Who is pebbles dating

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The stones were also rubbed together with no effect on the new painted symbols.These experiments using distilled peat tar reveal a substance, which was readily available as a resource and much easier to find than haematite.Excavations at Old Scatness and Sandwick, Unst present us with reliable dates obtained from secure archaeological contexts, establishing their use from the middle Iron Age, through the late Iron Age and into the Pictish period.As more archaeological sites are investigated in the future we may yet find further clues about the origin and purpose of these intriguing artefacts. Further research is needed into their type and distribution across the surfaces of these mysterious stones."More from Culture24's Archaeology section: Archaeologists investigate lost medieval chapel built to rest souls of kings in Edinburgh Iron Age hillforts to 18th century graves: Archaeologists reveal discoveries in Scotland Archaeologists find ketchup, fishy condiments, beer and radio remains at World War II Prisoner of War camp DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted at are the opinion of the comment writer, not Culture24.In most areas where painted pebbles have been found, peat was generally used for domestic fires and also for smelting and smithing, due to the dearth of wood resources.This was especially the case in Shetland from the early Iron Age onwards.At first, a straw was used, and this replicated dots, S-scrolls and lines similar to those on the Scalloway pebbles used as examples.As more dots were applied to the stone’s surface, and as the paint on the straw lessened, the dots became fainter, which was reminiscent of some of the original designs.

The presumed emblematic value of quartz in prehistory may have been important in portable material culture; one suggestion is that the small decorated pebbles may have been used as charm-stones.Another, more recent suggestion concerning the function of painted pebbles is that they were produced and used in conjunction with metalworking.This discussion continues today as more of these enigmatic pebbles are unearthed.To reproduce the perfect circles seen on the Buckquoy pebble, two ‘tools’ were used: the shaft of a large seagull feather cut in half, and the hollow stalk of Wild Angelica, both of which were used with good precision to duplicate the original designs.The rings produced on the experimental pebble, using the bird’s feather, were almost identical to the markings on the Balta example.

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