Tayside and Central Scotland

Centuries-old stone carvings discovered at Dunkeld Cathedral

Dunkeld Cathedral carving Image copyright PA
Image caption Detailed 3D models have been made of the carvings

Stone carvings hidden from view for 600 years have been discovered on a tomb at a Perthshire cathedral.

Conservationists found at least a dozen unrecorded carved figures on the back of Bishop Cardeny's tomb in Dunkeld Cathedral.

He was the cathedral's longest-serving bishop and was appointed by Pope Benedict XIII in 1399.

The tomb was created in 1420 and the carvings were found on the side facing a wall.

The unearthing of the stone carvings has shed new light on the history of the site, revealing the tomb was moved and built into the wall from its original free-standing location.

Image copyright PA
Image caption At least a dozen unrecorded carved figures were found on the back of Bishop Cardeny's tomb

Colin Muir, stone conservator at Historic Environment Scotland (HES), said the discovery was "very exciting".

He said: "This discovery also gives fresh incentive for further research and exploration of the site, as we still don't know when exactly the tomb was moved or why."

Mr Muir said that there may other obscured areas of detail preserved within the walls of the tomb.

A detailed 3D model has been made of the carvings using cameras and mirrors.

Relics of St Columba were brought to Dunkeld from Iona by King Kenneth McAlpin in 849.

The cathedral was developed over a period of about 250 years, with the earliest surviving section dating from the late 1200s.

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