Scheduled Monument

Dhuallow, cairn 195m E ofSM11468

Status: Designated


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The legal document available for download below constitutes the formal designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The additional details provided on this page are provided for information purposes only and do not form part of the designation. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within this additional information.


Date Added
Prehistoric ritual and funerary: cairn (type uncertain)
Local Authority
Daviot And Dunlichity
NH 64538 26626
264538, 826626


The monument comprises the remains of a burial cairn, between 4500 and 3500 years old. It is situated in unimproved boggy moorland at approximately 240m OD, just below the lower break of slope of a wide river valley.

The cairn is a grass-covered, roughly circular, stony mound, measuring 12 m from NE to SW by 11 m transversely, and up to 0.8 m in height. There is a slight prominence at the summit and kerbstones are visible around the ESE edge. Immediately to the ENE of the cairn is a small, low and probably artificial mound. This may contain a peripheral satellite burial to the ones contained within the main cairn.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, to include the cairn and an area around in which evidence for its construction and use may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling excludes a modern drain around 11m from the cairn, to allow for its maintenance.

Statement of National Importance

Cultural Significance

The monument's archaeological significance can be expressed as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics: Despite the erosion or robbing out that may have reduced some of the upper, central body of the monument, there is a strong likelihood that the characteristic structural features that define this class of monument, and the internal and external archaeological deposits associated with this particular monument, have not been disturbed. The remaining height of the stones that form the body of the structure, together with the survival of the kerb and subsequent land-use as moorland, would appear to confirm this. Although a modern drain now runs near to the site, the waterlogged nature of the surrounding soils has resulted in the high potential for well-preserved environmental and organic archaeological deposits.

Contextual characteristics: This monument is located in a low-lying boggy area, far from the contemporary settlements and fields that occupy the upper reaches of the valley. This may indicate that it occupied a marginal position in the contemporary prehistoric landscape, at the base of the valley, on the edge of a marsh. If so, possibly its construction, and the acts of internment here, demarcated and defined the boundaries of domestic/living and wild/dead space, the territories of different communities, and/or route-ways through the landscape, followed by game or herded stock. This monument therefore provides a rare opportunity for understanding how prehistoric people in this region perceived the spheres of life, agriculture and death.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it is a good example of a later prehistoric burial cairn. It is well preserved and there is a high potential for the survival of associated organic and environmental remains. It has the potential to inform upon the pattern and development of upland exploitation and occupation, and upon the perceived relationship between the spheres of sacred and profane existence within prehistoric communities and societies. Its loss would significantly detract from our ability to understand prehistoric burial and ritual practices in this region and would affect our ability to understand this landscape.



RCAHMS record this site as NH62NW7. It is recorded in the Highland SMR as NH62NW0039.


RCAHMS 1994, Upper STRATHNAIRN, INVERNESS: AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SURVEY: SUMMARY REPORT, Edinburgh, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland.

About Scheduled Monuments

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Scheduling is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for monuments and archaeological sites of national importance as set out in the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

We schedule sites and monuments that are found to be of national importance using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Scheduled monument records provide an indication of the national importance of the scheduled monument which has been identified by the description and map. The description and map (see ‘legal documents’ above) showing the scheduled area is the designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The statement of national importance and additional information provided are supplementary and provided for general information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within the statement of national importance or additional information. These records are not definitive historical or archaeological accounts or a complete description of the monument(s).

The format of scheduled monument records has changed over time. Earlier records will usually be brief. Some information will not have been recorded and the map will not be to current standards. Even if what is described and what is mapped has changed, the monument is still scheduled.

Scheduled monument consent is required to carry out certain work, including repairs, to scheduled monuments. Applications for scheduled monument consent are made to us. We are happy to discuss your proposals with you before you apply and we do not charge for advice or consent. More information about consent and how to apply for it can be found on our website at

Find out more about scheduling and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


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Printed: 02/04/2023 06:42