22 Edinburgh Road
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Stories of ghosts and witchcraft to chill the nerves and intrigue the imagination…
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NH 805717 21 IV19 1QR
On minor road off B9175, in Nigg, 7 miles S of Tain, Ross
Standing in Nigg Old Parish Church, this Class 2 cross-slab, although broken with a section missing, is both intricate and exquisite. The front shows a full-length cross, filled with complex interlaced animal designs, surrounded by serpents coiling around intricately worked bosses. Above the cross, fitted into a triangular pediment and carved in high relief, two kneeling figures – representing St Anthony and St Paul in the Syrian desert – receive a loaf of bread from a crow descending from the apex of the slab. The back of the stone carries yet more interlaced designs, surrounding four panels containing: an eagle and a Pictish beast, which is mostly missing; a man armed with spear and sword and carrying a shield pursuing two deer; a figure identified as King David, depicted with a sheep and a harp, rending the lion’s jaws; and a mounted huntsman with a hound pursuing a deer, alongside a second man holding two discs. Is this final figure clashing cymbals to startle game, or is he another representation of the double disc?
NOTE: Open Apr-Oct, daily 10.00-17.00
© Martin Coventry 2018