The Rocking Stones of Auchmaliddie, situated near the village of New Deer in Aberdeenshire, are thought to be the remnants of a recumbent stone circle. Only the large recumbent and one flanker remain. They are made of white quartz which lights up under the moon and sparkles in the sunlight. What an impressive circle it would have been when whole! Most recumbent circles in the Grampian region are aligned to moon cycles so moonlight quite possibly featured in their use.
They are still beautiful, I think. Even in driving hail, as they were when I visited recently.
The black line there is comprised of straw bales wrapped in plastic. The stones are located at the edge of a field.
Folklore of the Rocking Stones
Local folklore suggests that the stones, also known as the Muckle (huge) Stanes of Auchmaliddie, were once placed on top of one another. It is said that if a person were to stand on them and tell a lie the top stone would tip.
A Stone Circle, Destroyed
The rocking stones have fared better than the stone circle that stood on the hill, just a mile or so away, at the other side of the village. In the 18th century it was smashed up and used in the foundations of the new manse. Bad luck is said to befall anyone who lives on the surrounding lands. The nearby farm is called Standing Stones. Below is the hillside where the circle would have been, Culsh Monument to the right.
In other news, I did a wee interview over on Relationships are Complicated.com here.
Quote from interview: My next historical novel explores the relationship between two chosen sisters who flee abuse together as young children. They are as close as two people can be and I am still working on conveying that closeness and the deep understanding that exists between these young women as they negotiate their own romantic liaisons with men, both approved and unapproved by their community, and as their Bronze Age society marches into war. (Now published. See SISTERS AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD).
If you liked this article on the Rocking Stones of Auchmaliddie, you might like to explore my other stone circle posts here.
Or maybe my books, all of which feature a stone circle:
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!
“Ethereal and spellbinding….” Historical Novel Society
See the press release here
Read the article Roman Aberdeenshire features in author’s new book from Grampian Online.
Taking place mainly in a 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.
See the press release here
From the Press and Journal: New book by Fraserburgh author highlights horrific extent of witch trials in Scotland
FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE was inspired by the kidnapped children and young people of Aberdeen. The story follows the adventures of Elizabeth Manteith from the castle and her determined efforts to get back home. There’s love. There’s derring-dos on the high seas… And there’s chocolate!
See the publisher’s Press Release here
“Filled with excitement and suspense…” Historical Novel Society Editor’s Pick
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35 Replies to “The Rocking Stones of Auchmaliddie”
You have such interesting geographic places to explore for your writing projects!
We do have a lot of stone circles up here!
This is very intriguing! Love this!
Another interesting post.
Thank you 🙂
Interesting stories of the stones. ‘Looking forward to your new story taking shape.
Thank you 🙂
Cozy here in Dallas , covered with my plaid from Scotland and reading this lovely post! Carl and I read all about New Deer and found it on a map- always interesting to read of the Fergusons !
I’m glad the post sparked your interest! Being all warm in a plaid sounds lovely 🙂
Folklore can be quite fascinating.
These posts of yours are always so interesting and send me off to Professor Google to learn more. Thanks for that.
That’s great to hear 🙂
This white quarz is quite unusual for stone circles, is it not? It is beautiful material!
It’s really unusual for them to be made of quartz. This one is near a quarry. White quartz fragments have been found in the local circles by archeologists, giving rise to the idea that it may have been used in full moon rituals.
A pity that they have been destroyed (the circles). The same happened here in Denmark.
The quartz is beautiful. Thank you for the wonderful information and photos. Looking forward to your next novel.
Thank you 🙂
We have a great deal of quartz around here but I am not aware of any stone circles. Thank you for the interesting read.
Glad you liked 🙂
Amazing! With each post you draw me closer and closer to opening one of your books….
*rubs hands together* The plan is working…
Fascinating post especially as I don’t know much about moon cycle alignments. Can understand why white quartz may be used in such sites.
It is beautiful.
Love your photos. So many places for adventure and fairytales. Never been to Scotland (yet), but feel at home in your pictures.
I’m glad you like them 🙂
How wonderful to have all that history to incorporate into your novels. Scotland is indeed a mythical places and so beautiful, at least to my Scottish soul.
These places are inspiring.
Ailish, I don’t know if you’ve ever read Stone Voices by the great Scottish writer Neal Ascherson. It is, on any number of levels, a book worth reading: it’s partly about Scottish identity, the significance of certain iconic stones and more besides. But mostly I’d recommend it just as a piece of literature.
It sounds amazing. I will look it up.
Do visit to my blog and follow it if you like…
My Scottish Gran called the white stones chuckies and they lined her garden path but none were so big!
Yes, we call gravel chuckies up here 🙂 Painful to walk on with bare feet!