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Brodgar Farm

Carved Stone (Period Unassigned), Cist(S) (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Brodgar Farm

Classification Carved Stone (Period Unassigned), Cist(S) (Period Unassigned)

Alternative Name(s) House Of Brogar

Canmore ID 2111

Site Number HY31SW 25

NGR HY 302 129

NGR Description HY c. 302 129

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2019.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Orkney Islands
  • Parish Stenness
  • Former Region Orkney Islands Area
  • Former District Orkney
  • Former County Orkney


Ness of Brodgar, Orkney, runic inscription fragment

Measurements: L 0.41m, W 0.15m, H 0.10m

Stone type: sandstone

Place of discovery: HY c 302 129

Present location: National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh (X.IB.211).

Evidence for discovery: found reused in a field wall on Brodgar Farm in or before 1927 when it was presented to NMAS.

Present condition: broken and worn.


This irregular fragment bears incised twig runes but the inscription is difficult to interpret.

Date: uncertain.

References: Barnes & Page 2006, OR 7, 172-4.

Compiled by A Ritchie 2017

Archaeology Notes

HY31SW 25 c. 302 129.

Six short cists and a sculptured stone were found in February 1925 in the field immediately to the SE of the house of Brogar, on Brodgar farm. Five of the cists, including three joined end-to-end and separated only by single slabs, and one 6 ins square and 1 ft deep, were found during ploughing, about 6 ins below the surface. Three of the larger cists each contained unmburnt bones and waterworn stone.

'Outside, but overlapping the E. ends of the two large cists in the centre, was a flat stone of triangular shape, 2 ft 6 ins in length along the front, tapering to 2 3/4 ins at the back, and 3 3/4 ins thick, on the longest side of which were eight bands of chevrons, lozenges, and oblique lines, resembling some of the designs on Bronze Age pottery. This last stone is now in the National Museum.' (J G Marwick 1926; Proc Soc Antiq Scot 1928; H Marwick 1925). A saddle-quern is also said to have been found. (Accession no. of Stone - IA 44)

A sixth cist was later found, five ft beneath the others, containing only reddish ashes. 'Many stones had to be removed before it was reached.'

H Marwick 1925; J G Marwick 1926; Proc Soc Antiq Scot 1928; RCAHMS 1946.

The present farmer at Brodgar could only verify the siting to the field centred at HY 302 129.

No further information.

Visited by OS (NKB) 11 May 1966.


Orkney Smr Note (February 2006)

Excavations started in this area in 2004 and are continuing. Check detailed records.

Information from Orkney SMR


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