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Inverurie Churchyard, Symbol Stones

Cross Incised Stone(S) (Pictish), Pictish Symbol Stone(S) (Pictish)

Site Name Inverurie Churchyard, Symbol Stones

Classification Cross Incised Stone(S) (Pictish), Pictish Symbol Stone(S) (Pictish)

Alternative Name(s) Old Inverurie Churchyard; Inverurie Cemetery; Inverurie Kirkyard; Inverurie, Old Parish Church

Canmore ID 18872

Site Number NJ72SE 11

NGR NJ 78043 20611

NGR Description Centred NJ 78043 20611

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/18872

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

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Digital Images

Administrative Areas

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

EARLY MEDIEVAL CARVED STONES PROJECT

Inverurie 1 Aberdeenshire, Pictish symbol stone fragment

Measurements: H 1.67m, W 0.48m, D 0.23m

Stone type: red granite

Place of discovery: NJ 6099 3025

Present location: Inverurie churchyard.

Evidence for discovery: all four symbol stones were built into the walls of the medieval church, which was demolished in 1775. They were then built into the churchyard wall, whence they were removed and set up in a line in the churchyard in the nineteenth century.

Present condition: broken and damaged.

Description

This slab is incised with parts of four Pictish symbols, one above the other: from the top, a crescent and V-rod, a circular disc and rectangle (‘mirror-case’), a serpent with a straight rod, and a double disc and Z-rod

Date: seventh century.

References: ECMS pt 3, 168-9; RCAHMS 2007, 123; Fraser 2008, no 26.1

Desk-based nformation compiled by A Ritchie 2017

EARLY MEDIEVAL CARVED STONES PROJECT

Inverurie 2, Aberdeenshire, Pictish symbol stone fragment

Measurements: H 0.75m, W 0.62m, D 0.28m

Stone type: red granite

Place of discovery: NJ 6099 3025

Present location: Inverurie churchyard.

Evidence for discovery: all four symbol stones were built into the walls of the medieval church, which was demolished in 1775. They were then built into the churchyard wall, whence they were removed and set up in a line in the churchyard in the nineteenth century.

Present condition: trimmed.

Description

Part only of a symbol stone, this fragment is incised with two symbols: the disc and rectangle, and the arch, both with internal decoration.

Date: seventh century.

References: ECMS 169; RCAHMS 2007, 123; Fraser 2008, no 26.2.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2017

EARLY MEDIEVAL CARVED STONES PROJECT

Inverurie 3, Aberdeenshire, Pictish symbol stone fragment

Measurements: H 0.75m, W 0.62m, D 0.28m

Stone type: pink granite

Place of discovery: NJ 6099 3025

Present location: Inverurie churchyard.

Evidence for discovery: all four symbol stones were built into the walls of the medieval church, which was demolished in 1775. They were then built into the churchyard wall, whence they were removed and set up in a line in the churchyard in the nineteenth century.

Present condition: the top of the slab is missing.

Description

This is part of a symbol stone, incised with a large double disc and Z-rod, and above there is an arc of another symbol.

Date: seventh century.

References: ECMS pt 3, 169-70; RCAHMS 2007, 123; Fraser 2008, no 26.3.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2017

EARLY MEDIEVAL CARVED STONES PROJECT

Inverurie 4, Aberdeenshire, Pictish symbol stone fragment

Measurements: H 1.25m, W 0.82m, D 0.31m

Stone type: pink granite

Place of discovery: NJ 6099 3025

Present location: Inverurie churchyard.

Evidence for discovery: all four symbol stones were built into the walls of the medieval church, which was demolished in 1775. They were then built into the churchyard wall, whence they were removed and set up in a line in the churchyard in the nineteenth century.

Present condition: some weathering.

Description

This slab is incised with a trotting horse, facing right, with scroll joints and a long tail. The head has a pointed ear, circular eye and five hairs representing the mane.

Date: seventh century.

References: ECMS pt 3, 170; RCAHMS 2007, 123; Fraser 2008, no 26.4.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2017

Archaeology Notes

NJ72SE 11.00 centred 78043 20611

(NJ 7800 2064) Sculptured Stones (NR) found.

OS 6" map, Aberdeenshire, 2nd ed., (1928)

NJ72SE 11.01 NJ 7802 2062 Pictish Symbol Stone (Inverurie no. 1)

NJ72SE 11.02 NJ 7802 2062 Pictish Symbol Stone (Inverurie no. 2)

NJ72SE 11.03 NJ 7802 2062 Pictish Symbol Stone (Inverurie no. 3)

NJ72SE 11.04 NJ 7802 2062 Pictish Symbol Stone (Inverurie no. 4)

NJ72SE 11.05 NJ 7802 2062 Stone: Cross-incised

NJ72SE 11.06 NJ 7802 2062 Stone: Cross-incised

For Bass of Inverurie (NJ 7809 2059), Old Inverurie Churchyard (NJ 7800 2064) and Inverurie Cemetery (centred NJ 7815 2055), see NJ72SE 13, NJ72SE 15, NJ72SE 138 respectively.

There are four symbol stones lying in the church-yard at Inverurie. They were taken out of the church-yard walls, which were built from the materials of the old church (NJ72SE 15). They should be placed under cover to 'prevent their further disintegartion by the weather'. (For descriptions, see under entries for individual stones).

J R Allen and J Anderson 1903; J Stuart 1856.

In Inverurie churchyard there are four sculptured stones and two small cross-marked stones. Both the latter stones are circular with a triangular foot for fixing into the ground; both bear an incised cross on each face. The triangular foot has been broken off the smaller stone which measures 10 1/2 by 9 1/2 by 3 1/2 inches thick; the larger measures 16 1/2 by 12 by 5 inches thick.

J Ritchie 1911.

Activities

Reference (1997)

Four Class I symbol stones.

Inverurie 1 : two groups (a) crescent and V-rod over a mirror-case (b) double-disc and Z-rod above a serpent and Z-rod.

Inverurie 2 : east facing fragment showing a mirror.

Inverurie 3 : east facing fragment showing a double-disc and Z-rod below part of a disc.

Inverurie 4 : west facing showing a horse symbol.

A Mack 1997.

Field Visit (14 August 2000)

Seven stones stand or lie on the line of a row of birch and sycamore trees between the area of the old churchyard in Inverurie cemetery and the Bass (NJ72SE 13). Four are Pictish symbol stones, one is an early 17th-century headstone commemorating Walter Innes of Ardtannes, and two are simply roughly shaped slabs, one of whinstone, the other of pink granite. These last probably served funerary function, the massive form and unshaped nature of the granite slab suggesting that it may have been used as a mortsafe to deter the activities of 19th century body-snatchers.

Stuart relates that the symbol stones 'seem to have been built into the foundations of the old church, the walls of which were pulled down to afford materials for building the churchyard dykes in the early part of the present century. Numbers 2, 3 and 4 were recently observed in these dykes, and Number 1, while in the course of being broken up by the masons, who were building the dykes, was rescued by Mr Donald of Urybank, and has lain in the churchyard since that time'.

Visited by RCAHMS (IF), 14 August 2000.

J Stuart 1856.

References

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