[ScG dùn Chailleann, fort of the Caledonians].
An ecclesiastical capital in the upper Tay valley, 15 miles NW of Perth, and centre of power in Scottish culture from the 9th century to the early Middle Ages. Reputedly founded by St Adamnán, biographer of Colum Cille [St Columba], before 700, Dunkeld became a leading centre of Celtic Christianity, especially after the demise of Iona (c.825), possibly the equal of Kells in Ireland. As its name implies, it was also a ‘capital’ of the Caledonii, a P-Celtic people. Remains of a pre-medieval stronghold are found on a crag north of the modern town of the same name. Cináed mac Alpín [Kenneth MacAlpin] made Dunkeld one of two capitals, along with Scone, when he united the Picts and Scots in 844. Remains of a late medieval cathedral (1318–1501) stand in the town.