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Orkney Islands’ Neolithic and Viking Heritage

By Carolyn Emerick

The islands of Orkney are a beautiful archipelago located between the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea, to the Northeast of Scotland. Like the rest of the British Isles, Orkney is an amalgam of influences. The ancients left standing stones and neolithic settlements as prehistoric monuments to their culture.

The next known inhabitants were the Picts. However they remain even more of a mystery, as the Picts left very little evidence of their existence in Orkney behind. So scarce is the evidence, in fact, that until recently scholars questioned whether they were there at all. It was the Vikings that left their stamp on Orkney so strongly that their influence can be found in the culture to this day.

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