An interdisciplinary study of the ecclesiastical centre of Abernethy before the early thirteenth century

McCormack, Victoria Anne (2022) An interdisciplinary study of the ecclesiastical centre of Abernethy before the early thirteenth century. MRes thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Many prominent medieval sites in Scotland, such as St Andrews and Iona, have been researched, excavated, and assessed by scholars over the centuries, and rightfully so with an impressive assemblage of stones and fortifications and textual evidence. This leads to the question: what was Abernethy? Similarly, to St Andrews and Iona, Abernethy was a prominent site that has a foundation legend, a stone assemblage, a rare round tower, and an abundance of charter evidence, yet has been often overlooked by scholars. What happened to Abernethy’s prominence? In the quest to further our understanding of what was Abernethy before the thirteenth century and when did it change, the methodology will consist of interdisciplinary research based on chronological order from the earliest source to the latest source. To begin, the foundation legend of Abernethy will be addressed, followed by archaeology, and finishing with the charter material. To understand the assemblage, each stone will be assessed with basic information such as dating, dimensions, and descriptions, followed by a deeper analysis of what the overall assemblage could indicate for Abernethy’s status and prominence. Following the archaeology chapter is the charter evidence, where certain charters containing crucial moments concerning the abbacy, the land, and the church of Abernethy’s involvement with the wider Church will be presented with a summary of the text and a description of the charter, following an overall analysis to help further our understanding of what Abernethy was like towards the end of the thirteenth century. The loss of prominence could be related to the Treaty of Abernethy or attributed to the continuous loss of lands from the abs of Abernethy. Overall, the textual and archaeological evidence supporting the prominence of Abernethy before the thirteenth century is characterised by high-quality carvings and wealthy patronage with a valuable centre for learning, while providing a glimpse of how the ecclesiastical establishment of Abernethy viewed itself.

Item Type: Thesis (MRes)
Qualification Level: Masters
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Humanities > Celtic and Gaelic
Supervisor's Name: Broun, Professor Dauvit and Forsyth, Professor Katherine
Date of Award: 2022
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2022-82961
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 15 Jun 2022 13:02
Last Modified: 15 Jun 2022 13:02
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.82961

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