Masons' Marks Project

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An ecclesiastic building of some form has stood on this site since 6th century AD; became a cathedral in early 12th century. A Norman cathedral style of building was added in the latter half of 12th century. In the 13th-14th century the building underwent extensive restorations started by Bishop Cheyne (1282-1328)  when it became a fortified kirk, one of the few surviving examples. Construction continued under Bishop Kinnimund (1355-80) and Bishop Elphinstone (1431-1514). There was originally a crossing to the east of the nave with a choir and a large central tower, with transepts to the north and south. A storm in 1688 caused the collapse of the central tower and severe damage to the choir, crossing and transepts which were never rebuilt. Today's cathedral consists of the nave and the western towers with the eastern end shortened and replaced by a wall with stained glass windows where the crossing once stood. During work in the later 19th century, which entailed stripping many of the walls of plaster A. Gibb took the opportunity to record a number of masons' marks which ran in to several 100's, but exact locations of all marks are not known, only the general locations. Not surveyed by Project. Survey record sheets are taken from the results of his report (PSAS 7 (1866-68) pp471-3) to show examples of these marks. Many of the stones may be re-used when rebuilding took place. Forty-eight different masons were noted. No plans of locations of marks are available as exact locations unknown of most of the marks. A ground plan is supplied for reference only. A few marks were photographed on a subsequent visit.