The mysterious and desolate Beaghmore Stone Circles were discovered by local peat cutters in the 1940s in the mountains near Cookstown in co. Tyrone. The site is made up of 7 large stone circles and 1,269 smaller upright stones and was probably used as a location for religious and social gatherings. The stone circles and the cairns are attributed to the earlier part of the Bronze Age (c. 2000 b.c > 1200 b.c) while flint tools that were discovered have been carbon dated to an even earlier period (c. 2900 b.c > 2600 b.c). Excavations of one of the cairns discovered a polished porcellanite axe which probably originated from the Tievebulliagh axe factory in co. Antrim (some 70 miles away). A unique feature of one of the stone circles is that it has more than 800 smaller stones set upright. These are locally known as “The Dragon’s Teeth”. The site also includes a dozen small stone cairns which frequently covered a cremation burial. Some stones have possible alignments to the rising sun, the setting sun and the moon and it is highly probable that the full extent of this incredible complex has not yet been revealed from the peat bog.

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