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Temple Bottom

Long Barrow (Destroyed)

<b>Temple Bottom</b>Posted by RhiannonImage © Mr Lukis
Also known as:
  • Temple Farm Chambered Round Barrow
  • Monument No. 221631
  • Ogbourne St Andrew 19

Nearest Town:Marlborough (5km ESE)
OS Ref (GB):   SU14867251 / Sheet: 173
Latitude:51° 27' 3.02" N
Longitude:   1° 47' 10.06" W

Added by Chance

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<b>Temple Bottom</b>Posted by Rhiannon


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The "Mutilated Kistvaen" lies in the centre of the valley known as Temple Bottom, and south-east of Temple Farm, conjectured to be so called from the preceptory of Knights Templars established there in the reign of Henry II. It occupies the corner of a field, very near some detached farm buildings on the estate of Rockley. Sir Richard Hoare spoke of it in his time as "the mutilated remains of a stone barrow, having a kistvaen at the end of it;" and said "it is the finest example we have yet found of this species of interment, excepting the one in Clatford Bottom." (North Wilts, page 42.) I fear Sir Richard would not say the same of it now.

When I first saw it some twenty years ago, it presented little more than the appearance of a heap of stones: indeed a great many loose stones were scattered round the large and more prominent ones, and it was choked with briars and brambles. Unpromising however as was its exterior, I had a great desire to examine its interior, and having received the ready permission of the owner of the property (the same liberal gentleman who so kindly allows us to examine the barrows at Rockley on Thursday next, Mr. William Tanner), I enlisted the help of my friends, Mr. Lukis (then my colleague as one of the Secretaries of this Society) and Mr. Spicer, Rector of Byfleet, in Surrey, and on June 12th, 1861, we proceeded to excavate the stone chamber.

With regard to the formation of the exterior part of it, whether it was originally covered with one or more roofing slabs, and whether it had a covered passage leading to it, we were unable to form any decided opinion, owing to the confusion of stones and its generally dilapidated condition: but we found a sepulchral chamber, guarded by a circle of upright stones, some of them in position; and on the floor of this chamber indications of a layer of charcoal, calcined human bones, and fragments of coarse pottery: we found also several unburnt bones, portions of a human skull and teeth; some of the bones of a hand and foot; and above all a well-formed and perfect bone chisel (now in our Museum at Devizes), of which a sketch is annexed.

We then examined the narrow space between the two parallel upright stones, and at B found unburnt bones of a hand and foot and fragments of pottery, and at C portions of a human skull and teeth, and a stone muller or rubber. The orientation of this chamber was probably east and west.
On British Stone and Earthworks on the Marlborough Downs by the Rev. A C Smith, in the Wilts Arch Nat Hist Magazine, v19, 1881.

Something is amiss here, because the very precise grid reference on Pastscape is not to the SE of Temple Farm at all. But is perhaps the reverend misremembering - he is talking about something that happened 20 years ago. But then again, he knew the area very well.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
13th May 2013ce
Edited 13th May 2013ce

Details of site on Pastscape

Chambered round barrow listed by Grinsell as Ogbourne St Andrew 19, possibly Neolithic, excavated by Lukis in 1861. The mound had already suffered considerable damage by then. The excavations located an inhumation and a cremation. The cremation was accompanied by a potsherds and a bone chisel, the inhumation by a stone muller or rubber. In 1863 the mound was described as being 47 feet in diameter and formed largely of sarsens laid flat over a low mound, whereas Lukis had referred to a mutilated tumulus with a circle of upright stones near the base. No surface trace remains of the monument. The monument was not seen on available air photographs.

(SU 14867251) Long Barrow (NR) (site of). (1)
"...the mutilated remains of a stone barrow having a kistvaen at the east end" comparable with that at Clatford Bottom (SU 16 NE 36 Long Barrow). (2) Lukis, who excavated here in 1861, describes it only as a very mutilated tumulus of earth and stones near the base of which was a circle of upright stones some of which remained. No trace of a covered passage could be found and only two uprights of a chamber remained, with a third stone to the east. Between the uprights he found an inhumation burial with its head to the south. Beside it was a stone muller or rubber. Outside the E upright a cremation burial was found, with fragments of pottery, and a bone chisel was found tucked in at the base of the stone. This chisel and two stone mullers are in Devizes Museum. (3-4)
A tumulus about 47 ft in diameter and nearly entirely formed of large sarsen stones laid flat over a low mound of earth. A little from the centre of the SW side two large flat stones rise above the rest to a height of 6 ft above the mound and a former cap-stone has fallen to the north. No sign could be seen of the former presence of stones at either end of the erect stones nor was there any trace of the earth and stones that had formed the mound over the chamber. (Lukis (above) makes it plain that Harrod is describing the mound excavated by him two years before). (5) There is no direct evidence to justify describing this as a long barrow. No trace remains of the mound. (6) There are no surface remains. (7) No trace of this feature was seen when the area was mapped at 1:10,000 from air photographs. (8)
Chance Posted by Chance
11th November 2012ce

Site of a chambered Neolithic long barrow, which was opened by Lukis and Smith in 1861.

The remains of a skeleton with a stone muller, sherds, bone implements, and burnt human bones were found.
Chance Posted by Chance
3rd February 2012ce