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

The Hills of Dunipace

Sacred Hill


The Romans documented that here at the Hills of Dunipace, there was at least one peace treaty brokered between them and local Celts in the 3rd century. The Roman Emperor, Severus came here in person for this purpose in 210, Severus's son Caragill may have returned here soon after for more peace talks and the usurper, Carausius brokered another deal in 286. In the past it was thought that the hills were erected to commemorate one, two or all of these treaties.

William Wallace is said to have met with King Robert Bruce here in 1298. Wallace supposedly persuaded the Royal Bruce that he should fight on, in the interests of Scotland and it's people, and not sell the Scottish crown to England through land deals.

Edward I of England came here on 14 October, 1301 to sign a peace warrant with Scotland in order to appease the French King (who was an ally of the Scots at the time).

Other similar hills in the valley were excavated and were thought to be natural remains of the post glacial beach. On top of one nearby (and less prominent) hill, which was destroyed for road building materials, was found an ancient burial cist with remains. The use of natural features like this, for sacred purpose was also uncovered by the archeos, at nearby Cambusbarron (-at Dunipace, burial continues to this day - the site was Christianised in the 12th century by the erection of a chapel at the foot of the hills, the remains of which can be seen beside the modern cemetery). Thankfully, the hills at Dunipace have been left more or less untampered by the archeos, but it looks pretty much like these hills are mostly natural. However, the almost perfectly flattened top of the SE hill makes me think that it may have been artificially flattened for ceremonial use. The NW hill was badly damaged by flooding in the 16th century so it's impossible to say if this one had the same flat top.

Arthurian madman/scholar, August Hunt, in his online book, the Road to Avalon, theorises that King Ban and his wife left the Stirling area with his son, the infant Lancelot, and crossed the Carron here at Dunipace.

The area is at the heart of UFO country; The town of Bonnybridge is just a few hundred yards away at the other side of the nearby roundabout.
Posted by winterjc
8th February 2002ce

Comments (4)

I've just chanced upon an image of the larger hill when its popped up as one of the alternating pix on the TMA Scotland header.. reminds me very much of Droughduil, D&G, which I added recently. The latter was thought to be of post Roman origin till dug as part of the excavations which revealed the cursus which had been found through study of aerial photographs. Droughduil, it is now thought, is a viewing platform. Could Dunipace be the same? Are there any aerial images of its environs on the net? I don't have the etech to look myself. Are there other structures of similar size elsewhere in Scotland? spencer Posted by spencer
3rd December 2016ce
Hello Spencer, I don't know if it's quite what you want, but if you click the 'FlashEarth' link towards the top of the main Dunipace page, it'll show you an aerial photo. Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
4th December 2016ce
Cheers Rhiannon, my elderly smartphone can't, unfortunately, no computer either (nor am I comp literate, tbt - hope to rectify both soon tho). I must admit I am very curious as to whether there are other mounds like Dunipace and Droughduil north of the Silburys (?) spencer Posted by spencer
4th December 2016ce
I hope someone knowledgeable can help you with suggesting some mounds.

You shouldn't do your computer literacy down - you must be doing fine if you have a smartphone and can post things on here! I'd totally recommend getting along to the local library though and using their computers to see the maps on the National Library of Scotland website I was just looking at a lovely large scale 25 inch map of a wood I went to today. mmm. And zoom earth's satellite photos - oh the hours to be spent (allowable when it's cold outside)
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
4th December 2016ce
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