Scheduled Monument

Clach an Tiompain, symbol stoneSM1676

Status: Designated

Documents

Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions (https://portal.historicenvironment.scot/termsandconditions).

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.

Summary

Date Added
18/05/1925
Last Date Amended
10/10/1995
Supplementary Information Updated
07/11/2018
Type
Crosses and carved stones: symbol stone
Local Authority
Highland
Parish
Fodderty
NGR
NH 48487 58513
Coordinates
248487, 858513

Description

The monument consists of a standing stone of slightly less than 1m in height, one side of which bears incised Pictish symbols and which stands on a low stony mound.

The stone, which is known locally as 'Clach an Tiumpan' or 'The Eagle Stone', is a roughly rectangular slab of blue gneiss which stands approximately 0.85m high and measures approximately 0.6m wide by 0.25m thick. On its E-facing side appear 2 incised symbols, the upper one known as the horseshoe, because of its shape (although this is not necessarily what is represented), and the lower carving showing a bird, traditionally identified as an eagle. The latter appears to have given the stone its English name, but the Gaelic name means either 'The sounding stone' or 'The stone on the ground'. The top right-hand corner of the face of the stone has been broken at some point, and a small arc of the downward-facing 'horseshoe' symbol is missing. The upper symbol is ornamented with curved lines and small circles, and the bird is represented covered in conventionalised feathers.

The stone stands on a low stony mound approximately 1m in height, obviously of artificial origin. Its original position is uncertain, and although a credible local tradition states that it was moved from the old churchyard at Fodderty, over a mile to the SE, it is also possible that it stands close to or on its original site.

The area to be scheduled is a circle 8m in diameter centred on the stone, to include the stone and the mound on which it sits, as depicted in red on the enclosed map.

Statement of National Importance

The monument is of national importance as a stone bearing Class I Pictish symbols, and hence considered to represent the earliest type of Pictish symbol stone, standing on an artificial mound. It has the potential to enhance our understanding of social structures in the early historic period, as well as contributing to our understanding of the function of these enigmatic monuments.

References

Bibliography

The monument is recorded in the RCAHMS as NH 45 NE 6.

References:

Allen, J. R. (1903) Early Christian Monuments of Scotland, 59-61.

RCAHMS (1994), Pictish Symbol Stones: A Handlist.

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 www.historicenvironment.scot.

Find out more about scheduling and our other designations at www.historicenvironment.scot/advice-and-support. You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at designations@hes.scot.

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Printed: 31/01/2023 14:42