Long barrow immediately north west of Maiden Castle

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015779

Date first listed: 11-Jul-1997

Map

Ordnance survey map of Long barrow immediately north west of Maiden Castle
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Dorset

District: West Dorset (District Authority)

Parish: Winterborne Monkton

National Grid Reference: SY 66515 88799

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Long barrows were constructed as earthen or drystone mounds with flanking ditches and acted as funerary monuments during the Early and Middle Neolithic periods (3400-2400 BC). They represent the burial places of Britain's early farming communities and, as such, are amongst the oldest field monuments surviving visibly in the present landscape. Where investigated, long barrows appear to have been used for communal burial, often with only parts of the human remains having been selected for interment. Certain sites provide evidence for several phases of funerary monument preceding the barrow and, consequently, it is probable that long barrows acted as important ritual sites for local communities over a considerable period of time. Some 500 examples of long barrows and long cairns, their counterparts in the uplands, are recorded nationally. As one of the few types of Neolithic structure to survive as earthworks, and due to their comparative rarity, their considerable age and their longevity as a monument type, all long barrows are considered to be nationally important.

Despite some reduction by ploughing, the long barrow immediately north west of Maiden Castle survives comparatively well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed. The long barrow represents the only extant survival of its class close to the broadly contemporary causewayed enclosure at Maiden Castle.

History

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

Details

The monument includes a long barrow situated on a north east facing slope overlooking the Frome Valley. The long barrow is situated c.600m to the north west of a broadly contemporary causewayed enclosure located at the eastern end of Maiden Castle and 500m to the south of another long barrow. The long barrow has a mound, aligned NNW by SSE, composed of earth, chalk and flint. The mound is visible as an earthwork 25m long, 12m wide and c.0.45m high, but it is known from a previous survey to have maximum dimensions of 30m in length and 15m in width. The mound is bounded on either side by a ditch from which material was quarried during the construction of the monument. The quarry ditches, which were identified during field survey in the 1960s, have since become infilled, but will survive as buried features c.5m wide.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 28338

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432
Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset: Volume I, (1970), 432

End of official listing