lewisian gneiss


The Callanish Stones are a collection of stones arranged in the form of a cross. They are located near the village and Callanish, Scotland, erected in the late Neolithic era. One local legend claims the stones were petrified giants who would not convert to Christianity. Another claims the stones as the end of a hiking path for an entity known as “the Shining One,” who walks amongst the stones in early midsummer mornings and is heralded by the call of a cuckoo.

Carved from lewisian gneiss, the Callanish Stones consist of a large stone circle, a series of standing stones, and a large chambered tomb-like structure beneath the ground.

Thought to be the focus for Bronze Age ritualistic activity, numerous nearby monuments and stone circles suggest the area itself was a site of prehistoric religious activity for at least 1500 years. Although interestingly, sometime around 1500 – 1000 BC the complex fell into disrepair as Bronze Age farmers used up the land. It was abandoned probably sometime around 800 BC and by 500 BC the smaller stones and the circle were covered by turf over 1 meter thick.

As with most things this old, the way these stones were used remains a mystery. Not surprisingly there is some thought that it was a lunar observatory, but critics quite reasonably argue that alignments between stars and standing stones are bound to exist by pure chance as much as they deliberate design. Moreover, extreme weathering and shifts in the earth over millennia mean there is no way to be certain that these alignments are even still accurate.


Gneiss Beach by Seán Kerr Photography
Via Flickr:
Lewisian Gneiss rocks on Tràigh Mhòr (Big Beach), Isle of Harris. These rocks are some of the oldest on earth at three billion years old.


‘Lewisian Gneiss’ - A4 illustration print now available on my ETSY SHOP 

Inspired by numerous Alan Watts lectures, Dynamic form in nature (from the expression, ‘li’), ecology and geological patterns in rock formations.

Li can be seen as a manifestation of the gestalt, defined as the inherent pattern of things.  It has been used as a Chinese expression for a very long time indeed.

Would make an ideal gift for woodland animal enthusiasts and those alike! Purchase it for your partner, friend, dog or why not just treat yourself, eh?

This A4 black and white art print measures 29.7 x 42.0cm, 11.69 x 16.53 inches and is printed on A4, 220gsm heavyweight, off-white cartridge paper.

Sugar, Spice and Lewisian Gneiss

Nestled happily between my muffin and cup of tea just so happens to be a rock that is 2.8 BILLION years old. It is actually the oldest rock type in the UK and here it is sitting on my kitchen table. This was picked up on the Isle of Skye in Scotland and despite all the pretty minerals I have on display, the sheer mind blowing age still makes this one of my favourite pieces.


Good Morning from Scotland 

Suilven - Sunrise from ancient lands. by Andy Belshaw
Via Flickr:
Suilven Lying in a remote area in the west of Sutherland, it rises almost vertically from a wilderness landscape of moorland, bogs and lochans. It is formed of Torridonian sandstone, sitting on a landscape of Lewisian Gneiss. The surrounding rocks were eroded during an episode of glaciation. Suilven was left poking above the level of the ice sheet, as a nunatak, with the flow of ice creating the distinctive narrow teardrop plan, while carving and scouring the vertical sides of the mountain

Watch on the-earth-story.com

Time lapse flight over the Isle of Lewis, one of the islands in the Outer Hebrides off the coast of Scotland. This is the type area for the Lewisian Gneiss, one of the main metamorphic units making up the northern section of Scotland. Look at all the glacial lakes.