The Lang Stane (long stone) of Aberdeen is situated close to bustling and busy Union Street. Many places in the city are named after this stone, but most people don’t even know that it’s there. It’s hidden away on the corner of Langstane Place and Dee Street. The Music Hall can be seen in the background of these first two photos.
History of the Lang Stane
There’s not a lot of documented history on the stone or how it came to be placed in the wall, though I have heard that this event happened in the 1960s. It’s shown as a solitary standing stone on a map from 1746, before Langstane Place was built.
Battles and Boundaries
The Lang Stane may have originally been part of a stone circle. The carved base is consistent with this idea, that anchor shape being common in the stones of Aberdeenshire recumbent circles (see a photo of an uprooted one in this post about the circle on Aikey Brae here). It is also thought to have been used as a boundary marker along with another old and mysterious stone, the Crabstane. Both stones may have borne stony witness to the 1571 Battle of Craibstone between Clans Forbes and Gordon.
Who carved the words on it, or when, I don’t know. But it was very naughty. There is also a faint six-pointed star just below the text, which is interesting but still desecration.
Visiting the Lang Stane
I like to pay the stone a wee visit when I’m in the vicinity, all tucked away and squished into its alcove as it is. There’s no scenic rolling hillsides or lush forests for the Lang Stane as enjoyed by its contemporaries…
The opening scene of FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE takes place in a stone circle, the story then travelling the old cobbled streets of Aberdeen before leaving Scotland’s shores.
There’s a lovely new review of the book up on Pink Quill Books here: “This is a love story that transcends colour, race, and class, as Elizabeth grows from being a spoilt lady of the castle to a young woman who fiercely defends her closest friends.“
FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE
FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE was inspired by the 600 children and young people who were kidnapped from Aberdeen during the 1740s and sold into indentured servitude in the American Colonies. The story follows the adventures of Elizabeth Manteith from the castle and her determined efforts to get back home. There’s love. There’s proper derring-dos on the high seas… and there’s chocolate!
“Filled with excitement and suspense…” Historical Novel Society Editor’s Pick
See the publisher’s Press Release here
SISTERS AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD
Set in 1st century Scotland, SISTERS AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD includes the battle of Mons Graupius between the Romans and the Caledonian tribes. The book features a neurodivergent main character and some rather complicated romance…
See the press release here
Read the article New Novel Highlights Roman History in North East from Grampian Online.
THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR
Taking place mainly in a fictional castle, THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR blends an often overlooked period of history, the Scottish witchcraft accusations, in particular the 1597 Aberdeen witchcraft panic, with a love story. There’s 6 chapters of medieval Christmas too.
See the press release here
From the Press and Journal: New book by Fraserburgh author highlights horrific extent of witch trials in Scotland
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