- Category: N/A
- Date Added: 20/02/1998
- Type: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: fort (includes hill fort and promontory fort), Secular: castle
- Local Authority: Highland
- Parish: Kintail
National Grid Reference
- NGR: NG 88130 25853
- Coordinates: 188130, 825853
The monument consists of the remains associated with the medieval castle of Eilean Donnan and its predecessors.
The majority of the Castle was rebuilt in the early decades of the twentieth century but the rest of the island appears to have been little disturbed. There is clear indication of the remains of man-made structures to the N of the present castle. The whole island though, being small, is likely to retain concentrated evidence of its history of occupation.
The area to be scheduled includes the entire island with the principal exclusion of the present castle itself. Also excluded are the terrace between the SW wall of the Castle and sea and the above-ground structures of the MacRae War Memorial, the slipway and the various flood-lights. The area is irregular in shape and measures approximately 120m N-S by 80m at its greatest extent, as marked in red on the accompanying map extract.
Statement of National Importance
This monument is of national importance because it is a site with a long history of occupation. Reports of vitrified material and shell middens point towards a prehistoric settlement while the 13th-century castle suggests similarities with other sites such as Eilean Tioram in Moidart.
The castle was the main social and political focus for Kintail throughout the later Middle Ages and was still habitable until 1719, when it was involved in the abortive Jacobite rising. The monument is of interest in the study of settlement and defence in the Highlands and Islands throughout this long period.
RCAHMS records the monument as NG 82 NE 3.
Hume, J. (1977) The Industrial Archaeology of Scotland, ii, 290.
MacGibbon & Ross (1899) Castellated and Domestic Architecture of Scotland, iii, 82-85.
Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.
Scheduling is the way that a monument or archaeological site of national importance is recognised by law through the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.
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