Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Urquhart,Old Parish Church

A Scheduled Monument in Black Isle, Highland

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Latitude: 57.5941 / 57°35'38"N

Longitude: -4.3763 / 4°22'34"W

OS Eastings: 258065

OS Northings: 858492

OS Grid: NH580584

Mapcode National: GBR H8KN.B3Y

Mapcode Global: WH3DP.RD75

Entry Name: Urquhart,Old Parish Church

Scheduled Date: 10 June 1993

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM5696

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Ecclesiastical: church; Secular: mausoleum

Location: Urquhart and Logie Wester

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Black Isle

Traditional County: Ross-shire


The monument consists of the former parish church of Urquhart which is dedicated to St Maelruba.

It is specified in the "Breviary of Aberdeen" that a wooden chapel was built at Urquhart on the spot where St Maelrubha was martyred in 721 and that this church was superseded by the parish church of Urquhart or Ferintosh. The present church, situated in an extended burial ground overlooks the neck of the Cromarty Firth to the N.

The ivy-choked gables of the building are still intact but the intervening walls have been altered by the insertion of a N burial aisle (c.1795) and later burial enclosures. The rectangular-plan, rubble-built structure measures 23.5m E-W by 7.7m N-S over walls 0.9m thick. The W gable is surmounted by a late 17th-century belfry.

The area to be scheduled is rectangular, extending 2m from the exterior walls of the church and measuring a maximum of 27.5m by 11.7m, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because it is a post-medieval church which, if medieval documentary sources and local traditions are taken into consideration, links the site of the parish church of Urquhart with the martyrdom of St Maelrubha and the erection of a wooden church on the spot in AD 721. The present building is likely to overlie the site of one or more earlier Medieval churches and as such it provides evidence and has the potential to produce further evidence through excavation, for ecclesiastical architecture, early Christian history, burial practices, parish development and material culture.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NH55NE 1.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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