Fetlar, Gravins, 'Haltadans'

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Site Type CAIRN
Canmore ID 1463
Site Number HU69SW 4
NGR HU 6221 9241
Former District SHETLAND
Former County SHETLAND
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Notes and Activities

Archaeological Notes

HU69SW 4 6221 9241.

(HU 623 924) "Haltadans", a cairn closely comparable with "The Fiddler's Crus" (HU69SW 7) with which it has been confused by the O.S. and which lies 550yds to the N.W.
It consists of a ring of stones 37' in diameter and now containing 22 earthfast and several loose slabs. The surviving set slabs are set edge to edge, and it is probable that a gap in the SW is original. At a distance of 5' inside and concentric with the stone ring is a low bank with a gap of 5' in the SW. The centre of the space thus enclosed is occupied by two earthfast boulders of rectangular section.
Nothing is known about this class of cairn, but it has obvious affinities with ring cairns and hengiform barrows, and a general flavour of the Early Bronze Age.
R W Feachem 1963.

Jakobsen describes the site as 'three concentric rings of stones and two higher stones in the middle. He also points out the name Haayltadans means 'lame or limping dance and mentions the popular explanation of the stones as 'petrified dancing trolls, the two in the centre being the fiddler and his wife. (Dr J Jakobsen 1897)
RCAHMS 1946.

Haltadans at HU 6220 9340, as described by Feachem, and illustrated by RCAHM.
Visited by OS(AA) 16 May 1969.

Books and References

Burl, {H} A {W} (1979a) Rings of stone: the prehistoric stone circles of Britain and Ireland, London
Page(s): 46, 83 Held at RCAHMS E.7.BUR

Feachem, R (1963b) A guide to prehistoric Scotland, London
Page(s): 85-6 Held at RCAHMS E.2.FEA

Jakobsen, J (1897) The Dialect and Place-Names of Shetland,
Page(s): 116-17

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