Apologies for a rather lacklustre week of blogging–between filling in job applications and trying to make the most of the summer weather, I’m afraid I’ve rather neglected my history books. To make it up to you, today’s Friday Photo is a rather well-preserved carved stone boss kept by Historic Scotland at Dryburgh Abbey. It depicts the crucifixion of St Andrew, recognisable by the distinctive x-shaped crucifix, known as a Saltire. Its shape provided the inspiration for the Scottish flag–a blue field and white saltire–due to the elevation of St Andrew as the patron saint of Scotland, probably because of the prominence of St Andrews as the country’s premier ecclesiastical site. This carving would have sat at the intersection of ribs in the vaulting of Dryburgh, constructed in the Gothic style, and demonstrates the importance of this saint to ecclesiastical identity in mediaeval Scotland.