The Quirang

(The Quiraing, Cuiraing)

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

This edition is copyright © The Editors of the Gazetteer for Scotland, 2002-2022.

It has taken much time and money to make the six-volumes of Groome's text freely accessible. Please help us continue and develop by making a donation. If only one out of every ten people who view this page gave £5 or $10, the project would be self-sustaining. Sadly less than one in thirty-thousand contribute, so please give what you can.

Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry Arrow

Quiraing, a mountain (1779 feet) in Kilmuir parish, Isle of Skye, Inverness-shire, 2 miles WNW of Stenscholl, 6 NE of Uig, and 20 N by W of Portree. Consisting of amygdaloidal trap, and apparently formed by volcanic eruption, it ascends very steeply, almost murally on the NE side; and is capped with a kind of crater, from which it takes its name (Gael. cuith-fhirFhinn, ` pit of the men of Fingal '). The rim around the summit resembles a strong, rough, lofty rampart, with only three or four gaps or fissures affording access to the interior. The principal gap is a steep narrow passage, obstructed by debris, and overhung by a tall, tapering, isolated pinnacle, the ` Needle; ' and the rampart all round, except at the gaps, shows distinct basaltic formation in columnar, pyramidal, and other forms. Through the gaps one gains picturesque glimpses of sea and land; and the hollow itself could shield 4000 head of black cattle, and indeed was probably used in olden times as a place of retreat and concealment from invasion. From the bottom of it rises an oblong tabular mass or truncated rocky hill, the flat and turf-covered ` Table, ' which measures 300 feet long and 180 broad. Such is this ` nightmare of nature,' this huge ` basaltic cathedral,' which in 1872 was ascended on foot by the Empress Eugenie and the Prince Imperial. See chaps. vii. and xi. of Alex. Smith's Summer in Skye (1865).

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better