Texture and pattern in Devonian sedimentary rocks used for building stone walls on a over 2000 years ago

Stone textures at Broch of Gurness 1

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Natural patterns and textures of Devonian sedimentary rocks (often covered with lichens) used in the building stonework for an ancient archaeological site called the Broch of Gurness in Orkney.

13 Replies to “Stone textures at Broch of Gurness 1”

  1. Thanks, Claudia. I have noticed so many old buildings made of interesting and colourful rocks – but in later centuries a great deal of effort was expended on covering up the natural stone with plaster, lime wash, paintings, panelling, or tapestries.

  2. Here we have a local stone that many older buildings are constructed from, Wissahickon schist, and then there are other ones that were constructed with “junk” stones not meant to be seen but stuccoed or the like. Our climate does not lead to the same kind of lichens as other places, but we do get them, and moss, and I love how the stone gets a look to it from them. As an aside, I made concrete statues for a while maybe ten years ago, which have been in my yard, and weathered so nicely, with black and green lichens on them.

  3. “Wissahickon schist” – what a great name! Lichens not only grow on the surface of rocks but can be endolithic, penetrating the surface and helping to break it down – given enough time.

  4. Yes, Wissahickon is a Lenape word and appears in many local place names in my near neighborhood. And I like the way it sounds! On the other subject, I like the idea of a slow-moving but stubborn lichen.

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