With more than 800 full colour images of agates, landscape photographs, illustrations and photomicrographs. The book also provides an illustrated description of the geological history of Scotland, as well as considering possible mechanisms for agate formation and profiling several successful agate collectors.

Chapters include: The Geology of Scotland; Agate Genesis; Historical Collecting; Nine chapters describing specific locations; Imaging Techniques, Abstract Photographs and Illustrations; Profiles of Modern Collectors; Artefacts made from Scottish Agates and Cutting and Polishing Techniques. Numerous examples are shown of the different agate types that can be found within Scotland and historical references to Scottish agate collecting are described. A list of bibliographical material comprising 138 references is also provided for those seeking more information on the subject.

The authors have been collectors of Scottish agates for many years. Interest in the collection of these artefacts of nature has increased recently and this has provided an opportunity to bring knowledge of these beautiful Scottish stones to a wider audience. The book provides the most comprehensive description of Scottish agates to date.





1. Introduction and Definitions

2. The Geology of Scotland

A detailed history of the geological development of Scotland from the formation of the Earth through the different epochs, the beginning of life and development to the present day.

3. Agate Genesis

An exploration of the different and sometimes conflicting theories of agate formation, the materials from which they were formed and processes involved in their genesis

4. The History of Agate Collecting in Scotland

Scottish agates have been collected for several hundred years but the most important period was the Nineteenth Century. The chapter provides a detailed account of collecting from about 1800 to the present day.

5. Agates from the Montrose area

This chapter provides a description of the many varieties and types of agate found near Montrose. The contents include extensive colour photographs of particularly spectacular stones.

6. Agates from the Dundee area.

In the early 1990s two quarries near Dundee, Ardownie and Ethiebeaton, produced some of the most beautiful agates ever found in Scotland. This chapter describes these finds with many photographs of extraordinary examples.

7. Agates from the Perth area

People have collected agates from the fields, hills and quarries around Perth for more than two hundred years. The most important of these sites are described in detail with many colour photographs of outstanding stones.

8. Agates from Fife

The ‘Kingdom’ of Fife represents one of the most important agate collecting areas in Scotland with many well documented sites. This chapter provides and in depth exploration of Fife stones.

9. Ayrshire Agate Locations

Around Dunure and Maidens on the Scottish coast south of Ayr is found one of the most prolific sources of Scottish agates and agatised coral. This chapter provides an in depth description of the stones to be found here.

10. Galston – The Burn Anne

The Burn Anne is one of the most famous Scottish agate sites and stones from this location were widely used in ‘Pebble’ jewellery. The authors describe Burn Anne agates and a series of recent excavations at this site.

11. Cheviot Agate Locations

This chapter provides an exploration of one of the lesser known agate collecting areas in Scotland with descriptions of some of the colourful agates and jaspagates that can be found in this rugged upland landscape.

12. The Scottish Isles

A description of some of the numerous places on the Scottish Isles where agates can be found, accompanied by photographs of some of the spectacular scenery to be found in this part of the world.

13. Agates from Other Scottish sites

A description of some of the lesser known Scottish agate sites with photographs of stones from the National Museums of Scotland as well as examples from the collections of the authors.

14. Imaging Techniques and Abstract Photographs

Obtaining quality full colour images of agates for the book provided a challenging task. The authors describe the techniques employed, the equipment used and processes involved in obtaining the stunning results achieved.

15. Artefacts made from Scottish Agates

During the Nineteenth Century Scottish ‘Pebble’ jewellery became very popular and was widely manufactured in the major Scottish towns. This chapter describes examples of this jewellery and contrasts it with some contemporary work.

16. Scottish Agate Collectors

Profiles and histories of six successful collectors and photographs of some of the most spectacular stones in their extensive collections.

17. From Pebble to Picture

Techniques for collecting, cutting and polishing agates to present these beautiful artefacts of nature in the best light.


About the Authors