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Pictish Symbol Stone (Pictish)

Site Name Crosskirk

Classification Pictish Symbol Stone (Pictish)

Alternative Name(s) Chapel Pool

Canmore ID 319016

Site Number ND07SW 4.01

NGR ND 0248 7012

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Reay
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Caithness
  • Former County Caithness

Early Medieval Carved Stones Project (2016)

Crosskirk, Caithness, Pictish symbol stone

Measurements: more than H 0.69m, W 0.66m

Stone type: Old Red Sandstone

Place of discovery: ND 0248 7012

Present location: lost.

Evidence for discovery: found in the 19th century at Crosskirk broch, the stone was taken to Thurso Castle and later presented to the King of Denmark.

Present condition: unknown.


The stone as depicted by Stuart has either been trimmed or it was the cast which was drawn. On one face there were two incised symbols: the crescent and V-rod with traces of ornament within the crescent, and below the arch symbol.

Date: seventh century

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2016

Archaeology Notes

A rectangular symbol stone, 2ft 3ins high and 2ft 2ins wide, a facsimile of which is at Thurso Castle, is said to have been found at this broch and to have been given to the King of Denmark by Sir George Sinclair.

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


Field Visit (25 August 1910)

A sculptured stone, said to have been found in the broch (No.347) near the old Chapel of St Mary's, Lybster, in Reay is described and illustrated in the 'Sculptured Stones of Scotland', and in 'The Early Christian Monuments of Scotland'. It is of Caithness sandstone, rectangular in form 2' 3" in height by 2' 2" in width, and is sculptured on one face with incised lines, thus:- At the top, the crescent and V-shaped sceptre symbol, and below it the horse-shoe or arch symbol, both ornamented with curved lines. The stone is said to have been presented to the King of Denmark by Sir George Sinclair, the proprietor, but it has not been traced.

Visited by RCAHMS, 25th August 1910

Reference (1997)

Class I symbol stone (lost) showed a crescent and V-rod and a horseshoe.

A Mack 1997


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