolithic times the southern parts of Britain and 
Ireland were peopled by immigrants from the adjacent Con- 
tinent, commencing probably when there was a direct land 
communication between the latter and Britain. The phys- 
ical characteristics of these invaders were — short stature, 
strong muscular frames, dark hair and eyes, and dolicho- 
cephalic heads. They were a religious people, as even then 
they buried their dead, the chiefs and persons of social dis- 
tinction being consigned to great chambered cairns and dol- 
mens, which formed family burying-places for several gener- 
ations. The subsequent incomers would carry with them 
further elements of progressive civilisation, as well as what- 
ever changes in their personal physique became developed 
through the crossing of the different races. 

The next great landmark in the peopUng of these islands 
of which we have evidence was the appearance of a brachy- 
cephalic and somewhat taller race, who brought with them a 
knowledge of bronze. This metal was, however, only spar- 
ingly used, the objects known in the earliest period being 
confined to small hand-daggers, pins, and a few trinkets. 
Almost coincident with this great event in the progress of 
British civilisation came the remarkable religious movement 
which manifested itself in the sepulchral rite of cremation. 
There can be no doubt that these innovations were due to 
the stream of immigrants to our shores, but from what par- 
ticular localities we are unable to say. They appear to have 
been cross-breeds which had sprung up somewhere in Cen- 
tral Europe, and formed the van of the so-called Aryans, gen- 
erally known to us under the name of Celts. The physical 
characteristics, especially the complexion, of these early 

ARYANS. 481 

Celts have been long a matter of controversy — some regard- 
ing them as dark and others as fair. So far as I can judge 
they belonged to the fair stock, and had more or less red or 
yellow hair. Having conquered the previous inhabitants, 
they amalgamated with them and ultimately spread over 
Ireland and Scotland, where their characteristic sepulchral 
remains are largely to be found. Meantime, the chambered 
cairns had been gradually discontinued, and inhumation in 
short cists or urn burials, with or without mounds and other 
external indications, had taken their place. In Ireland, how- 
ever, it would appear that these sepulchral innovations had 
made slower progress than in Britain, for when the inhabi- 
tants of the north of this island began to cross over into Scot- 
land to the adjacent shores of Argyll, they still adhered to the 
system of burial by chambered cairns, notwithstanding that 
cremation was then a common practice over the larger 
portion of Scotland. 

The third wave of westward civilisation, which carried with 
it new elements of culture and industry, was that known in 
this country as " Late Celtic," corresponding to the " Mar- 
nian," or " La Tene," period of Continental antiquaries. 
Chronologically, this period is roundly defined by the three, 
or perhaps four, centuries immediately preceding the Christian 
era. The main body of immigrants of this movement were 
not the same as those of the Bronze Age, as they belonged 
to the " Galli," or Gauls of classical authors, and probably 
the Belgffi of Caesar. They do not appear to have extended 
their authority over the whole of Britain, as the north and 
west of Scotland, as well as parts of Wales and Cornwall, 
were unaffected by them ; nor did they occupy Ireland. But 
the art and industrial elements which they introduced found 
much favour among the inhabitants, and spread to Ireland 
and Scotland, where they took deep and permanent root. As 


special memorials of their presence in Britain we have a 
number of cemeteries (Aylesford urn burials, a cairn at Mold, 
Flintshire, the Yorkshire tumuli, &c.), the Hunsbury Camp, 
and the lake -village of Glastonbury. The special charac- 
teristics of this art have already been described, and need not 
be further referred to here ; but for the physical character of 
these invaders we are on the terra firma of history, as both 
Germans and Gauls are depicted by ancient writers as being 
tall and fair-skinned, with large limbs, blue eyes, and reddish- 
yellow hair. Strabo (v. 2), in referring to the Britons, says 
that they were "taller than the Kelts, with hair less yellow, 
and slighter in their persons." Caesar (v. 12) states that the 
maritime: portion of Britain was inhabited by those who had 
passed over from the country of the Belg^ for the purpose 
of plunder and making war (see p. 5). The farthest north 
of the Late Celtic tumuli hitherto discovered in Britain were 
in Yorkshire, so that these Belgic immigrants will scarcely 
account for the existence of the red-haired Caledonians, who, 
in the judgment of Tacitus, were more like the Germans than 
the southern fair people. Hence the Caledonians of that 
historian must have belonged to the earlier Celts, or have 
entered the country as a colony from German lands. One 
of the Late Celtic skulls found in a tumulus at Arras in York- 
shire, described and figured by Dr Thurnam, has a cephalic 
index of 73.7. As this is regarded as a typical specimen, 
we have to note the remarkable fact that, while the early Celts 
were brachycephalic, the late Celts were dolichocephalic. 

Looking at these general deductions from the linguistic 
point of view, we find that at the time of the Roman conquest 
there were two main dialects spoken in the British Isles — viz., 
Gaelic and Cymric — both being branches of a common Celtic 
language which had its home in Central Europe. The former 
survives in the modern Gaelic of the Highlands of Scot- 


land, the Manx in the Isle of Man, and the Irish, which still 
lingers in some of the western counties of Ireland. The 
latter is represented by modern Welsh, the ancient Cornish 
(now extinct), and the Breton, still spoken in parts of Brittany. 
Gaelic was introduced into Britain about the same time as 
bronze, whence it spread, along with the Celtic invaders, into 
Ireland. It was followed, in the course of some centuries, 
by the Cymric, a branch of the same speech, and then the 
language of the Gauls of history, but greatly modified by the 
intermixture of races and the wandering tendencies of the 
Celtic tribes on the Continent. The immigrants of this 
second invasion called themselves Brythons, and as we have 
seen that they were the introducers of the Late Celtic art, 
they may be associated with the development of the early 
Iron Age in Britain. Professor Rhys, taking advantage of the 
accident in Celtic phonology which led them to substitute a/ 
in words in which their predecessors used a q, characterises the 
two, in accordance with this shibboleth, as Q Celts (Goidels) 
and P Celts (Brythons). 

As to the speech of the indigenous, or Iberian, inhabitants 
with whom the first Celtic invaders (Goidels) came into direct 
contact there is little known. Professor Rhys and other 
philologists profess to see its fossil remains in a few non- 
Aryan words. 1 That a non - Celtic language was prevalent 
among the common people in the vicinity of Inverness, in 
the sixth century a.d., has often been suggested by the fact 
recorded by Adamnan — viz., that Columba, while on his 
mission to Brude, King of the Picts, addressed the natives 
by means of an interpreter. The Picts are also included by 
Bede among the five British nations (Angles, Brythons, Scotti, 
Picts, and Latins) in whose languages Christianity was taught 
in his time. I do not, however, think that on such evidence 
^ See Proc. Soc. A. Scot., vol. xxxii. pp. 324-398. 


we can regard the Pictish language as the lineal descendant 
of the pre-Celtic, or Euskarian, which, in the time of Caesar, 
was spoken in Aquitaine and Spain, and is still represented 
by the modern Basque. That the Pictish language had been 
considerably modified by the pre-Celtic speech there can be 
little doubt. But the difference between the Celtic speech 
of Columba and that of the northern Picts may be only 
dialectical — the mere accumulated accretions and modifica- 
tions of one common speech acquired while moving in dif- 
ferent paths and different environments. Columba's mother- 
tongue reached him by a circuitous route through Ireland, 
while the Pictish came direct through Britain, so that after 
such a long separation, representing rnany centuries, we need 
not wonder that the two languages were not interchangeable 
when they met in the Highlands of Scotland, though at the 
starting-point they may have been the same. 

When North Britain was invaded during the first century 
of the Christian era by the Roman legions the country was 
inhabited by a mixed population, among whom the Cale- 
donians attracted attention on account of their tall stature 
and reddish appearance. Brythons were pushing northwards, 
Norsemen had probably even then found a permanent footing 
on its eastern shores, and Goidelic immigrants from Ireland 
had for centuries kept up intercourse with its western islands 
and mainland. Thus the dawn of our history reveals the fact 
that three different streams of immigrants had then reached 
the shores of North Britain. It took some time, however, 
for these peoples and their various culture elements to make 
much progress northwards ; and as each succeeding wave 
travelled faster than its predecessor, it is probable that 
the duration of the pre-Roman periods in these out-of-the- 
way regions was considerably shorter than in the southern 
parts of the island. This view partly accounts for the inter- 


mingling of relics usually regarded as characteristic of the 
three ages of Stone, Bronze, and Iron, which is so frequently 
to be met with in the north of Scotland and in Ireland. If 
Tacitus is correct in his assertion that at the battle of Mons 
Graupius the Caledonians were provided with long swords, 
short targets, and armed chariots, it is quite clear that they 
were then in the early Iron Age, and that Gaulish influence 
had already reached them through the Brythons. Although 
metallurgy and all its appurtenances had been an exotic 
growth, it is proved, from the frequency with which moulds 
and casting materials have turned up, that the bronze industry 
was carried on throughout various parts of the country. 

To describe the influence of Roman and Anglo - Saxon 
civilisation in moulding the subsequent destinies of the 
Scottish people lies within the sphere of the historian : I 
shall not, therefore, encroach on materials which will be, 
more or less, utilised by other writers of the series to which 
this volume may be regarded as an introduction. For the 
same reason, antiquities referred to in the Scottish annals 
have not been discussed in these prehistoric sketches, with 
the exception of works of defence and lake-dwellings, which, 
in their general aspects and associations, are more allied to 
the prehistoric than to the historic materials. 

Ireland seems to have been peopled by the same races 
as Britain, as, from the earliest period of which we have 
any knowledge, it contained a dark and a fair stock. Its 
language was that of the Goidels — the first Celtic invaders 
— and it continued unaffected by the Cymric and all sub- 
sequent linguistic elements till superseded in comparatively 
recent times by the Teutonic tongue. 

On comparing the present population of Western Europe 
with the earlier races, notwithstanding the extensive changes 
due to the spread of civilisation, the greater intercourse 


between nations, the intrusion of the Teutons into Britain, 
and political dislocations, the dark and fair people still 
retain relatively the same geographical distribution as in 
proto-historic times. The fair folk cluster around the Ger- 
man Ocean and eastwards along the shores of the Baltic 
to Asia, while the dark occupy a more southern zone on 
both sides of the Mediterranean. All statistics go to prove 
that the tendency has been to increase the number of people 
with intermediate skull-forms (mesaticephali), a fact which 
may be partly explained by the intercrossing of the original 
brachycephali and partly by the steady advancement of 

The greatest difficulty in all these anthropological re- 
searches is to account for the origin of the blond element 
among the earlier races. According to Professor Huxley, 
the fair whites (Xanthochroi) and dark whites (Melanochroi) 
of Britain are distributed now very much the same as they 
were in the time of Tacitus. From these and other facts 
he formulated the following conclusions: "(i) That the 
Melanochroi and Xanthochroi are two separate races in the 
biological sense of the word race; (2) that they have had 
the same general distribution as at present from the earliest 
times of which any record exists on the continent of 
Europe; (3) that the population of the British Islands is 
derived from them, and from them only." ^ 

There is one feature of the ethnological question which, 
being of a practical character, cannot fail to interest those 
who think they can distinguish, through the gossamer of 
language and tradition, the blood and civilisation of the 
various races who have, from time to time, found a per- 
manent home within the British Isles. Perhaps few anthro- 
pologists have ever seriously considered the slender grounds 
' Collected Essays, vol. vii. p. 262. 


on which the term " Celtic " is applied in modern times to 
sections of the population of these islands. If the hnguistic 
fragments still extant are to be taken as evidence of the 
distribution of Celtic influence, they would restrict the latter 
to the very same geographical areas which the racial evidence 
marks out as non-Aryan or pre-Celtic. No greater contrast 
between existing races is to be found than between the 
present inhabitants of the Aran Isles, in Galway Bay, and 
those of County Kerry, in Ireland. They are probably the 
purest breeds of the Xanthochroi and Melanochroi to be 
found in Western Europe, but yet they are both within 
the modern "Celtic Fringe." The truth is, that between 
language and race there is no permanent alliance. Many of 
the most sentimental and patriotic Scotsmen of the present 
day are Teutons by blood, while still more have pre-Celtic 
blood coursing in their veins ; and the same may be said 
of Irishmen. And what a picture of mistaken identity do 
so many Englishmen present when, with the physical quali- 
ties of low stature, long heads, and dark eyes, they boast 
of their Teutonic origin ! To console readers who may 
not find themselves labelled by nature among any of the 
original types which enter into our common nationality 
— neither dark nor fair, long nor short, dolichocephalic 
nor brachycephalic — but among the larger category of well- 
developed mongrels, let me assure them that no special 
combination of racial characters has ever yet been proved 
to have a monopoly of intellectuality and virtue. 


Abercromby, the Hon, John, on bronze 

dagger from Crawford Priory, 193. 
Aberdeenshire, fabricators found in, 

Abernethy, fort on Castle Law Hill, 

371 — remains found at, 372. 
Aboyne, bronze armlets found near, 

Adams, Mr A. Leith, on Irish elk, 

Adzes of the Stone Age, 157. 
^sica, fibulas of Late Celtic Period 

found on site of, 266. 
Agricola, invasion of Scotland, 7 et 

seq. — battle of Mons Graupius, 9 — 

withdraws south of Firths of Forth 

and Clyde, 11 — recalled to Rome, ib. 
Agriculture the mainstay of prehistoric 

peoples, 359. 
Airleywight, Perthshire, head and 

horns of the elk found at, 94 et seq. 
Airlie, Forfarshire, earth -houses at, 


Alton, Mr, quotation from 'Treatise 
on the Origin, Qualities, and Culti- 
vation of Moss Earth ' by, 31. 

Allen, Mr J. Romilly, on cup-marked 
stones, 224 fn. 

Alloa, two gold armlets found at, 

Alvah, Banffshire, bronze armlet found 
in, 256. 

Alvey, Inverness-shire, earth-house at, 

Amber, its use in the Stone Age, 144. 
Anderson, Dr Joseph, his discussion of 
the MacArthur Cave, 52 — account 
of the investigations at Caisteal-nan- 
Gillean, 56 — animal remains in 
broch at Yarhouse, 89 — remains 
of large ox found at Keiss by, 
115 — stone anvils described by. 

150 — his conclusions regarding 
brochs, 402 — references to ' Scot- 
land in Pagan Times ' by, 89 fn.,, 
171 et seq., 196, 291, 294 et seq., 
324 et seq., 394, 397. 

Anvils, stone, finds of, 150. 

Arborescent Age, 22 et seq. — arbores- 
cent growths, 27 et seq. 

Arbroath, dagger-blade of Bronze Age 
found near, 193. 

Ardmore, "submarine crannog " at, 

Ardoch, camp of, suggested as Agric- 
ola's headquarters, 9. 

Ardrossan, forts near, 375 — rock- 
shelter at, 81. 

Argyllshire, remains of circular dwell- 
ing-house on crannog in, 334. 

Armlets of Bronze Age, 205 et seq. — 
penannular ring with cup-shaped 
ends, 207. 

Arras, Yorkshire, chariot-wheels, &c., 
found in cist at, 247. 

Arrow-heads of the Bronze Age, 203 — 
arrow-points of Stone Age, 167 et 

Art of the Bronze Age, 216 et seq. 

Ashgrove Loch, stone crannog in, 
420 — relics found in, ii. et seq. 

Ashkirk, Roxburghshire, stag's head 
found at, 108 — horns of urus found 
on Synton estate, in. 

Ass, approximate date of introduction 
into Scotland of, 130. 

Assynt, Ross-shire, jet necklace of 
Bronze Age found at, 213. 

Athol, skull of urus found near, 113. 

AuchendoUy, Kirkcudbrightshire, en- 
amelled harness mounting found at, 

Auk, Great, in prehistoric times, 125- 



Auquhorthies, near Inveniry, stone 

circle of, 318. 
Axes, of the Stone Age, 155 et seq. — 

unperforated axe, 156 et seq. — 

method of hafting, 160 — of the 

Bronze Age, 183 et seq. 
Aylesford, Kent, relics of Late Celtic 

Period discovered at, 268. 
Ayrshire, remains of beaver found in, 

122 — bronze sword - sheath found 

near Bargany House, 243. 

Badger in prehistoric times, 129. 
Balblair, Sutherlandshire, bronze razor 

found at, 190. 
Balcalk, Tealing, jet necklace of 

Bronze Age found at, 213. 
Bald, Mr Robert, on skeleton of whale 

found at Airthrey, 60. 
Balgay, near Dundee, jet necklace 

of Bronze Age found at, 213. 
Ballynienach, stone circle at, 290. 
Ballynamintra, Co. Waterford, bones 

of Irish elk found in the cave of, 

Balmaclellan, Kirkcudbrightshire, find 

of Late Celtic Period at, 263, 
Baouss^-Rouss^ caverns at Mentone, 

Barhullion, Wigtownshire, snake- 
headed armlet found at, 259. 
Baimekyne of Echt, Aberdeenshire, 

hill-fort on the, 369. 
Barnwell, Rev. E. L., on Late Celtic 

ornaments, 261. 
Barri, Giraldus de, reference to beaver 

in ' Itinerarium CambriEe' by, 122. 
Barry, Sir F. T., M.P., discovery at 

Keiss of reindeer horn, 91 — part of 

antler of elk, 99 — of bear's tooth, 

128 — reference to excavation of 

brochs at Keiss, 403. 
Bateman, Mr, reference to 'Vestiges' 

by, 119 — references to 'Ten Years' 

Diggings' by, 119, 124 fn., 129, 

Beach, 25-feet raised, theory of Sir 

Archibald Geikie and others, 37 — 

suggested cause of, 45. 
Beads of glass, amber, and jet of the 

Bronze Age, 211. 
Bear, brown, in prehistoric times, 128 

et seq. — approximate date of extinc- 
tion in Scotland of, 130. 
Beattie, Mr W., on cave at North 

Esk, 79. 
Beauly Firth, the Black Cairn in, 437. 
Beaver, in prehistoric times, 120-123 — 

approximate date of extinction in 

Scotland of, 130. 
Beddoe, Dr, on Silures, 458. 
Beehive huts, 336 et seq. — on Skellig 

Michael, 341 — at Eilean-na-Noimh, 

Beith, Ayrshire, bronze shield found 

at Lugtonridge, 200. 
Belhelvie, Aberdeenshire, remains of 

urns found at, 115 — torque found 

at, 210 — bronze armlet found in, 


Bellenden, reference to beavers in his 
' Croniklis of Scotland,' 123. 

Bennachie, Aberdeenshire, bronze arm- 
lets and celts found near, 206 — East 
Fort on, 369. 

Bertrand and Reinach, MM., refer- 
ences to ' Les Celtes dans les Vallees 
du P6 et du Danube ' by, 233, 246. 

Beveridge, Henry, Esq,, on burials at 
Pitreavie, 314. 

Birdlip, near Bristol, bowl - shaped 
bronze dishes found at, 260. 

Birrenswark, bridle-bit found at, 249. 

Birsay, Orkney, clothing of female 
skeleton found in peat-bog at, 174. 

Blair Drummond Moss, 37 — remains 
of Celtic shorthorn found in, 119. 

Boar, wild, in prehistoric times, 123- 
125 — approximate date of extinction 
in Scotland of, 130. 

Boethius, reference to beavers in his 
'Scot. Hist.,' 123. 

Bone used for making implements in 
Stone Age, 159. 

Borer or drill used by Stone Age 
people, 153. 

Borgue, Kirkcudbright, bronze armlet 
found in, 253. 

Borness Cave in Kirkcudbrightshire, 
79 — Celtic shorthorn found in, 118. 

Bower, heads of urus found in bog in 
the parish of, 116. 

Bowl-shaped bronze dishes of the Late 
Celtic Period, 260. 

Boyd-Dawkins, Professor, quoted, 90 
— on the urus, 109 — on the Celtic 
shorthorn, 116 et seq. — references 
to 'Cave-Hunting' by, 129 fns., 130 
— reference to 'Early Man in Brit- 
ain' by, 457, 476. 

Boynton, Mr Thomas, on lake-dwell- 
ings in the Holderness, 422. 

Bracelets of Bronze Age, 206. 

Brechin, part of horn of an elk found 
in Trinity Muir, 93. 

Breckigo, Loch of, remains of urus, 
&c., found in, 115, 

Bridgewater, Devon, Celtic shorthorn 
found in peat near, 119. 

Bridle-bits of Late Celtic Period, 249 
et seq. 

Britain, becomes known to the Greeks, 
2— visit of Pytheas establishes the 
overland trade - route, 3 — Roman 



invasion, ib. et seq. — Caesar's ac- 
count of the country and people, 
4 et seq. — Strabo's account of man- 
ners and customs of Britons, 5 et 
seq, — reference by Diodorus Siculus, 
6 — religion of the Britons, 12 — 
population prior to the Roman 
invasion, 14 — account of the in- 
habitants and country by Rom&n 
writers, 42 et seq. 

Broadsword traced to pre - Roman 
times, 10. 

Broca on Neolithic skulls, 462 et seq. 

Brochs, only found in Scotland, 389 
— Mousa, ib. et seq. — Ousdale, 391 
et seq. — their structure and design, 
394 et seq. — relics found on sites of, 
398 et seq. — their builders and in- 
habitants, 401 et seq. 

Brodie, Rev. J., on horns of elk found 
at jMarlee, 94. 

Brogar, Ring of, 297. 

Bronze Age, sea-level in, 40 — cemetery 
of, at Magdalen Bridge, ib. — find in 
Duddingston Loch, 93 — progress in 
culture and civilisation during the, 
177 et seq. — art of, 216 et seq. 

Bryce, Dr James, on stone circles in 
Arran, 316. 

Bryson, JVIr A., on cave at North Esk, 

Buchanan, iVIr John, on the Clyde 

canoes, 70. 
Bugthorpe, iron sword, &c., found at, 

24s • 

Bunrannoch, Perthshire, armlets found 
at, 255. 

Burghead, remains of Celtic short- 
horn, &c., found at, 118 — Dr Mac- 
donald's account of the wall of 
fort at, 374 — further details by 
Mr Hugh W. Young, ib. 

Burial customs of prehistoric man, 
279 et seq. — cairns and barrows, 

Burraness, broch of, 398. 

Burray, broch of, 400. 

Butmir, Bosnia, remains of ox, urus, 
&c., found at, 119— stone objects at, 

Buttons, of Bronze Age, 205— of the 
Stone Age, 172 et seq. 

Caesar, Julius, invades Britain, 3 et 
je?.— account of tlie trees found 
in Britain, 43— on the uri of the 
Hercynian forest, 109 — describes 
the Gaulish method of construct- 
ing ramparts by stones and beams, 

Caher-Fada-an-Dorms, 340. 
Cairn of Achnacree, 283— at Largie, 

28s — at Kilchoan, 288 — at Kil- 
martin, ib. — horned cairns of Caith- 
ness, 29r et seq. — Maeshowe, 298 et 
seq. — at Unstan, 302 — at Quanter- 
ness, 304 — at Wideford, 305 — at 
Papa Westray and Quoyness, 306 
et seq. — at Clava, 310 — at Collessie, 
312 — at Gilchorn, 313 — general re- 
marks, 326 et seq. 

Cairn Conan, near Arbroath, Forfar- 
shire, eaith-house at, 349. 

Caisteal-nan-Gillean, exploration of, 


Caithness, horned cairns in, 291 et 

Caldron, bronze, description of one 
found in Kincardine Moss, 37 et 
seq. — one found in West of Scot- 
land, 38 — one found at Cardross, 
ih. — one found in Carlingwark Loch, 

Caledonians, the, 14 — described by 
Tacitus, 443. 

Caledonii, 12. 

Callernish, stone circle of, 308 et seq. 

Cambridgeshire Fen, remains of brown 
bear found in, 129. 

Campbeltown, discovery of urns and 
flint instruments in, 73 et seq. 

Campigny, hut dwellings at, 332. 

Cannibalism in the Neolithic Age, 82. 

Canoes, finding of, in Carse-lands, 66 
et seq. — in the basin of the Clyde, 70 
et seq. — used by prehistoric people in 
Scotland, 359. 

Capercailzie, the, in Denmark and 
Scotland, 127 et seq. 

Carham, bronze sword-sheath found 
in the Tweed at, 245. 

Carlingwark Loch, Kirkcudbright- 
shire, relics of Iron Age found 
at, 274 et seq. 

Carmichael, Lanarkshire, three pen- 
annular gold armlets found in 
parish of, 208. 

Carnban, near Crinan Canal, slab 
with concentric lozenge - shaped 
sculptures found at, 221. 

Carn-liath, broch of, 396, 399. 

Carnwath, Lanarkshire, ornamented 
cover-stone of cist, &c., found at, 

Carradale, vitrified fort at, 386. 

Carse of Stirhng, 36 — implements 
associated with the skeletons of 
whales in, 57 et seq. — other relics 
of man found in, 65 et seq. — per- 
forated deer-horn chisels and picks 
found in, 169. 

Cartailhac, M., references to ' La 
France Pr^historique ' by, 474, 



Carthaginians, trading expeditions of;, 

Cassiterides, or Tin Islands, location 
of, I et seq. 

Castle- Newe, Aberdeenshire, bronze 
armlets found at, 256, 258. 

Cat, approximate date of introduction 
into Scotland of, 130. 

Caterthuns, the, Forfarshire, 369. 

Cattle, modem, origin of, 131. 

Caves, Borness, in Kirkcudbrightshire, 
79 — near the mouth of the North 
Esk, ib. 

" Celtic Fringe," the, 487. 

Celtic Period in Britain, Late, 234 eiseq. 

Celtic shorthorn in prehistoric times, 

Celts, bronze, found at the ' ' Maidens," 
jj — the celt or unperforated axe, 156 
ei seq. — method of hafting, 160. 

Chambers, Mr Robert, quotation from 
' Ancient Sea-Margins ' by, 72. 

Chisels, of the Stone Age, 159 — method 
of hafting unperforated chisels, 160 
— of the Bronze Age, 186. 

Christison, Dr David, reference to 
^ Early Fortifications of Scotland ' by, 

Cill-TroUa Broch, pieces of reindeer 
horns found in, 87 — Celtic short- 
horn found in broch of, 118. 

Clava, cairn and stone circles of, 310 
et seq. 

Cleaven Dyke suggested as Agricola's 
headquarters, 9. 

Clerk, Sir John, quotation from ' Reli- 
quise Galeanee * by, 31, 66. 

Clikamin, Lerwick, broch of, 398. 

Climatic features of prehistoric Scot- 
land, 20 et seq, — change from an 
arctic to a temperate climate, 25 — 
climatic conditions at the period of 
the Roman occupation, 36, 42 et seq. 

Cloonfinlough, horns of Irish elk found 
in the crannog of, 102. 

CIose-y-Garey, Isle of Man, skeleton 
of Irish elk lound at, 104 et seq. 

Clothing of the Stone Age, 172 et seq. 

Clouston, Mr R. S., on cairn of Un- 
stan, 302. 

Clyde, canoes found in basin of, 70 et 
seq. — reindeer horns found on north 
bank, 8g~remains of urus found on 
north bank, 112. 

Coal-bog, wooden hut in, 335. 

Coffey, Mr G., reference to 'Origins 
of Prehistoric Ornament ' by, 145 
— on decoration of the Bronze Age 
in Ireland, 219 et seq, 

Coilstield, Ayrshire, spiral decoration 
on cover-stone of a cist, found at, 

Colchester, remains of brown bear 
found at, 129. 

Coldingham, Berwickshire, palmated 
horn found at, 96. 

Coldstream, flint knife found near, 

Cole's Castle, near Brora, Sutherland- 
shire, 398. 

Collessie, Fife, sepulchral cairn at, 

Coracle, description of, 359 et seq. 

Cornwall, earth-houses and other re- 
mains in, 353 et seq. 

Cowden Burn, remains of urus found 
in, 112. 

Cowlara, Yorkshire, remains of Late 
Celtic Period found at, 267. 

Craigton, Linlithgowshire, reindeer 
horns found in marl-pit near, 89. 

Cramond, skeleton of elk found on the 
farm of Greycrook, 93. 

Crannogs, evidence of kind of dwell- 
ings in early Iron Age, 334 — Irish 
crannogs, 406 — Scottish crannogs, 
408 et seq. — relics found in, 412 et 
seq. — construction of, 430 et seq. 

Crawford Moor, Lanarkshire, jet but- 
ton found on, 173 — bronze armlets 
found at, 207. 

Cree, the, trees found in, 42— ancient 
forest of, 69 et seq. 

Cremation, spread of, in Britain to- 
wards close of Stone Age, 280— in- 
humation and, 474-481. 

Crichie, Aberdeenshire, axe-hammer 
found in stone circle of, 156 — stone 
circle at, 316. 

Croftamie, Dumbartonshire, portion 
of reindeer horn found at, 90. 

Crofthead, Renfrewshire, remains of 
Irish elk, urus, &c., found near, 104, 

Cromagnon, prehistoric skulls at, 462. 

Cromdale, Inverness-shire, gold armlet 
found at, 207. 

Croy, oaks and firs found in a moss 
at, 30. 

Culbin Sands, borer found on, 153 — 
flint saws from, 164 — bronze armlet 
found on the, 258. 

Culrain, Ross-shire, fragments of cloth 
and leather shoe found at, 174. 

Culzean hoard, 40 — discovery of bronze 
celts near, 77. 

Curie, Mr James, on broch of Tor- 
woodlee, 400. 

Currach. See Coracle. 

Daggers, of Bronze Age, 191 et seq. — 
of the Late Celtic Period, 246 et seq. 

Dalrymple, Mr C. E., reference to 
Appendix to Stuart's ' Sculptured 



Stones of Scotland' by, 316 — stone 
circle at Crichie, U. 

Darwin, Mr, reference to 'Origin of 
Species ' by, 135. 

Dawson, Sir W., on Guanclies, 468. 

Deskford, Banffshire, fragment of 
bronze helmet found at, 238. 

Diclc, Sir Alexander, of Prestonfield, 
his find of Bronze Age, in Dudding- 
ston Loch, 93. 

Dio Cassius, description of the Cale- 
donians, 43. 

Dog, the, in prehistoric times, 134 et 

Dolmens rarely met with in Scotland, 
328 — distribution of, ib. 

Domestic animals in prehistoric times, 

Dowalton, Loch of, Wigtownshire, 
remains of Celtic shorthorn, &c., 
found in crannogs in, 117 — orna- 
ment found in, 249 — account of the 
crannogs, 409 et seq. — relics found 
at, 410 et seq. 

Drem, skull of Celtic shorthorn found 
at Balgone, 119. 

Drill or borer used by Stone Age 
people, 153. 

Drinking-cups found in graves, 321. 

Druids, 12 et seq. 

Druimvargie, rock-shelter of, 54 etseq. 

Drumcrief, finding of oaks in moss at, 

Drumkilrn Bog, wooden hut in, 335. 

Drummond, Mr H. H., on whale 
remains, 61. 

Dryden, Sir Henry, on Hunsbury 
Camp, 24T, 269 et seq. 

DUben, Prof, von, on skulls in Sweden, 

Duddingston Loch, remains of Bronze 
Age found in, 93. 

Dumbuck, crannog at, 437 et seq. — 
relics found at, 440 et seq. 

Dumfries, finding of animal remains 
on the Shaw property, 90. 

Dumfriesshire, remains of urus, bear, 
and reindeer found in, 90, in — 
skull of brown bear found in, 128. 

Dunagoil, vitrified fort at, 385 et seq. 

Dunbar, bronze razor found at Bower- 
houses, near, 190. 

Dunbeath, broch of, 400. 

Dunbuie Fort, 379 — relics found at, 

Duncombe, Hon. Cecil, on lacustrine 
remains on the banks of the Costa, 

Dundee, jet button found on Law Hill, 

Dunfermline, cemeteries found on Pit- 

reavie estate, 314 et seq. 

Dun Mac Uisneachan, enamelled 

bronze disc found on vitrified fort 

of, 251. 
Dim Skeig, vitrified fort of, 387. 
Dupont, M., reference to ' L'Homme 

pendant les Ages de la Pierre ' by, 

131 fn. 

Earrings, gold, found at Orton, near 

Fochabers, 214. 
Eddertoun, Ross-shire, blue glass bead 

of Bronze Age found at, 211. 
Edenshall, Cockburn Law, 398. 
Edinburgh, stag's head found in the 
Meadows, 108 — sword-blades, &c., 
of Bronze Age found at Grosvenor 
Crescent, 196, 204, 205 — the Cat 
Stone, near, 318. 
Edrom, skeleton of beaver found in 

Middlestot's Bog, 122. 
Eilean Buidhe, vitrified fort on, 385. 
Eilean - ra - Noimh, Garveloch Isles, 

beehive cells on, 342. 
Eirde houses, 343 et seq. 
Elk, the, in prehistoric times, 91-99. 
Embsay, near Skipton, Yorkshire, 

bronze torque found at, 252. 
Enamelled ornaments found in Scot- 
land, 249-251. 
Engelhardt, Mr, quotation from ' Den 
mark in the Early Iron Age ' by, 
England, remains of elk found m, 99 
— remains of Celtic shorthorn found 
in eastern counties, 116. 
Eriska, mound at, 436. 
Ethnology, 442 et seq. — description of 
ancient Britons by Tacitus, 443 — 
dolichocephalic and brachycephalic 
crania, 444 — modern research in 
craniology, 445 et seq. — dual type of 
skull found in Portugal, 460 et seq. 
— French research in prehistoric 
craniology, 461 et seq. — dolichoce- 
phali and brachycephali, 468 et seq. 
— general anthropological data, 470 
et seq. — linguistic research and the 
Aryans, 471 et seq. — religiosity and 
funereal rites, 473 et seq. — cremation 
and the Bronze Age in Britain, 476 
et seq. — general conclusions, 479 et 
seq. — inhabitants of Britain in Neo- 
lithic times, 480 — the Celts, ib. — im- 
migration of the Gauls bringing late 
Celtic art, 481 et seq. — the Caledoni- 
ans, 4S2 — two dialects spoken at the 
time of the Roman conquest, ib. — 
the speech of the Iberians, 483 — 
Prof. Huxley on dark whites and fair 
whites, 486. 
Evans, Sir John, reference to ' Ancient 
Stone Implements ' by, 146 et seq.. 

2 L 



169 — reference to * Bronze Imple- 
ments ' by, 186-188, 200, 205, 217. 
Evans, Mr A. J., reference to 'On a 
Late Celtic Urn-Field at Aylesford ' 
by, 269 — fibulas at ^sica, 266 — gold 
ornaments in Ireland, 267. 

Fabricators or flaking tools, descrip- 
tion of, 152. 

Fahan, ancient city of, 340. 

Falkirk, canoe found in Carse of, 66— 
canoe found near, 6^ — bronze fibulae 
found near, 260. 

Fallow-deer, approximate date of in- 
troduction into Scotland of, 130. 

Farrer, Mr, on Maeshowe, 298 — 
chamber at Quoyness, 306. 

Fauna, of the post-glacial period, 21, 
25 — of prehistoric times, 84 et seq. — 
reindeer, 86-91 — elk, 91-99 — gigantic 
Irish deer, 100-105 — red-deer and 
roe-deer, 105-108 — urus, 108-116 — 
Celtic shorthorn, 116-120 — beaver, 
120-123 — wild boar, 123-125 — Great 
Auk, 125-128 — general remarks, 128- 
130 — domestic animals, 130-136. 

Fergusson, Dr, reference to ' Rude 
Stone Monuments ' by, 301, 328 — 
reference to ' The Brochs and the 
Rude Stone Monuments of the 
Orkney Islands ' by, 401. 

Fibulas of the Late Celtic Period, 259 
et seq. 

Fife, dagger of Bronze Age found on 
Crawford Priory estate, 193. 

File of Bronze Age, 189. 

Fir found in peat-bogs up to 3000 feet 
above sea-level, 36. 

Flaking tools or fabricators, 152. 

Flanders Moss, bronze caldron found 
in, 38. 

Fleming, Dr, reference to ' History of 
British Mammals' by, 112. 

Flint implements found at Millknowe, 
74 et seq. — use of flint in the Stone 
Age, 140 — flint factories discovered 
near Moos, Belgium, 331 — similar 
discoveries in England, ib. — remains 
of factories in Scotland, 357. 

Flora of post-glacial period, 21. 

Food vessels found in graves, 321. 

Forests, disappearance of the, since pre- 
historic times, 42 — Romans charged 
with their destruction, 43 — south of 
Scotland well wooded after the Saxon 
language replaced the Celtic, 44 — 
-— scarcity of wood in medieval 
times, ib. 

Forfarshire, head and horns of an elk 
found in a marl-pit, 94. 

Forgandenny, fort at, 372. 

Forts, classification and distribution of. 

364 — earth-works and stone-works, 
366 et seq. — motes, 367 et seq. — hill- 
forts, 369 et seq. — analogous forts in 
Europe, 380 — vitrified forts, ib. et 
seq, — suggested means of vitrifica- 
tion, 382 et seq. — vitrified forts out- 
side Scotland, 388 et seq. 

Fowl, domestic, approximate date of 
introduction into Scotland of, 130. 

Fox in prehistoric times, 129. 

Franks, Sir A. Wollaston, quotations 
from ' Horse Ferales ' edited by, 
124, 234 et seq. 

Fraser, Mr James, on circles of Clava, 
309 et seq. 

Friarton, Perth, canoe found at, 67. 

Furfooz, brachycephalic race of, 469. 

Fyrish, Evanton, Ross-shire, bracer 
found at, 169. 

Fyvie, arrow-head found at, 161. 

Galloway, skull of urus found in, in. 

Galloway, Mr William, his explora- 
tion of Caisteal-nan-Gillean, 36 — 
other excavations in Oronsay, 57 — 
description of fortified camp on Mid- 
hill Head, 370. 

Galston, Ayrshire, borer found in 
parish of, 154. 

Garioch, the Newton Stone in, 318. 

Garson, Dr, on Yorkshire barrows, 


Geikie, Sir Archibald, his theory of the 
25-feet raised beach, 37. 

Geikie, Prof. James, references to 
'Great Ice Age' by, 23, 42 — his 
'Prehistoric Europe' quoted, 24 — 
his description of a canoe found at 
Friarton, Perth, 67 — account of re- 
mains of urus found in Cowden 
Burn, 112. 

" Ghegan Rock," near Seacliff, East 
Lothian, and account of early habi- 
tation on, 79 et seq. — relics found 
there, 80 — Celtic shorthorn found in 
kitchen-midden on, 118. 

Gilchorn, near Arbroath, cairn at, 313. 

Glacial period, 20 et seq. — parallelism 
between glacial epochs and land- 
submergences, 45. 

Gladstone, Dr, quotation from paper 
on "The Transition from pure Cop- 
per to Bronze made with Tin " by, 


Glasgow, remains of urus found in, 

Glastonbury Lake village, remains of 

beaver, &c., found on, 121 — account 

of, 4245^ seq. — relics found at, 465 

et seq. 
Glenelg, Inverness -shire, broch at, 




Glenluce, flint saws from, 164— jet 
button found at Mid-Torrs, 173. 

Golspie, flint saws found at, 164. 

Gouges of the Bronze Age, 186. 

Grange of Conan, near Arbroath, 
bronze spiral armlet found at, 258. 

Graves, contents of prehistoric, 320 et 

Gray, Mr Alexander, on raised beach 
at Campbeltown, 73. 

Graj', Rev. George, on Irish elk in 
Ayrshire, 103. 

Greeks, their discovery of Britain, 2. 

Greenwell, Canon, references to ' Brit- 
ish Barrows' by, 119, 121, 124 fn., 
I33> 14s. 159. 162, 173, 174, 215, 
267, 476 ei seq. — on cairns and stone 
circles in Argyllshire, 285 et seq. 

Grieve, Mr Symington, his exploration 
of Caisteal-nan-Gillean, 56 — remains 
of the Great Auk found in Oronsay, 
126— references to 'The Great Auk 
or Garefowl' by, 56, 126 fn. 

Grime's Graves, flint-mining at, 332. 

Grimthorpe, iron sword, c&c, found in 
a barrow at, 245. 

Gundestrup vase, 238. 

Hadrian's wall, 11. 

Hagbourn Hill, Berkshire, bronze 

bridle-bits, &c. , found at, 247. 
Hamden Hill, Somersetshire, tyres of 

wheels, &c., found at, 248. 
Hamilton, Dr E., on vitrified forts, 

Hamilton, Mr George, on sculptured 

rock-surfaces at High Banks, 225. 
Hammers, stone, description of, 151 et 

seq., 156 — of the Bronze Age, 186. 
Hardy, Mr James, on elk remains, 

Harray, Orkney, amber and glass 

beads, with objects of Iron Age, 

found at, 211 — broch in, 400. 
Hatfield Moss, 32 et seq. 
Hebrides, Outer, existence of bogwood 

in. as- 
Helmets of Late Celtic Period, 237 et 

Herodian, account of the Caledonians 

by, 43- 
Hevvison, Rev. Mr, on vitrified forts, 


Hibbert, Dr, on reindeer in Caithness, 

High Banks, Kirkcudbrightshire, cup- 
marked rock surfaces at, 225. 

Hildebrand, Dr Hans, reference to 
' Scandinavian Arts ' by, 182, 

Hilgay, Norfolk, bones of beaver, &c., 
found at, 121. 

Himilco, the voyage of, 2. 

Hoare, Sir R. Colt, reference to ' An- 
cient Wilts' by, 119. 

Hoerness, Dr, reference to ' Urges- 
chichte der Bildenden Kunst in 
Europa' by, 233. 

Holderness, Yorkshire, remains of 
beaver found at, 121 — crannog dis- 
covered in, 422. 

Honeyman, Mr John, observations on 
vitrified forts by, 384. 

Horn, use of, in making implements 
in Stone Age, 159. 

Horse, the, in prehistoric times, 131- 
134 — horse-trappings, &c., of Late 
Celtic Period, 247 et seq. 

Howden, Dr, on cave at North Esk, 

Howe Hill Barrow, Yorkshire, 451. 
Hunsbury, or Dane's Camp, near 

Northampton, relics of Late Celtic 

Period found at, 241 et seq. , 269 et 

Huntiscarth, Orkney, amber necklaces 

found at, 213. 
Hutcheson, Mr A., on dagger-blades, 

192 — on the cairns of Gilchorn and 

Collessie, 313. 
Huts of prehistoric date discovered on 

the Continent, 331 et seq. — Stone 

Age settlement of Schussenried, 333 

et seq. — dwellings of early Iron Age, 

334 et seq. — discoveries in Ireland, 

335 et seq, — beehive huts, 336 et 

Huxley, Prof., on prehistoric skulls, 
456, 459, 460 — fair whites and dark 
whites, 486. 

Hyndford crannog, near Lanark, 416 
et seq. — relics found at, 418 et seq. 

Ice Age, 20 et seq. 

Implements of bone and horn, found 
in MacArthur's Cave, 48 et seq. — 
in rock-shelter at Oban, 55 — at 
Caisteal-nan-Gillean, 56 — of deer- 
horn in the Carse of Stirling, 57 
et seq. — of the Stone Age, 155 et 
seq. — process of polishing, 159 et 
seq. — found in graves, 324. 

Industrial life of prehistoric people, 

357 ^^ ^^9- 
Innermessan, Wigtownshire, bronze 

trumpet found at, 201. 
Innes, Cosmo, his 'Sketches of Early 

Scottish History' quoted, 44 — on 

Clava circles, 311. 
Inveravon, finding of sea-shells at, 65 

et seq. 
Inverness, stone circles near, 309. 
Ireland, remains of elk found in, 99 — 

remains of Celtic shorthorn found 

in, 116, 119 — flint saws found in. 



165 — remains of wooden huts found 
in, 335 et seq. — beehive huts in, 339 
et seq. — earth-houses in, 352. 

Irish deer, gigantic, in prehistoric 
times, roo-105. 

Iron Age, 226 et seq. 

Jade, its use in the Stone Age, 140 
et seq. 

Jamieson, Dr John, on fortifications 
on the Laws, 377. 

Jardine, Sir W., on animal remains 
from a peat-bog, 90. 

Jedburgh, skull of urus found near, 

Jervise, Mr Andrew, on "Picts' house" 
at Teahng, 349. 

Jet, its use in the Stone Age in Scot- 
land, 143 et seq. 

Jewitt, Mr Llewellynn, reference to 
' Grave-Mounds ' by, 240, 

JoasSj Dr, on animal remains near 
Tain, 86 — at Kintradwell, 115 — on 
glass beads, 211 — reference to 'Ar- 
chseologia Scotica ' by, 396. 

Jolly, Mr W. , on bronze armlet found 
at Poolewe, 207. 

Keiss, Caithness, portion of reindeer 
horns found at, 88, 91 — part of 
antler of elk found at, 99 — remains 
of large ox found at, 115 — Celtic 
shorthorn found at, 118 — bones of 
the Great Auk found in the Har- 
bour Mound, 125 — bear's tooth 
found in broch at, 128 — excava- 
tion of eight brochs by Sir F. T. 
Barry, 402 — relics found, 403. 

Keith Marischal, East Lothian, jet 
button found at, 172. 

Keller, Dr, his experiments in cutting 
and boring stones, 147. 

Kelton, Kirkcudbrightshire, bronze 
with horns found in, 238. 

Kemble's * Horas Ferales ' quoted, 
234 et seq. 

Kettleburn, Celtic shorthorn found 
at, 118 — broch at, 396, 400. 

Kilbarchan, description of a moss 
at, 31. 

Kilchoan, cairn at, 288. 

Kildrummy, Aberdeenshire, " Picts' 
houses " at, 348. 

Killin, bronze bracelet and rings, &c., 
found near, 206. 

Kilmartin, cairn on glebe-lands of, 

Kilmaurs, Ayrshire, reindeer horns 
found at, 90. 

Kinahan, Mr G, H., on Irish elk, 

Kincardine Moss, bronze caldron 

found in, 37. 
Kincardineshire, finds of fabricators 

in, 152 — bronze armlets found near 

the Castle of Kinneff, 207. 
Kinleith, near Edinburgh, bones of ox 

and dog, &c., found at, 118 et seq. — 

bronze blade found at, 191. 
Kintradwell, find of animal remains 

at, 115 — broch of, 396. 
Kirkcudbrightshire, skull of urus 

found in, iii. 
Kirkpark, near Musselburgh, ceme- 
tery with and without urns at, 313. 
Kirkurd, horns of elk found in, 99. 
Kitchen-middens, at Inveravon, 66 — 

in Denmark, 134 — at Salvaterra, 

Portugal, 460. 
Klebs, Richard, reference to * Der 

Bernsteinschmuck der Steinzeit ' 

by, 145 fn. 
Knives, flint, 161 et seq. — of the 

Bronze Age, 187. 
Knock Farril, vitrified fort at, 381, 

Knockmany, Co. Tyrone, sculptured 

stone found in cairn, 224. 
Knowles, Mr W. J., on Great Auk, 

127 — on flint saws, 165. 
KoUmann, Prof., on primitive races, 

Kourganes^ Neolithic remains in, 469. 

Lagore, near Dunshaughlin, Ireland, 
lake-dwelling at, 405 et seq. 

Laibach, in Carniola, remains of 
beaver found at, 121. 

Laidlay, Mr J. W., description of early 
habitation on the '* Ghegan Rock," 

Laing, Mr Samuel, on harbour mound 
at Keiss, 88 — urus, 116 — great auk, 
125 — reference to ' Prehistoric Re- 
mains of Caithness* by, ib. et seq.^ 

403. 457- 

Lake-deposits, strati graphical succes- 
sion of, 26. 

Lake-dwellings, 404 et seq. — sketch of 
lacustrine research, 405 et seq. — La- 
gore, 405 — Ober-Meilen, 406 et seq. 
— other discoveries in Europe, 408 
— Loch of Dowalton, 409 et seq. — ■ 
crannogs in Ayr and Wigtown, 411 
— lake - dwellings in England, 421 
et seq. — structure of lake-dwellings, 
426 et seq. — pile-structures, 427 et 
seq. — crannogs, 430 et seq. — ferre- 
mare, 434 et seq. — marine dwell- 
ings, 435 et seq. — modern pile- 
dwellings, 441. 

Lamberton Moor, Berwickshire, grind- 
ing-stone found on, 160. 



Lanark, skeleton of urus found in the 
parish of, 112 — beaded torque found 
near, 252. 

Lanarkshire, ornamental bronze ball 
found in, 276. 

Lanfine, Ayrshire, arrow-point from, 

Largie Farm, Argyllshire, cairn at, 
285 et seq. 

Largo, Lower, Fifeshire, four gold 
bracelets found at, 208 — torque 
found at, 210. 

Late Celtic Period in Britain, 234 et 

Lauder, Sir Thomas Dick, reference 
to ' Moray Floods ' by, 310. 

Laws, the, Forfarshire, fortifications 
on, 377 et seq. — relics found at, 379. 

' Leges Wallicse,' reference to beaver 
in, 122. 

Lenormant, reference to ' Les Pre- 
mieres Civilisations' by, 133 fn. 

Leswalt, Wigtownshire, ornamented 
socketed celt found in, 185, 217. 

Lewis, stone circles on, 308. 

Lilliesleaf, skulls of uri seen near, iii. 

Lingrow, broch of, 400. 

Linguistic research and Aryan lan- 
guage, 471. 

Linlithgowshire, enamelled bronze 
cup or patere found in, 251. 

Linton Loch, Roxburghshire, remains 
of urus, &c., found in, in. 

Lisnacroghera, relics of Late Celtic 
Period found at, 274. 

Llangorse, Lake of, Wales, crannog 
at, 422. 

Lochan Dughaill, crannog at, 334, 
415 — relics found at, 416. 

Lochar Moss, 36 — beaded torque found 
in, 40, 252 — description of, 67 — Rev. 
James Laurie's account of, 68. 

Loch Etive, exploration of cairn near, 
283 et seq. 

Lochlee crannog, fragments of rein- 
deer horns found in, 90 — remains of 
Celtic shorthorn, &c. , found in, 117 
— evidence of kind of dwelling at, 
334 — discovery of, 411 — construc- 
tion of, 431. 

Lochspouts, Ayrshire, scraper from 
crannog of, 166. 

London, remains of brown bear found 
in, 129 — remains of pile-buildings 
found near London Wall and South- 
wark, 422. 

Loughrea, head of Irish elk found in, 

Low, George, quotation from ' Tour 
thro' Orkney and Shetland ' by, 35. 

Lowe, Rev. George, on cemetery at 
Kirkpark, 313. 

Lowson, MrW., on Bronze-Age ceme- 
tery, 40. 

Lunan Head, Forfar, jet necklace of 
Bronze Age found at, 213. 

Lyell, Sir Charles, on marl-deposits, 
26 — 'Antiquity of Man' referred to, 
28 fn. 

Macalister, Mr Stewart, on ruins of 
Fahan, 341. 

MacArthur Cave, Oban, discovery of, 
46 — contents of the cave, 47 et seq. — 
description of bone and horn imple- 
ments, 48 etseq. — animal remains, 49 
et seq. — discussion of the cave, 52 et 
seq. — Celtic shorthorn found in, 118. 

M'Call, Mr, reference to ' History 
and Antiquities of the Parish of 
Mid-Calder,' 187. 

M'CuUoch, Dr, reference to 'High- 
lands and Western Isles of Scot- 
land ' by, 383. 

Macdonald, Dr, reference to " Burg- 
head as the site of an Early Christian 
Church " by, 375. 

Macdonald, Mr James, excavations on 
Tap o' Noth, 385. 

Mackay, Mr James, on broch of Ous- 
dale, 391. 

Maclagan, Miss C, reference to ' The 
Hill Forts and Stone Circles of Scot- 
land ' by, 366. 

M(Eatce^ 12. 

Maeshowe, tumulus of, 298 et seq. 

Magdalen Bridge, near Musselburgh, 
cemetery at, 314. 

" Maidens," the, discovery of bronze 
celts at, 77. 

Mapleton, Rev. R. J., on cairns in 
Argyllshire, 288. 

Marine dwellings in Holland, 435 — 
analogous remains in Scotland, 436 
et seq, 

Marlee, Loch of, Perthshire, animal 
remains found in, 89 — a pair of 
elk's horns found at, 94 — remains of 
beaver found in, 122. 

Mauchrie Moor, Arran, stone circles 
on, 316 et seq. 

Maxwell, Sir Herbert, reference to 
' Dumfries and Galloway ' by, 7 — on 
miniature bronze axe, 186 — war- 
trumpets, 201. 

Maxwell, W. H., reference to 'Hill- 
side and Border Sketches ' by, 96. 

Maybole, remains of Irish elk found 
in the parish of, 103 — skull of urus 
found in, 112. 

Melfort, Argyllshire, bronze armlet, 
&c., found at, 206. 

Mid-Calder,bronze knife-blade found in 
parish of, 187. 



Middlesby, Annandale, bridle - bits, 
&c., found at, 250. 

Midhill Head, Mid-Lothian, fortified 
camp on, 370. 

Millknowe, flint implements found in 
beach shingle at, 74 et seq. 

Millport, fossil Trochus liiteatus fonnd. 
in raised beach strata of, 8t. 

Mitchell, Sir Arthur, his 'The Past in 
the Present' referred to, 6, 338 — his 
observations on the forest of Cree, 
42, 69. 

Molyneux, Dr, on Irish elk, 100. 

MonteliuSj Dr, reference to ' Findet 
man in Schweden Ueberreste von 
einem Kupferalter ' by, 179. 

Monzie Castle, Perthshire, sculptured 
stone found at, 224. 

Moosseedorfsee, settlement of, 25. 

Moothills, 367. 

Morayshire, bronze objects found at 
Wester Achtertyre, 206. 

Morbhaich Mor, Tain, find of animal 
remains at, 86, 119. 

Morris, Mr David B., on whale re- 
mains near Stirling, 62 et seq. 

Mortillet, M. G. de, reference to 'For- 
mation de la Nation Fran9aise' by, 

Mortimer, Mr J. R., on Howe Hill 
barrow, 451. 

Mosses, finding of trees in, 30 et seq. 

Motes, 367 et seq. 

Moulin, Perthshire, skull of urus found 
near, 114. 

Mount Batten, Late Celtic ornaments 
at, 264. 

Mountstuart, Bute, necklace of Bronze 
Age, and other remains, found at, 

Mousa, Shetland, broch of, 389 et seq. 

Munro, Robert, references to ' Ancient 
Scottish Lake - Dwellings ' by, 90, 
108, 414, 441 — references to ' Lake- 
Dwellings of Europe ' by, 39, 121, 
125, 128, 142, 143 fn., 148 fn,, 175, 
187, 210 fn., 232 fn., 237 fn., 347 
fn., 414, 437 — references to 'Pre- 
historic Problems' by, 55 fn., 165, 
180, 444 fn. — references to * Rambles 
and Studies in Bosnia' by, 119, 121, 
175 fn., 237 fn., 261 fn., 358 fn., 366 

Murthly, Perthshire, bone button 
found at, 173. 

Musselburgh, cemetery of Bronze Age 
at, 40 — bronze blade found at Mag- 
dalen Bridge, near, 190. 

Muthil, remains of uri found near 
Drummond Castle, 115. 

Muthill, Perthshire, two bronze arm- 
lets found neai", 253. 

Necklaces of Bronze Age, 212. 
Needles of bone and bronze, 205. 
Neish, Mr James, on fortifications on 

the Laws, 378 et seq. 
Neolithic man, first appearance of, in 

Britain, 83 — domestic animals of, 84. 
Newburgh, Fifeshire, skull of urus 

found at, 112. 
Newbury, Berkshire, bones of beaver, 

&c., found at, 121. 
Newry, Co. Down, Ireland, bronze 

armlet found near, 256. 
Newstead, Roxburghshire, remains of 

Celtic shorthorn found at Roman 

station at, 118. 
Niedervvyl, huts at, 336. 
Nilsson, Professor, quotation from 

* Primitive Inhabitants of Scandi- 
navia' by, 447. 
Northamptonshire, Late Celtic bronze 

ornament found in, 261. 
North Esk, cave near mouth of, 79. 
Norton, Suffolk, enamelled ornament 

for harness found at, 249. 

Oakwood, Selkirkshire, skull and horns 
of elk found at, 97. 

Oban, MacArthur Cave at, 46-54 — 
discovery of rock-shelter at, 54 et 
seq. — contents of the shell-heap at, 
55 — barbed harpoons found at, 169. 

Obsidian, use of, in the Stone Age, 142 
et seq. 

Okstrow, broch of, 400. 

Old Luce, javelin -head found at 
Machermore, 170. 

'Orkneyinga Saga,' reference to, 86. 

Orkney Islands, decayed timber found 
in peat-bogs, 34 et seq. 

Ornaments, of the Stone Age, 172 et 
seq. — of Bronze Age, 204 et seq. — 
found in graves, 323. 

Oronsay, finding of bone harpoons and 
implements of bone and stone at 
Caisteal-nan-Gillean, 56. 

Orphir, Orkney, portions of woollen 
cloth found in cist at Greenlgoe, 174. 

Orton, near Fochabers, gold earrings 
found at, 2T4. 

Otter in prehistoric times, 129. 

Ousdale, Caithness, broch at, 391 et 

Owen, Sir Richard, references to * Brit- 
ish Fossil Mammals' by, 89 fn., 
loi, 106, 109, 113, 116, ijgetseq., 
124, 129 fn,, 132. 

Ox, domestic, of urus type, approxi- 
mate date of introduction into Scot- 
land of, 130. 

Papa Westray, Orkney, sepulchral 
cairn at, 306, 307 et seq. 



Paton, Sir Noel, on gold earrings, 

Paulinus, attack of, on Isle of Mona, 

Peach, Mr B. N., on kitchen-middens 

at Inveravon, 66. 
Peat-bogs, 29 et seq. 
Peeblesshire, bronze armlet found near 

Siobo Castle, 207 — bronze armlet, 

&c., found on farm of Stanhope, 

Pennant's ' Tour ' quoted, 68 — ' His- 
tory of Quadrupeds' referred to, 

89 — on broch at Glenelg, 394. 
Pentland Hills, mammalian bones 

found at Green Craig, 90 — bronze 

sword-sheath found near, 244. 
Perdeswell, near Worcester, bronze 

torque found at, 252. 
Perrot et Chipiez, reference to ' His- 

toire de I'Art dans I'Antiquit^ ' bv, 

143 fn. 
Personal ornaments of the Late Celtic 

Period, 251 et seq. 
Petit-Morin, Neolithic remains at, 466. 
Petrie, Mr George, on sepulchral 

cairns, 305, 307. 
Pheasant, approximate date of intro- 
duction into Scotland of, 130. 
Phocseans found Massilia, 2. 
Phoenicians, colonies of, i — did not 

trade for tin with Britain, 2. 
Physical features of Scotland in pre- 
historic times, 19. 
Pickering, Yorkshire, indications of 

lake-dwellings found on the banks 

of the Costa, near, 423 et seq. 
Picts, their first appearance in history, 

Picts' houses, 343 et seq. 
Piette, M., on the rock-shelter of Mas- 

d'Azil, 55. 
Pins of the Bronze Age, 204. 
Pitalpin, near Dundee, bronze armlet 

found near, 258. 
Pitkelloney armlets, 254 et seq. 
Pitt-Rivers, General, on pile-dwellings 

at London Wall, 422. 
Pliny's ' Natural History' referred to, 

108, 435 — on wild oxen, 108. 
Plymouth, find of Late Celtic Period 

at Mount Batten, near, 264. 
Polden Hill, near Bridgewater, bosses 

of shields, bridle-bits, &c., found at, 

Polishing stone implements, process 

of, 159 et seq. 
Poolewe, Ross-shire, penannular ring 

found at, 207. 
PrEetorius, Mr J. C, on bronze 

trumpets, 203. 
Pytheas, the voyage of, 3. 

Quanterness, near Kirkwall, cham- 
bered cairn at, 304. 

Queensferry, cover-stone of cist, with 
spiral decoration, found near, 221. 

Quoyness, sepulchral chamber at, 306. 

Raesgill, Lanarkshire, fragment of rein- 
deer horn found at, 89. 

Rampini, Sheriff, reference to ' His- 
tory of Moray and Nairn ' by, 375. 

Rannoch, Moor of, torque found at, 

Rat, common, approximate date of 
introduction into Scotland of, 130. 

Rau, Charles, reference to ' Contri- 
butions to N. American Ethnology ' 
by, 218, 

Razors of the Bronze Age, 190. 

Read, Mr C. H., on sword-sheath 
from Hunsbury, 241. 

Red -deer in prehistoric times, 105- 

Reindeer, remains of, found in Scot- 
land, 86-91 — remains rarely found 
in Denmark in peat, 128 — approxi- 
mate date of extinction of, 130. 

Relative level of land and sea, 22 et 

Religion of the Britons, 12 et seq. 

Retzius, Prof., on Scandinavian skulls, 

Rhys, Prof., on pre-Celtic people of 
Britain, 483. 

Robenhausen, remains of urus found 
at, 109 — civilisation of lake-dwellers 
at, 36t. 

Rochdale, Lancashire, bronze torque 
found in, 251. 

Rock-shelter at Ardrossan, 81. 

Roe-deer in prehistoric times, 105-108. 

Rogart, Sutlierland shire, bronze razor 
found at, 190. 

Rolleston, Professor, quotation from 
article *'On the Iron, Bronze, and 
Stone Ages," to — reference to ' Brit- 
ish Barrows ' by, 133, 134, 448 et 
seq.y 457 — on the oxidation theory 
as accounting for the disappearance 
of iron relics, 229. 

Romans, their invasion of Scotland, 7 
et seq. — battle of Mons Graupins^ 9 
— Hadrian's wall, 11 — march of the 
Kmperor Severus through Scotland, 
ib. et seq. — destruction of British 
forests by, 43. 

Ross-shire, reindeer horn found in the 
peat-bogs of, 90. 

Rousay, reindeer horn found in, 90. 

Roxburghshire, fabricator found in, 
153 — borer found in, ib. 

Roy, General, on the position of Agric- 
ola's headquarters, 9 — reference to 



' Military Antiquities of the Romans 
in North Britain' by, 375. 
Riitimeyer, Professor, on the wild 
swine possessed by Swiss lake- 
dwellers of the Stone Age, 125 — on 
the dogs of the Swiss lake -dwellings, 

Saham Toney, Norfolk, rings, &c., of 
Late Celtic Period found at, 248. 

St Andrews, Orkney, complete woollen 
hood found in a moss in parish of, 

St Keverne, Cornwall, objects of Late 
Celtic Period found at, 265. 

Salmon, M. Philippe, on Neolithic 
crania of Gaul, 463 — general con- 
clusions on, 467. 

Saws, flint, 163 et seq. — of the Bronze 
Age, 189. 

Schliemann, reference to ' Ilios ' by, 
140, 143, 231 — reference to ' Mycenae 
and Tiryns ' by, 143 fn. 

Schussenried, dwelling of Stone Age 
at, 333. 

Schweizersbild, rock-shelter at, 83, 

Scoiland, Agricola's invasion of, 7 et 

* seq. — battle of Mons Graupius, 9 — 
physical features in prehistoric times, 
16 — climatic and topographical feat- 
ures, 20 et seq — first appearance of 
Scots in history, 12. 

Scraper or "thumb flint," 166. 

Seafield Tower, Fife, bronze armlets 
found near, 255. 

Seal, remains of, found in brochs, 
&c., 129. 

Sea-level, in Bronze Age, 40 — in Roman 
times, 41 — alterations in relative level 
of sea and land since appearance of 
man in Scotland, 45 et seq. — argu- 
ment from finding of canoes in Clyde 
basin, 71 — evidence from sand- 
dunes, raised beaches, &c., 73 et 

Seamill, Ayrshire, fort at, 376 — relics 
found at, ib. et seq. 

Selkirkshire, remains of urus, stag, 
&c., found in, 97 et seq. — head of 
urus found in, no. 

Sergi, Prof., on dolichocephalic races 
prior to Celts and Etruscans, 469. 

Severus, Emperor, march of, to Moray 
Firth, II. 

Shanwell, Kinross-shire, bronze blade 
found at, 190. 

Sheep, domestic, origin of, 131. 

Shetland Islands, decayed timbers 
found in peat-bogs, 34 et seq. 

Shewalton Moor, evidence of encamp- 
ment at, 76, 

Shields of Bronze Age, 200 — of Late 
Celtic Period, 236 et seq. 

Sickles of the Bronze Age, 189. 

Silures, the, 14 — description of, by 
Tacitus, 443. 

Simpson, Mr James, on animal re- 
mains in Oban Cave, 49 — at Green 
Craig, 90. 

Simpson, Sir James, reference to 
' Ancient Sculpturings of Cups and 
Concentric Rings, &c.,' by, 218, 221, 

Sinclair, Mr T,, on broch of Dun- 
beath, 400. 

Singapore, pile-dwellings at, 441. 

Skaill, underground house of, Orkney, 
horns of large ox found in, 116. 

Skelmuir, Aberdeenshire, stone anvils 
found at, 150, 151 — hoard of flints 
found at, 357. 

Skene, Dr, on the position of Agricola's 
headquarters, 9. 

Skerrabrae, Orkney, " Picts' houses" 
at, 344 et seq. 

Skye, bronze pin found in, 204. 

Slains, Aberdeenshire, celt found at 
Ferney Brae, 158. 

Slateford, Mid- Lothian, coiled gold 
bracelet found at, 208. 

Sling-stones, 170. 

Smith, Dr Angus, on Dun Mac 
Uisneachan, 251 — on cairn of Ach- 
nacree, 283. 

Smith, Dr J. Alexander, on the rein- 
deer, 86 — elk, 91 et seq. — red-deer, 
108 et seq. — urus, in — stone balls, 
171 et seq. — bronze helmets, 238 et 
seq. — bronze armlets, 254 et seq. 

Smith, Rev. Fred., on palasolithic re- 
mains in Scotland, 20. 

Smith, Mr John, reference to 'Pre- 
historic Man in Ayrshire ' by, 420 
fn. — on rock-shelter at Ardrossan, 
81 — on beaver, 122. 

Smith's ' Newer Pliocene Geology ' re- 
ferred to, 70. 

Snaburgh, broch of, 398. 

Sobunar, near Sarajevo in Bosnia, re- 
mains of beaver found at, 121. 

Social life of prehistoric inhabitants of 
Britain, 329 et seq. 

Solutr^, remains of horse, &c., on pre- 
historic camping -ground at, 132, 

Soiway Moss, stone axe from, 161. 

Spear-heads, of Stone Age, 169 et seq. 
— of Bronze Age, 193 et seq. 

Spiennes, pit-dwellings and flint-fac- 
tories at, 331. 

Spindle-whorl, 173. 

Spoon-like objects of Late Celtic 
Period, 261. 



Standing stones, 318. 

Stanwick, Yorkshire, bridle-bits, &c., 
found at, 247. 

Staub, F., reference to 'Die Pfahl- 
banten in den Schweizer - Seen ' 
by, 407 fn. 

Steenstrup, frof., on domestication of 
the dog, 134. 

Stewart, Mr Charles, on bronze hoard 
at Killin, 206. 

Stitchel, Roxburghshire, bronze collar 
found near, 253. 

Stone Age : the raw materials used by 
the people, 140-146 — their workshop 
and its tools, 146-154 — method of 
chipping, 146 et seq. — method of 
boring, 147 et seq. — tools used in the 
manufacture of flint instruments, 
150 et seq. — implements, weapons, 
and ornaments, 154-176 — process 
of polishing stone implements, 159 
et seq. 

Stone balls, 170 et seq. 

Stone circle, at Ballymenach, 290 — 
Ring of Brogar, 297 — in Kincardine 
and Aberdeen, 3r6 — at Mauchrie 
Moor, Arran, ii. — Auquhorthies, 

Stoneykirk, Wigtownshire, whetstone 
and stone axe found in, 160. 

Stoppani, A., reference to ' L'Ambra 
nella Storia e nella Geologia' by, 
145 fn. 

Strath Halladale, horns of elk and 
red-deer found in, 95 et seq. 

Strathnairn, stone circles of, 309. 

Strathspey, fabricator found at, 152. 

Strobel, Prof., on swine in the Terre- 
mare^ 125. 

Stuart, Dr, on earth-houses, 351 — on 
the fortifications on the Laws, 378 
— on crannogs in Loch Dowalton, 

Sword-sheaths, Hunsbury, 241 — Ayr- 
shire, 243 — Lisnacroghera, 244 — 
Pentland Hills, ib. — river Tweed, 
and elsewhere, 245. 

Swords, of Bronze Age, 194 et seq. — 
rapier-shaped blade, 197 — scythe- 
shaped, 193 — of the Late Celtic 
Period, 241 et seq. 

Switzerland, lake-dwellings in, 428. 

Tacitus, his ' Life of Agricola' quoted, 
8 — reference to Druids quoted from 
'Annals,' 13 — on underground 
dwellings, 356. 

Tap o' Noth, vitrified fort on, 385. 

Tarbolton, Ayrshire, stone axe found 
at, 158 — bronze horn found at, 201. 

Tarves, Aberdeenshire, bronze pins 
found at, 204. 

Tate, George, reference to ' Sculp- 
tured Rocks of Northumberland ' 
by, 218. 

Tealing, Forfarshire, "Plot's house" 
at, 349. 

Terpen, structure of, 435 — described 
by Pliny, ib. 

Terremare, structure of, 434. 

Thames, antiquities found in, 236,, 

Thomas, Captain, on beehive huts,, 

Thurnam and Davis, reference tc 
' Crania Britannia ' by, 448, 457. 

Tillicoultry, sculptured cover - stone 
of cist found at, 223. 

Tools used by people of Stone Age, 
146-154- , 

Topographical features of prehistoric 
Scotland, 22 et seq. — main outlines 
remain unaltered, 26. 

Torque, beaded, found in Lochar 
Moss, 40 — torque or twisted neck- 
ring of the Bronze Age, 209 — torques 
of Late Celtic Period, 251 — in Hynd- 
foni crannog, 253. 

Torrs, Old Luce, Wigtownshire, borer 
found at, 154 — flint knives from, 162 
— scraper found at, 166 — arrow- 
points from, 167, 168 — bracer found 
at, 169. 

Torwoodlee, Selkirkshire, enamelled] 
ornament, &c., found at, 249 — 
broch at, 400. 

Towie, Aberdeenshire, stone balf 
found at, 171. 

Trenoweth, Cornwall, fragment of 
bronze collar found at, 252. 

Trepanned skull from grave at Mount- 
stuart, Bute, 213. 

Trumpets of Bronze Age, 201 et seq. 

Tuack, stone circle at, 316, 
Tumulus of Maeshowe, 298 et seq. 
TurnbuU, Mr John, on Edenshall,, 

Turner, Sir William, his report on the 
human remains in the MacArthur 
Cave, 47 — his discussion of the 
implements associated with the 
skeletons of whales in Carse of 
Stirling, 57 et seq. — summary of 
his observations on the prehistoric 
craniology of Scotland, 454 et seq. 

Uhlmann, Dr, on shell-marl, 25. 
Uist, North, roots of trees found in 

peat-bogs in, 29. 
Uist, South, remains of beehive huts 

found in, 338 et seq. 
Underground dwellings, 343 — at Sker- 

rabrae, 344 — in Aberdeenshire, 348. 

— in Forfarshire, 349 — not found in 



Galloway, 351 — in Ireland, 352 — in 

Cornwall, 353 — in Germany, 356. 
Undset, Dr, reference to * Erstes 

Auftreten des Eisens in Nord- 

Europa' by, 233. 
Unstan, Orkney, fabricator found at, 

152 — chambered cairn at, 302 et 

Urns, cinerary, found in graves, 320. 
Urquhart, near Elgin, torque found 

at, 210. 
Urus, in prehistoric times, 108-116, 
Ussher, Mr R. J., on Irish elk, 102 — 

great auk, 126 — on a submarine 

crannog, 437. 

Verneau, Dr, on the Gaunches, 468. 
Victoria Cave, Yorkshire, harpoon 

found in, 57. 
Vitrified forts, 380 et seq, 

Wales, North, remains of brown bear 

found in, 129. 
Walston, ornamented bronze ball 

found at, 277. 
Warne, Mr, reference to ' Celtic 

Tumuli of Dorset' by, 119. 
Wauwyl, remains of urus found at, 

"Way, Mr Albert, on Late Celtic orna- 
ments, 261. 
Weapons, of the Stone Age, 166 et seq. 

— of Bronze Age, 191 et seq, — found 

in graves, 324. 
Weems, 343 et seq. 
Westhall, near Halesworth, Suffolk, 

rings and bronze lamp found at, 

Whales, remains of, found in brochs, 

&c., 129 — stranded in Carse of 

Stirling, 26, 57-65. 
Whitburn, harpoon found at, 57. 

Whitehaugh Moss, Ayrshire, dagger 
of Bronze Age found in, 193. 

Whitmuirhall, discovery of five skulls 
of uri at, no. 

Whitrig Bog, Berwickshire, account 
of skull and horns of elk found 
in, 91 et seq. — portion of skull of 
urus found in, iir. 

Wideford Hill, " Pict's house" at, 

305 ■ 

Wigtownshire, horns of elk found in, 

Wilde, Sir W., reference to ' Beauties 
of the Boyne' by, 174, 456 — on war- 
trumpets, 202 — on early races in 
Ireland, 456. 

Williams, Mr John, reference to 
'An Account of some Remarkable 
Ancient Ruins, &c.' by, 380, 

Willie Struther's Loch , Roxbi irgh- 
shire, skull of elk found at, 97. 

Wilson, Sir Daniel, his ' Prehistoric 
Annals of Scotland' referred to, 
67, 71, 174, 187, 189, 207, 221, 
250. 252, 305 fn., 445 et seq. 

Witham, daggers of Late Celtic 
Period found in, 246. 

Wolf, in prehistoric times, 129 — ap- 
proximate date of extinction in 
Scotland of, 130. 

Wraxal, Somersetshire, bronze torque 
found at, 252. 

Yarhouse, tynes found at, 89 — Celtic 
shorthorn found at, 118 — broch of, 

Yarrow, remains of urus and deer 

found in, 98. 
Yetholm, bronze shield found near, 

Yorkshire, remains of beaver found 

in, 121. 





Vemy Svo, pp. xix-371, profusely illustrated, price lOs. net. 

Contents. — 1. Rise and Progress of Anthropology. 2. On tlie 
relation between the Erect Posture and the Physical and Intellectual 
Development of Man. 3. Notes on " Fossil Man." 4. On Intermediary 
Links between Man and the Lower Animals. 5. Prehistoric Tre- 
panning and Cranial Amulets. 6. Otter and Beaver Traps. 7. Bone 
Skates. 8. Preliistoric Saws and Sickles. 

"One of the most interesting essays in this book is that dealing with the im- 
portance of the assumption of the erect posture as a factor in the physical and 
intellectual development of man. Dr Munro is a strong advocate of the enormous 
advantage which man derived from the attainment of the erect posture, and the 
consequent differentiation of the limbs into hands and feet ; in other words, the 
releasing of the fore-limbs from locomotive duties, so that they might become the 
servants of the brain in other directions, and thus assist the development of 
mental qualities." — Natural Science. 

" Not merely is the above theory important, by rendering the process of 
physical evolution as applied to the human body and brain more conceivable 
than it otherwise would be, but it is still further valuable as furnishing an 
entirely new standard, by means of which 'transition forms,' should remains of 
such appear, may be classified. It thus vindicates, with no uncertain sound, the 
entirely human character of the men of Neanderthal and Spy, and this in spite of 
certain slight but Histinct approaches to the simian type ; while, on the other hand, 
it is able to point to the contrasted characters of skull and thigh bone shown by 
the remains of the strange nondescript from Java, called by its founder, Dr 
Dubois, Pithecanthropus Erectus, as being precisely those which a genuine ' miss- 
ing link' might be trusted to display," — The Quarterly Review. 

" His ' Notes on Fossil Man ' are a model of careful examination of a difficult 

problem We recommend to who would see what pertinacity and 

patience are needed to solve an apparently .simple problem in archseology, the 
study of two essays on otter and beaver traps and bone skates." — '/'he Times. 

" There is no need to further emphasise the fact that Dr Munro has produced a 
book which, though designed for the general reader, contains a good deal of new 
matter, and is a serious contribution to several important aspects of archseology." 
— Nature. 

" Dr Munro is one of the few original investigators who possess the happy 

knack of presenting the results of their inquiries in a popular form The 

author has given us a learned and useful work, and withal a very readable one. 
The different objects described are carefully illustrated." — Antiquary. 

"We are convinced Dr Munro's book will meet with many readers, and will 
prove to be a new stimulant for the study of ma,n."— Internationales Archiv fur 

"The prime value of Dr Munro's book lies in the fact that his object has 
been, not to formulate any fanciful theories and speculations, but to put before 
his readers clearly and fully all the available data. This he has done with com- 
plete success, and there has been no such valuable contribution of recent years 
towards the furtherance of the science of anthropology."— ^fterdem Free Press. 

WILLIAM BLACKWOOD & SONS, Edinbukgh and London. 



Demy Svo, profusely illustrated, price 12s. 6d. net. [In the Press. 

This edition will include, besides some additional matter throughout 
the text, a new chapter on the " Civilisation of Hallstatt and La Tine." 
Notwithstanding the importance of these two landmarks in the evolu- 
tion of the iron industry in Europe, there is no work in the English 
language which gives a general idea of the archseologioal phenomena 
with which they are associated. This desideratum in archaeological 
literature came forcibly before the author while writing ' Prehistoric 
Scotland,' and hence this effort to remove, to some extent, the deficiency 
— for it is a remarkable fact that a knowledge of the subject-matter of 
this chapter is as essential for the elucidation of the Early Iron Age of 
the north-western regions of the Balkan peninsula as it is for that of the 
British Isles. The arohseological part of the work contains a description 
of the remarkable remains found on the Neolithic station of Butmir, 
and in the cemeteries of Glasinac and Jezerine, together with an account 
of the Proceedings of the Special Congress invited by the Government 
to discuss the place of these remains in the prehistoric civilisation of 


"No surer guide to the archaeology of this almost virgin soil could be wished for 
than Dr Munro, and his patient and lucid explanation is profusely supplemented 
by excellent plates and cuts in the text. " — Pall Mall Gazette. 

"Every page of the book has something of interest in it, and from the vivid and 
lucid style of the author the reader may, when he closes it, almost imagine he has- 
himself traversed the wooded glens and rugged depths so clearly depicted to him." 
— Belfast Neivs-Letter. 

"The author has produced a book which will become a necessity to all students 
of the history and antiquities of Bosnia - Herzegovina and Dalmatia." — The 

" Sketch-maps and many illustrations heighten the interest of this fascinating 
monograph." — Evening Standard. 

" l>r Munro has, indeed, produced a book worthy of the subject and of his own 
reputation, a work of unending interest to archseologists, and one with consider- 
able attraction as a picture of scenery and a record of travel." — Notes and Qiceries. 

"We specially commend chapters ix. and x. to all persons interested in the 
details of a bygone civilisation, containing as they do a masterly summary of the 
subject. The figure ornamentation of men and animals in the cemeteries com-^ 
monly assigned to the Bogomiles, and representing the chase, the battlefield, the 
dance, and other idyllic scenes, are of peculiar signification." — Daily Neius. 

"But, apart from these matters, the book is a mine of information about a 
most interesting region, which, though now easily accessible to Western Europeans, 
has as yet been little visited." — Guardian. 

" L'auteur tout en abordant avec sa haute competence les questions scientifiques, 
decrit d'une maniere charmante sou voyage." — Revue Mensuelle. 

WILLIAM BLACKWOOD & SONS, Edinburgh and London.