Ancient Monuments

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Lybster, Church of Scotland, cross incised stone

A Scheduled Monument in Wick and East Caithness, Highland

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Latitude: 58.307 / 58°18'25"N

Longitude: -3.285 / 3°17'5"W

OS Eastings: 324795

OS Northings: 936093

OS Grid: ND247360

Mapcode National: GBR L67S.5WK

Mapcode Global: WH6F4.HGYN

Entry Name: Lybster, Church of Scotland, cross incised stone

Scheduled Date: 20 March 1940

Last Amended: 13 January 1999

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM613

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Crosses and carved stones: cross-incised stone

Location: Latheron

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Wick and East Caithness

Traditional County: Caithness


The monument consists of a rough boulder inscribed with an equal armed cross formed by a double border. The boulder is roughly 1m long and 0.4m wide by 0.4m high. It is protected from the worst of the elements by a flagstone shelter.

The stone may have come from the Well of the Martyrs which was disturbed during the construction of Lybster harbour in the 1840s.

Since the stone is not in its original location, the area to be scheduled includes only the stone itself at the location marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

This monument is of national importance because it has a very well preserved early-Christian carving on it. It is one of a very small number of obvious links to the early medieval history of Caithness. Although not in its original location the stone indicates early Christian occupation of the area, perhaps marking the position of a holy well.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as ND 23 NW 2.


Gourlay, R. (1993) 'Before the Vikings; Pre-Norse Caithness' in 'The Viking Age' ed. Batey, C. E., Jesch, J. & Morris, C. D., Edinburgh University Press.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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