Aberdeen City HER - NJ90NW0018 - KING'S COLLEGE

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Main Details

Primary ReferenceNJ90NW0018
NameKING'S COLLEGE
NRHE Card No.NJ90NW7
NRHE Numlink 148162
HES SM No.
HES LB No. 20092
Site Form Standing Structure
Site Condition Complete 2
Details Kings College, including King's College Chapel (NJ90NW0917), quadrangle, library and Elphinstone Hall. King's College, named for King James IV, was founded in 1495, built about 1498 - 1505 and arranged around a quadrangle, The Chapel and Ivy Tower are the only original parts of this range to survive. The west frontage of the quadrangle is by John Smith 1825-6, comprising a 2-storey Tudor gothic building with an archway into the quadrangle. The south and east sides of the quadrangle and library were designed by Robert Matheson 1860-2 and 1870-3 with additions by WW Robertson 1881 and 1894, and in 1914 by A Marshall Mackenzie. The Ivy Tower dating from the 16th century and is 4-storey, rubble built now partly enclosed in the Mathieson Buildings. The Cromwell Tower was begun in 1657 (dated 1658), reconstructed by John Smith 1825-6 and is 4-5 storey (altered from 6 storey), rectangular in plan with a battlemented top. Inside is a 16th Century tall oak screen separating nave and choir. It contained confessional cubicles and a staircase led originally to the library. The blocked door high in the south wall of the choir indicates the original position of the screen. The ceiling is a shallow wooden vault. The Elphinstone Hall was designed by A Marshall Mackenzie and son 1927-9 with alterations and additions by G Bennet Mitchell 1956. It is in late Scots gothic style of ashlar, with a cloister feature. A wing connecting the Elphinstone Hall and the library is by G Bennet Mitchell, ashlar built in simple late medieval style. The Chapel contains a war memorial window dedicated to Captain William Murison Smith Merson, 7th Battalion Gordon Highlanders, who was killed in action in November 1916. In front of the college stands a memorial to Bishop Elphinstone (NJ90NW1192), designed by Harry Wilson 1926, comprising a tomb chest with a recumbent bronze figure. In the pend of the quadrangle is a commemorative plaque to philosopher and Scottish enlightenment scholar Thomas Reid (1810-1796) who taught in the College. See NJ90NW0063 for cross incised stones built into the east end wall of the chapel. A watching brief in 1990 in the Library building recorded a circular structure, probably a support structure. A watching brief was carried out by Aberdeen City Council Archaeological Unit (ACCAU) in February 2002 on trial pits external to the chapel. A further watching brief was carried out by ACCAU in December 2002 on trial pits on the west side of the college for a soakaway. See also NJ90NW0917 - including excavation in the Chapel in 2003, NJ90NW0929 watching brief 2005 during works for floodlighting, NJ90NW0934 - watching brief; NJ90NW1018 - watching brief 1989 on trenches for floodlighting. A watching brief during conversion from University Library to Visitor and Conference Centre recorded no archaeological features. A desk based assessment was carried out by Cameron Archaeology in July 2020 prior to alterations to allow for formation of a new teaching block. Photographic survey was also carried out.
Last Update13/01/2021
Updated Bycpalmer
CompilerACU
Date of Compilation13/09/2017

Easting: 394009.919877344, Northing: 808144.342233623

Google Map for NJ90NW0018

National Grid Reference: NJ 9400 0814



Event Details

Event DateEvent TypeOASIS ID
2003 Excavation
2005 Watching-Brief
1989 Watching-Brief
1990 Watching-Brief
2002 Watching-Brief
2020 Desk Based Assessment
2020 Building Recording

Excavations and Surveys


Artefact and Ecofact

Ecofact

Samples
Palynology
Ecofact Notes

Monument Types

Monument Type 1Monument Type 2Monument Type 3OrderProbability
COLLEGES  A100
TOWERS  D100
SCREENS OAKF100
HALLS  G100
MEMORIALS  H100
CHAPELS  B100
LIBRARIES  C100
QUADRANGLES  E100
STONES CROSS-INCISEDI100
WINDOWSMEMORIAL J100
MEMORIALSWORLD WAR I K100
PLAQUES COMMEMORATIVEL100