Aberdeen, Greyfriars Church

Burial(s), College (post Medieval), Friary, Hospital, Post Hole(s), Wall(s) (medieval), Organic Material (bone)(medieval), Pot(s) (15th Century), Unidentified Pottery(s) (medieval)

Site Name Aberdeen, Greyfriars Church

Classification Burial(s), College (post Medieval), Friary, Hospital, Post Hole(s), Wall(s) (medieval), Organic Material (bone)(medieval), Pot(s) (15th Century), Unidentified Pottery(s) (medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Marischal College; Grey Friar's Monastery; Aberdeen, Franciscan Friary

Canmore ID 20146

Site Number NJ90NW 26

NGR NJ 9425 0650

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Ordnance Survey licence number 100020548. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeen, City Of
  • Parish Aberdeen
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District City Of Aberdeen
  • Former County Aberdeenshire

Archaeology Notes

NJ90NW 26 9425 0650

For Dominican friary (NJ 9389 0640) and Carmelite friary (NJ 9411 0608), see NJ90NW 27 and NJ90NW 49 respectively.

(NJ 9425 0646) Greyfriars Church (AD 1500) (NAT)

(NJ 9425 0650) Site of of Marischal College (NR)

OS 1:500 map, Aberdeenshire, 1st ed., (1867).

(NJ 9425 0650) Marischal College on site of (NAT)

Grey Friar's Monastery (NR)

OS 1:500 map, Aberdeenshire, 2nd ed., (1901).

The site of the Franciscan Friary, some of whose buildings were used by the original Marischal College after the Reformation.

The friary was founded in 1469 and consisted of cloister, church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, etc. A new church was built for the friars in 1518-32 and in 1559 they resigned their whole property to the Town Council, so the buildings survived the Reformation. In 1567 permission was granted for 'the place of the Friars Minor' to be converted into a hospital, but the church stood derelict until 1624, when it was restored. A north projection was added to it in 1768 and it remained in use as a parish church until its demolition in 1903. The other buildings passed to George, Early Marischal, who founded Marischal College on the site in 1593 although new college buildings were not erected until c.1676. The college was rebuilt on the site in the early 19th century.

D E Easson 1957; D MacGibbon and T Ross 1897; A Smith 1882.

Visited by OS (JLD) 20 August 1952.

The original college buildings were grouped around a courtyard behind Broad St. In 1837 Simpson designed a new Tudor-Style quadrangle in white granite behind the original houses of Broad St. A Mitchel Mackenzie built the Mitchell Tower in 1891.

(Additional bibliography cited).

NMRS, MS/712/83.

The site of this church is now occupied by Marischal College.

Visited by RCAHMS (JRS, ATW), 26 February 1997.

NJ 9425 0651 Interim report on ongoing works around Marischal College, Aberdeen. This report covers evaluation work within the rear and front quadrangles (Trench 1-8). Medieval and post-medieval contexts have been recorded in all areas.

Information from OASIS ID: aberdeen3-53479

Alison Cameron, Aberdeen City Archaeological Unit



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