Courtesy of National Library of Scotland | Licence: CC BY 4.0
Courtesy of National Library of Scotland | Licence: CC BY 4.0

180 - Interior of the Cathedral at Kirkwall, Orkney

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From the Collection


William Daniell drew this sketch, of the interior of St Magnus’ Cathedral, Kirkwall, Orkney, probably in 1818, when he visited the island. Daniell went on to record another two interior sketches and all together there are eight views of the Cathedral to be found in the Hutton Drawings. There has been much speculation over the origins of the architects and masons responsible for the work carried out at the Cathedral. There appear to be strong similarities between the work at Durham Cathedral and Dunfermline Abbey and the architecture in evidence on Orkney. The Cathedral commemorates Earl Rognvald's, martyred uncle, St Magnus. This link was always tenuous but excavations in 1919 discovered a skull high up in the structure of the wall. The skull had split in two, which is the reported manner of Magnus’ death!

Collective title: Hutton Drawings > [Volume 2] > Orkney

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Courtesy of National Library of Scotland

From the Watercolour World


St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Scotland