Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cross Incised Stone, 60m NNW of Pillar, Meall Doire

A Scheduled Monument in Caol and Mallaig, Highland

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Latitude: 56.8914 / 56°53'29"N

Longitude: -4.8081 / 4°48'29"W

OS Eastings: 229035

OS Northings: 781298

OS Grid: NN290812

Mapcode National: GBR GBHH.QBW

Mapcode Global: WH2GV.31PS

Entry Name: Cross Incised Stone, 60m NNW of Pillar, Meall Doire

Scheduled Date: 13 December 2000

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM9579

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Crosses and carved stones: cross-incised stone

Location: Kilmonivaig

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Caol and Mallaig

Traditional County: Inverness-shire


The monument consists of an angular boulder erratic on which is a crudely incised cross, situated near the summit of Meall Doire.

The boulder is traditionally said to be a Mass stone dating from the period of Roman Catholic Prescription (1560-1793, although rarely enforced vigorously after 1730). It is believed to have been used as an altar in large open air services. Such places of worship were by their nature transitory and the site at Meall Doire is unusual in leaving any material remains.

The stone is 2.0m by 2.3m and 1.0m high, with the incised cross on its SW vertical face measuring 0.52m and 0.33m. The carving appears to have been re-cut and it may be later than the use of the stone as an altar.

The area to be scheduled is a circle measuring 10m in diameter, as indicated in red on the map. It consists of the boulder and an area around it, within which related material may be expected to be found.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance as a rare material reminder of the Penal era of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland. It demonstrates the survival, and the struggle for survival, of the Roman Catholic faith after the Reformation in certain parts of Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NN 28 SE 13.


Historic Catholic Sites in the Highlands and the North East of Scotland ' Leaflet compiled for the Scottish Catholic Heritage Commission.

MacDonald, A. and MacFarlane, R. (1995) Cille Choirill. Roy Bridge.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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