- CAPUTH, a parish, in the county of Perth; containing, with the villages of Craigie, Fungarth, Kincairnie, Meikleour, and Spittalfield, 2317 inhabitants, of whom 178 are in the village of Wester Caputh, 5 miles (E. S. E.) from Dunkeld. This place, called in ancient records Keapoch, was in former times the site of a Pictish town of great strength, named, according to Boetius, Tuline or Tulina, and the inhabitants of which, who were very numerous, burned and deserted it, on the approach of the Romans. It was situated at a place called at present Inchtuthil, "the island in the flooded stream," and is supposed to be the station described by Tacitus, to which Agricola led his troops, after the famous battle with Galgacus. Caputh is mentioned in Mylne's Lives of the Bishops of Dunkeld, as originally forming a portion of the parish of Little Dunkeld, and as having been erected into a distinct parish, in the year 1500, by Bishop Brown, who built, at his own cost, a quire, with painted ceiling and glazed windows, and gave, for the support of the minister, a vicarage which had been formerly united to his see, four acres of glebe land, and some rising ground, called the Mute-hill, for the erection of a church. This author also informs us, that the parish of Dowally was once a part of Caputh, and that the same bishop built and endowed a church in honour of St. Anne, among the woods of the church lands of that district, in consequence of having heard that the Irish language was spoken in the Highland parts of Caputh.The parish is situated on the northern bank of the river Tay, which forms its boundary for ten miles, from the bridge of Dunkeld, on the west, to its confluence with the Isla, on the east; the latter river forms its boundary on the south-east, and the Lunan separates it, on the north-east, from Blairgowrie. It measures about thirteen miles in length, from east to west, and varies in breadth from two to seven miles, comprising 16,000 acres, which form the principal part of the plain of Stormont, a continuation of the vale of Strathmore, towards the foot of the Grampians. The surface is considerably diversified; the portion towards the south-east is nearly level, and consists of rich and well-cultivated tracts, while the northern and north-western parts are hilly, and present many beautiful varieties of Highland scenery, enlivened by refreshing streams, traversing the verdant dales. The river Tay, on which, as well as the Isla, are extensive salmon-fisheries, here varies in width from 150 to 200 yards, and is distinguished for its striking scenery. Towards the northern boundary, the burn of Lunan, which rises in the Grampians, falls down a precipitous and thickly-wooded glen two or three miles long, and reaches the loch of Craiglush; adjoining this, is the fine piece of water called Lows, about two miles north-east of Dunkeld, and not far off, is the loch of Butterstone. After passing through all these waters, and connecting them in a chain, the Lunan runs eastward, and falls into the Isla, seven miles from Caputh church.The soil, near the rivers, is a rich alluvial earth, and is much indebted for its fertility to deposits conveyed by the frequent overflowing of the streams; in the lower and level grounds, it is in general light and dry, and in the higher parts cold and wet, though, where well cultivated, very fertile. The husbandry is on a superior footing, and excellent crops are raised; bone manure has been extensively applied, and, in some parts, very beneficially as a top-dressing to the pasture. The cattle formerly bred were the Angus dodded sort; but these have been latterly much improved by crosses with the Teeswater and Ayrshire, and the sheep, which are of various kinds, are gradually improving by the intermixture of Leicester stock. The rateable annual value of the parish is £14,426. The chief rocks are limestone and clay-slate, and the former, which is of good quality, has been extensively quarried for some years, and burnt in kilns the construction of which obtained, some time since, a premium from the Highland Society; at Newtyle, a quarry of dark blue slate, of firm texture, has long been in operation, and the material is in great demand. The mansions are, Delvine House, a plain but pleasant residence, nearly three miles east of the church; Meikleour House, beautifully seated on the north bank of the Tay; Snaigow House, an elegant mansion in the old baronial style, two miles north of the church; and Glendelvine, a modern residence, similar in style to that of Snaigow. Cattle-fairs are held at Meikleour, on the fourth Friday in June, the second day in July, third Friday in August, and fourth Friday in October. The parish is in the presbytery of Dunkeld and synod of Perth, and in the patronage of the Crown; the minister's stipend is £232. 15. 11., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £22. 10. per annum. The church, built in 1798, is a plain commodious edifice, situated on an eminence near the southern border, and contains sittings for 800 persons; it has lately been extensively repaired, and improved by the erection of a new porch at each end. The parochial school is in the village of Spittalfield, and affords instruction in the usual branches; the master has a salary of £34, with a house and garden, and £30 fees. A savings' bank was established in 1815. Remains exist of a Roman camp at Inchtuthil, supposed to have been the station of Agricola; it is situated on the north-eastern part of a piece of table-land covering upwards of 200 acres, steep on all sides, and elevated about sixty feet above the plain on which it stands. It measures about 500 yards square, and the walls, now almost levelled by the plough, were nine and a half feet thick, and built with stones brought from a quarry two miles distant; on the south-eastern side, are two tumuli, and a redoubt. There are also in the parish numerous Druidical circles and cairns, one of the latter of which, called Cairnmure, or the Big Cairn, is the largest in the county, being 456 feet in circumference, and 14 feet in height.
A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. Samuel Lewis. 1856.
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