The Building of the Cathedral
The Norse Cathedral
The Usage of the Cathedral in History
The Usage of the Cathedral Today
The Art of the Cathedral
Behind the Scenes in the Cathedral
Famous Orcadians & Others With Links
The Norse settlement on the Brough of Birsay - SMC075
The Brough of Birsay is a small tidal island which is situated off the north west coast of the Orkney Mainland. On the eastern side of the island is a very extensive settlement dating from both the Pictish and Norse periods.
The Norse settlement dates from the tenth century and was built directly on top of an older, high status, Pictish settlement. The buildings are quite well preserved and include 'hall houses' one of which has a bath house. The remains of a twelfth century church can also be seen.
During the Norse period Birsay was the political centre of the Orkney Earldom. Prior to the construction of St Magnus Cathedral it was also the ecclesiastical centre.