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Newton Of Lewesk

Pictish Symbol Stone (Pictish)

Site Name Newton Of Lewesk

Classification Pictish Symbol Stone (Pictish)

Alternative Name(s) Kinellar House Policies

Canmore ID 18093

Site Number NJ62NE 19

NGR NJ 693 279

NGR Description Removed to NJ 7049 2592 and to NJ 8151 1294

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2020.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeenshire
  • Parish Rayne
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District Gordon
  • Former County Aberdeenshire


Newton of Lewesk, Aberdeenshire, Pictish symbol stone

Measurements: H 0.93m, W 0.55m

Stone type: reddish granite

Place of discovery: NJ c 815 129

Present location: beside the driveway of Kinellar House (NJ 693 279)

Evidence for discovery: found in 1914 ‘embedded in the soil’ on Newton of Lewesk farm. It was taken first to Logie Elphinstone House and later to Kinellar House.

Present condition: plough-damaged edges and parts of the carving are worn.


One face of this irregular boulder bears three or possibly four incised Pictish symbols. A disc and rectangle towards the top of the stone has traces of a spiral design within the disc. Its base touches a rectangle below, which has an inner small square and which may represent a shield with a spear projecting behind it. To the left of this possible shield symbol appears to be part of a single-sided comb with a high back shaped into semi-circular projections. Below the shield is a double crescent symbol with two back-to-back crescents, each with an inner curved projection.

Date: seventh century.

References: Ritchie 1916, 280-5; Fraser 2008, no 39.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2017.

Archaeology Notes

NJ62NE 19 693 279 removed to 7049 2592 and to 8151 1294

This stone now stands on a bank beside the driveway of Kinellar House (NJ 815 129), see NJ81SW 176.

In the autumn of 1914 Mr J Gordon, farmer, Newton of Lewesk removed a block of stone which lay embedded in the soil about 300 yards SW of the farm-steading and a few yards away from a dry-stone dyke. After the removal symbols were noted on the face which had been hidden. The stone, of red granite 2ft 10ins long, and 7ins thick, is the only example known to have a rectangle with rod attached. It has been placed beside the 3 symbol stones (NJ72NW 7) at Logie House.

J Ritchie 1916; W D Simpson 1943.


Field Visit (11 March 1969)

This symbol stone has been removed to NJ 7049 2592, where it lies recumbent. Its exact find spot could not be ascertained.

Surveyed at 1/2500.

Visited by OS (NKB), 11 March 1969.

Reference (1985)

This stone, of reddish coloured granite, formerly at Logie House (NJ 7049 2592) and now lost, measures 0.85m by 0.2m and bears a double crescent, 'mirror case' and a rectangle with rod; not all the symbols need be contemporary.

J N G Ritchie 1985.

Reference (1997)

Class I symbol stone bearing a mirror-case at the top and a double crescent at the base.

A Mack 1997.

Project (April 2006 - October 2006)

The proposed underground cable runs from N of Kirkton Farm, Colpy, AB52 6XD to Blackhall Road (adjacent to Westburn Gardens), Inverurie, AB51 5SN. The National Grid Reference of the NW end is NJ64961 33749 and the SE end is NJ75620 21721. The proposed cable is in Culsalmond Parish (NW end) and Inverurie (SE end). The height is 245-250m OD (NW end) and 95-100m (SE end). 1.2 The work was commissioned by Gordon McConachie, CKD Galbraith LLP for SSE. All the archaeological work will be carried out in the context of Scottish Planning Policy (SPP) Planning Advice Note (PAN 2/2011) and Scottish Historic Environment Scotland’s Policy Statement (HESPS), which state that archaeological remains should be regarded as part of the environment to be protected and managed.

Following a Desk-Based Assessment, a walkover of the entire length of the cable trench, carried out 30 April - 5 May 2016, revealed no new sites on the route but a number of Scheduled Monuments and archaeological and historical sites have been identified on the route and a watching brief was required in six areas. Six trenches were monitored between 14 June and 26 September 2016. At least two and possibly four prehistoric ring ditches with associated pottery were identified in two trenches and these were retained in situ and a clear path identified in each case for the cable trench. The base of a possible rock-cut ditch was uncovered at Durno and this was recorded, sampled and backfilled. At this area of the Roman camp the cropmark is not visible as the underlying geology is bedrock.

One ring ditch was found at the N end of the pipeline associated with prehistoric pottery and one definite and two potential ring ditches at Glenniston. In the road within Logie Durno Roman Camp, the base of a possible ditch was identified in an area where the cropmark is not visible as the underlying geology is bedrock. The watching briefs are now complete and the cabling being laid. A Post-Excavation Research Design (PERD) will now be prepared for the post-excavation works required.


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