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South Street

Long Barrow


Details of the Long Barrow on Pastscape

(SU 09036927) Long Barrow (NR) (site of) (1)
South east of the Long Stones, South Street - Avebury 68, a ploughed down long barrow (see plan (3)) sited to SU 09026928 (2). Revealed by excavation to be unchambered and probably unfinished (2). The excavation in 1966-7, by Evans on behalf of the Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society found no burials in the mound, which had been preserved to a height of two feet, but fragments of antler were discovered both in the mound and in the primary fill of the ditches.
Finds from the soil beneath the mound consisted of Windmill Hill sherds, two sickle flints and many flakes. From the buried soil in the ditches came sherds of Peterborough and Beaker ware, barbed and tanged and flint laurel-leaf arrowheads and animal bone (4 & 5). Radio-carbon analysis of finds date the barrow to the first half of the 3rd millennium BC (6). The long barrow is now represented by an unsurveyable amorphous ground swelling, centred at SU 09006072, in ploughland. Re-sited at 1:2500. (7) The final report of the 1964-7 excavations appeared in 1979 (8). The earthen and chalk mound had been constructed as a series of infilled bays defined by wooden fences offset at right angles from a central long axis. A crescent shaped zone of massive chalk rubble defined the front of the mound. A number of sarsens of varying size were incorporated into the mound. The mound material came from flanking ditches. Finds included a quantity of animal bone, 2 human skull fragments, plus pottery and flint assemblages. The potsherds included plain bowl fragments, plus Peterborough wares in secondary ditch fill, and Beaker and later material associated with cultivation in Beaker and subsequent periods. Radiocarbon dates range from 2810 plus/minus 130 bc to 2580 plus/minus 110 bc. An important feature of pre-barrow activity was the presence of two sets of grooves scored into the the subsoil and crossing each other at right angles. These have been interpreted as marks caused by cross-ploughing. (8) Additional references: long barrow. (9-10) Additional references: ploughmarks. (11-13) The Neolithic long barrow, described by the previous authorities, was visible, on oblique air photographs, as a cropmark of a ploughed oval mound, oriented roughly east west, and measuring 45m by 20m. Dark marks at the east end of the barrow and linear features visible over the barrow are probably the result of the excavations detailed in the previous references. The possible remains of side ditches to the barrow are visible as dark marks flanking the mound but these were too amorphous to be certain. The long barrow aligns on the southern of the two Beckhampton stones (SU 06 NE 56). The barrow is visible as a low mound on vertical air photographs. (14-15)
Chance Posted by Chance
29th October 2012ce

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