MHG35894 - Midden - Ashaig 1


Open air midden site investigated by the Scotland's First Settlers Project. It was radiocarbon dated to the 13th century.

Type and Period (1)

  • SHELL MIDDEN (Medieval - 1058 AD to 1559 AD)

Protected Status

Full Description

NG62SE 34 6871 2424 and 6866 2420

The following sites were recorded between January and September 1999 as part of the Scotland's First Settlers Project. A full report has been lodged with the NMRS.
NG 6871 2424 Ashaig 1 This substantial shell midden is associated with the ancient cemetery and lies inside (Ashaig 2, MHG55545) and outside (Ashaig 1) the cemetery wall. A 1 x 0.5m trench was opened in Ashaig 1. Midden material was extensive, consisting of approximately 90% periwinkle with occasional fragments of animal bone and limpet shell. Coring with a post auger established that the site continued about 1m eastwards from the test section and suggests that the midden is extensive.
B Finlayson, K Hardy and C Wickham-Jones 1999

This site was investigated as part of the Scotland's First Settlers Project in 1999. It comprises a substantial open shell midden associated with an ancient cemetery. One test pit (1m×0.5m) was opened to assess the depth of midden deposits. There were three lithic finds from Test Pit 1, all were debitage, two pieces of baked mudstone and one of quartz, 15.9g unclassified ironworking slag, oyster, limpet, periwinkle and cockle. Three radiocarbon dates were obtained which all indicate activity in the 13th century AD (AD 1215-1290; AD 1220-1390; AD 1210-1295). The large boulders uncovered in Test Pit 1 appear to have been displaced from further up the slope and may have originated from a collapsed revetment from earlier structures pre-dating the present cemetery. The lithics are likely to relate to general background ‘noise’, but the dates and general proximity to the graveyard suggest that this was a site of some interest in more recent times. Metalworking at such locations would not be unexpected. <1>

See link below to online published report for radiocarbon dates. See also link below to Scottish Radiocarbon Database.

Shell midden between enclosure wall of cemetery, to east of postulated chapel site, and Tobar Ashik.
Alternate name: Ashaig <2>

The shell midden was scheduled by Historic Environment Scotland together with the adjacent burial ground, chapel site and well with effect from 04/09/2019. <3>

Sources/Archives (3)



Grid reference Centred NG 6871 2424 (14m by 14m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NG62SE
Geographical Area SKYE AND LOCHALSH
Civil Parish STRATH

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (4)

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