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TITLE
Iona Abbey
EXTERNAL ID
QZP40_2475_VOL1_P001
PLACENAME
Iona Abbey
DISTRICT
Mull
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ARGYLL: Kilfinchen and Kilvickeon
DATE OF IMAGE
1792
PERIOD
1790s
CREATOR
Davad Stuartus
SOURCE
Highland Libraries
ASSET ID
31729
KEYWORDS
islands
churches
monasteries
monks
nuns
St Columba
saints
buildings
religion
Christianity
communities
Iona Abbey

St Columba landed on Iona in 563 AD and founded a monastery. Since then Iona has been the centre of Scottish religious life. Christianity survived on the island despite several Viking raids which resulted in the death of many monks.

Somerled evicted the Norse from the Western Isles, including Iona, and became Lord of the Isles during the 12th century. In the early 13th century, his son, Reginald MacDonald, decided to replace the Columban monastery with a Benedictine Monastery and an Augustinian Nunnery. Later, 15th-century building work expanded the abbey and the nunnery and improved the abbey church. Despite having survived the Viking raids, the Reformation of the 1560s saw the beginning of the decline of the nunnery and later the abbey and both fell into disrepair.

In 1874 the 8th Duke of Argyll, who owned the island, commissioned an architect to preserve the ruins and in 1899 transferred ownership of the buildings to the Iona Cathedral Trust. The Trust was able to raise the funds to restore the abbey church. In 1938 Rev George Macleod founded the Iona Community who restored the other monastery buildings back to use, except for the nunnery.

Responsibility for the buildings now lies with Historic Scotland but a continuous Christian presence is also maintained by the Iona Community.

This plate was found in volume 1 of the 'Transactions of the Society of the Antiquaries of Scotland'

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Iona Abbey

ARGYLL: Kilfinchen and Kilvickeon

1790s

islands; churches; monasteries; monks; nuns; St Columba; saints; buildings; religion; Christianity; communities

Highland Libraries

Fraser Mackintosh Collection (illustrations)

St Columba landed on Iona in 563 AD and founded a monastery. Since then Iona has been the centre of Scottish religious life. Christianity survived on the island despite several Viking raids which resulted in the death of many monks.<br /> <br /> Somerled evicted the Norse from the Western Isles, including Iona, and became Lord of the Isles during the 12th century. In the early 13th century, his son, Reginald MacDonald, decided to replace the Columban monastery with a Benedictine Monastery and an Augustinian Nunnery. Later, 15th-century building work expanded the abbey and the nunnery and improved the abbey church. Despite having survived the Viking raids, the Reformation of the 1560s saw the beginning of the decline of the nunnery and later the abbey and both fell into disrepair.<br /> <br /> In 1874 the 8th Duke of Argyll, who owned the island, commissioned an architect to preserve the ruins and in 1899 transferred ownership of the buildings to the Iona Cathedral Trust. The Trust was able to raise the funds to restore the abbey church. In 1938 Rev George Macleod founded the Iona Community who restored the other monastery buildings back to use, except for the nunnery.<br /> <br /> Responsibility for the buildings now lies with Historic Scotland but a continuous Christian presence is also maintained by the Iona Community.<br /> <br /> This plate was found in volume 1 of the 'Transactions of the Society of the Antiquaries of Scotland'