Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Dalarossie Cottage, cairn 375m SSE of

A Scheduled Monument in Inverness South, Highland

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Latitude: 57.2905 / 57°17'25"N

Longitude: -4.0471 / 4°2'49"W

OS Eastings: 276718

OS Northings: 824067

OS Grid: NH767240

Mapcode National: GBR J9CG.4W2

Mapcode Global: WH4HJ.S0ZV

Entry Name: Dalarossie Cottage, cairn 375m SSE of

Scheduled Date: 1 October 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11815

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric ritual and funerary: ring cairn

Location: Moy and Dalarossie

County: Highland

Electoral Ward: Inverness South

Traditional County: Inverness-shire


The monument is a ring cairn, a form of prehistoric burial mound. It is situated at a height of approximately 350m above sea level, in an area of rough grazing on a shelf overlooking the River Findhorn and Dalarossie Church.

The monument consists of a circular stony bank surviving up to 0.7m high, spread to an average of 3m wide and measuring approximately 18m in diameter overall. The bank encloses a slight central stony mound 8m in diameter and 0.3m high. There are traces of a possible break in the bank on the E side. No kerbstones are evident. The form of the monument bears comparison with other ring cairns, such as Weird Law in Peeblesshire, which provided a radiocarbon date of approximately 1500 BC. An interpretation as a more rare saucer cairn or barrow is, however, also a possibility.

The cairn lies on the N edge of a relic field system and also within sight of two burial cairns to the S and a hut circle to the E.

The area to be scheduled is circular on plan, centred on the cairn, to include the visible remains and an area around in which evidence relating to 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 as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics: The monument appears to be in a good state of preservation under the cover of heather. It is upstanding and clearly visible in the landscape and retains the field characteristics that identify it as a Bronze-Age ring cairn or, perhaps, a saucer cairn, a rare form of prehistoric burial site. It is likely that the monument preserves high quality archaeological deposits relating to prehistoric burial rites, as well as sealing evidence for the earlier environment.

Contextual characteristics: The cairn was a highly visible component of the Bronze-Age landscape and can be compared and contrasted to nearby prehistoric funerary monuments and others outside the region to create an understanding of regional identity and society during this period. The monument is located within a complex of prehistoric settlement sites, both domestic and funerary, in this part of the Findhorn Valley, further enhancing the value of the monument.

National Importance

This monument is of national importance because it is a prominent, upstanding Bronze-Age cairn with the capacity to reveal much about funerary practice in the prehistoric communities of NE Scotland. It has the potential to make a significant contribution to our knowledge of prehistoric society in this locality and, by association, the rest of Scotland. The loss of the monument would affect our future ability to appreciate and understand the prehistoric landscape and its inhabitants.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS record the monument as NH72SE 5. It is recorded in the Highland SMR as NH72SE0005.


Ritchie J N G and MacLaren A 1972, 'Ring cairns and related monuments in Scotland', SCOTT ARCHAEOL FORUM 4.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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