Orkney: Churches and Stones

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The St Magnus Cathedral: love the red and yellow stone

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The impressive doorway

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Of course I have to snap any image of my buddy Olaf, the viking saint

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He mostly seemed more viking than saint, but hey — it was all in the name of religion I guess

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Magnus is better known as a viking too, Orkney’s fine with that.

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In fact they’re proud of their viking heritage: I saw more Norwegian flags than saltires flying.

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This monument to St George marks another even odder church

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This church was built during WWII by Italian POWs.

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Hard to believe it was once a quonset hut!

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Photographing Amy photographing something else.

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We saw what looked like standing stones on top of a hill and investigated to find the Cuween Hill Cairn where prehistoric people and their dogs were buried.

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You get a lovely view including two islands famous as viking arenas for battle.

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The ‘stones’ ended up being stacked stones of varying sizes.

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When you have a lot of rocks, you incorporate them into your constructions.

6 thoughts on “Orkney: Churches and Stones

  1. These places are fascinating. I’ve never seen the use of stacked stone to make standing stones, but it makes a lot of sense. By how much does that site predate the Vikings?
    As for the Italian chapel, as a resident of the town next door to Quonset, I’d say that roof line makes it very easy to believe it started as a Quonset hut!

    • The stacking stones are probably much more recent than the vikings, but the stacking idea is behind most of the early housing (earlier than the pyramids).

  2. Fascinating! I’m nuts about history and have wanted to go to Orkney for years, so it was great to read (and see) more. The stacked standing stones remind me of the Nine Standards near the Cumbria/Yorkshire border.

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