Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Glack, cairn 245m WNW of

A Scheduled Monument in Westhill and District, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.1938 / 57°11'37"N

Longitude: -2.4398 / 2°26'23"W

OS Eastings: 373520

OS Northings: 811533

OS Grid: NJ735115

Mapcode National: GBR X5.8KXG

Mapcode Global: WH8P7.HFFZ

Entry Name: Glack, cairn 245m WNW of

Scheduled Date: 19 December 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM12120

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: kerb cairn

Location: Cluny

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Westhill and District

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire


The monument comprises a small Bronze-Age burial cairn, with some evidence for a kerb remaining. It is situated on a false crest of Lumphanan Hill, at around 180m above sea level, in an area currently under mature conifer plantation.

The monument is a structurally intact small cairn, measuring around 7m in diameter and surviving to a height of around 0.6m. The centre of the cairn appears undisturbed and there is some evidence of possible kerb stones visible in the SE edge, including one stone of around 1m in length.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on the top of the mound, to include the remains described and an area around within which evidence relating to their construction and use may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

The monument's cultural significance can be expressed as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics

The monument is visible as an upstanding feature, and is an excellent example of a well-preserved small Bronze-Age cairn. The centre of the cairn appears to be undisturbed, leaving a high potential for the survival of primary burials. A buried land surface is likely to be preserved beneath the cairn and this could provide evidence of the environment during the Bronze Age when the monument was constructed and used. The monument has the potential to further our understanding of Bronze-Age funerary practices, as well as inform our knowledge of the structural features of this type of cairn.

Contextual characteristics

This monument belongs to a group of 165 known prehistoric burial cairns in the Strathdon area, of which around half survive as upstanding remains. In addition, this particular example is representative of a smaller group of cairns which show definite evidence of kerbs and is also one of a relatively uncommon class of cairns of smaller size. Its position in the landscape is a commanding one, with views in all directions, although the views from the west to the north-east are currently obscured by the mature conifers on the site. Spatial analysis of this cairn and other burial sites may further our understanding of funerary site location, the structure of society and the Bronze-Age economy. Information gained from the preservation and study of this site has the potential to help us gain an insight into the wider knowledge of Bronze-Age funerary practices across Scotland.

National Importance

This monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to contribute to an understanding of the past, in particular Bronze-Age burial architecture and practice. It also fits into a distinctive pattern of prehistoric burial and settlement in the Strathdon area. Skeletal remains and artefacts from such burials have the potential to tell us about wider prehistoric society, how people lived, where they came from and who they had contact with. The old ground surfaces sealed by the monument can provide information about what the contemporary environment looked like and how it was being managed by the prehistoric peoples who interred their dead here. Its loss would impede our ability to understand the placing of such monuments within the landscape, as well as our knowledge of Bronze-Age social structure and economy.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the site as NJ71SW120.


RCAHMS 2007, IN THE SHADOW OF BENNACHIE: THE FIELD ARCHAEOLOGY OF DONSIDE, ABERDEENSHIRE, Edinburgh: Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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