MHG2210 - Chambered Cairn - Cairn of Get


No summary available.

Type and Period (2)

  • CHAMBERED CAIRN (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)
  • HUMAN REMAINS (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)

Protected Status

Full Description

'Cairn of Get': A short horned cairn of Orkney-Cromarty type.
Though much dilapidated, this cairn, excavated by Anderson in 1866 (Anderson 1869), is still 8 ft high and is covered with turf and heather. Much of the chamber is visible, E wall of the inner chamber standing some 5 ft above the debris. The finds, now lost, included ashes, bones (both burnt and unburnt), flint (including leaf-shaped arrowheads) and Western Neolithic pottery.
A S Henshall 1963; R W Feachem 1963; J Anderson 1869. <1> <2> <3> <4> <5>

The site was mentioned in PSAS in 1873 in relation to museum purchases and donations. <6>

The site was visited and mentioned by RCAHMS in 1911. <7>

Scottish Neolithic pottery was discussed by J G Callander in 1929, in which he discussed finds from multiple cairns across Scotland. <8>

The cairn was Scheduled in 1934.

Cairn of Get, as described and planned above.
Resurveyed at 1:2500. Visited by OS (N K B) 21 April 1967.

This short horned cairn appears to have originated as a round chambered cairn about 25 ft in diameter.
A S Henshall 1972. <9>

ND34SW 4 3133 4112.
Cairn of Get (NAT) Chambered Cairn (NR) OS 1:10,000 map 1976

'As a preliminary to consolidating this short horned cairn the chamber and passage, which were excavated in Victorian times, were re-excavated. No in situ prehistoric remains were found though several sherds of prehistoric pottery including grooved ware were found. The debris from the passage and chambers was used to consolidate several robber holies in the body of the cairn. Sponsor: SDD-HBM' <10>

When first excavated in 1866 this short horned chambered cairn revealed the bones of seven or more people in the antechamber, and a deposit of wood ash, burnt and unburnt human and animal bones, flint arrowheads and fragments of pottery were discovered in the main chamber. The chamber was divided by upright stones and had lost its roof and lay open to view. Two leaning slabs at the back of the chamber were deliberately set that way; aboev them heavy corbel stones project over the chamber as the start of a roof. The walls facing the sides of the horns culd be seen in places. <11>

The site was mentioned by J L Davidson and A S Henshall in 1991. <12>

East Caithness Local Plan, May 1987: P31/2.52.
J Aitken : 22/05/01.

Cairn still survives as open chamber to walk into and cairn material around it. Survives to c 2m high in places. Definitely visible as horned at both ends from top of mound, Survives as grassy area in heather otherwise and sits on top of one of more dominant knolls below the hillfort. Rabbit scrape in N side above entrance passage is turning out pieces of large long bone, skull and other pieces - HAW 24/05/2005

The site was visited and photographed by C Jones in April 2011. A series of photographs on a 360 degree panorama were taken starting in the south west and turning clockwise. <13>

The monument was rescheduled by Historic Environment Scotland in 2016 and now also includes the monuments previously included under SM4255 (see MHG2181) and an additional cairn to the northeast (see MHG57377). <14> <15>

GIS spatial data amended to position as seen on 2009 APs. <16>

The NMS catalogue lists rim sherds from the Cairn of Get, Garrywhin, under Acc. No. 2006.2. These are likely the groove ware sherds from the re-excavation of the the passage and chamber for consolidaton in 1985. <17> <10>

Sources/Archives (21)



Grid reference Centred ND 3132 4112 (29m by 31m) (2 map features)
Map sheet ND34SW
Civil Parish WICK
Geographical Area CAITHNESS

Finds (4)

  • HUMAN REMAINS (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)
  • LITHIC IMPLEMENT (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)
  • LEAF ARROWHEAD (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)
  • SHERD (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2401 BC)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (2)

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