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Drumtroddan Cup And Ring Marked Rocks

Three groups of well-defined cup and ring marks on bedrock probably carved in the Bronze Age

Drumtroddan Cup And Ring Marked Rocks

Three groups of well-defined cup and ring marks on bedrock probably carved in the Bronze Age.

Part of an important prehistoric landscape.


Mysterious marks

Among the more mysterious relics left behind by our prehistoric forebears is their rock art.

Their designs include cup-marks, cup-and-ring marks, spirals, stars and linear grooves, often densely covering large expanses of rock face. Apart from the occasional axe, the art is not representational – there are no human or animal figures.

Similar prehistoric rock art is found in Scotland from Galloway to Shetland, and in Ireland, Brittany and north-west Spain.

Many people have tried to read a symbolism into these cup-and-ring marks, but we can only speculate about their original significance. Such rock art is difficult to date, but it is also found in archaeological contexts such as tombs. It is clear that the potential date range is very long, from about 3500 to about 1000 BC.


Rock art at Drumtroddan

At Drumtroddan there are three natural rock surfaces covered with carvings. The design of the decoration is relatively simple, although it has been developed to form an intricate pattern.

There are a number of hollows (cups), a few of which are surrounded by one or more rings. One cup is encircled by six rings. These cup-and-ring marks have additional grooves (gutters) linking the cup-and-rings together. The proximity of this rock art to the nearby Drumtroddan Standing Stones suggests that the two sites might be contemporary.


Highlight
  • The pleasing patterns – simple but satisfying.

Facilities

Car Parking

Location

Region – Dumfries and Galloway

2m north east of Port William on the B7085.

Grid reference - NX 362 447.