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Migdale

Hoard (Bronze)

Site Name Migdale

Classification Hoard (Bronze)

Alternative Name(s) Loch Migdale; Skibo; Dornoch

Canmore ID 14010

Site Number NH69SW 22

NGR NH 6336 9214

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

C14 Radiocarbon Dating

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/14010

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Creich (Sutherland)
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Sutherland
  • Former County Sutherland

Archaeology Notes

NH69SW 22 6336 9214.

An Early Bronze Age metalwork hoard was found during the blasting of a granite knoll on moorland at Migdale (NH 635 921) between 1895 and April 1901; and was donated to the National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland (NMAS) in 1964-5 by Mrs M Carnegie Miller, Connecticut, descendant of the owner of the property at the time of the discovery, Andrew Carnegie. (The enclosing dates are those of Carnegie's acquisition of the property [HBD No. 5] and of the report to Society of Antiquaries of Scotland [Anderson 1901])

According to Rev Dr Joass (information from J M Joass to J Anderson) the site lay 200 yards SW of two hut circles, and many tumuli and cairns lay all around, but at greater distances (Anderson 1901). The hoard consisted of one flat axe (not two as has been consistently reported), eight armlets, seventy-three beads, at least twenty bead-fragments, fragments of sheet bronze, five sheet cones, an ear-ornament and six jet buttons (Accession nos: DQ 205, 335-365) (Coles 1962). (See also NH69SW 21).

J Anderson 1901; Proc Soc Antiq Scot 1967; J M Coles 1971.

No definite information was found regarding the findspot of the hoard; but Mr Stewart (N Stewart, Migdale) indicated an area of rocky knolls where he had heard of 'something' having been found. The area, at NH 6336 9214, has been extensively quarried for stone and one or two shot-holes were seen in the rock. It is now overgrown with scrub. The moorland to the NE of this area was perambulated but no trace was found of the hut-circles mentioned by Joass (Anderson 1901)

(Undated) information from OS record card.

No further information.

Visited by OS (J B) 6 October 1980.

Loch Migdale, Skibo, Dornoch. Hoard found by blasting a granite knoll on the moor at the W end of Loch Migdale.

Flat axe, smooth on one face and corroded on the other, green, tinned, butt cleaned on one face, one side notched; length 152mm, butt 37mm, cutting edge 82mm, weight 530 gms. NMAS DQ 335.

Associated finds: two armlets of butt-jointed strips with three horixontal mouldings between which a decoration of short vertical incised strokes (milling) can be seen; six armlets of D- or oval-section, butt-jointed but now overlapping, their internal diameter varying between 56 and 66mm; 43 beads of sheet bronze partly with wooden cores, varying in length between 34 and 18mm and in diameter between 6.5 and 4mm; a fragment of sheet bronze, decorated on one face with lenticular bosses between traced strokes and bordered with rows of small bosses; fragment of a sheet bronze earring of the basket type; fargment of sheet bronze possibly similar to the last; five (plus one fragment of) conical, V-bored buttons of jet or lignite.

The axe figured by Piggott and Stewart is no longer considered to belong to this hoard, not least because of the different patina: see NH78NW 19.

P K Schmidt and C B Burgess 1981.

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