|When the Manton Round Barrow was excavated by Maud Cunnington it turned out to be the richest and most elaborate of only a few 'Wessex-style' burials in the Avebury area.
An elderly woman's body had been wrapped in cloth and laid in a crouching position on the ground surface*, with grave goods at her head and feet. Amongst the items found were: a gold-bound amber disc; a biconical shale bead with gold bands; a halberd pendant with a shaft covered in sheet gold; a bronze knife dagger with an amber pommel; a second knife dagger; a shale bead necklace; amber beads; three bronze awls; other beads of shale, chalk, and fossil; and two small 'accessory vessels' (list in Pollard & Reynolds' 'Avebury - the biography of a landscape').
Neil Burridge's "Bronze Age Craft" website has pictures of the fantastic objects, which I believe are on display at the museum in Devizes.
(*whether this means a hole was left in the centre of the barrow, or the barrow was built complete over her, I don't know - I'm sure it would be evident from the excavation)
Perhaps with all this (and the publicity which no doubt surrounded the finds) it's no wonder the folklore above became associated with the barrow. (One thing confuses me, that the info on MAGIC clearly says 'no details are known' about the barrow at this grid reference. Have I got the wrong location?)
- Thank you very much MJB for your clarifications (see above).
Posted by Rhiannon
6th July 2005ce
Edited 7th July 2005ce