Carved stone balls are petrospheres dated from the late Neolithic to possibly as late as the Iron Age mainly found in Scotland, but also elsewhere in Britain and Ireland. They are usually round and rarely oval, and of fairly uniform size at around 2.75 inches or 7 cm across, with 3 to 160 protruding knobs on the surface. They range from having no ornamentation (apart from the knobs) to extensive and highly varied engraved patterns. A wide range of theories have been produced to explain their use or significance, with none gaining very wide acceptance.
A revolutionary new idea on the movement of big monument stones like those at Stonehenge has been put forward by an archaeology student. He discovered that many of the late Neolithic stone balls had a diameter within a millimeter of each other, which he felt indicated they would have been used together in some way rather than individually.
The Ground Stone Tools of Britain and Ireland: an Experimental Approach Andy's doctoral research explores the way ground stone tools are currently interpreted and examines the manufacture of a wide range of implements through experimental archaeology. His research contextualises the nature of ground stone tools with reference to the Neolithic and Bronze Age, analysing the trajectory of their development over time and the ways technological innovation may have driven certain morphological changes. He has developed a range of complimentary technical analyses which can be applied to experimental replication studies in order to better understand a wide range of tools. Interpretations are based on qualitative and quantitive data, whilst at the same time examine the ways a post-processual-linked phenomenological perspective might be a valid means of enquiry, with special emphasis on craft skills.
New archeological finds shed light on the most misunderstood monument of the ancient world.
Dated to the late Stone Age, Stonehenge may be the best-known and most mysterious relic of prehistory. Every year, a million visitors are drawn to England to gaze upon the famous circle of stones, but the monument's meaning has continued to elude us. Now investigations inside and around Stonehenge have kicked off a dramatic new era of discovery and debate over who built Stonehenge and for what purpose.
How did prehistoric people quarry, transport, sculpt, and erect these giant stones? Granted exclusive access to the dig site at Bluestonehenge, a prehistoric stone-circle monument recently discovered about a mile from Stonehenge, NOVA cameras join a new generation of researchers finding important clues to this enduring mystery.
THEY are among the most mysterious artefacts ever discovered in Scotland, ornate relics whose purpose has long been lost to the mists of time.
I AM pleased that Jeff Nisbet has managed to do what I have tried in vain to do for the past two years which is to get media interest into what may well be the first examples of art in Scotland ("New theory sheds light on mysterious stone balls found across Scotland", The Herald, May 4) with the suggestion that the balls are, perhaps, apprenticeship pieces for entry into the profession of stone masonry.
Hugh Newman investigates the geometric stone spheres found in Northeast Scotland, Orkney and parts of Britain and Ireland. What were they used for? How did they carve them? One was even found in Bolivia! Read Hugh's two-part article here: https://bit.ly/2H9YxU4.
Our archaeological art takes its inspiration from artefacts found in Orkney. Each one is a unique piece, made by archaeologist Chris Gee.
In the long summer evenings, when it hardly gets dark at all here in Orkney, you will often find Chris in his garden overlooking the archipelago, where he is chipping away at another stone. He finds delight in recreating Stone Age art using their tools and methods. And like them, he carefully selects local stone, with beautiful colours and patterns. In this way, he makes Neolithic ceremonial maces, stone axes, carved stone balls, enigmatic carved stone objects, and beautifully patterned sandstone which he sometimes colours with hematite and other natural dyes. It is awe-inspiring to think that his hands are recreating the same movements that someone right here in Orkney did more than five thousand years ago.
Archaeologist Chris Gee shows how he makes a Carved Stone Ball as they did in Neolithic times. Chris is from the Orkney Islands in Scotland and makes Neolithic art by hand, using the same methods as people would have done in Orkney 5000 years ago. Please visit our website www.brodgar.co.uk for more details about our stone sculptures, archaeological chocolate, and Orkney guided adventures.
Prehistoric Petrosphere – Carved Stone Spheres and Balls Prehistoric Petrosphere – Carved Stone Balls are spherical human-made objects made from stone. These ancient artifacts have been created by carving by up to up to 5200 years ago. These carved stone balls dating from the Late Neolithic to as late as the Iron Age, are mainly […]
Plotting the find sites on a map shows that these petrospheres were often located in the vicinity of Neolithic recumbent stone circles. ❧
Annotated on July 24, 2020 at 03:06PM
They are usually round of reasonably uniform size at around 2.75 inches or 7 cm across. They can have from 3 to 160 protruding knob shapes on the surface. These carved stone balls are nearly all have been found in north-east Scotland, the majority in Aberdeenshire. As portable objects, they are straightforward to transport and have been found on Iona, Skye, Harris, Uist, Lewis, Arran, Hawick, Wigtownshire, and fifteen from Orkney. A similar distribution to that of Pictish symbols led to the early suggestion that carved stone balls are Pictish artifacts. However, examples have been found in Ireland and England. ❧
Annotated on July 24, 2020 at 03:27PM