The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

The Howie of The Manse



The 1798 and 1842 Statistical Accounts describe this as semi-circular and 140 yards across, having walls 12' high and 9' thick. If there were internal compartments these were filled with rubbish at that time. Unfortunately the site was heavily 'quarried' for stone in order to make the glebe wall i.e. that around the minister's land. They believed the site might have once been used in part for burials. There were further walls on the outside of the "great wall". In the various compartments were found "peat ashes" along with animal bones (including deer horn), shells and small bone rings.

In 1931 a cist and some prehistoric fragments were excavated here (notes accompanying photo of ongoing excavations, no follow-up article found). Probably the cist is the 'box' I found.

In "The Archaeological Sites and Monuments of Scotland , 27..." by Raymond Lamb it is said this site is akin to Bretta Ness in Rousay, which upon excavation was found to be a crannog. As water levels have risen by a meter and it still isn't cut off from the land I somehow doubt this. But perhaps like Wasdale this is a possible causewayed island dun?

From RCAHMS I would add that there are several rectangular banks under a foot high to the S and W and that one of these connects to one of two probable defensive walls at 27m and 42m from the centre.
wideford Posted by wideford
20th January 2007ce
Edited 17th June 2007ce

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