The Maiden Stone at Pitcaple near Inverurie in Scotland, of pink granite stands 10 feet tall and is one of the finest examples of a Pictish cross slab in Aberdeenshire. It dates from about the 9th century. The creation of the stone is subject of a local legend when The Maiden of Drumdurno made a wager with a stranger that she could bake a firlot of meal before he could build a road to the top of the local Benachie hill. The stranger was the Devil and of course he finished the road before the bread was baked. The maiden fled and as the Devil caught up with her she uttered a prayer to God. At once she was turned to stone and the place where the Devil touched her shoulder is still marked by the cleft in the stone.
Interesting story about this stone. Devil vs Faith.
What are the symbols that appear in the stone?
The stone is carved with Christian and Pictish symbology. The west side shows a cross with a human figure between two fish. Below the cross there is a disc shape with a celtic spiral motif surrounded by a key patterned ring, with simple knotwork patterns in the corners. On the reverse, there are four panels enclosing: several centaur-type figures and a dog; a notched rectangle and Z-rod; a Pictish Beast; and a mirror and comb. There is a knotwork pattern on the narrow north edge and a keywork pattern on the south edge. A portion of the north edge is missing and the patterns are heavily eroded, particularly on the western face.
The human figure and fish are assumed to represent the Biblical story of Jonah and the Whale.
The site is listed and protected by Historic Scotland.
Thanks for the explanation. Best regards.
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Photo taken in Aberdeenshire, UK
Misplaced? Suggest new location