CC BY-NC-ND, © Jim Forest

Location: Mull and Iona
vikings, ww1 and ww2

Viking attacks on Iona

Iona Abbey was first attacked by Vikings in 795, with subsequent attacks taking place in 802, 806, and 825.

There are two areas on Iona associated with these attacks - to the east Martyr’s Bay and to the north The White Strand of the Monk. The Vikings stole treasures, burned down the monastery and massacred the monks. The part of the story that isn’t very well known is that during the Second World War a Norwegian Sailor visited the Abbey and was told stories of these Viking attacks.

When the sailor returned to Norway, he decided to collect donations of timber and donate them to the Abbey as a form of penance for his ancestors. The roof that now covers the refectory came from this donation.

Contributed by Chris Merchant, Iona Abbey

More information on visiting the area can be found here.