Description: Kinghorn Road, Alexander Iii Monument
Date Listed: 10 September 1979
Historic Scotland Building ID: 13639
OS Grid Coordinates: 325388, 686368
Latitude/Longitude: 56.0643, -3.1999
Hippolyte J Blanc, 1886; John Rhind, sculptor. 3-stage, 28' high, cross-finialled, shafted memorial of red Peterhead granite set on natural bedrock and surmounted by bronze Celtic Cross. 2-tier base below pedestal with moulded panel to N face worded:
..."TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS/ALEXANDER III/THE LAST OF SCOTLAND'S CELTIC KINGS/WHO WAS ACCIDENTALLY KILLED/NEAR THIS SPOT/MARCH XIX MCCLXXXVI/ERECTED ON/THE SEX-CENTENARY OF HIS DEATH".
Battered coping giving way to reduced 2nd stage with bronze figured sculpture to N, topped with small recessed panel to each face bearing heraldic shields as follows:
W face with Arms of Scotland and of Comte de Dreux; E face with Lion Rampant of Scotland and 3 Lions of England; S face with Scottish National Emblem of St Andrew on Cross; N face with Arms of Scotland.
Square-plan shaft above with engaged colonnettes to angles, each face trefoil-headed and corniced; moulded gablet cope with carved tympanum supporting foliate cross.
D A Marshall THE BLACK STONE. Gifford FIFE (1992), p272.
Alexander III met his death on or near the spot which tradition has attached to the Black Stone upon which this monument is erected. Various versions of his death abound but seem to agree that it resulted from a fall from his horse on a stormy night. Previously a stone cross marked the site but this was ruinous by the 19th century and Professor Bruce, owner of Kingswood lands, proposed a replacement as early as the 1840s. Interest was renewed by 1885 when donations were received from Queen Victoria ('15) and the Burntisland Oil Company ('10), the total cost being '330. The memorial was unveiled on 19th July 1887, by the Earl of Elgin and Kincardine, Lord Lieutenant of Fife. Inside the pedestal is a jar containing items representative of the late Victorian period, including issues of various newspapers and coins. Stone was obtained from the Pentland and Solway Firths, most northerly and southerly limits of Alexander's kingdom, and from Dunfermline where he is buried. Up-graded C(S) to B 31.3.95.
Source: Historic Scotland
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.