Kirkcudbright, Greyfriars Monastery

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Alternative Names Greyfriars Convent; 'Castle Aisle'
Canmore ID 64082
Site Number NX65SE 41
NGR NX 682 510
Former District STEWARTRY
Datum OSGB36 - NGR
NGR Desc NX c. 682 510

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Notes and Activities

Archaeological Notes

NX65SE 41 c. 682 510

(Centred NX 682 510) Site of Greyfriar's Monastery (NR)
(13th Century)
OS 6" map (1849-50)

The monastery of Franciscan Friars was founded, according to Bryce, in or about 1455. The foundation is alleged to have been made in 1239 but Bryce regarded the unwitnessed charter, doubtfully genuine, as referring to the Augustinian priory of St Mary's Isle (Kircud 55 NW 7). It was supposed in 1569.
D E Easson 1957; W M Bryce 1909

The boundaries of the conventual buildings of the monastery of Greyfriars (destroyed in 1852 in building MacLellan's Castle - NX65SE 28) are described in the charter of 1569 granting it to Sir Thomas MacLellan. They ran from the harbour across St Cuthbert's Street, between Castle Street and the present Church grounds to the Meickle Yett at Townend, along the south High Street and west High Street to the River Dee. The Friary Kirk was used as the parish church (with its burial ground on Moat Brae) until 1730. It was then pulled down, except for the "Castle Aisle"'(burial place of the MacLellans') and its rubble used to build a wall round Moat Brae. This aisle later formed the nucleus of the Old Church School but since the first World War it has been rededicated as Greyfriars Church (Episcopal) (Galloway Publ Assoc).
J Robison 1916

The small aisle of the church, at NX 68282 51066, now the chancel, incorporates all that remains of the friary. It was not established that the aisle is known as 'Castle Aisle'.
Visited by OS (EGC) 11 February 1965.

Books and References

Bryce, W M (1909c) The Scottish Grey Friars,
Page(s): Vol.1, 36-7

Brydall, R (1895) 'The monumental effigies of Scotland from the thirteenth to the fifteenth century', Proc Soc Antiq Scot, vol.29
Page(s): 337 fig.6

Cowan and Easson, I B and D E (1976) Medieval religious houses in Scotland: with an appendix on the houses in the Isle of Man, London
Page(s): 107 Held at RCAHMS C.3.2.EAS.R

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Charity SC026749