The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Mount Wood

Round Barrow(s)


On the brow of the down, overlooking the vale, stands one solitary barrow, just within the precincts of the park at Compton Bassett: it is of moderate dimensions, bowl-shaped, and appears never to have been opened: it is planted with trees, and the wood in which it stands is in consequence marked in the Ordnance Map 'Mount Wood'.

I take this early opportunity of expressing my regret that so many of the fine barrows on our downs are covered with trees, to their great disfigurement, nay, to their absolute concealment: for the barrow is soon lost to sight under the plantation which overwhelms it. This is the more to be regretted, because there is no object gained by thus mutilating the mounds, destroying their symmetry and hiding the elegance of their proportions: for, once encumbered with trees, they soon become mere unsightly excrescences, unmeaning heaps to raise the burden they support in a most unnatural way above the surrounding level; and while the injury to themselves is fatal, there is no compensating advantage of benefit derived by the plantation.
p44 in Rev. A C Smith's 'Guide to the British and Roman Antiquities of the North Wiltshire Downs' (1884).
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
13th March 2006ce

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