In my recent post on the Barochan Cross I bemoaned the fact that the original base or socket-stone remains in situ on a hillside when (in my opinion) it should be reunited with the cross. Although the cross now stands proudly inside Paisley Abbey it is incomplete without its base, to which it was joined for more than 1000 years. Viewed separately, both pieces are important relics of the Viking Age, having been carved in the 9th century by the same ‘school’ of craftsmen who produced the Govan Stones. The Barochan cross-base, despite its plain appearance, is no less a product of this sculptural tradition than the magnificently decorated shaft it once supported.
These two photographs were taken by Donald Watson in November 1998. I am grateful to Donald for allowing me to reproduce them here.
* * * * * * *