Aberdeen, Carmelite Friary

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Alternative Names 12 St Martin's Lane; 2-12 Rennie's Wynd; The Green; Carmelite Monastery
Site Type FRIARY
Canmore ID 20171
Site Number NJ90NW 49
NGR NJ 9411 0608
Council ABERDEEN, CITY OF
Parish ABERDEEN
Former Region GRAMPIAN
Former District CITY OF ABERDEEN
Former County ABERDEENSHIRE
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Notes and Activities

Archaeological Notes

NJ90NW 49 9411 0608

(NJ 9408 0605) Carmelite Monastery (NR) (Site of)
OS 25" map, (1955).

See also NJ90NW 49, NJ90NW 114, NJ90NW 226 -9, 239 and 267.

For Franciscan friary (NJ 9425 0650) and Dominican friary (NJ 9389 0640), see NJ90NW 26 and NJ 90NW 27 respectively.

The site of a Carmelite monastery, founded c.1273 and destroyed at the Reformation. By c.1647 only a single vault, known as the 'Friar's Kiln' remained. The site is now built up and no trace remains.
D E Easson 1957; W Macfarlane 1907.
Visited by OS (JLD) 11 September 1952.

(Located to NJ 9411 0608 by excavation).
J Stones 1982.

Further excavation of the friary took place in 1994. The NW corner of the church was excavated, including two chamfered sandstone buttress bases and a doorway in the N wall with some surviving mouldings. The church may date to the 14th century. Inside the church nearly 60 skeletons, mainly in grave cuts, were cut through various floor levels. Outside the church to the N, cobbled surfaces were cut through by several burials and by a lead pipe which ran through the church walls and alongside the length of the domestic building. Pre-friary plough marks in this area were the first identified on an urban site in Aberdeen. A line of large post holes runnning parallel to the N wall of the church belong to an earlier wooden building, possibly an earlier church.
To the S of the church, a long stone building 24m long and 7m wide may have been the remains of the W range of the cloister. It was divided into four rooms, one of which was probably a kitchen with a fireplace and drain. The building was dated to the 15th century by a coin found in a wall foundation. Two slightly later coins were found in the demolition rubble, which contained hundreds of painted and stained window glass fragments and lead window cames, as well as a tap or spigot, and fragments of two others. Adjacent to and earlier than this building were three burials and an oven or kiln.
Sponsor: Stewart Milne Group.
A Cameron and D I Harding 1994a.

(Location cited as NJ 941 060 and named as The Green). Carmelite friary, founded 1273. NW corner of church uncovered during 1994 excavation by Aberdeen City Unit, including chamfered sandstone buttress bases, a doorway and a N wall with some surviving moulding, possibly of 14th century date. Inside the church wre nearly 60 skeletons in graves cut through various floor levels. A cobbled area to the N was also cut through by burials. Pre-friary plough marks were identified while a line of large postholes running parallel to the N wall of the church may belong to an earlier wooden building, possibly an earlier church. To the S of the church, a long stone building may have been the remains of the W range of the cloister. It was divided into four rooms, one of which may have been a kitchen with a fireplace and drain, which was dated to the 15th century by a coin found in the wall foundation. Many fragments painted glass and lead window cames were found. Adjacent to this building were three burials, an oven and a kiln.
NMRS, MS/712/10.

(Location cited as NJ 9408 0605). Newspaper reference cited; location of finds not stated.
NMRS, MS/712/83.

The site of this friary lies in a redeveloped part of the city.
(See also NJ90NW 49 and NJ90NW 226 -9, and 267).
Visited by RCAHMS (JRS, ATW), 26 February 1997.

 
External Links

Scottish Church Heritage Research (SCHR)


 
Books and References

Bateson and Holmes, D and N (1989) 'The small finds. Aberdeen small finds. Coins and coin weight', in Stones, J A Three Scottish Carmelite friaries: excavations at Aberdeen, Linlithgow and Perth 1980-1986, Society of Antiquaries of Scotland monograph series no 6 Edinburgh
Page(s): Microfiche 12: C2 Held at RCAHMS E.13.11.STO

Bateson, J D (1990) 'Roman and medieval coins found in Scotland, to 1987', Proc Soc Antiq Scot, vol.119
Page(s): 170

Cameron and Harding, A and D I (1994a) 'The Green (Aberdeen parish): Carmelite friary', Discovery Excav Scot
Page(s): 21-2

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Charity SC026749