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Gigha, Tarbert, Holy Stone

Cross Incised Stone (Early Medieval)

Site Name Gigha, Tarbert, Holy Stone

Classification Cross Incised Stone (Early Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Tarbet

Canmore ID 38597

Site Number NR65SE 12

NGR NR 6541 5151

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Gigha And Cara
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Argyll And Bute
  • Former County Argyll

Archaeology Notes

R65SE 12 6541 5151.

(NR 6541 5151) (informartion from R E MacCallum to OS) About 14m S of the S corner of the field there is a large flat-topped slab of schist, locally known as the 'Holy Stone', on which is incised a group of Early Christian symbols. The stone is wedge-shaped and measures about 2.4m long at the base by 0.6m in maximum height. The symbols have been pecked on the upper surface of the stone, the one on the left of the drawing being a Latin cross with a ring over the head, a semi-circle (?Calvary mount) at the foot, and dots in the interspaces of the cross. To the right of this is a symbol measuring about 0.9m in length and consisting of a cross with bifid terminals and a curved bar over the head. The lower end of the shaft is prolonged to bisect a rectangular figure with two right-angled and two curved corners - perhaps a representation of an altar or a socket-stone. Slightly below and to the right of the last there is a third symbol consisting of a small Latin cross with a cup-shaped hollow on either side of the base of the shaft. The presence of these symbols and the existence of the neighbouring cross (NR65SE 13) suggest that this was a place of some ecclesiastical significance in Early Christian times.

RCAHMS 1971, visited 1966.


Field Visit (20 January 1978)

No change to RCAHMS report.

Surveyed at 1:10 000.

Visited by OS (J M) 20 January 1978.

Reference (2001)

Flat-topped slab, 2.4m long by 0.6m high, bearing pecked symbols. A Latin cross has a ring enclosing the top arm, a curved mount at the foot, and dots in the angles, the lower ones pendant from the transom. A larger cross, with forked terminals and a curved bar above the head, is prolonged to bisect a shield-like base. Near this is a simple Latin cross.

I Fisher 2001.


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