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Chambered Cairn (Neolithic)

Site Name Carriside

Classification Chambered Cairn (Neolithic)

Canmore ID 7643

Site Number ND05NE 27

NGR ND 0722 5928

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Reay
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Caithness
  • Former County Caithness

Archaeology Notes

ND05NE 27 0722 5928.

(ND 0722 5928) Chambered Cairn (NR)

OS 6" map, (1963)

Carriside. Orkney-Cromarty - round, with Camster-type chamber. This chambered cairn has been considerably robbed and now appears as an irregular, turf-covered mound about 6ft high from which the tops of some stones project. Its extent, however, is quite clear, 75ft N-S by 70ft transversely. The entrance to the chamber has been from the SSE and the remains, as visible at present, suggest a passage 20ft long with a large chamber 26ft long divided into only three compartments, 9ft, 10ft and 6ft long respectively.

A S Henshall 1963, visited 1956; RCAHMS 1911.

The remains of this chambered cairn are as described by Miss Henshall. It measures 22.7m N-S by 21.2m transversely, with a maximum height of 1.7m.

Visited by OS (W D J) 11 April 1962.

A chambered cairn as described above.

Visited by OS (J M) 30 June 1981.

The cairn is in a flat area of heather moorland at 80m OD, 350m NW of the deserted croft of Carriside. The cairn is turf-covered with heather spreading up the sides. The edge is fairly wel defined though disturbed in places by robbing. The interior has been left in humps and hollows, and the area E of the chamber has been removed to almost ground level. The maximum height to the E of the back-slab of the chamber is 1.7m. The cairn appears to have been heel-shaped in plan as the SSE side is only slightly convex with a rounded corner to the S. The diameter SSE to NNW is about 22m and transversely is about the same. The entrance has been from the SSE. About 5m from the cairn edge the S part of a lintel is exposed, its lower surface 1.2m above ground level and 0.6m below the top of the E portal stone. The lintel is 1.7m long, over 0.6m wide and 0.3m thick, tilting down slightly to the NE. There can be little doubt it covers the inner end of the passage. The chamber is 8m long, Six orthostats are visible, all with broken upper edges 1.5m or so above ground level. The portal stones are 0.85m apart, 0.6 and 0.85m long, both 0.07m thick, the first barely visible and the other 0.3m high. Three metres to the N the E slab of a pair of divisional slabs just projects. It is 0.6m long and 0.1m thick. A pair of divisional slabs 3.1m to the N are 1.1m apart. They are 1 and 1.3m long, 0.15 and 0.1m thgick, and 0.5 and 0.35m huigh. The back-slab, 1.8m behind them, leans to the N> It is 1.55m long, 0.1m thick and exposed for 0.5m though its true height is about 1.7m. Butting against it a short stretch of the W side wall can just be seen.

J L Davidson and A S Henshall 1991, visited 23 September 1987.


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