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Kili Holm is a tidal island in the Orkney Islands, linked to Egilsay. Unusually, like its neighbour Egilsay, it may have a partly Gaelic etymology,[1] in this case from cille meaning a monk’s cell (Egilsay may derive from eaglais a church).[2] This may make it another “Papey” or island of the papar or culdees.

Kili Holm
Cairn on Kili Holm
Cairn on Kili Holm
Kili Holm is located in Orkney Islands
Kili Holm
Kili Holm
Kili Holm shown within Orkney
OS grid referenceHY475325
Coordinates59°10′34″N 2°55′08″W / 59.176°N 2.919°W / 59.176; -2.919
Physical geography
Island groupOrkney
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Council areaOrkney Islands

There is a cairn on the island, and it is currently used as rough grazing for sheep.

Geography and geologyEdit

Kili Holm is made up of red sandstone.[2]

It is separated from Egilsay by Smithy Sound, which dries out at low tide. The north east is known as Point of Ridden, and the north west as Point of Pitten. The west is known as Marlow.

It is due east of Rousay, and much further to the north is Westray.


  1. ^ Anderson, Joseph (Ed.) (1893) Orkneyinga Saga. Translated by Jón A. Hjaltalin & Gilbert Goudie. Edinburgh. James Thin and Mercat Press (1990 reprint). ISBN 0-901824-25-9
  2. ^ a b Haswell-Smith, Hamish (2004). The Scottish Islands. Edinburgh: Canongate. ISBN 978-1-84195-454-7.

Coordinates: 59°10′35″N 2°55′08″W / 59.17639°N 2.91889°W / 59.17639; -2.91889