MHG8591 - Clach Biorach, Edderton

Summary

A prehistoric standing stone which was inscribed with symbols in Pictish times.

Type and Period (3)

  • STANDING STONE (Erected, Neolithic to Middle Bronze Age - 4000 BC to 1500 BC (at some time))
  • (Former Type) SITE (Early Bronze Age to Early Medieval - 2400 BC to 1057 AD)
  • INSCRIBED STONE (Inscribed, Late Iron Age to Early Medieval - 500 AD to 700 AD (at some time))

Protected Status

Full Description

NH78NW 2 7082 8507.
(NH 7083 8506) Clach Chairidh (NR) (Sculptured)
OS 6" map, Ross-shire, 2nd ed., (1907)

An unhewn pillar of red sandstone narrowing to a point at the top - whence the local name 'Clach Biorach' - 'the sharp stone'. Sculptured on one side only, it is 10ft 3ins high by 3ft 6ins wide and 1ft 6ins thick at base (Allen and Anderson 1903).
There is a circle surrounding stone at a radius of 3 yards, and 2ft above the surrounding plain. Supposed to mark the grave of a Danish prince killed in nearby battle.
NSA (D Gordon - 1840, pg.448) 1845; J R Allen and J Anderson 1903.

This large symbol stone is as described by Allen and Anderson.
It is oriented NW-SE but there is no trace of a circle round it. Gordon (NSA 1845) is probably confusing this site with NH78NW 1. Visited by OS (W D J) 17 May 1963.

This symbol stone, standing in an arable field, is as described by previous authorities. Its position is erroneous on OS map; it stands at NH 7082 8507, some 15m to N. It has not been moved.
Surveyed at 1:2500. Visited by OS (J B) 27 February 1973.

This Class I symbol stone bears fish symbol over a double-disc and Z-rod. J R Allen and J Anderson 1903

Class I symbol stone bearing a salmon above a double-disc and Z-rod.
A.Mack 1997 p.115

Almost certainly a re-used earlier standing stone, due to its relationship with cairn to east and alignments <1>

Historic Scotland proposed to reschedule this monument to meet modern standards of documentation. <2>

The monument was rescheduled on 2 November 2011, with the official name of Clach Chairidh. <3>

A detailed description and statement of national signficance can be found on Historic Scotland's website (see link at the bottom of this record). It is described by Historic Scotland as a standing stone which was erected probably in the Neolithic or Bronze Age period, between about 4000 BC and 1500 BC. It was re-used some time between 500 AD and 700 AD when Pictish symbols were carved on it. The three symbols consist of a large and well-defined leaping salmon, a double disc and a Z-rod.
The stone stands to a height of approximately 3 metres measuring about 1m by 0.5m at its base. It tapers to a natural point, as per the alternative name of "Clach Biorach", "the Pointed Stone". Around the base of the stone is a spread of apparent cairn material consisting of small and medium-sized rounded stones.
An association is noted between Clach Chairidh and the Winter Solstice, which aligns with a prominent gap in the hills to the north. It is suggested that Clach Chairidh may have been an outlier associated with the nearby stone circle.
A local tradition is noted which asserts tht the stone marks the grave of Carius, a Danish prince killed at this spot in a skirmish with the Pictish inhabitants of the area.
Historic Scotland notes that there is high potential for the survival of buried evidence relating to the original erection of the stone as well as traces of other activities and rituals around the stone in prehistoric and early medieval times. <4>


'Clach Biorach', Edderton (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG9363.


Edderton, Clach Biorach, Pictish stone (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG8511.


Edderton, Pictish stone, grip hole & ogham? (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG8507.


P.S.S. 1, Edderton, Grip hole& 'Ogam' (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG10198.


P.S.S. 1, Edderton, Grip hole&'Ogam' (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG10195.


P.S.S. 1, Edderton, symbols, N. Face (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG10184.


Standing Stone, 'Clach Biorach, Edderton (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG9792.


Untitled Source (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG3645.


Untitled Source (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG3646.


Untitled Source (Image/Photograph(s)). SHG3647.


NSA, 1845, The new statistical account of Scotland by the ministers of the respective parishes under the superintendence of a committee of the society for the benefit of the sons and daughters of the clergy, Vol. 14, Ross-shire, 448 (Text/Publication/Volume). SHG2597.


Stuart, J, 1856, Sculptured stones of Scotland, 12; pl. 32 (Text/Publication/Monograph). SHG350.


Allen and Anderson, J R and J, 1903, The early Christian monuments of Scotland: a classified illustrated descriptive list of the monuments with an analysis of their symbolism and ornamentation, pt. 3, 57-9 (Text/Publication/Volume). SHG1883.


RCAHMS, 1979, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. The archaeological sites and monuments of Easter Ross, Ross and Cromarty District, Highland Region, 25, No. 213 (Text/Report). SHG2670.


Mack, A, 1997, Field guide to the Pictish symbol stones, 115 (Text/Publication/Volume). SHG2456.


<1> White, H, Comment by Hilary White, HC Archaeologist, 06/2004 (Verbal Communication). SHG23635.


<2> Historic Scotland, Proposal to Schedule an Ancient Monument: Statement of National Importance, 02/02/2011 (Text/Report). SHG25202.


<3> Historic Scotland, 2011, Entry in the Schedule of Monuments: The Monument known as Clach Chairidh, symbol stone (Text/Designation Notification/Scheduled Monument). SHG25570.


<4> Historic Scotland, Various, Online scheduled monument descriptions and statements of national significance, HS 1673 (Dataset). SHG25571.

Sources/Archives (19)

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred NH 7083 8507 (10m by 10m) (Buffered by site type)
Map sheet NH78NW
Geographical Area ROSS AND CROMARTY
Civil Parish EDDERTON

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (3)

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