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Lewis, Garrabost, Cnoc Nan Dursainean

Chambered Cairn (Neolithic)

Site Name Lewis, Garrabost, Cnoc Nan Dursainean

Classification Chambered Cairn (Neolithic)

Alternative Name(s) Dursainean Druidical Circle

Canmore ID 4393

Site Number NB53SW 2

NGR NB 5238 3307

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/4393

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Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Western Isles
  • Parish Stornoway
  • Former Region Western Isles Islands Area
  • Former District Western Isles
  • Former County Ross And Cromarty

Archaeology Notes

NB53SW 2 5238 3307

(NB 5238 3307) Dursainean Druidical Circle (NR)

OS 6" map, Ross-shire, 2nd ed., (1898)

'Denuded Chambered Cairn and Circle...The chamber has been contained within four central corner stones, 2 1/2ft to 3 1/2ft high, and a thin slab capstone 4 1/2ft long and 3 1/4ft broad, now fallen in. On the SW and 1ft distant is an upright 4 1/2ft high while about 10ft from the centre of the chamber to the ESE are two prostrate stones, a few feet beyond which are two uprights 4ft and 2ft 7ins high respectively.

The circle of standing stones has been depleted, but four stones ranging from 1ft 2ins to 2ft 9ins in height and two prostrate are still in situ on the NE arc, barely 30ft from the chamber. Two others, 3ft in height, 36ft and 44ft distant respectively, are to the W, and one, 2 1/2ft high and 36ft distant, stands to the S. Within the circle are two prostrate stones, one to the SW and one, fractured, to the SE. The cairn has probably been used as a quarry for the houses in Garrabost, and few loose stones are left.'

RCAHMS 1928, visited 27 June 1921.

As described by RCAHMS except that the capstone is now fractured.

Visited by OS (A L F R) assistant archaeology officer, 23 April 1964.

The stone circle, like that suggested at Steinecleit on the west coast of Lewis (NB35SE 2), is more probably the remains of a large perastilith around the base of a sub-rectangular cairn. There is a straight alignment of stones on the NE side of the cairn, although a bulge of smaller stonework is also visible here and probably represents collapse with later quarrying activity.

Information from RCAHMS (SMDG), 9 February 2005.

This cairn has been heavily robbed and some of the stones appear to have been broken deliberately, yet enough of the kerb remains to suggest that it has been square on plan. Kerbstones survive at three of the four corners, those on the S and W corners being roughly triangular with pointed tops; the third, on the E, is the last of three small boulders forming the shallow facade on the SE. The tallest stone on the facade leans slightly inwards and marks the NE side of the narrow entrance passage leading to an oval chamber. Three substantial orthostats stand beyond this, rising high above the present surface of the cairn and slightly off-set to the SW. Their arrangement is perplexing, leading Henshall to suppose that they belong to the ‘E side of large chamber on a different axis’ approached by an oval shaped ante chamber.

Activities

Field Visit (30 August 2009)

This cairn has been heavily robbed and some of the stones appear to have been broken deliberately, yet enough of the kerb remains to suggest that it has been square on plan. Kerbstones survive at three of the four corners, those on the S and W corners being roughly triangular with pointed tops; the third, on the E, is the last of three small boulders forming the shallow facade on the SE. The tallest stone on the facade leans slightly inwards and marks the NE side of the narrow entrance passage leading to an oval chamber. Three substantial orthostats stand beyond this, rising high above the present surface of the cairn and slightly off-set to the SW. Their arrangement is perplexing, leading Henshall to suppose that they belong to the ‘E side of large chamber on a different axis’ approached by an oval shaped ante chamber.

Visited by RCAHMS (ARG,SPH) 30 August 2009

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