Carvings and Beliefs

Carvings on Pictish Symbol Stones include:

Geometric shapes

         so-called “enigmatic” carvings decoded by the author as Pictish-Mithraic;

         Christian Crosses;

         other, as yet, undecoded rounded and angular shapes; implements.

Animals, birds and fish – representing personal attributes or Celtic beliefs; some having Roman contexts (typically military); others e.g. rabbit, calf/cow/cattle, sheep with no specific association.

Zoomorphic creatures – so-called “Pictish beast” / elephant (decoded as Pictish-Mithraic); stylised representations of animal forms; “fantastic” beasts.

People – riders on horseback; biblical scenes/characters and angels; someone wielding an axe; persons hunting, standing, sitting, walking etc.

Plants – flowers; trees.

Texts – Ogham; miniscule; cursive.

With a focus on exploring the prospects of “Shared Space”, those objects that pertain specifically to beliefs are considered in detail in the following sections:

Mithraism and Pictish Symbols

Christian Crosses and Biblical Stories

Animals, Birds and Fish – particularly exploring Celtic relevance and Roman context.

Meigle 1 reverse (2)
Meigle 2, Perth & Kinross – Pictish Symbol Stone – reverse side

Additionally, Hunting Scenes, Battle Scenes, animals alone (e.g. horses) and examples of Ogham writing are referred to in the Investigations into “Shared Space” Belief Combinations.