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Pictish Stones Trail
As one of the heartlands of the Pictish community, Aberdeenshire is home to a large number of the elaborately decorated Symbol Stones for which the Picts are famed – around 20% of all Pictish stones recorded in Scotland can be found in Aberdeenshire.
The stones, incised or carved in relief, are decorated with a variety of symbols, ranging from geometric shapes and patterns, to animals (real and mythical), human figures, objects, and Christian motifs. Some earlier Pictish stones are also incised with a script known as Ogham, which comprises a pattern of short linear strokes crossing a vertical line.
The exact purpose of Pictish Stones, and the meaning of the symbols which adorn them, is not clearly understood, and continues to be the subject of much research and debate. Current thinking is that the symbols may represent the names of individuals or groups, possibly acting as some kind of land marker or commemoration stone. The sites listed are an introduction to Pictish Aberdeenshire, highlighting the some of the area’s best carved stones – but there are plenty more out there to explore!
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