Dun Ringill is an Iron Age hill fort on the Strathaird peninsula. Further fortified in the Middle Ages, tradition holds that it was for several centuries the seat of Clan MacKinnon. The original structure is consistent with an Iron Age Broch dating to approximately the first years of the common era. The main and subordinate structures have been occupied and modified throughout its history until the 19th century. Tradition relates that the structure was occupied by the MacKinnons as their clan seat well before the 16th century. It is mentioned in historical texts in the 16th century after which the MacKinnons moved their seat to Dunakin.

Dun Ringill today is a stacked stone ruin overlooking Loch Slapin. The present structure is approximately 4 meters in height and 16 meters on each side with a ditch following the outer wall. Its most notable feature is the central landward facing doorway approximately 1.8 meters high that leads into the center of the structure. The interior of the structure contained two rectangular buildings 4.5 meters by 2.4 meters. The original layout was similar to that of a broch, a form of complex Atlantic roundhouse.

A stone wall foundation encloses area adjacent to the structure. Similarly to other castles and fortified houses, the wall probably formed a defensive perimeter and livestock enclosure. The remains of the wall itself are hidden by vegetation. A site survey has shown that there are remains of other buildings in the immediate vicinity; and although their age is uncertain, it is likely their construction and occupation was throughout the history of Dun Ringill up until the 19th century.

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Founded: 0-100 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in United Kingdom

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