Following on from my previous post about Ale’s stones in Skåne Sweden, I decided to make part 2 with a couple more photos.
A quick recap. This stone circle lies in Kåseberga, just east of Ystad in the south of Sweden, high up on a cliff above the Baltic sea looking out towards Germany. It’s what’s known as a ship tumulus or stone ship as it’s more commonly known. In the late iron age, stone ships were a common burial custom in Denmark, Sweden, northern Germany and the baltic states. The largest stone ship, the “Jelling” stone ship in Denmark is 170m long. The Ale stone ship is a mere baby or perhaps little sister in comparison measuring in at just 67m. They can measure all the way down to a few metres in length.
Some believe the ships are meant to provide those buried under them with the things they need in the afterlife. There are also theories that the ships are connected to Norse mythology and will bring good fortune to the land and surrounding people. The stones are believed to date from the latter part of the Nordic Bronze Age or around 1000 BC – 500 BC or from the Germanic Iron Age and the Viking Age. They are usually oval shaped with larger stones at the bow and the stern of the ships.
Ale’s stones, looking north west
Ale’s stones, the “bow” of the ship at the edge of the cliff, the baltic sea, calm today stretches off into the distance.
As to how people brought these huge stones to a single location to build a stone circle, unfortunately but understandably, there is very little evidence left to be found. It was long believed that the stones were dragged on wooden sledges by oxen or horses but one of the more credible modern theories suggests that wooden or stone balls constrained between wooden tracks were used to ease the passage of these stones to their (so far) final resting place.
Until next time, have a great morning, afternoon, evening or night!