The Long Debated Bourne Stone

B.L. Freeborn © January, 2023                  (PDF version.)

Photo of Bourne Stone by Gene M. Marchand, The Enterprise – Bourne

2003 rubbing by Scott Wolter, Sherry Malecha and Charlotte Czarnecki.

The Bourne Stone from Cape Cod provides another riddle to be deciphered. Its reading and origin have been long debated. There are four very good write ups on the Bourne Stone listed below. The reader is left to explore these for background and other views. The traced image at the Bourne Historical Society, where the Bourne Stone is displayed, appears to be the one created by Scott Wolter, Sherry Malecha and Charlotte Czarnecki in 2003 and shown in his book (pg. 311).

Below is a translation of the stone based on the drawing which appears to be more than correct. The symbols do translate as runes primarily in the Younger Futhark with two exceptions which are in the older. The number work below is explained in Validating North American Rune Stones.(PDF) It is too long to explain here adequately. Essentially, the numbers 56 and 792 must be found once the runes are converted to their numeric values.

There is an immediate give away that this is Pagan – Runic in nature and probably a riddle. The LI in a vertical line preceding the images which are read right to left is very notable. In the Kensington Rune Stone (pdf), Spirit Pond Long Inscription Stone (post and pdf) and the Rök Rune Stone in Sweden a TI is used. In the Kingigtorssuaq Inscription a BL is used. The proposed significance of the images are: comet, lake, sail; and walk about /tour -or- giant’s footprints/shoe meaning ‘foundation.’

If what follows seems odd or ridiculous to you, remember the Catholic Church went to great lengths to wipe out all Pagans. The victor has taught us what they want us to think Pagans believed. The question becomes as suggested in the movie ‘The Da Vinci Code,’ what was so dangerous to the Church in Pagan beliefs? Perhaps their beliefs were not even remotely what we have been led to believe.

Number Proof of Transliteration

A number proof of the transliteration is required to prove certain values appear. If they do not, then it is either not transliterated correctly or not Pagan / Baalist in origin. (See below.**) (Rune/number charts are below.)

  • Note: G and H are from Older Futhark.
  • Total sum on right (G,H,S,I,S,U,K,I and L) ⇒ (7,9,11,9,11,2,6,9 and 15) is 79.✓
  • Sum of SUKI is 28.✓
  • Sum of GHSI is 36.✓
  • There are 18 runes on the first line.✓
  • GH, SI is 7,9, 11,9 ⇒ 7920.✓
    N to G (N ʀʀʀʀG) (8,16,16,16,16,7) =79 and it is followed by HS (9,11) = 20 or 7920.✓
  • There are 5 images and then it turns and there is a 6th ⇒ 56.✓
    There are 5 I’s and 6 ʀ’s ⇒ 56.✓
    5 I’s is 5 x 9 = 45. 6 ʀ’s is 6 x 16 = 96. Sum is 141 and twice this is 282.✓
  • Also 5 x 9 x 6 x 16 = 4320.✓
  • The four strokes (ʀ’s) are in two groups. Each group is 16,16 or 32.✓
  • The four strokes (ʀ’s) are 4 x 16 = 64. This is preceded by N or 8 so 864.✓
  • The first three strokes are separated off by the fourth that is lower. IʀI is 9,16,9 = 34.✓
  • Then ʀ N and N is tall or 16, 8 = 24.✓
    IL is 9,15 = 24.✓
  • Placement of ‘fingers’ on comet is 1, 3, 1⇒ 113 or twice 56.5✓ and 32.✓

Let’s give some of these meaning:

  • There are 24 hours in a day and 24 hours of longitude mark the planet.
  • There are 360 degrees of longitude and 36 suggests 360.
  • Similarly, the 18 runes of the inscription suggests 180 degrees of latitude.
  • The number of seconds of longitude is 86400. This is also the number of seconds in a day. Half of this is 432,000 or 432 for short.
  • The diameter of the planet is 7920 miles.
  • The 113, 32, 34 and 282 are related to 56. The complementary angle of 56 is 34. The square of 5.65 is 32 and twice 282 is 564. Twice 56.5 is 113.

All of these seem to refer to time, longitude and/or latitude except for the last group.

It would appear the transliteration is correct. Not far from where this is located was the Leif Erikson stone on Nomans Land (pdf and post). This inscription is very similar to it, so we might suspect he used some of the same tricks. In that inscription the date was prominent in the middle, many I’s were used, part of the writer’s name was included in the script and the rest of his name had to be deduced by working the numbers backwards to obtain runes. In that script Leif was spelled out clearly. Here the name appears to be hidden in an anagram.

Translation of Text

In the Younger Futhark I’s can be used as E’s. In this riddle one ʀ becomes R so that:
I ʀ I I ʀ N ʀʀʀʀ GHSISUKI and L is an anagram of ‘Henricus’, ( HENʀIKUS), and other words. After Henricus is removed the remaining letters are Iʀ II ʀʀʀʀ G S L.
The four strokes (ʀ’s) suggest an Æ /O.
The G can be seen as an X as in ‘X marks the spot’ or with O it is ‘go.’
Now remaining S, L, Iʀ II ⇒ S LI Iʀ I ⇒ S lie ire eye or South lies the eye that wandered which is a typical Baalist statement. Other Pagan / Baalist concepts: Iʀ I Iʀ N ʀ ⇒ Ire I Ire, Near, North go.
The enlarged NI provides ⇒ nigh ……and comet, lake, footprints’ of the giant, and foundation.

A Pagan/Baalist reading might be:

South lies the eye that wandered in ire as it went.
There are two foundations now, the Magnetic and True.
The North foundation went South.
It lies nigh in the comet’s lake where it left its giant footprints..

Henricus and Dates

Bishop Henricus (aka Eirikr Gnupson) was believed to be the first bishop in Vinland. He was sent by Pope Paschal II (AD 1099-1118). (Gordon, pg. 93) Although he was sent by the church, it appears he was Pagan and since there is nothing else known about him, except who replaced him, it appears he defected. Hidden in the anagram on the right side are dates which correspond to those mentioned in the Spirit Pond Stones (post and pdf) and seen imbedded in the Newport Tower (post and pdf).

Note that SUKI provides 11 and 2,6,9 ⇒ 1117. Also, GHS provides 11 and 9,7 ⇒ 1116. These are the same dates seen in the aforementioned inscriptions. This is either when he arrived in Vinland or when he took his extraordinary journey to tour the seat of Baal ie. Belcher Island in the giant’s footprints.

Henricus sailed to the comet lake for a tour in 1116 to 1117.
It is where the eye wandered and turned. It lies nigh and near…

Author and Date of Inscription

This stone is dated via the Easter Tables. (The reader is directed to Landsverk’s books below on this method of dating.) The first 5 strokes, N = 8 and 4 ʀ strokes implies the date is found on Line #4, at Golden Number 8 with Day Letter 5 ⇒ 1242. This is the only year that fits. It is confirmed by the N or 8 + 4 strokes = 12 and there are 4 strokes in 2 groups ⇒ 1242.

The author’s name remains to be found. The Nomans Land – Leif Iriksson stone uses a ÞIʀ as three letters from the author’s name. The remaining letters were found by counting and converting back to letters/runes. The same occurs here. The IʀN are central and large which suggests it is important. There are 4 ʀ (strokes) on the right of the N which implies 4 = Æ/O. There are 3 strokes on the left which implies Þ (Th or D). So, we have ÞOʀN I or simply put I am Thorn.

South lies the eye that wandered in ire as it went.
There are two foundations now, the Magnetic and True.
The North foundation went South.
It lies nigh in the comet’s lake where it left its giant footprints.

Henricus sailed to the comet lake for a tour in 1116 to 1117.
It is where the eye wandered and turned. It lies nigh and near…

I am Thorn and I wrote this in 1242 in memory of Henricus.

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From Wikipedia


Similar Articles by the Same Author

*Easter Tables

** For numeric background see:

**Freeborn, B.L., Validating North American Runic Inscriptions,, November 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Ancient Riddles to Test Our Wits: The Secret Chamber,, January 2016. (Post)

Freeborn, B.L., Deciphering the Spirit Pond, Nomans Land and Narragansett Runic Inscriptions,, November 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Et in Arcadia Ego – OUOSVAVV DM – Deciphered,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., Kensington Rune Stone: A New Translation,, February 2023.

Freeborn, B.L., Lifting the Veil of Time off the Rökstone of Sweden,, April 2023.

Freeborn, B.L., Runic Riddles: Time Capsules,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L. The Long Debated Bourne Stone,, January 2023.

Freeborn, B.L., The Nomans Land – Leif Eriksson Inscription,, December 2022. (An excerpt from the above.)

Freeborn, B.L., The Narragansett Inscription: A Translation with its Date of Dedication, Author and Inscriber,, October 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Newport Tower: Finding the Date of Dedication, its Designer and Builder,, October 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Runic Riddles: Younger Futhork,, December 2022.

Freeborn, B.L., The Vinland Map – Encoded Riddle,, February 2023.


Firestone, Richard; West, Allen; Warwick-Smith, Simon; The Cycle of Cosmic Catastrophes: Flood, Fire, and Famine in the History of Civilization, Bear & Company, Rochester, VT., 2006.

Gordon, Cyrus, Riddles in History, Crown Publishers, Inc. New York, 1974.

Landsverk, O.G., Ancient Norse Messages, Norseman Press, Glendale, California, 1969.

Landsverk, O.G., Runic Records of the Norsemen in America, Erik J. Friis, Publisher, Rushford, MN, 1974.

Nielson, Richard and Wolter, Scott, The Kensington Rune Stone: Compelling New Evidence, Lake Superior Agate Publishing, 2006.

Mongé, Alf & O.G. Landsverk, Norse Medieval Cryptography in Runic Carvings, Norseman Press, Glendale, California, 1967.

Syversen, Earl, Norse Runic Inscriptions with Their Long-forgotten Cryptography, The Vine Hill Press, Sebastopol, California, 1979.

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Chartier, Craig, New Thoughts on an Old Rock or Confessions of an Ignorant Skeptic, January 2016, at:

Hoxie, Nelda, Visiting the Mysterious Bourne Stone at the Bourne Historical Society, 2 September 2015, at:

Petiet, Mary, New Theory Presented About Bourne Stone Markings, The Enterprise Bourne, 15 October 2015 at:

Wicked Yankee, The Bourne Stone – Bourne, Ma, 31 October, 2012 at: