MHG13624 - Cross Slab and Rune stone - Old St Peter's, Thurso


No summary available.

Type and Period (2)

  • RUNE STONE (Norse - 800 AD to 1300 AD)
  • CROSS SLAB (Early Medieval - 561 AD to 1057 AD)

Protected Status

Full Description

Built into the tower of the church is a runic stone. Proposals to remove for conservation reasons - HAW 5/2004

NMRS Report: (30/03/2007 09:52:15)
ND16NW 387 12043 68616

A rune-inscribed stone discovered in St Peter's Church, Thurso, is listed in the National Museums of Scotland's database of early medieval sculpture. No further detail is available.
Information from RCAHMS (IFr), 16 June 2004.)

The rune-inscribed stone was incorporated in masonry, high up in the NW angle of the tower of St Peter's Church, Thurso. The stone measures 650mm in length, by 350mm in breadth, and 180mm in thickness. Between December 2006 and February 2007 it was removed from the wall, conserved, and replaced with a replica. The runic inscription runs along the narrow edge of the block. Once removed the stone was found to have formed part of a larger stone, bearing the greater part of an incised expanded arm cross on one face, and possible carving in relief on the other.
Information from Nicolas Boyes Stone Conservation (March 2007).

Thurso, St Peter’s Church 2, Caithness, cross-slab with runic inscription
Measurements: H 0.70m, W 0.27m, D 0.18m
Stone type: Old Red Sandstone
Place of discovery: ND 1204 6861
Present location: Caithness Horizons, Thurso.
Evidence for discovery: discovered during survey work in 1989, the stone had been re-used almost 8m above ground level in the outer W face of the tower of St Peter’s Church. It was removed early in 2007 and replaced with a replica.
Present condition: trimmed and worn and the runes are poorly preserved.
The stone is a large part of a cross-slab which is likely originally to have been about 0.4m wide but which has been trimmed for re-use. Face A bears an incised equal-armed cross with expanded terminals, face B is missing, face C has possible traces of relief carving, and face D is incised with a memorial inscription in runes. The reading of ‘(G)unnhildr his wife’ has been suggested.
Date: tenth century.
References: Morris 1993, 9-10; Blackie & Macaulay 1998, no 25; Barnes & Page 2006, SC 15, 249-51.
Compiled by A Ritchie, Early Medieval Carved Stones Project, 2016

See also:
ND16NW0010 Church
ND16NW0299 Font
ND16NW0300 Graves

Sources/Archives (3)



Grid reference Centred ND 1203 6861 (10m by 10m) (2 map features)
Map sheet ND16NW
Civil Parish THURSO
Geographical Area CAITHNESS

Finds (1)

  • RUNE STONE (Norse - 800 AD to 1300 AD)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (2)

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