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Due to scheduled maintenance work by our external provider, background aerial imagery on Canmore may be unavailable

between 12:00 Friday 15th December and 12:00 Monday 18th December


Cairnbaan 4

Cup And Ring Marked Rock (Neolithic) - (Bronze Age)

Site Name Cairnbaan 4

Classification Cup And Ring Marked Rock (Neolithic) - (Bronze Age)

Canmore ID 39575

Site Number NR89SW 2

NGR NR 83880 91051

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2023.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Kilmichael Glassary
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Argyll And Bute
  • Former County Argyll

Archaeology Notes ( - 1977)

NR89SW 2 8387 9106.

(NM 8387 9105) Inscribed Rock (NR)

OS 6" map (1900)

Cups, cup-and-rings, and some gutters, on a sheet of rock.

M Campbell and M Sandeman 1964; D Christison 1904

Cup and ring marked rock as described and planned by above.

Visited by OS (DWR) 1 May 1973

NR 8388 9106. No change to the previous information.

Surveyed at 1/10,000.

Visited by OS (BS) 1 April 1977


Field Visit (June 1985)

In open moorland 100 m W of (NR89SW 3) there is a rock-sheet, flush with the surface of the ground, on which there is a complex series of markings, the most distinctive of which are a number of conjoined multiple-ringed cups. Six of these are surrounded by four rings, one by three rings, seven by two rings, and eight by single rings; several of the ringed cups have gutters. In addition, there are at least fifteen plain cups and stretches of wandering grooves. An unusual mark lies at bottom right of the outcrop; it is badly weathered, but appears to comprise a broad shallow cup surrounded by a single ring which is linked to the cup by a series of rays (Morris 1977).

Visited June 1985


Note (21 July 2019)

Date Fieldwork Started: 21/07/2019

Compiled by: ScRAP

Location Notes: The panel is located at the base of a gentle E facing slope on the W edge of a flat area roughly 35x25m that is bounded to the N, W and S by sloping land, forming a natural amphitheatre. The panel is in a grassy, cleared area surrounded by bracken, with mixed sliver birch and fir trees to the N, W and S. There are clears views to the E across the S end of Kilmartin Glen to Achnabrek in forestry on the opposite side of the valley, and to the SE to Cowal. The cluster of carved panels (Cairnbaan 1-3, Canmore 39586) are situated about 70m to the E, through a metal gate in a stone wall which lies 40m to the E. Other caved panels at Dunamuck Cottage (ScRAP 805 and 1725, Canmore 312122 and 88647) lie about 120-150m to the NE. Crinan Canal is situated about 200m to the S but is not visible.

Panel Notes: This roughly rectangular area of exposed schist bedrock, measuring about 3.2x2.5m, is flush with the ground and slopes gently to the E in line with the natural incline of the terrain. The surface is textured by natural pitting, and segmented by numerous fissures running across and longitudinally down the panel. At the E end of the panel, the fissures create a series of triangular shapes. The surface is covered with multiple cup and ring motifs and grooves, as well as cupmarks, and a rare possible star motif. Several motifs are interconnected, and there are at least two cases of superimposition or phased production. Most of the carvings are arranged within the spaces defined by natural fissures, and several grooves lead into fissures. The main area of carving is situated on the SW section of the panel, with fewer motifs on the N edge.


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