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Loch Kinord, Cross Slab

Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Site Name Loch Kinord, Cross Slab

Classification Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Aboyne Castle; Kinord Cross-slab

Canmore ID 33981

Site Number NO49NW 14

NGR NO 44000 99787

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeenshire
  • Parish Glenmuick, Tullich And Glengairn
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District Kincardine And Deeside
  • Former County Aberdeenshire

Early Medieval Carved Stones Project

Loch Kinord, Aberdeenshire, cross-slab

Measurements: H 1.91m, W 0.94m, D 0.31m

Stone type: pink granite

Place of discovery: NO c 4400 9978

Present location: NO 4400 9978

Evidence for discovery: in the mid nineteenth century the stone stood ‘on an eminence’ on the north bank of Loch Kinord, but later that century it was taken to the grounds of Aboyne Castle and set up in a ‘small oak plantation’ (NO 5250 9898). In 1959 it was returned to approximately its original site beside Loch Kinord.

Present condition: damaged at the top and some edge-damage elsewhere,


Roughly kite-shaped, this slab is carved in relief on one broad face with an elaborate ringed cross, which occupies most of the available space. The cross is outlined by a roll moulding, which extends into a spiral at each corner of the arm terminals and into a semi-spiral at the base of the shaft. The circular arm-pits are closed by arcs of a ring. The entire cross is filled with continuous interlace, which in the side arms conveys an impression of triquetra knots and in the upper arm forms four ring knots.

Date: eighth or ninth century.

References: Stuart 1856, pl 13; ECMS pt 3, 194.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2017.

Archaeology Notes

NO49NW 14 44000 99787

The cross-slab was removed from Loch Kinnord and taken to Aboyne Castle (NO59NW 3). In 1959 it was taken back to Loch Kinord where it was re-erected at approx, its original position (NO 4400 9988).

(Undated) manuscript information on OS Record Card.

The alleged chapel of the castle on Loch Kinord (NO49NW 16) stands on the north shore of the loch, rather to the east of Castle Island. Its remains are 52 feet long and 18 feet wide internally and there is an internal partition at each end.

'On the top of a brae called the Claggan, not far from the chapel...' (J Stuart 1868) stood a Class III cross-inscribed slab (J R Allen and J Anderson 1903)... removed to the park at Aboyne "(Stuart 1868) but restored as near as possible to its original position in 1959. (SDD 1965) It is 6ft 3ins high, 3ft 1in wide and 1ft thick (J R Allen and J Anderson 1903).

J Stuart 1868; J R Anderson and J Anderson 1903; SDD 1960-.


Field Visit (12 November 1968)

The cross-inscribed stone, standing within a railed enclosure at NO 4400 9988, is as described and illustrated by Allen (Allen and Anderson 1903) The only structure resembling the alleged chapel is at NO 4405 9977 but is almost certainly a ruined croft.

Surveyed at 1/2500.

Visited by OS (N K B), 12 November 1968.

Publication Account (1986)

This excellently preserved cross-slab of granite stands close to its original site. The interlace-filled cross occupies almost the whole surface of the slab, the anns in particular run up hard against the edges of the stone. The top panel bears four spiral knots and the angles of the cross have been hollowed out to emphasise the ring that embraces the angles. It is thus close to the free-standing ring-crosses of Irish inspiration seen in the west of Scotland.

Information from ‘Exploring Scotland’s Heritage: Grampian’, (1986).


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