Location Analysis: Royston Cave - Part Four

I ♥ pay-day. Wed 19 July 2023

Hearts on hands. Source: Palaeographia Britannica, William Stukeley, 1743, Tab III, p33

Why the hearts?

The three hands holding hearts are all right hands. The hand most people use when they offer money.

Royston Cave's carvings also depict hearts on chests:

Well-presented merchandise, ready for sale. Source: Royston Cave

We can't be sure they're slaves but the carving shows a line of people, hands behind their backs. It is a clue:

Slave delivery carved at Behistun, Iran. Source: Archaeologia, or, Miscellaneous tracts relating to antiquity, Vol 34, p 76.

The "dunce's cap" seems to be a quick visual check that the line is intact.

Hearts on chests shouldn't baffle anyone. We're very familiar with chest badges:

Nothing new about the SKU. Source: Nazi concentration camp badge

From What Is a Stock Keeping Unit (SKU)?:

A stock-keeping unit (SKU) is a scannable bar code, most often seen printed on product labels in a retail store.

That's right: chest badges are product labels. Labels from a pre-digital age.

The black triangle on the chest of the man in the centre labels him as 'Romani'. Gypsy. In a 20th century camp, it ensured a low-to-zero chance of survival.

Product selection and labelling also gave us blue ribands, rosettes and medals - chest badges for winners.

Product selection and labelling pre-dates concentration camps.

The need to grade stock, label it, and track its movement has always influenced the architecture of camps, be they stock camps, labour camps or prisoner-of-war (POW) camps:

Prisoner-of-war camp. Source: Stalag Luft III

Note the ubiquitous watchtowers and the administrative zone at the front.

Compare Stalag Luft III with Castleshaw Roman 'fortlet' on Saddleworth Moor, England:

Artist's impression of Castleshaw fortlet. Source: The Roman Fortlet in AD 120

The image is of Castleshaw's front zone. But like Stalag Luft III, Castleshaw had two zones:

A badge on the landscape. Source: Castleshaw Roman Fort

The easy-to-see rectangle in the aerial photograph is at the front of a harder-to-see larger rectangle.

As The Roman Fortlet in AD 120 says of Castleshaw:

...but many questions remain unanswered.

Such as: did the guards in Castleshaw's watchtowers look outward or inward?

And: how old is it really?

Orthodoxy says Castleshaw was Roman (753 BC to AD 476). But doesn't mention the Holy Roman Empire (AD 800 to AD 1806).

Which 'Roman' would be most compatible with this photograph of Castleshaw?

Castleshaw fortlet in 1890. Source: Peter Fox Collection

Here's another camp - this one from near Royston:

Crop-marks at Cumberlow Green, Hertfordshire. Source: Google Maps

For more 'Roman' camps, try:

Though it's not as complete as it claims.

Two symbols appear on chests in Royston Cave:

  • Heart (♥)
  • Vertical cross (+)

Most of the cave's vertical crosses were carved low and in the centre of large individuals.

A diagonal cross (x) appears low and in the centre on the cave's large crucifix carving.

These low vertical crosses appear to be registration marks, perhaps to ensure the figures were carved in the correct place. So we focus on chest badges here.

You are looking at retail. Product labels, staff badges, money offered, money taken. And in the image above, at two customers waiting to be served.

Why hearts and not coins?

Because the hearts in hands are receipts that confirm payment was made.

Buyers paid in advance for goods and received a receipt indicating what they had paid for and its quantity. Then they took the receipt - a heart-shaped token - to the stallholder from whom they they preferred to buy.

At the end of the day, stallholders took the tokens they had accumulated to the market organiser and cashed them in.

This practice is still found at some fairs. In London's Charing Cross Road, Foyle's bookshop used a similar system until 1999. British hairdressers use a variant where Individual hairdressers 'rent' a chair from the shop owner. The owner takes customers' payments, subtracts their cut and pays the other hairdressers.

The pre-payment system ensures market organisers receive their cut of stallholders' sales.

It explains why the Royston Cave's narrative gives such prominence to disputes with the market organiser:

Royston market's manager tracked sales. Source: Royston Cave - A Mystery beneath the Streets

That is also the joke buried in the Romantic Movement's invention of Christianity - that monks 'took orders'.

They certainly did.

More difficult is to determine what weights and measures the hearts and crosses represent.

Crosses on chests seems to indicate 'suitable for quartering' as in 'hung, drawn and quartered'. But they may indicate 'vendor', or 'market employee'. We just can't tell.

The hearts on the two taller males themselves may indicate 'suitable for bleeding' but may just as easily indicate 'suitable for breeding'. They may be studs. There's a lot of sense to that. For this form of enhanced natural selection to be effective, Royston market's selection processes would be made before any of the children became sexually fertile. Which may be why the images seem to show adolescent and pubescent children.

Unmarked chests may suggest 'sell as slave', which would translate in practice to "buyer's choice".

In the video above, Beamon says the Knights Templar disputed Royston's market fees. In the source video she hints that Royston's prior responded by denying stallholder rights to the Knights Templar.

Those disgruntled former stallholders may have built Devil's Hopscotch as an out-of-town alternative. But Devil's Hopscotch seems to have serviced much more than just Royston Market. It appears to have been a logistics trans-shipment centre at the southern end of a canal that ran to the River Rhee (now River Cam) at Wendy in Cambridgeshire. The Devil's Hopscotch-to-Bassingbourn part of that route is evidenced in Location Analysis: Clothall and Therfield Heath, Hertfordshire.

Royston Cave's crucifix scene also hints at a lost technology. That evidence is analysed in Gas Stations of the Past - Part Six:


Source: Royston Cave: A Knights Templar Ritual Cave? Royston England UK

Source: Mysterious Symbols and Carvings in Man-Made Royston Cave, UK! Who Made them, When? Mystery Remains!

Old Descriptions of Royston Cave:

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