Ancient Monuments

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Pitmuies, cross slab 15m WSW of North Lodge

A Scheduled Monument in Arbroath West, Letham and Friockheim, Angus

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Latitude: 56.6396 / 56°38'22"N

Longitude: -2.708 / 2°42'28"W

OS Eastings: 356671

OS Northings: 749976

OS Grid: NO566499

Mapcode National: GBR VR.FR0W

Mapcode Global: WH7QP.CCPV

Entry Name: Pitmuies, cross slab 15m WSW of North Lodge

Scheduled Date: 17 June 1936

Last Amended: 28 July 2015

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM153

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Crosses and carved stones: cross slab

Location: Kirkden

County: Angus

Electoral Ward: Arbroath West, Letham and Friockheim

Traditional County: Angus


The monument is the remains of a carved cross slab and is probably Pictish or early Christian in date (between AD 600 and 1000). It comprises an upstanding monolith of sandstone, measuring about 1.6m high by 0.8m wide, which is carved in relief on its E and W faces. The carvings are worn and obscured by lichen in places, but some details can be discerned. The lower portion of a cross-shaft is depicted on both faces, with scrolls and animal ornament visible towards the shaft base. Previous records suggest that additional carvings may survive. The cross slab has been moved from its original location around 60m to the NW. It is now situated in a private garden forming part of the grounds of the House of Pitmuies. The cross slab is set in a concrete foundation and iron rods on either side provide support to its lower part. The monument was first scheduled in 1936, but the documentation did not meet modern standards: the present amendment rectifies this.

The scheduled area is circular on plan, measuring 5m in diameter, focused on the stone and its modern base, as shown in red on the accompanying map. The scheduling specifically excludes the top 300mm of the gravelled area around the socket to allow for maintenance.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because of its potential to make a significant addition to knowledge of the past, particularly our understanding of early ecclesiastical sculpture and the development of Christianity. It has the potential to further our understanding of the techniques and iconography of early stone carvings, their functions and their role in contemporary religious practices. Although incomplete and no longer in its original location, this cross slab is important because its carvings are highly unusual. It is also of interest for its close proximity to a possible early Christian site, Guthrie Collegiate Church, with which it may originally have been associated, and its reported association with a long cist cemetery. Studied in its landscape context, the monument has the potential to contribute towards our understanding of the origins and development of Christianity in Angus, and the wider relationships between this Christian community and others in the area. The loss of this monument would impede our ability to understand ecclesiastical sculpture, stone carvings and the early Christian church, both in Angus and further afield.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



Other Information

RCAHMS and the Angus Sites and Monuments Record both record the monument as NO54SE 4.


Borland, Fraser and Sherriff, J, I and J 2007, 'Eight socket stones from eastern Scotland', TAFAJ 13, 104-6, 108.

Chalmers, P 1848, The ancient sculptured monuments of the county of Angus, including those at Meigle in Perthshire and one at Fordoun in the Mearns, Edinburgh, 11.

Coutts, H 1970, Ancient monuments of Tayside, Dundee, 65-6.

Old Statistical Account 1791-9, The statistical account of Scotland, drawn up from the communications of the ministers of the different parishes, in Sinclair, J (Sir) Edinburgh, 2, 513.

RCAHMS 1978, The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. The archaeological sites and monuments of Lunan Valley, Montrose Basin, Angus District, Tayside Region, The archaeological sites and monuments of Scotland series, 4, Edinburgh, 29, no 240.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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