Ancient Monuments

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Loch Ruthven, crannog 490m SSW of Tullich

A Scheduled Monument in Aird and Loch Ness, Highland

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Latitude: 57.3235 / 57°19'24"N

Longitude: -4.2688 / 4°16'7"W

OS Eastings: 263482

OS Northings: 828163

OS Grid: NH634281

Mapcode National: GBR H9TC.KC6

Mapcode Global: WH3G3.D6G1

Entry Name: Loch Ruthven, crannog 490m SSW of Tullich

Scheduled Date: 29 August 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11490

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: crannog

Location: Daviot and Dunlichity

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Aird and Loch Ness

Traditional County: Inverness-shire


The monument is an artificial island or crannog, between 3000 and 1000 years old, located at the eastern end of Loch Ruthven. A second crannog lies 3180 m away at the western end of the loch.

The crannog survives as an oval spread of stones, barely visible below the waterline. The loch level has been lowered in recent times, suggesting that the remains of the crannog may have been further submerged prior to this. The mound broadens as the loch gets deeper, spreading in width to the W where the water is approximately 2 m deep and where the monument is most exposed to incoming winds and waves.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on the crannog, to include the crannog and an area around in which evidence for its construction and use may survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

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

Intrinsic characteristics: The depth of the crannog below the present water level suggests that the main body of this crannog was originally supported by timbers, which have now collapsed, causing the stone part to fall in on itself and create a small sub-surface mound. The continued flooding of this loch will have ensured that any waterlogged structural timbers and environmental, organic and archaeological deposits associated with this crannog are well preserved. This evidence has the potential to provide future study information on the life-style, consumption patterns, status and environment of the crannog's occupants. Use of the loch for fishing and as part of a SSSI is unlikely to have damaged any deposits.

Contextual characteristics: The relative depth of this crannog may possibly suggest an earlier date of occupation and use from the other crannog in Loch Ruthven, which may have been in use in the medieval period. Through comparison with the other crannog in this loch, as well as others, this crannog has the potential to inform upon changes in the techniques of crannog construction and site location from later prehistory to the Middle Ages. The surrounding landscape contains a large number of later prehistoric settlements. By placing this crannog within its wider landscape, study of this monument therefore has the potential to contribute to an understanding of the wider social and cultural contexts of crannog occupation.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it is a well-preserved example of a poorly understood monument type. It has the potential to inform our understanding of the methods of construction used at this crannog and developments in the environmental, economic, cultural and social contexts of its inhabitants. Evidence gained from here will have inferences for a future understanding of crannog building and occupation, and therefore Scottish society as a whole, over a wide period. Its loss would significantly detract from our ability to understand these issues.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the site as NH62NW68.

Aerial photographs:

RCAHMS, 1994, C26173, Loch Ruthven, Crannog (possible).

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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