Blarney Stone myths rubbished by Scottish geologists

Tourists kissing the Blarney Stone back in 1897.

Scottish scientists rubbished claims that the Blarney Stone was cut from stone at the mythical Stonehenge site in England.

They have also discounted the story that the Cork stone is half of the original Stone of Destiny, the seat of the first King of Scots. The report, released in March 2014, from a team of geologists at the University of Glasgow confirmed that the famous stone – said to offer the gift of the gab to anyone who kisses it – is 100% Irish.

The stories about the stone’s origins are as intriguing as the myths surrounding it with many of the belief the stone was a single block of bluestone, the same material used to build Stonehenge.

Another legend claimed the stone was gifted to Irish Chieftain Cormac McCarthy, by Robert the Bruce, in 1314, in gratitude to the Irish for supporting the Scots in the Battle of Bannockburn.

But the geologists discovered that the stone is about 330-million-years-old and has nothing to do with either Stonehenge or the Stone of Destiny, according to a report in the Irish Sun newspaper.

Geologists, based at the University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum, examined a microscopic slice of the stone.

They identified it as a type of limestone that is unique to the south of Ireland.

Museum curator Dr John Faithfull explained “This strongly supports views that the stone is made of local carboniferous limestone, about 330million-years-old.

“It also indicates to us that it has nothing to do with the Stonehenge bluestones, or the sandstone of the current ‘Stone of Destiny’, now sitting in Edinburgh Castle, for that matter.”

Dr Faithfull joked: “The Blarney Stone is famous for bestowing the gift of eloquence on those who kiss it.

“We don’t really know if kissing the microscope slide would have the same effect, although I have given it a try.”

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* Originally published in 2014.

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