MHG52943 - Shieling dyke, Rubh' an Dunain

Summary

A dyke that defined a shieling depicted on Home's map of 1774.

Type and Period (1)

  • BOUNDARY DYKE (In use, Early Iron Age to 19th Century - 550 BC? to 1878 AD? (between))

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

This shieling dyke is depicted on Home's map of 1774 and can still be traced on the ground. The dyke was surveyed in 2008 as part of a Scotland's Rural Past project.
From its northern end on the cliff top the dyke runs south and then southeast to a point close to a change of angle in the later field boundary after which it appears to run east-southeast parallel to that boundary. The northern end of the dyke is badly eroded and all that remains are a few stones within fragments of earth bank. However it survives much better from NC03940 33900 southwards as far as the field system boundary and about half way along that stretch it reaches a maximum height of 1m and slopes gently down on either side to give a maximum overall width of approximately 7.5m. This is very unusual and all other known field/shieling dykes in the area are much narrower (usually no more than 1m) with at least one steep side. The remaining section of the dyke running parallel to the field wall is much eroded and only partially discernible, but what survives is also low and wide.
It is suggested that the unusual construction of the shieling dyke could indicate an earlier date, possibly contemporary with one or more phases of the nearby dun. <1><2>

Sources/Archives (2)

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred NC 04001 33877 (149m by 202m) (Centred)
Map sheet NC03SW
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish ASSYNT

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Investigations/Events (1)

External Links (1)

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