Wednesday, 1 April 2015

The stone of Watford.



The college is built on an old a cow field. (See map).

There are no cows there anymore. They have all been turned in to burgers.

There are a lot of students at the college, so if the cows were to come back there wouldn't be any room for them. 

About 100 years ago, a local writer and scholar, Alfred Piloor*, was passing through the field and  noticed a large stone covered in moss. He started to pick away at the moss and discovered some strange cuts and grooves on the stone.

The marks intrigued Alf and he decided to investigate further. The next day Alf came back to the field with a horse and cart and a few strong men from the nearby village. They loaded the stone on to the back of the cart and took it back to Alf's house.

Alf cleaned up the stone. He removed all the moss and centuries of dirt to reveal some strange words that had been carved deep in to the stone.

Alf contacted a friend who studied ancient history at Cambridge. The friend came to look at the stone.

After some research and with help from the British Museum, the friend concluded that the stone was, in fact, left by the Norse in the 5th century. 

They had not settled in the area, however, the Norse did like to leave their mark on the lands they visited, rather like a modern teenager scratching Barry woz here on a wall. 

The words didn't say anything like Barry woz here because the Norse were highly intelligent and they didn't use the name Barry.

Alf's friend concluded that the letters were runic and said something akin to this:

Let the breathings of your heart fill paper. 

In the 5th Century, before the Watford Creative Course existed on the site, these words didn't make any sense.

They do now.

The Stone Of Watford.

  *Alf Piloor wrote three books: A Hangman's Guide to Famous Necks, Cured Ham And Other Curios and The Bucolic Farmer Of Wheathampstead. 

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