Old Keig

Recumbent Stone Circle - Aberdeenshire

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NJ 59659 19394 (GPS 45min) Diameter 25.0m (meas.)
Visited August 1987/ July 1999 No magnetic anomalies

Unfortunately not much survives of the circle at Old Keig, only the recumbent, flankers, and one circle stone remain, two smaller stones stand inside the circle near the eastern flanker, but their original function is uncertain. When intact, Keig must have been a magnificent sight, the remaining stones are massive, the flankers are 2.7 and 2.9m high, and the 4.9m long recumbent is the heaviest known at over 40 tons. The size of the recumbent is made even more impressive when it is found that the block of sillimanite gneiss is not local, but was transported from a source several miles to the south east, up a steady slope. Excavation revealed that the turf had been stripped inside the circle and a pyre burned, before the construction of a ring-cairn which was18.6m across. The cairn was found to have kerbed internal space 4.3m across, this area yielded cremated bone, pottery shards, flints, and a broken lignite armlet on excavation. The eastern flanker is aligned to the major southern moonset.

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