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Braidenoch Hill

Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Site Name Braidenoch Hill

Classification Cross Slab (Early Medieval)

Canmore ID 63877

Site Number NX59SE 3

NGR NX 5709 9081

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2021.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Dumfries And Galloway
  • Parish Carsphairn
  • Former Region Dumfries And Galloway
  • Former District Stewartry
  • Former County Kirkcudbrightshire

Early Medieval Carved Stones Project

Braidenoch Hill 1, Kirkcudbrightshire, cross-slab fragments

Measurements: H 1.05m, W 0.43m to 0.32m, D 0.18m

Stone type: whinstone

Place of discovery: NX 5709 9081

Evidence for discovery: first recorded in 1911 lying on the south-west slope of Braidenoch Hill.

Present location: still on the hillside.

Present condition: broken in two but the carving is in good condition.


The cross is deeply incised: an equal-armed cross with expanded arms and a central circle, with the lower arm set on a long shaft.

Date: eighth or ninth century.

Primary references: RCAHMS 1914, no 100; Craig 1992, vol 2, 300-2.

Desk-based information compiled by A Ritchie 2019


Field Visit (1 August 1911)

100. Cross-slabs, Braidenoch Hill.

Lying on the south-west slope of Braidenoch Hill, near the top and some 300 yards south of the actual summit, are two incised crosses, the one complete though broken in two, and the other a fragment. About them lie several other blocks seemingly of quarried whinstone. Their position is most easily found from the north-west wall of the field, which starts from the side of Braidenoch cottage standing north-east and south-west in the valley below, with which they are in line. The crosses are similar in design. The most complete (fig. 60) measures 13 inches in length, is equal-armed and hollow angled, with arms 5 inches in length, expanding from 3 inches to 5 inches, and with a boss in the centre 1 1/2 inches in diameter. The cross-head is set on a shaft 17 inches in length, expanding downwards from 2 to 3 inches. The slab on which this cross is incised measures 3 feet 3 inches in length, 12 1/2 inches in breadth at the upper end, 17 inches at base, and 7 inches in thickness. It is broken across near where the head joins the shaft. The second stone measures 2 feet 2 inches in length, 9 inches in width, and 6 1/2 inches in thickness.

Both stones are of the Silurian sandstone of the district. These relics are probably in or near their original sites, high up on a hillside over 900 feet above the sea-level, and adjacent to an old bridle-path, the " packman's road."

Visited by RCAHMS 1st August 1911.

Desk Based Assessment (8 November 1976)

NX59SE 3 5707 9083.

(NX 5709 9081) Stone Crosses (NAT) (Ruins of).

OS 6" map (1957)

There are two slabs (NX59SE 3 and NX59SE 67) bearing incised crosses, some 300 yds S of the summit of Braidenoch Hill; one is complete though broken in two, and the other a fragment. They are probably on or near their original sites, near an old bridle path.

The large slab measures 3ft 3 ins x 17 ins at base and 7 ins thick; it is broken where the crosshead joins the shaft. The cross measures 13 ins in length, is equal-armed and hollow angled, with arms 5 ins in length expanding from 3 ins to 5 ins, and with a boss in the centre 1 1/2 ins in diameter. The cross-head is set on a shaft 17 ins long expanding downwards from 2 to 3 ins.

The second stone measures 2 1/2 ins x 9 ins x 6 1/2 ins and bears a cross similar in design to that described above. Truckell dates them as 10th-11th century.

Information from OS 8 November 1976.

RCAHMS 1914, visited 1911; A E Truckell 1963

Field Visit (21 February 1978)

NX 5707 9083. The incised slabs are as described. They rest amongst a random spread of large stones on a SW- facing slope of rough pasture and rock outcrop. They are almost portable and there is no obvious reason for their occurrence here, but perhaps they were carved by an itinerant craftsman.

Surveyed at 1:10 000.

Visited by OS (JRL) 21 February 1978.

Visited by OS (JRL) 10 March 1978

Field Visit (July 1998)

NX 570 908 (centre) An area of 1000 acres surrounding Braidenoch Hill was inspected and numerous previously unrecorded sites were located.

A full report has been lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: Scottish Woodlands Ltd.

T Ward 1998

These crosses were noted during a pre-afforestation survey of Braidenoch Hill. No new details were recorded.

T Ward and M Brown (Biggar Museum Trust) July 1998; NMRS MS 959/3, no.7


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