Ancient Monuments

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Dun Toiseach, dun 300m south east of Torran Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Mid Argyll, Argyll and Bute

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.1882 / 56°11'17"N

Longitude: -5.4167 / 5°25'0"W

OS Eastings: 188083

OS Northings: 704761

OS Grid: NM880047

Mapcode National: GBR FD0C.7M1

Mapcode Global: WH0HK.RQTF

Entry Name: Dun Toiseach, dun 300m SE of Torran Farm

Scheduled Date: 9 January 2004

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM10872

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: dun

Location: Kilmartin

County: Argyll and Bute

Electoral Ward: Mid Argyll

Traditional County: Argyllshire

Description

The monument comprises the remains of a dun, a fortification of late prehistoric date, set on a rocky knoll overlooking the S end of Loch Awe.

A stone-faced, rubble-cored rampart about 4m thick encloses a roughly D-shaped area measuring about 16m N-S by 13m E-W. Two stretches of outer wall-face plus several stones of the inner wall-face are visible, but generally the details of the plan are obscured by tumbled stone The entrance has been on the NE side, where a possible door-jamb survives on the NW side of the line of the entrance passage. The interior has various irregularities, but it is not possible, on surface inspection, to determine if these are natural or represent the remains of internal constructions. A small modern cairn surmounts the dun wall on the SE side. Outside, various field walls run towards the dun over the naturally terraced hillside, but these all appear to be of relatively recent date.

The significance of the location in strategic terms is great, commanding as it does the point at which travellers from the SW, particularly the Kilmartin area, would have transferred between foot or horse and boats on the waters of Loch Awe. This significance is underlined by the nearby Medieval towerhouse at Caol Chaorann.

The area to be scheduled is an irregular oval, measuring a maximum of 45m between its most northerly and its most southerly points and a maximum of 40m transversely, as shown on the accompanying map extract. This includes the dun and a small area outside its walls in which evidence relating to its construction and occupation is likely to survive.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance as a well-preserved example of a small fortification of late prehistoric date. It appears never to have been seriously excavated, and has good potential for the preservation of occupation deposits. It also gains importance from its location at the N end of the extensive suite of monuments of many periods in the valley running N from Kilmartin, at a junction of natural routeways.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography

RCAHMS record the monument as NM80SE 14.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Other nearby scheduled monuments

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