Round Dounan

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Alternative Names Dunragit House
Site Type MOTTE
Canmore ID 61250
Site Number NX15NW 4
NGR NX 1483 5795
Former District WIGTOWN
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Notes and Activities

Archaeological Notes

NX15NW 4 1483 5795.

(NX 1483 5795) Round Dounan (NR)
OS 6" map (1957)

Fort at Dunragit, on a natural hillock of outcropping rock some 12-14 feet in height. Reid's survey of 1951 showed an outer rampart from which stones protruded. A terrace, some 18 feet wide, noticed by the Commissioners, on the W side, he showed to have been formed by a later track entering the defences.
The fort itself was a stone built structure with an entrance through a straight passage at the inner end of which must have been a second gate. A thickening of the wall to the W. of the outer gate indicated theh position of a gate tower.
The fort was dated to the 5th-6th centuries by Radford and Reid deduces that this is the Fort of Rheged, the kingdom which flourished in the 4th and 5th centuries, erroneously sited by Watson at the 12th century Mote of Drochdool (NX15NW 6) (believing that to be the Mote of Dunragit). Round Dounan is not an early name.
RCAHMS 1912; R C Reid 1952; W J Watson 1926

This small fort is generally as described and planned by the above authorities. Reid's "outer rampart" encircles the base of the knoll except on the east side where the natural slopes are an adequate defence. No trace of any structure was seen in the interior of the fort. The name Round Dounan is not in local use.
Resurveyed at 1/2500.
Visited by OS (RD) 13 March 1968

What may be a motte fashioned from a natural mound (up to 5.3m high) is situated in woods 230m SSW of Dunragit House. Its irregularly shaped summit measures 28m by 25m. A terrace (up to 5m broad) flanks the base of the mound on the W.
RCAHMS 1987, visited October 1986.

Books and References

RCAHMS (1912) The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments and Constructions of Scotland. Fourth report and inventory of monuments and constructions in Galloway, 1, county of Wigtown, Edinburgh
Page(s): 114, No.312 Held at RCAHMS A.1.1.INV(4).R

RCAHMS (1987a) The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. The archaeological sites and monuments of East Rhins, Wigtown District, Dumfries and Galloway Region, The archaeological sites and monuments of Scotland series no 26 Edinburgh
Page(s): 61, No.340 Held at RCAHMS A.1.2.ARC/26

Reid, R C (1952) 'Dunragit', Trans Dumfriesshire Galloway Natur Hist Antiq Soc, 3rd, vol.29
Page(s): 155-6 fig.3

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Charity SC026749