MHG39448 - Mound, Thing's Va


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Type and Period (1)

  • MOUND (Undated)

Protected Status

Full Description

Thing’s Va, ND06NE0001

This largely turf-covered broch, stands in the centre of a large natural mound, overlooking the town of Thurso. The entrance passage, a probable guard chamber and two sets of door checks against which wooden doors would have rested, are visible.
The name Thing’s Va, is a corruption of ‘Thing-vollr’, the Scandinavian word for a local court or assembly. It is possible that this refers to local beliefs about the original function of the broch or to its re-use as a court hill during the Norse period. (48)
(9.1m/c. 18.1m)
Armit, I., 1997. Celtic Scotland. Edinburgh: Batsford.
RCAHMS. 1911. Caithness. Edinburgh: HMSO, 119, No. 432.
Information from SCRAN Project, March, 2000

ND 065 680 (centre) An archaeological desk-based study was undertaken in September 1994 as part of environmental assessment for a planned windfarm development. The study was designed to identify and evaluate any archaeological monuments present, through the examination of documentary, cartographic and aerial photographic sources. The study area covered approximately 10.5 sq km. Previous systematic fieldwork covering the majority of the proposed development area was led by Mr R J Mercer between 1980-3. Sites located within the study area comprised: two brochs, seven longhouses, 12 lengths of wall, four enclosures, ten structures, a windmill, two cairns, a cist, a burnt mound, ten mounds, two field systems and two areas of rig-and-furrow. No new sites or monuments were located as part of the current study. A detailed report is lodged with the NMRS.
Sponsor: EcoGen Limited.
R J Strachan 1995.

'Thing's Va', a turf-covered broch partially exposed in old excavation trenches, is generally as described by previous authorities. The 'small cell' noted by previous OS field investigator is entrance to a guard-cell totally obscured by tumble; and the ancillary features described form no logical association with the broch, so may be later.
Revised at 1:2500. Visited by OS (N K B) 24 August 1981.

A grass-covered stoney mound 45 by 42m by 4m high, enclosed by a bank, 60m by 55m.
R J Mercer 1981.

Thing's Va (NAT) Broch (NR) OS 6"map, (1969)

The remains of broch as described by RCAHMS. A small cell at a higher level on the left inside entrance has been exposed by excavation. A slight bank which runs off to W from the outer defensive bank, a small oval mound on NE end of bank and another oval mound to SE of it, are not necessarily coeval with the broch.
Re-surveyed at 1:2500. Visited by OS (R D) 25 February 1965.

A broch, partly excavated, on the centre of a mound 110ft in diameter, which is cut off from higher level to N by a ditch 30ft wide, 8ft deep below top of scarp and about 4ft below top of a bank on counter-scarp.
The broch stands 18 -20ft from edge of ditch, and measures 30ft internally and probably 60ft externally (judging by given length of passage, 15ft). External wall has not been cleared but internal wall is exposed at several points. The unroofed passage in SE has walls standing to a max height of 4ft and two sets of door-checks, between which, on right, is apparent entrance to guard chamber, inner edge of which is visible although neither passage nor chamber has been cleared. The inner left wall of passage is concealed by a secondary wall which curves to right into interior of broch, and another secondary wall is visible 9ft to left of it in uncleared interior.
The name 'Thing's Va' is a corruption of 'Thing-vollr', Norse for a local court or assembly.
RCAHMS 1911, visited 1910.

Sources/Archives (11)



Grid reference Centred ND 0807 6823 (14m by 14m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet ND06NE
Civil Parish THURSO
Geographical Area CAITHNESS

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

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