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Bronze Age

 

Bronze Age 2500 to 800 BC

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Round Barrow

During the Bronze Age the dead were normally cremated and the remains placed in a pottery vessel (funerary urn) which was set into the ground beneath a circular mound. Round barrows are round mounds of earth and stone, and are the lowland equivalent of the stony mounds known as 'cairns' of the upland zone. Round barrows are often surrounded by a ring ditch from which the earth for the mound was dug. While barrows are often isolated, many occur in groups that have accumulated over generations. These are known as 'barrow cemeteries'. Barrows can occur anywhere in the landscape.

Entrance Graves

During the Bronze Age the dead were normally cremated and the remains placed in a pottery vessel (funerary urn) which was set into the ground beneath a circular mound.

Find an Entrance Grave

Cairn

Cairn means simply a ‘stony mound’, and they are the upland equivalent of the earth and stone round barrows of the lowland zone. Cairns may incorporate a variety of ‘architectural’ features such as cists and kerbs, and excavation shows that they often went through a series of developments to reach the final phase visible today.

Hut Circle Settlement

A prehistoric settlement consisting of stone-walled round houses, usually dateable to the Bronze or Iron Ages. The houses, sometimes solitary but more often in groups, are now visible only as low stony banks, but even so, it is often possible to recognise different constructional techniques in the walling and to identify the doorways. They survive only in moorland areas and are often associated with the remains of contemporary field systems.

Standing Stone

Setting large stones upright is one of the features of the megalithic culture which flourished in Britain in the late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age. Standing stones can occur singly or in pairs, and are often associated with other megalithic sites, particularly stone circles. They seem to have played an important role in the ceremonial and ritual life of the times, and may have served a variety of purposes, perhaps as memorial stones or grave markers, way markers or territorial boundary stones.

Stone Circle

Stone circles are probably the most dramatic manifestation of the megalithic culture of the late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age. Very few are perfectly circular and their function, as expressed in their layout and design and their landscape context, has sparked controversy and debate in recent years. They are often found in association with other megalithic monuments in 'sacred landscapes' on windswept uplands which may broadly be interpreted as places set aside for the performance of ceremonial and ritual.