MHG25216 - Carved stone, Rosemarkie No. 5 - Rosemarkie church graveyard


Panel fragment with a loose interlace border carved in relief and very likely to be a fragment from an altar top. The narrow edge is incised with a four-cord interlace. Discovered in the churchyard and presented to the NMS in 1885.

Type and Period (2)

  • CARVED STONE (Pictish to Early Medieval - 300 AD to 1057 AD)
  • ALTAR? (Pictish to Early Medieval - 300 AD to 1057 AD)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

No. 5. This Class 3 sculptured stone measures 0.41m x 0.37m x 0.06m.
One face bears the remains of an interlace border and a pitted area which may have been decorated. The other face bears the weathered remains of low relief ornamentation. One side bears a corded plait. Found in Rosemarkie churchyard and donated to the RMS(NMAS) in 1885 by Major C Mackenzie ( IB 120).
Information from R Jones to RCAHMS, 1980.

Rosemarkie 5, Ross & Cromarty, church furniture, panel fragment
Measurements: H 0.41m, W 0.35m, D 0.05m
Stone type: sandstone
Place of discovery: NH 7372 5763
Present location: National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh (IB 120), on loan to Groam House Museum.
Evidence for discovery: found in the churchyard at Rosemarkie and given to the National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland in 1885.
Present condition: worn, with three broken edges.
This fragment is part of the top of a panel and is carved in relief both on face A and on face E. The top of face A has a border of loosely knotted interlace within two roll mouldings, with another roll moulding along the edge of the slab. The top narrow edge, face E, is carved with median-incised interlace. It may have been part of the front edge of an altar top.
Date: eighth or ninth century.
References: ECMS pt 3, 88; Henderson & Henderson 2004, 210-11; Seright & Henderson 2013, 14.
Early Medieval Carved Stones Project, A Ritchie 2017.

This fragment is thought to have been discovered while digging a grave in Rosemarkie churchyard. It was presented to the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland by Major Colin Mackenzie, F.S.A., of Flowerburn, Rosemarkie in 1885. The broad face of the fragment has a border filled with loose interlace carved in relief. The narrow face is incised. It is filled with a tighter four-cord interlace. The loose interlace is edged on both sides with a plain moulding. The moulding adjacent to the incised interlace forms a rolled edge for the fragment. All other edges are broken. The surfaces are totally flat and smooth as a result of the fragment having been extracted from the natural bedding-plane of the rock. The sculpture was intended to be seen from both sides. The large uncarved area on the broad face would be unusual for a cross-slab. <1>

Note; Precise find spot not known so indicative find area only (T.Blackie 3/3/2021).

Sources/Archives (3)



Grid reference Centred NH 7373 5762 (4m by 4m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH75NW
Geographical Area ROSS AND CROMARTY

Finds (1)

  • CARVED OBJECT (Early Medieval - 561 AD to 1057 AD)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (1)

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