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Two large regular stone circles 290m north east of Hailglower Farm

List Entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Two large regular stone circles 290m north east of Hailglower Farm

List entry Number: 1004493

Location

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The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:

District: Cornwall

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: St. Just

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 31-May-1951

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

UID: CO 305

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Stone circles are prehistoric monuments comprising one or more circles of upright or recumbent stones. The circle of stones may be surrounded by earthwork features such as enclosing banks and ditches. Single upright stones may be found within the circle or outside it and avenues of stones radiating out from the circle occur at some sites. Burial cairns may also be found close to and on occasion within the circle. Stone circles are found throughout England although they are concentrated in western areas, with particular clusters in upland areas such as Bodmin and Dartmoor in the south-west and the Lake District and the rest of Cumbria in the north-west. This distribution may be more a reflection of present survival rather than an original pattern. Where excavated they have been found to date from the Late Neolithic to the Middle Bronze Age (c.2400-1000 BC). It is clear that they were designed and laid out carefully, frequently exhibiting very regularly spaced stones, the heights of which also appear to have been of some importance. We do not fully understand the uses for which these monuments were originally constructed but it is clear that they had considerable ritual importance for the societies that used them. In many instances excavation has indicated that they provided a focus for burials and the rituals that accompanied interment of the dead. Some circles appear to have had a calendrical function, helping mark the passage of time and seasons, this being indicated by the careful alignment of stones to mark important solar or lunar events such as sunrise or sunset at midsummer or midwinter. At other sites the spacing of individual circles throughout the landscape has led to a suggestion that each one provided some form of tribal gathering point for a specific social group. Large regular stone circles comprise an arrangement of between one and three rings of from 20 to 30 upright stones. The diameters of these circles range between 20 and 30 metres. They are presently known only in upland contexts, the majority being located in Devon and Cornwall or Cumbria. Of the 250 or so stone circles identified in England only 28 are examples of this type. Despite cultivation, quarrying, robbing and restoration the two large regular stone circles 290m north east of Hailglower Farm, survive comparatively well and are part of a very rare group of monuments. They will still contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, function, development, restoration, social organisation, ritual and funerary activity, territorial significance and overall landscape context.

History

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Details

The monument includes two large regular stone circles situated on Truthwall Common, with rising ground to the prominent Carn Kenidjack to the north and Carn Vres to the SSE. They are known locally as the 'Tregeseal Circles' or 'The Dancing Stones'. The eastern circle survives as an oval ring of 19 stones measuring approximately 23.8m by 22.6m. Only one of the stones is recumbent and the heights of the stones vary between 0.8m and 1.5m. There is a limited area of quarrying on the western side of the circle. To the west, and separated from the first circle by a field wall, is the second circle which originally consisted of an approximately 23m diameter ring of about 19 stones. Only one stone remains visible, built into the field wall. The rest are either buried or missing, although the socket holes and associated features will be preserved as buried features. Borlase initially recorded the two circles in the mid-19th century. Since then both circles deteriorated with the small quarry encroaching between 1861- 9 until by 1902 there were no upright stones in the western part of the eastern circle. In 1932 Hencken discovered the eastern circle had been completely 'restored'. The western circle had continued to deteriorate, and in 1905 there were clearance cairns around the stones. By 1961 most of the stones has been removed or buried.

Sources: HER:- PastScape Monument No:-421794

Selected Sources

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details

National Grid Reference: SW 38631 32362

Map

Map
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This copy shows the entry on 24-Nov-2017 at 07:54:23.

End of official listing