Nearest town: Kirkwall
Nearest village: Finstown
Map reference: HY 364128
entrance of the Neolithic tomb
Locally known as the Fairy Knowe, this is a communal tomb of about 3000 BC, located about 800 m (.5 mile)
S of Finstown, which is 11 km (7 m) WNW of Kirkwall. Overlooking the Bay
of Forth, a low mound covers this Neolithic chambered tomb with four cells.
In its arrangement of passage,
main chamber, and side-cells, it is related to the great tomb of Maes
Howe. Remains of eight people were found inside with bones of ox, birds
and the skulls of 24 dogs, which suggests some rite connected with hunting
or maybe the choice of a totem to protect the tribe. Unfortunately, in the
1901 excavation report by M.M. Charleson the dog's breeds are not identified. Tombs like this were used for many generations.