Callernish  Ross and Cromarty


In 1882-4, Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland described Callernish like this:

Callernish, a village and a district of Uig parish, Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Ross-shire, on the E coast of Loch Roag, 16 miles W of Stornoway. In the Builder of 12 June 1873, Mr Jas. Kerr of Edinburgh described a neighbouring ` cruciform sun-temple:, ` A bed of peat moss, 5 feet thick, only recently cleared away by the proprietor, Sir James Matheson, had grown year by year around the base of these standing stones. ...

The only relics found were 2 curious built, sunk, altar chambers on the E side of the great gnomon or centre stone of a circle, having a built drain also from the same flowing towards the E.- The standing stones are not hewn or dressed in any way, but are great upright blocks of gneiss. The dimensions of the gnomon are 161/6 feet high by 4 broad, and 1 foot thick, placed in the centre of a circle, 40 feet in diameter, formed of 12 stones, averaging from 10 to 13 feet high. From this circle a row of stones projects eastward 38 feet, another southward 69 feet, and another westward 43 feet. Then we find the grand meridian avenue from the N, extending in that direction from the circle 270 feet, formed of a double row of standing stones 27 feet apart. Walking up this avenue at 12 o'clock noon, and looking towards the great centre stone while the meridian sun throws his rays right athwart it, one can hardly fail to see the great object for which this rude memorial was erected.'

Callernish through time

Callernish is now part of Eilean Siar district. Click here for graphs and data of how Eilean Siar has changed over two centuries. For statistics about Callernish itself, go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Callernish, in Eilean Siar and Ross and Cromarty | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 24th October 2021

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