01 May 2012
An ancient carved tombstone known as the Mariota Stone is to return to the Ross of Mull after conservation work by Historic Scotland. ...
An ancient carved tombstone known as the Mariota Stone is to return to the Ross of Mull after conservation work by Historic Scotland.
Historic Scotland has announced that an ancient carved tombstone known as the Mariota Stone is to return to the Ross of Mull following work to repair cracks to the stone. The Mariota Stone is a 500-year-old grave marker which is categorised as a Scheduled Monument. It has been repaired at Historic Scotland's conservation workshop in Edinburgh and will now be taken to Tigh na Rois, the Ross of Mull Historical Centre (ROMHC), in time for a celebration to mark Scotland's Festival of Museum on 18 and 19 May 2012, before being moved to a new purpose-built protective shelter funded by Historic Scotland and the ROMHC.
Stephen Gordon, Head of Applied Conservation, who carried out the repairs, said: 'The stone is carved from west highland slate. It was in poor condition with considerable fracturing consistent with being compressed under a heavy load. Before the stone could be uplifted by the conservation team a significant portion of the carved ornament had been lost or stolen. The stone was brought to the Applied Conservation studios in Edinburgh where the numerous fragments could be examined, recorded and cleaned. The work then involved many further hours of reassembling the fragmented sections to reconstruct the stone using a combination of acrylic based mortars and adhesives.
'We were lucky to have good archive material illustrating the missing section and a decision was made to remodel the carved detail in a synthetic epoxy based composite material. This repair was designed and attached to the stone in order that if the missing fragment is ever recovered it can be replaced. Whilst the stone is now conserved and relatively stable its vulnerability to exposure to the Scottish climate means that the new shelter will afford it good protection for the future.'
Sign up now for our FREE e-newsletter for more news stories, sneak previews, exclusive content and special offers.