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Gaut's Cross Slab

Period: Early Medieval

NGR Easting: 231790

NGR Northing: 490850

Description: The cross was discovered in the old parish church and removed from it in 1827 during demolition. One of the most well-known of the Manx crosses, famous for its sculptor, Gaut, it shows the treatment of the head characteristic of him and perhaps his workshop. The rectangular slab is decorated on both faces with a wheel-headed cross, and the entire monument is covered with some of the finest examples of interlace motifs found on the Island.

One face shows the ring-chain design on the shaft which has often been ascribed to Gaut. To the left is a plait-of-four, and to the right the tendril pattern also linked with Gaut. Runes above the head of the cross translate, ‘Gaut carved this and all in Man.’ On the strength of this inscription and another which also apparently names him (Manx Cross 99) Gaut has often been credited as a leading local carver whose supposedly signature style has been identified on a number of other Manx monuments.

The other face bears a plait-of-five on the shaft; twist-and-ring to the left, and, to the right, a linked twist, which has likewise been ascribed to Gaut.

A runic inscription runs up one edge. The reading is difficult because of grammatical inconsistencies, but the following is suggested, 'Mael Brigde, son of Athakan the smith erected this cross for his own soul (and that of) his brother’s wife'.

View map location on Archaeology Data Service

Site & Monument Type: cross

Category: National Monuments Record: Statutory Ancient Monuments

Site ID number: Manx Cross 101

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