Knocknagael Boar Stone

  • Highland Council offices, Inverness



An early symbol stone 

The Knocknagael Boar Stone is not easily dated, but it probably belongs to the period between AD 400 and AD 600. It depicts:

  • a wild boar, with scrolls emphasising shoulders and haunches, and spiky bristles on its back 
  • a series of Pictish symbols, including a mirror case, a disc and a rectangle 

The stone’s decoration was carefully executed by a skilled carver – the scrolls on the boar realistically reflect musculature. This is one of only four known depictions of boars in Pictish stone carvings. 

Before it was moved to the Highland Council offices for preservation, the stone stood at Knocknagael Farm just south of Inverness. However, it’s unlikely this was the stone’s original location, which remains unknown. 

Legacy of the Picts 

We don’t know a lot about the Picts, the descendants of Iron-Age tribes who occupied the area north of the Forth and Clyde estuaries in the first millennium AD. They left about 300 carved stones scattered across the country. The earliest of these stones, including the Knocknagael Boar Stone, date to about AD 600 and display a variety of enigmatic symbols.  

The later group of Pictish stones, after about AD 700, were more overtly Christian cross-slabs. On these, the Christian cross dominates the traditional symbols. 

Opening times

Knocknagael Boar Stone is free to view through a glazed wall on the exterior of the council building.

Historic Scotland


Download our visitor app

Discover more on the go – the Historic Scotland app lets you find out about Scotland’s most iconic places wherever you are.

Plan your visit

More than 20 of our sites are now open. Please book your tickets in advance.

Become a member

Join Historic Scotland to visit our properties free of charge for a full year and support our work at the same time.

Hire a site for filming

Use one of our fantastic locations on your next shoot for an awe-inspiring backdrop to your work.

Learning visits

Our 300+ historic places serve as creative inspiration for all sorts of learning activities – and for learners of all ages.

Search our events

See the past brought to life by the imaginative year-round programme of events at our properties.