The Carrick Stone – Cumbernauld, Scotland - Atlas Obscura

The Carrick Stone

Cumbernauld, Scotland

An ancient Roman altar named after Robert the Bruce.  


The Carrick Stone is a Roman altar, the only one that still stands outdoors in Scotland. It’s unknown if the altar is still in its original position, but it would have been a part of a military zone behind the Antonine Wall.

Romans worshipped many gods. Sometimes, soldiers or members of their families would raise an altar dedicated to many gods or a particular god. Although it is currently plain stone, it’s likely that originally, the stone would have been brightly painted.

The original carvings have also worn over time. Although the faint words left on it are not Roman. Legend states that in 1314, Robert the Bruce raised his standard on the Carrick Stone before the Battle of Bannockburn. The stone’s name comes from this legend because, as well as being King of Scotland, Robert the Bruce was also Earl of Carrick.

When the Romans withdrew back to Hadrian’s Wall, the altar was left behind and eventually became surrounded by a housing estate.

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January 24, 2024

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