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Durisdeer Church
Monument to James and Mary Douglas.

Durisdeer is a small village in Dumfries and Galloway, south-west Scotland. It lies 6 miles (9.7 km) north of Thornhill, above the Carron Water, a tributary of the Nith.

A Roman road once passed through the site of the village as a direct route from Nithsdale to Clydesdale, and the remains of a small, but well preserved Roman fort are located about a mile up the Well Path to the north-east; the defensive ditch and rampart are clearly visible.

The parish church, a category A listed building in the village, also serves Drumlanrig Castle, the 17th-century home of the Duke of Queensberry. Durisdeer Church was rebuilt by the third Duke in the 1720s, to designs by James Smith. Adjoining the church is the slightly earlier Queensberry Aisle, burial place of the dukes, also by Smith, with a large marble monument to the second Duke (1662-1711) and Mary, his duchess, carved by Jan van Nost. The former manse nearby is now a private dwelling.

Durisdeer village mill stands on the Carron Water, some distance away. It is a category B listed building.

Durisdeer was included in the 1978 film version of The Thirty Nine Steps, starring Robert Powell.


Durriseer is recorded in the form Durrysder in 1328. This likely represents Gaelic dubhros 'a dark wood' and doire 'an oak copse'. The name would therefore mean "dark wood of the oak copse."[1]


  1. ^ Watson, William J. (1925). "The Celts (British and Gael) in Dumfriesshire and Galloway" (PDF). Transactions and Journal of Proceedings of the Dumfriesshire and Galloway Natural History and Antiquarian Society. Third Series. Volume XI: 147. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-08-31. 

Coordinates: 55°18′55.28″N 3°44′31.72″W / 55.3153556°N 3.7421444°W / 55.3153556; -3.7421444