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Axeheads of jadeite

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From Fortingall, Perthshire; Rattray, Perthshire; Cunzierton, Roxburghshire

Axeheads of jadeite
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These four stone axeheads, all of Alpine jadeite, were found at Fortingall in Perthshire, at Rattray in Perthshire, and two at Cunzierton in Roxburghshire. They were imported from the Piedmont area, around the Swiss-French-Italian border.

All four axeheads are made from jadeite, a very tough stone which is difficult to work. They are highly polished and unused, clearly status symbols, not utilitarian tools.

Some axeheads were symbols of power and prestige, probably with religious significance as well. They were often used in gift exchanges and, like these, could travel over large distances. These axeheads may have arrived in Scotland via the Rhineland.

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