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TITLE
Carvings from the Stone at Hilton
EXTERNAL ID
QZP40_2475_1_P005
PLACENAME
Hilton of Cadboll
DISTRICT
Fearn
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Fearn
DATE OF IMAGE
1857
SOURCE
Highland Libraries
ASSET ID
31679
KEYWORDS
Pictish stones
carved stones
carvings
Picts
standing stones
Carvings from the Stone at Hilton

Carved in relief on both faces, Pictish standing stones remain something of a mystery. The later slabs usually contain a cross as well as numerous Pictish symbols which may have mythological or religious meanings. However, as many symbols appear in pairs they may designate particular lineages or kindreds. These stones are only found around the north-east coast and three of the finest examples of this type were produced in the Tarbat peninsula, including this one at Hilton.

Gradually, between 600 and 800 AD, most of the Picts were converted to Christianity. It is during this time that the carved stones for which the Picts are renowned were produced.

The Hilton of Cadboll cross-slab is designated a Class 2 stone. A Class 2 Pictish stone is regarded as a major work of art dating from the 8th and 9th centuries. They are rectangular slabs, usually of sandstone, decorated with Pictish symbols and Christian motifs.

The top panel shows a double-disc and z-rod above a crescent and v-rod and two discs. The middle panel contains a hunting scene with two warriors, two trumpeters and a deer being attacked by two hounds. Also in the scene is a female side-saddle rider riding abreast with another rider. A mirror and comb case is shown beside them.

The bottom panel contains an interlocking spiral design and there is an inhabited scroll design going up both sides of the stone face. It stood outside St Mary's chapel at Cadboll until the 19th century. In 1676 the face bearing the cross was inscribed with a crudely carved shield to commemorate Alexander Duff, a local dignitary, and his three wives. The lower half of the bottom panel was missing until 2001, when it was found buried near the chapel ruins.

The stone was removed to Invergordon Castle and, in 1921, was presented to the British Museum in London. It remained there for a year before being returned to Scotland and is now in the Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

This plate is taken from 'A Short Account of some Carved Stones in Ross-shire, accompanied with a series of Outline Engravings' by Charles Carter Petley and published in 'Archaeologia Scotica or Transactions of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland', vol IV (1857)

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Carvings from the Stone at Hilton

ROSS: Fearn

Pictish stones; carved stones; carvings; Picts; standing stones

Highland Libraries

Fraser Mackintosh Collection (illustrations)

Carved in relief on both faces, Pictish standing stones remain something of a mystery. The later slabs usually contain a cross as well as numerous Pictish symbols which may have mythological or religious meanings. However, as many symbols appear in pairs they may designate particular lineages or kindreds. These stones are only found around the north-east coast and three of the finest examples of this type were produced in the Tarbat peninsula, including this one at Hilton.<br /> <br /> Gradually, between 600 and 800 AD, most of the Picts were converted to Christianity. It is during this time that the carved stones for which the Picts are renowned were produced.<br /> <br /> The Hilton of Cadboll cross-slab is designated a Class 2 stone. A Class 2 Pictish stone is regarded as a major work of art dating from the 8th and 9th centuries. They are rectangular slabs, usually of sandstone, decorated with Pictish symbols and Christian motifs.<br /> <br /> The top panel shows a double-disc and z-rod above a crescent and v-rod and two discs. The middle panel contains a hunting scene with two warriors, two trumpeters and a deer being attacked by two hounds. Also in the scene is a female side-saddle rider riding abreast with another rider. A mirror and comb case is shown beside them.<br /> <br /> The bottom panel contains an interlocking spiral design and there is an inhabited scroll design going up both sides of the stone face. It stood outside St Mary's chapel at Cadboll until the 19th century. In 1676 the face bearing the cross was inscribed with a crudely carved shield to commemorate Alexander Duff, a local dignitary, and his three wives. The lower half of the bottom panel was missing until 2001, when it was found buried near the chapel ruins.<br /> <br /> The stone was removed to Invergordon Castle and, in 1921, was presented to the British Museum in London. It remained there for a year before being returned to Scotland and is now in the Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.<br /> <br /> This plate is taken from 'A Short Account of some Carved Stones in Ross-shire, accompanied with a series of Outline Engravings' by Charles Carter Petley and published in 'Archaeologia Scotica or Transactions of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland', vol IV (1857)