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Eilean na Ba, fort, Rinn Thorbhais, Ceann a' Mhara, Tiree

A Scheduled Monument in Oban South and the Isles, Argyll and Bute

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.4528 / 56°27'9"N

Longitude: -6.9786 / 6°58'42"W

OS Eastings: 93376

OS Northings: 740072

OS Grid: NL933400

Mapcode National: GBR 9C5N.LB4

Mapcode Global: WGW93.S21K

Entry Name: Eilean na Ba, fort, Rinn Thorbhais, Ceann a' Mhara, Tiree

Scheduled Date: 19 November 1997

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM6904

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: fort (includes hill and promontory fort)

Location: Tiree

County: Argyll and Bute

Electoral Ward: Oban South and the Isles

Traditional County: Argyllshire

Description

The monument consists of a fort occupying a rocky promontory separated from the mainland by a gorge 16.5m deep. It lies 400m W of St Patrick's Chapel and just over 1km SSW of the summit of Bein Ceann a' Mhara, on the SW tip of the Isle of Tiree.

The landward side of the fort is defined by a denuded stone wall running NW-SE, now a low stony mound on average 1m thick. Several stretches of the outer face are visible, but none of the inner face survives above ground. Towards the E end of the south side of the fort, two gullies accessible from the shore are blocked by short stretches of walling. The longer of these retains some stones of its outer facing along a substantial proportion of its length.

Within the fort, the ground slopes SE in a series of shelves from the highest point of the fort, near its NW extremity. On the highest of these shelves there are traces of at least two circular stone-walled houses.

The entrance to the fort lay at the E end of the stone enclosure wall, where a gully allows easier access. The approach has been improved by steps cut in the gully floor and by a stone-revetted causeway leading across the gorge from the base of the steps. The stone revetment is well-preserved on its W side, but less so on the E side of the causeway.

The area to be scheduled is irregular on plan, measuring a maximum of 110m N-S by a maximum of 95m E-W, as defined in red on the accompanying map. It includes the fort and the base of the gorge, together with an area of ground in which evidence for the access to, and the construction and occupation of, the fort, may survive.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because it is a well-preserved field monument which has the potential to provide information about later prehistoric defensive and domestic architecture. The monument is one of several broadly contemporary sites within close proximity of each other, which therefore enhances its potential to provide information about the nature, organisation and development of Iron Age society.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography

Reference:

RCAHMS, Argyll 3, No. 145.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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