THE TWELVE-O'CLOCK STONE.
NUMBERS of people would formerly visit a remarkable Logan stone, near Nancledrea, which had been, by supernatural power, impressed with some peculiar sense at midnight. Although it was quite impossible to move this stone during daylight, or indeed by human power at any other time, it would rock like a cradle exactly at midnight. Many a child has been cured of rickets by being placed naked at this hour on the twelve-o'clock stone. If, however, the child was "misbegotten," or, if it was the offspring of dissolute parents, the stone would not move, and consequently no cure was effected. On the Cuckoo Hill, eastward of Nancledrea, there stood, but a few years since, two piles of rock about eight feet apart, and these were united by a large flat stone carefully placed upon them,--thus forming a doorway which was, as my informant told me, "large and high enough to drive a horse and cart through." It was formerly the custom to march in procession through this "doorway" in going to the twelve-o'clock stone.
The stone-mason has, however, been busy hereabout; and every mass of granite, whether rendered notorious by the Giants or holy by the Druids, if found to be of the size required, has been removed. [a]
[a] The following are a few of the interesting remains of old Cornwall which have entirely disappeared from the neighbourhood within a few years--
Between St Ives and Zennor, on the lower road over Tregarthen Down and a Logan rock. An old man, perhaps ninety years of age, told me he had often logged it, and that it would make a noise which could be heard for miles.
At Balnoon, between Nancledrea and Knill's Steeple, some miners came upon "two slabs of granite cemented together," which covered a walled grave three feet square--an ancient kistvean. In it they found an earthenware vessel containing some black earth, and a leaden spoon. The spoon was given to Mr Praed of Trevetha, and may possibly be in the possession of the present proprietor. The kistvean was utterly destroyed.
At Brunnion, not far from St Ives, in the garden attached to the house which is occupied by the Hoskings, is an arched doorway of carefully-worked granite. Tradition said this doorway belonged to an ancient church, and that the present garden was the burial-ground. Close by, at Treveerack, is a field known as the "Chapel Field," in which the plough is constantly turning up stones which have been carefully chiselled.
In Bosprenis Croft there was a very large colt or cromlech. It is said to have been fifteen feet square, and not more than one foot thick in any part. This was broken in two parts some years since, and taken to Penzance to form the beds for two ovens.