MHG47318 - Thick slab fragments, Rosemarkie No 10 - Rosemarkie church graveyard


Thick slab broken into three parts incised with an outlined single cross set on a stepped base - the slab possibly forming the top of a tomb. It was one of a collection of carved stones previously stored in the disused vestry/grave-diggers' store attached to Rosemarkie Church.

Type and Period (2)

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

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

Cross-slab, broken into three parts, bearing an incised cross rising from a cruciform base (Groam House 1992.7 and 1992.6).

Rosemarkie 10, Ross & Cromarty, recumbent cross-slab fragments
Measurements: H 1.45m, W 0.45m + tapering to 0.40m at the foot
Stone type: sandstone
Place of discovery: NH 737 576
Present location: Groam House Museum, Rosemarkie (ROMGH.1992.6-7)
Evidence for discovery: found in the churchyard at Rosemarkie in 1974.
Present condition: the slab is broken into three fragments, and the top right-hand corner is missing.
These fragments comprise most of a recumbent gravestone bearing an incised cross on a stepped base. The entire cross and base are outlined by a double incised line, and the armpits are slightly sunken. The surviving side-arm extends out to the edge of the slab, but the upper arm stops well short of the head of the stone. The base is has a single step and spans the width of the slab, with a wide tenon beneath. Within the base is a sunken shape echoing the shape of the base itself.
Date: ninth or tenth century.
Early Medieval Carved Stones Project, A Ritchie 2017 Seright & Henderson 2013, 13. <1>

This slab, which survives as three fragments, is thought to have been discovered while digging a grave in Rosemarkie churchyard. It was one of a collection of carved stones previously stored in the disused vestry/grave-diggers' store attached to Rosemarkie Church, and was brought into Groam House Museum in 1982. It was recorded by the RCAHMS as two separate stones and until recently was displayed as two separate crosses, with the elaborate base taken as being another cross-head. Three fragments of a slab that tapers towards the bottom. It is incised with a contoured (double outlined) shafted cross having widely curved hollows at the arms and a complex stepped base. The surviving transverse cross-arm ends with an inward-curve but the top arm is straight. An area around the arm-pits has been cut away to give emphasis to the centre of the cross. The cross has a cruciform stepped base within which a recessed panel follows its contours. The slab is most probably a recumbent funerary slab, although the unusually elaborate base may suggest that it functioned as a lid for a stone coffin rather than being laid directly on the ground. <2>

NGR adjusted based on 2015 aerial photographs. <3>

Note; precise find spot not known so indicative find area only (T.Blackie 17.2.2021).

Sources/Archives (4)



Grid reference Centred NH 737 576 (4m by 4m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH75NW
Geographical Area ROSS AND CROMARTY

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (1)

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