Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Dhuallow, cairn 195m east of

A Scheduled Monument in Aird and Loch Ness, Highland

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Latitude: 57.31 / 57°18'36"N

Longitude: -4.2504 / 4°15'1"W

OS Eastings: 264538

OS Northings: 826626

OS Grid: NH645266

Mapcode National: GBR H9WD.FRV

Mapcode Global: WH3G3.PJ5D

Entry Name: Dhuallow, cairn 195m E of

Scheduled Date: 2 May 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11468

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: cairn (type uncertain)

Location: Daviot and Dunlichity

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Aird and Loch Ness

Traditional County: Inverness-shire


The monument comprises the remains of a burial cairn, between 4500 and 3500 years old. It is situated in unimproved boggy moorland at approximately 240m OD, just below the lower break of slope of a wide river valley.

The cairn is a grass-covered, roughly circular, stony mound, measuring 12 m from NE to SW by 11 m transversely, and up to 0.8 m in height. There is a slight prominence at the summit and kerbstones are visible around the ESE edge. Immediately to the ENE of the cairn is a small, low and probably artificial mound. This may contain a peripheral satellite burial to the ones contained within the main cairn.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, to include the cairn and an area around in which evidence for its construction and use may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling excludes a modern drain around 11m from the cairn, to allow for its maintenance.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

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

Intrinsic characteristics: Despite the erosion or robbing out that may have reduced some of the upper, central body of the monument, there is a strong likelihood that the characteristic structural features that define this class of monument, and the internal and external archaeological deposits associated with this particular monument, have not been disturbed. The remaining height of the stones that form the body of the structure, together with the survival of the kerb and subsequent land-use as moorland, would appear to confirm this. Although a modern drain now runs near to the site, the waterlogged nature of the surrounding soils has resulted in the high potential for well-preserved environmental and organic archaeological deposits.

Contextual characteristics: This monument is located in a low-lying boggy area, far from the contemporary settlements and fields that occupy the upper reaches of the valley. This may indicate that it occupied a marginal position in the contemporary prehistoric landscape, at the base of the valley, on the edge of a marsh. If so, possibly its construction, and the acts of internment here, demarcated and defined the boundaries of domestic/living and wild/dead space, the territories of different communities, and/or route-ways through the landscape, followed by game or herded stock. This monument therefore provides a rare opportunity for understanding how prehistoric people in this region perceived the spheres of life, agriculture and death.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it is a good example of a later prehistoric burial cairn. It is well preserved and there is a high potential for the survival of associated organic and environmental remains. It has the potential to inform upon the pattern and development of upland exploitation and occupation, and upon the perceived relationship between the spheres of sacred and profane existence within prehistoric communities and societies. Its loss would significantly detract from our ability to understand prehistoric burial and ritual practices in this region and would affect our ability to understand this landscape.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record this site as NH62NW7. It is recorded in the Highland SMR as NH62NW0039.


RCAHMS 1994, Upper STRATHNAIRN, INVERNESS: AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SURVEY: SUMMARY REPORT, Edinburgh, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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