MHG12516 - Stone circle, Clach an Righ


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Type and Period (1)

  • CAIRN (Early Bronze Age to Norse - 2400 BC to 1300 AD)

Protected Status

Full Description

NC63NE 11 6793 3903.

(NC 6793 3903) Clach an Righ (NR) OS 6" map, (1963)

The remains of a stone circle 22ft in diameter, with a low central cairn, 11ft in diameter. Only two of stones remain upright, standing almost N & S of each other at right angles to line of circumference. The north stone measures 6ft high, 2ft 9ins broad at base tapering to 1ft 2ins at the top and about 8ins thick. The south stone is 8ft high, 3ft 6ins broad at base tapering to 10ins at the top and 8ins to 10ins thick. Three fallen stones, ranging from 6ft 6ins to 9ft, lie on the west circumference and another 5ft 4ins ling, lies on edge, touching the east side of the southern upright stone. The head of another stone protrudes through the turf between the two upright stones. The names 'Clach an Righ' - 'King's Stone' or 'King Harrald's Pillars' came from the tradition that the stones were raised to commemorate a victory in this area of King William the Lion's army led by Reginald of the Isles over a Norse army led by Harald Madadson, Earl of Caithness, in 1196 or 1198. Field clearance heaps in the area (eg NC63NE 12) are said to be the burial mounds of the dead who included Harald from whom Dalharrold is said to be named.
RCAHMS 1911, visited 1909; J M Joass 1865; J MacKay 1891; J Gray 1909;
M O MacDougall 1953; Visited by OS (E G C) 7 May 1961.

Clach an Righ (name verified), the remains of a stone circle as described by RCAHMS, now preserved within a clearing in a forest. The axis of the upright stones is radial to the circle. The central, heather-covered cairn is 0.3m high and an estimated 5.5m in diameter and practically touches the upright stones. The "field clearance heaps" can no longer be identified having been ploughed and planted with trees.
Visited by OS (J M) 15 March 1977.

Sources/Archives (9)



Grid reference Centred NC 6792 3903 (14m by 14m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet NC63NE
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish FARR

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