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Mal Lumkun's Cross Slab

Period: Early Medieval

NGR Easting: 231790

NGR Northing: 490850

Description: This large slab was discovered in use as a lintel above a window in the old church in 1772. It bears a cross carved in low relief on one face and inscriptions on the other.

The decorated side shows a shafted cross with limbs connected by a ring. Both the shaft and circle have a cable border ending at the foot in the head and tail of a serpent. In the centre of the cross is a circle of ring-chain, while each limb contains two interlinked rings bound by a diamond-shaped ring, and ends in four linked triquetras. The shaft is decorated with panels containing plaits of nine and seven strands.

To the left of the shaft are a hart and hound, and a robed priest with arms raised, supported by a staff. On the right side are the worn remains of what may possibly be another hart and hound. Below them a seated man plays a harp to the right of whom another figure carries what appears to be a drinking horn. Below the harpist is another priest with uplifted arms, again holding a staff. The ogham alphabet is incised vertically in the space below the cross shaft.

The other face bears a long runic inscription to the right which has been translated as, 'Mael Lomchon raised this cross to the memory of Malmura his foster mother, daughter of Dugald the wife whom Athisl had.' A second inscription to the left reads, 'Better is it to leave a good foster-son than a bad son.' A third inscription, in ogham, placed centrally near the top of the slab, is only lightly scored and is not decipherable.

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Site & Monument Type: cross

Category: National Monuments Record: Statutory Ancient Monuments

Site ID number: Manx Cross 130

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