Discovering Albion – day 7: It Just Kept Coming…

scotland trip jan 15 557The trouble with Brechin is that no sooner had you marvelled at the Aldbar Cross than you were confronted by the hogback… and all the rest of the stones safely stored in the corner. Now, we had, as you may recall, been foiled in our attempt to deliberately see the first hogback at Heysham in Lancashire, only to fall over them at every turn from that point onwards. So we had seen a few by this point… one just that morning. But none, I have to say, quite like this…

scotland trip jan 15 466
I studiously ignored it for a moment. I barely dare look, so went off to examine the collection of stones stored higgledy-piggledy in the corner. There was a consecration cross such as we had seen on many a church wall… fragments of decorative masonry and bits of crosses… even a small chunk of the roof-tile carving from another hogback… one of the type we were, by now, more used to seeing. It was no use, though. I was going to have to look eventually…

scotland trip jan 15 452I had never seen anything like it before, though technically… apparently… the Brechin hogback is a ‘type A endbeast’. Honestly… What it is, in fact, is an incredibly beautiful and sinuous piece of the craftsman’s art. It is almost as long as I am tall… and that doesn’t take into account the missing length from the damaged end. It was, at one point, reused as a grave cover and bears a 17th century inscription on its underside. However, the stone itself is a thousand years old, probably contemporary with the Round Tower in whose shadow it lies.

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About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at scvincent.com and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email: findme@scvincent.com.
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