Ancient Monuments

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Knock Hill cairn, 605m WSW of St John's Well

A Scheduled Monument in Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.1192 / 57°7'9"N

Longitude: -2.9052 / 2°54'18"W

OS Eastings: 345286

OS Northings: 803500

OS Grid: NJ452035

Mapcode National: GBR WL.5JMB

Mapcode Global: WH7N8.BBT6

Entry Name: Knock Hill cairn, 605m WSW of St John's Well

Scheduled Date: 15 October 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11666

Schedule Class: Cultural

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

Location: Logie-Coldstone

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire


The monument comprises the remains of a prehistoric burial cairn and is situated on a broad ridge, within a group of prehistoric burial cairns, hut circles and relic field systems identified on Knock Hill. The monument is dissected by the march dyke separating Blelack from Braehead, with approximately 80% of the monument within the rough pasture to the W of the dyke and 20% falling within the unploughed margin of the cultivated field to the E of the dyke.

The interior of the cairn has been robbed of most of its stone (presumably for dyke building) and survives as a slightly raised, turf-covered stony mound, but the boulders of the cairn's 16.6m diameter surrounding kerb can be traced along much of the circumference.

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 extract.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

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

Intrinsic characteristics: Despite the robbing of much of the interior stones of the cairn, the monument retains important field characteristics of this class of monument. The outer kerb and edge of the cairn is substantially upstanding and clearly visible in the landscape and there is no evidence for disturbance of the base of the monument. It is therefore likely that the structure preserves archaeological deposits relating to prehistoric burial rites within it.

Contextual characteristics: Comparing and contrasting this monument to nearby cairns and others outside the region can create an understanding of regional identity and society. The identification of a group of prehistoric monuments on Knock Hill and the environs further enhances the value of the monument. It shares a visual relationship with other ritual monuments on Knock Hill, and in the past would have been prominent on the skyline formed by one of southern ridges of Knock Hill.

National Importance: This monument is of national importance because it is an upstanding prehistoric burial cairn with the potential 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



The monument is recorded by RCAHMS as NJ40SE 117.



Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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