Outline of Scotland's Scone Abbey found

July 22, 2007

Scottish archaeologists say they have located the exact location of Scone Abbey, where Robert the Bruce is believed to have been crowned king.

The abbey -- founded by Alexander I in 1114 on a site believed to have been sacred for centuries -- was burned during the Reformation. Scone Palace, built in the 16th century and rebuilt in the 19th, survives.

"The importance of Scone -- where kings were made and parliaments met -- is only matched by how little we know about the reality of the place," Oliver O'Grady of Glasgow University told The Scotsman.

O'Grady, one of the archaeologists in charge at the site, said the abbey appears to be larger than historians believed -- about 100 meters (more than 300 feet) long.

The next step, now that the abbey's outlines have been traced, is an archaeological dig.

Bruce was crowned in 1306, defying King Edward I of England. Edward later seized the Stone of Scone, which was placed in Westminster Abbey with the Coronation Chair built to hold it.

The stone was later returned to Scotland and is now in Edinburgh.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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