Cross slab (piece)

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from Latheron, Caithness

Postcard of Cross slab (piece).
© National Museums Scotland

Cross slab (piece)

This fragment of a cross slab, carved into Caithness flagstone, was found at Latheron in Caithness, reused in the wall of a byre. Only one face of the stone was carved, sometime between 700 and 900.

The stone has a cross carved in relief. Below are an eagle and a fish, both recognisable Pictish symbols, but also with Christian meanings. Below the fish are two horsemen. On the left edge of the slab is an incomplete ogham memorial inscription.

In the early Historic period three alphabets were current: Latin, brought by the Christian church; ogham, originally developed by the Irish and used by both Scots and Picts; and runes brought by the Scandinavians. Most people, however, were illiterate.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-043-496-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  X.IB 183
Date: Between 700 and 900
Material: Stone; with portion of cross carved in relief with interlaced work, bird, fish and ogham inscription
Dimensions: 1010 mm H x 200 mm L x 520 mm W
What: Stone
Where: Scotland, Caithness, Latheron
Description: Stone with portion of a cross carved in relief with interlaced work, a bird, a fish and ogham inscription, from Latheron, Caithness
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