Recumbent Stone Circles

Learn about these mysterious stone circles!

A Forestry Commission Scotland resource:

Recumbent stone circles are amongst the oldest surviving structures in Scotland. They were built during the Bronze Age, roughly 4,000 years ago.

You may be familiar with stone circles – they are found in many places, from Stonehenge in Wiltshire to Callanish on the Isle of Lewis. However, recumbent stone circles are unique to Scotland’s north-east.

They get their name because one large stone in the circle is laid on its side, or is ‘recumbent’. We think ancient peoples might have used these circles to record the seasons or the passage of the sun and moon. They may have hosted funerary pyres or ceremonial bonfires. Whatever their purpose, they have fascinated people for generations.

We have created a learning resource and supporting loan box for teachers and youth group leaders, hoping to encourage people of all ages be inspired by these amazing Bronze Age structures and the people who built them. These resources are designed to help young people to learn about recumbent stone circles and the solar system as part of the Curriculum for Excellence.

It outlines the scope to study recumbent stone circles as a focus topic, or to support study of the Solar System, weather and climate change, mathematics or local environment and includes information about further reading and guides to more in depth activities.

Posted by: Forestry Commission Scotland

(c) Forestry Commission Scotland

Post Author: r.boyde