Mystery As Pagan Altar And Symbol Unearthed In Edinburgh’s Holyrood Park

Tribble

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(A surprisingly non-sensationalising article...)

Two mysterious pagan objects have been removed from a secluded part of Holyrood Park after they were uncovered by chance, the Evening News can reveal.

Archaeologists were called in after the remains of a concrete “altar” and a pagan metal plaque were discovered on Whinny Hill above St Margaret’s Loch.

The ornate metal plaque, which experts have confirmed to the Evening News as likely to be pagan, was found embedded in the ground within a sod of turf cut in a triangle shape. It depicted two figures – a male figure with horns and a female figure in a surrender pose – set within a pentagram within a circle.


https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman....arthed-in-edinburgh-s-holyrood-park-1-4952500

The person complaining in the comments of that article that the pics were mocked up doesn't seem to realise they were taken by Historic Environment Scotland and are in their report :

http://portal.historicenvironment.scot/decision/900012291
 

James_H

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Could it be from a film or music video set?

Also isn't there one night in the year (midsummer?) when a bunch of people dress up as pagan gods and have a bonfire party on Arthur's seat?
 

gordonrutter

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Could it be from a film or music video set?

Also isn't there one night in the year (midsummer?) when a bunch of people dress up as pagan gods and have a bonfire party on Arthur's seat?
Beltane celebrations ie May Day and it’s Calton Hill.
 

taras

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Hey, I can see my flat from here :D (in the photo)!

Someone in the comments on the article points out you can buy the 'concrete altar' - actually a plaque made from resin - on Amazon for under £20.

As well as the Arthur's Seat 'fairy coffins', the site is near a ruined chapel (St Anthony's Chapel) as well as two sacred springs: St Anthony's Well and St Margaret's Well.
 

Frideswide

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Thanks! I went to see it once with my Edinburgh cousins but my memory of the event is hazy for some reason.
:oldm:

Yes, or possibly no. None of the various pagans I know would have anything to do with that, especially the druids!

Lacks the charm and unease of the doll coffins.
 

Newt

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I cam find pictures of the plaque, but what was the second item?
I can't find any picture of it.
 

pandacracker

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"Mark Black, president of the UK Pagan Council, said the plaque was mostly likely pagan after the images of the find were shown to him yesterday"

So there's a UK Pagan council, didn't know that. Anyone here a member? (and happy to talk about it?)

"He said the points of the pentagram depict the four elements, earth, fire, air and water."

Shoddy bit of journalism not to explain the fifth point. A quick search tells me it represents the spirit.

I saw about four Pentagrams in St Pauls cathedral in Melbourne. I asked about their meaning to a guide and he was clearly flummoxed and and didn't know but waffled on about nothing. Not far from the cathedral I found a Theosophical Society bookshop and rummaged around and discovered that in Christianity the pentagram represents the five wounds of Christ.

In Taoism, the pentagram shows how the five classical oriental elements (earth, water, wood, fire, and metal) are connected but you all knew that anyway. :)
 

Tribble

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I cam find pictures of the plaque, but what was the second item?
I can't find any picture of it.
The HES report supplimentary information document ( http://portal.historicenvironment.scot/document/600021148 ) has a pic of the second item (a "cemented display")- it appears to be a pewter tankard, small bowl and... a plastic seagull? And some other bits and pieces.



A few possibilities :
1) Prank
2) Low-budget pagans
3) Low-budget film makers
4) ALIENS
 

Newt

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Thank you.
The seagull is particularly weird.
Unless it symbolises air, I suppose.
 

Newt

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I believe you!

I have been faced down by the beady eye of one of his minions. It would not let us leave the chip shop. It stood in the doorway in a menacing fashion.

The chip shop guy said we were best off just throwing it a chip and then it would let us out.

So we did, and it did let us go, but it stared at us all the way down the street.
 

escargot

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I saw about four Pentagrams in St Pauls cathedral in Melbourne. I asked about their meaning to a guide and he was clearly flummoxed and and didn't know but waffled on about nothing. Not far from the cathedral I found a Theosophical Society bookshop and rummaged around and discovered that in Christianity the pentagram represents the five wounds of Christ.
My example of inappropriate symbolism is when I saw a photo of an SS officer on the wall of a synagogue in Hungary.
There was of course a story behind it: the officer in question was supposed to direct a bombardment towards the building and the residential area around it but somehow managed to spare it all and save the buildings and many lives, at great personal risk.
 

GNC

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Tempest63

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Did I not read, possibly in a Colin Wilson, that following WWII bomb damage to a Wren church in London, they found a phallus and other pagan symbolism hidden within a wrecked Altar?
 

Tempest63

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View attachment 18361

From
Sex on the Couch: What Freud Still Has To Teach Us About Sex and Gender
By Richard Boothby

But its totally unreferenced.
I have never read that particular book and it doesn’t specifically mention Wren churches which were built following the great fire. I am now going to have to dig out The Occult and it’s follow up Mysteries to locate if it’s in either of them.

But thanks for the prod in the right direction.
 

Newt

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Yeah, it sounds interesting. Let me know what you find, please!

Edit, also I didn't mean to suggest that was where you had read it. It was just something that came up on google, that vaguely supported what you had said.
 
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Scribbles

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Just had a look. The metal plaque only looks pagan to me if the lady is pointing to the sky. If the man is on top (as it were!) then two of the pentagram points form "horns", which is what most devil worshippers/satanists/whatever usually use.

I don't think this is that mysterious, tbh. Neo-paganism has become quite a thing, and solitary practitioners often talk of finding lonely spots to practise their craft. I personally wouldn't use concrete or plastic, but there's no rules, so people use what means something to them. This is just someone's altar.
 

Spudrick68

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Is it just me or does the plaque look like something from the Alchemy catalogue?
 

His Extremely DeLux Self

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It doesn't look pagan. More like Satanists.
It looks pretty Heathen or Neopagan to me, what with the male figure having antlers like Cernunnos or Bullwinkle instead of the goat's or ram's horns we associate with The Devil, and the overtly sexual pose of the two central figures. The pentagram with two horns exalted isn't exclusively a Satanic or black magick image; there are some certain ritual magicians and traditional witches who use it as a positive symbol.
 

IbisNibs

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Did I not read, possibly in a Colin Wilson, that following WWII bomb damage to a Wren church in London, they found a phallus and other pagan symbolism hidden within a wrecked Altar?
What good would it do to stick a phallus in there?
 
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