Old Wife's Mound round barrow, 750m north west of Low Leaf Howe House

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018409

Date first listed: 22-Jan-1969

Date of most recent amendment: 21-Jan-1999

Map

Ordnance survey map of Old Wife's Mound round barrow, 750m north west of Low Leaf Howe House
© 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: North Yorkshire

District: Ryedale (District Authority)

Parish: Cropton

National Park: NORTH YORK MOORS

National Grid Reference: SE 77896 94630

Summary

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

Reasons for Designation

Bowl barrows, the most numerous form of round barrow, are funerary monuments dating from the Late Neolithic period to the Late Bronze Age, with most examples belonging to the period 2400-1500 BC. They were constructed as earthen or rubble mounds, sometimes ditched, which covered single or multiple burials. They occur either in isolation or grouped as cemeteries and often acted as a focus for burials in later periods. Often superficially similar, although differing widely in size, they exhibit regional variations in form and a diversity of burial practices. There are over 10,000 surviving bowl barrows recorded nationally (many more have already been destroyed), occurring across most of lowland Britain. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major historic element in the modern landscape and their considerable variation of form and longevity as a monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and social organisations amongst early prehistoric communities. They are particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of protection.

Old Wife's Mound is a good example of a medium sized round barrow. The majority of round barrows in the region were dug into by 19th century antiquarians in search of burials and artefacts, leaving behind a central depression as evidence of their work. However, excavations in the latter half of the 20th century have shown that round barrows typically contain archaeological information that survives earlier digging. Secondary burials tend to be located within the main body of the mound and sometimes one of these was mistaken for the primary burial which was usually the goal of the antiquarian. Even when the primary burial has been excavated, further secondary burials often survive in the undisturbed surrounding part of the mound. Additional valuable information about the mound's construction and the local environment at the time of its construction will also survive antiquarian excavation.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the buried and earthwork remains of a prehistoric burial mound known as Old Wife's Mound, located on the summit of Wrelton Moor. The barrow survives as an 18m diameter mound rising up to about 0.8m in height with an irregular central hollow up to 8m across, considered to be the result of a 19th century antiquarian excavation. The barrow lies 250m NNW of Leaf Howe, a larger barrow which is the subject of a separate scheduling.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 3 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: 30149

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Smith, M J B, Excavated Bronze Age Burial Mounds of Durham and N' land., (1994), 121
Other
Ordinance Survey record card, SE 79 SE 15, (1973)

End of official listing