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Brechin Cathedral, Brechin

#3 of 10 in Things to do in Brechin
Brechin Cathedral dates from the 13th century. As a congregation of the Church of Scotland, which is Presbyterian, the church is not technically a cathedral, in spite of its name.It is in the Pointed style, but suffered maltreatment in 1806 at the hands of restorers, whose work was subsequently removed during the restoration completed in 1902. The western gable with its flamboyant window, Gothic door and massive square tower, parts of the (much truncated) choir, and the nave pillars and clerestory are all that is left of the original edifice. The modern stained glass in the chancel is reckoned amongst the finest in Scotland.Round TowerImmediately adjoining the cathedral to the southwest stands the Round Tower, built about 1000 A.D. It is 86 ft.(26.21 m) high, has at the base a circumference of 50 ft.(15.3 m) and a diameter of 16 ft.(4.9 m), and is capped with a hexagonal spire of 18 ft.(5.5 m), added in the 14th century. This type of structure is somewhat common in Ireland, but the only Scottish examples are those at Brechin and Abernethy in Perthshire.The quality of the masonry is superior to all but a very few of the Irish examples. The narrow single doorway, raised some feet above ground level in a manner common in these buildings, is also exceptionally fine. The door-surround is enriched with two bands of pellets, and the monolithic arch has a well-preserved representation of the Crucifixion. The slightly splayed sides of the doorway (also monolithic) have relief sculptures of ecclesiastics, one of them holding a crosier, the other a Tau-shaped staff.
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  • I was prompted to do this visit after attending a lecture in which Brechin Cathedral was praised as a small jewel of medieval Scotland- which indeed it is . It ranks alongside Dunblane and Dornoch in ...  more »
  • Brechin Cathedral is an interesting building with a round tower and a magnificently well kept cemetery around it. Nice visit when it is sunny.  more »
  • There is a special parking with toilet in front of the Cathedral. It's dark in the Church and it smells old and dank, but that does have atmosphere. It does are we to it was quiet and that's important.
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  • Probably not worth a special trip on its own, the cathedral - and more importantly the round tower - is well worth a visit if you're passing. Be aware that the car park for the cathedral comes upon you VERY suddenly - there's a sign that's AT the car park and it's easy to go past without realising.
  • We would like to thank the minister Rodrick and his staff for the wonderful service. Irene and I were so happy with the whole experience of getting married in the historic setting that is Brechin cathedral We really appreciated the beautiful flower setting that was gifted to us. Than you so much again Bryan & Irene

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