Erected when Ruthwell, Dumfries and Galloway, was part of the Kingdom of Northumbria in the early 700s, this is one of the largest surviving pieces of Anglo Saxon sculpture. Figurative carvings on the front and back of the cross illustrate scenes from the life of Christ in the New Testament. The sides of the cross shaft are decorated with vine scrolls and have a runic inscription that translates ‘Christ was on the cross. Yet / the brave came there from afar / to their lord.’ Broken up in the early 1640s the cross was reconstructed in 1887 and placed in its present position inside the church.


Date Made
7th century
h 5300mm (h 17' 4 11/16")
Property Information
Ruthwell Church
Object Number
Access Status