[< Gallery Home | Latest Images | Top 100 | Submit Picture >]
<< Previous Picture | Next Picture >>
| Robin Hood's Picking Rods |
[500 x 496 jpg]
Unless otherwise stated, this image is the copyright of the submitter. Contact them for permission to reproduce it.
|Description ||Robin Hood's Picking Rods on Mellor Moor at GR: SK006909. The Rods are believed to be the bases of double cross shafts dating to the 9th century, similar to The Bowstones in Lyme. They are used as boundary markers.
According to local tradition Robin Hood bent his bow between the Rods.|
|I saw these for the first time today, I'm not sure that the double cross theory holds up. There is what appears to be the masonic Square and Compass carved into the top of the taller stone, and there is a very clear gothic capital N in the top of the shorter one, why? The taller stone is clearly not of the same type as the shorter and looks like it must have come from a quarry some way off, why? And who cemented the shorter pillar in place? It's all rather enigmatic, does anyone really know?|
|The masonic square and compass and the N would have been added at a later date as graffiti. Can you get a close up of the carvings?|
|I have a close-up of the tops of each of the picking stones. I'll submit those when I find them. (Too many photos! Argh!) The biggest problem with the double cross theory is that the Bow Stones are quite definitely a double cross. They are also wafer-thin and covered in carvings. The Picking Stones are cylindrical (1.5' diameter) and - other than the carvings noted on the top - are featureless. The other thing to note is that the Picking Stones are in an area with mesolithic and Iron Age remains. There are Saxon remains nearby, at St. Thomas' church, including a stone Saxon baptismal font, carved wooden pulpit and altar. The designs are highly distinctive and of high quality. The Picking Stones are much cruder. However, as this is an important point, the base is far more heavily eroded than the pillars. Finally, the Picking Stones are in a direct line between a recently-discovered Mesolithic/Iron Age settlement and a quarry that was used during those periods. However, the sockets would likely have been beyond Mesolithic technology. I therefore deduce (queue violin music and deerstalker) that the Picking Rods' initial incarnation was probably the base and that this dates from the Mesolithic settlement (somewhere in the region of 3000-8000BC). The pillars are likely a later addition, most likely from the Iron Age times (400 BC). Legends tell of the sacrifice of a chieftain's daughter there by druids, but it is far more likely they were simply a trail marker. The settlement discovered seems to have been primarily a trading center with evidence of trading links spanning at the very least coast to coast. Markers of some kind would seem to be inevitable. If this theory is correct, then archaeologists should find similar markers along probable routes over the Pennines and somewhere in the vicinity of Oldknow's Mill and the "Roman Lakes".|
|Thanks for your thoughtful and interesting comments, JC. Look forward to seeing the close-ups.|
To post comments first you must Register!
Megalithic Portal eGallery, images of megaliths and prehistoric sites worldwide, free to view.