The Pech Stane or stone is an enormous boulder near Billie Mains. It features in an old rhyme collected by George Henderson (1800-1864) in the early 1800s for his book ‘The Popular Rhymes, Sayings and Proverbs and Sayings of the County of Berwick’ (1854). Henderson claims to have heard the rhyme as a child from an old man, called David Donaldson, who possessed a rich collection of old sayings, songs, rhymes, tales and proverbs, which were never heard anywhere else.

Grisly DRŒDAN sat alane 
By the cairn and PECH stane; 
Billy, wi' a seg (or kent) sae stout, 
Cries - I'll turn grisly DRŒDAN out!‚
DRŒDAN leuch, and stalk'd awa, 
And vanish'd in a babbanqua'.

The Pech stone has been described as ‘The Altar’ suggesting some historic connection with ceremony. A ‘babbanqua’ is a quagmire or very boggy area of ground. George Henderson noted that the cairn was, ‘not far from the Pech Stone’, and was surrounded by a circle of stones so ‘may have been a place of worship for ancient druids’.

The Pech Stane and Rhyme. Public Domain.
Drawing of the Pech Stane. Image by John Blair, 1887.

There is more information on this fascinating site, and many more besides at Julian Cope’s Modern Antiquarian website:

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