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Mull, Gualachaolish, St John's Church And Churchyard

Burial Ground (Period Unassigned), Chapel (Period Unassigned), Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Site Name Mull, Gualachaolish, St John's Church And Churchyard

Classification Burial Ground (Period Unassigned), Chapel (Period Unassigned), Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Killean, Old Parish Church

Canmore ID 22647

Site Number NM72NW 3

NGR NM 7099 2839

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Torosay
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Argyll And Bute
  • Former County Argyll

Archaeology Notes

NM72NW 3 7099 2839.

(NM 7099 2839) Chapel (NR) (In Ruins)

Burial Ground (NR)

OS 6" map, Argyllshire, 2nd ed., (1900)

The remains of a pre-Reformation chapel, which has an old burial ground walled round it. Five bishops were interred there, the last of them the son of the then Maclaine of Lochbuie.

Name Book 1878.

The chapel measures 13.5m E-W by 5.6m internally within a wall 1.2m wide and up to 1.1m high. The entrance is on the W. The interior contains old graves and modern memorial stones. To the SE of the chapel are fragmentary traces of the wall of the original burial ground; the modern burial ground wall is outside this.

Revised at 1:10,560.

Visited by OS (DWR) 19 May 1972.

(NM 7099 2839) Chapel (NR) (remains of)

Burial Ground (NAT)

OS 1:10,000 map, 1976.

Old Parish Church, Killean: The ruins of the medieval church of the extensive parish of Killean or Torosay stand within a burial-ground some 250m from the E shore of Loch Spelve. It was dedicated to St John, and first comes on record in 1393 when a papal indulgence was granted in favour of those who visited it and made donations. Although the name 'Killean' was still applied to the parish during the 17th century, there were protracted vacancies and the church probably became derelict at this period.

The building was situated near the W bank of a small stream, on sloping ground above a level area of former rig-cultivation, and occupied a platform created by revetments running parallel to the E and S walls. For the most part the walls are now reduced to a turf-covered rubble core standing to a maximum height of about 1.0m, but a short length of wall-face is visible towards the W end of the S wall. The dimensions appear to have been about 13.1m from E to W by 5.8m transversely within walls about 1.0m in thickness, and the doorway was probably situated towards the W end of the N wall.

Within the church is the upper part of a 14th/15th century grave-slab, re-used as a headstone. It is sculptured with a foliated cross and the hilt of a sword. In the burial-ground is a 16th century carved window-head.

RCAHMS 1980.


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