Inchcolm Abbey is a medieval abbey located on the island of Inchcolm in the Firth of Forth in Scotland. The Abbey, which is located at the centre of the island, was founded in the 12th century during the episcopate of Gregoir, Bishop of Dunkeld. Later tradition placed it even earlier, in the reign of King Alexander I of Scotland (1107–24), who probably had some involvement in the island; he was apparently washed ashore there after a shipwreck in 1123, and took shelter in a hermit's hovel.

The Abbey was first used as a priory by Augustinian canons regular, becoming a full abbey in 1235. The island was attacked by the English from 1296 onwards, and the Abbey was abandoned after the Scottish Reformation in 1560. It has since been used for defensive purposes, as it is situated in a strategically important position in the middle of the Firth of Forth. A medieval inscription carved above the Abbey's entrance reads 'Stet domus haec donec fluctus formica marinos ebibat, et totum testudo perambulet orbem', or, 'May this house stand until an ant drains the flowing sea, and a tortoise walks around the whole world'.

Inchcolm Abbey has the most complete surviving remains of any Scottish monastic house. The cloisters, chapter house, warming house, and refectory are all complete, and most of the remaining claustral buildings survive in a largely complete state. The least well-preserved part of the complex is the monastic church. The ruins are cared for by Historic Scotland, which also maintains a visitor centre near the landing pier (entrance charge; ferry from South Queensferry).

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Inchcolm, United Kingdom
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Details

Founded: 12th century
Category: Religious sites in United Kingdom

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4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Scottish-Hidden-Gems (10 months ago)
Interesting place but very dark inside and difficult navigate around
Yolanda Vico (13 months ago)
Spectacular! Amazing! The location is incredible and the place is full of history. There is staff of Historic Scotland that can provide more information of the abbey and during the visit of the island. They are very friendly and happy to help you. It deserves a visit! You can arrive with the Maid of Forth cruise company.
Yolanda Vico (13 months ago)
Spectacular! Amazing! The location is incredible and the place is full of history. There is staff of Historic Scotland that can provide more information of the abbey and during the visit of the island. They are very friendly and happy to help you. It deserves a visit! You can arrive with the Maid of Forth cruise company.
Kelly Gallacher (2 years ago)
Love this place. Very well maintained and interesting to walk through. Beautiful views on a sunny day.
Kelly Gallacher (2 years ago)
Love this place. Very well maintained and interesting to walk through. Beautiful views on a sunny day.
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