Clochoderick Stone – Renfrewshire, Scotland - Atlas Obscura

Clochoderick Stone

This stone was once used by druids to determine a person's innocence or guilt.  


As the story goes, a giant was hiking through Scotland when a stone became stuck in his shoe. He plucked the stone out and left it behind. That massive rock came to be known as the Clochoderick Stone. This is just one of many legends surrounding the stone that measures 12 feet high and 17 feet across. 

The first documented account of the Clochodrick Stone dates back to 1204, where it was believed to be the final resting place of Rhydderch Hael, ruler of the ancient kingdom of Strathclyde. His victory at the battle of Arderydd brought Christianity to the area. Unfortunately, excavations did not uncover any evidence of the grave.

The stone’s history goes back even further. Although the stone no longer moves, it was originally a logan stone or clach bràth as they were known in Scotland. These stones could be rocked without much pressure as they were balanced on other stones. They were used as open-air courts by druids to determine innocence or guilt and were common wherever druids had a presence.

The rocks became something of a tourist attraction in the 18th and 19th-centuries. Many were damaged or vandalized from misuse. Such was the fate of Clochoderick Stone, which sadly no longer rocks. 

Its history doesn’t stop there. The stone is actually a glacial erratic and was carried 50 miles from its original location in Inverary, before being deposited at its present location. 

Know Before You Go

There is a parking space available for one car just opposite the stone. Please be respectful. The stone is on private property. Be mindful of livestock and keep dogs on a leash. There are small steps embedded into the wall near the information plaque to help you get into the field. 

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December 21, 2020

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