Last Photographed: Saturday 6th June 2009
Boscawen Un is a peculiar circle for mainland Britain, featuring 19 stones in an ellipse surrounding a central, larger stone that leans at an almost 45 degree angle. The outer stones are granite with the exception of one quartz stone that should be immediately apparent to the visitor. The outer stones are evenly spaced, with a wide entrance to the West. The circle has an associated legend that tells of dancing maidens being turned to stone. This is a common theme, the Merry Maidens being another local example.
I was sure it didn't look so far on the map! In fact, I was sure I'd taken a wrong turn and had missed the stones entirely. Fortunately, it was my map reading that proved to be at fault rather than the local geography, and so after a sweaty approach along the narrow hedge-lined footpath, I was pleased to see the circle finally appear before me.
I have to admit to a brief pang of disappointment when I initially saw the stones. I first visited in the height of summer, and they were all but obscured by the heavy bracken that grows here. It didn't help that it was actually fairly busy when I arrived, with one group of people just leaving and another couple and their kids still at the stones. Even The Merry Maidens had been quieter!
Still, it wasn't long before I had the stones to myself, and once I'd come to terms with the lack of a clear view of the complete circle, I was free to soak up the atmosphere. I'm glad I didn't hold onto my initial disappointment, because once I'd re-adjusted my expectations, I found this to be an enchantingly magical circle. The atmosphere here is powerful - you can almost picture the fairy folk coming out to dance in the corner of your vision! Sitting here in the sun, I felt very much at peace with the world. It's possibly this sense of simple contentment that continues to draw me so strongly to sites such as this.