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Priddy Nine Barrows

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery

<b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by mossImage © moss
Nearest Town:Wells (6km SSE)
OS Ref (GB):   ST538517 / Sheets: 182, 183
Latitude:51° 15' 43.3" N
Longitude:   2° 39' 43.95" W

Added by Rhiannon


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<b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by moss <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by moss <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by moss <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by vulcan <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by vulcan <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by vulcan <b>Priddy Nine Barrows</b>Posted by vulcan

Fieldnotes

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[visited 28/11/04] This is really only half a barrow cluster, there being another line of barrows (Ashen Hill) 1/2 a mile to the North. One thing I noticed when up here, besides the fact its cold on the edge of the mendips in late November, is you can't actually see the levels from here. In fact they are a touch oddly placed imo.

I presume the sight from the Priddy Circles to the North would have been unimpeded 3-4 thousand years ago and this lovely linear cemetary would have visible shining white on the horizon.

Access is across a few fields, but you can see these beauties from a fair way off in most directions (except North).
juamei Posted by juamei
11th December 2004ce
Edited 11th December 2004ce

Folklore

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Apparently a golden coffin is said to be buried in one of the many barrows in the parish of Priddy.

Is the mystery about which barrow part of the story? I don't know as I haven't read the original article (Notes and Queries S. D (Somerset?) 16 (1920) p298), only its mention by Mr Grinsell on p31 of 'Barrow Treasure, in Fact, Tradition, and Legislation', in Folklore, Vol. 78, No. 1. (Spring, 1967), pp. 1-38.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
14th June 2007ce

Miscellaneous

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The article here in the Archaeological Journal, v16 (1859) (in the Rev. Harry M Scarth's Account of the Investigation of Barrows), contains details of Skinner's speed-archaeology at the Nine Barrows. Time Team had nothing on Skinner you know. He knew how to get things done.

I always like tales of the artifacts found, so much more instantly appealing than layers of unusual coloured earth and ashes: perhaps I'm as bad as the Reverend S. on the quiet. We hear of Barrow Number Two:
The cavity [of the cist] was nearly filled with burnt bones, and covered with a flat stone; in it were found four amber beads in excellent preservation, and a fifth somewhat in the form of a heart, which broke in pieces on being handled. Part of a bronze spear or arrowhead was also found, much corroded, and a ring of the same metal. The appearance of decayed wood on the blade seemed to indicate that it had been enclosed in a sheath. Not far from the cist was found a small oval cup of pottery, 4 inches long, 3 wide, and 2 1/2 deep in the interior, the outside embossed with a number of projecting knobs [..]

The amber beads were of fine rich red, or ruby colour, highly polished, and transparent when held up to the light; a small blue opaque glass bead was found with them, perforated; only one of the amber beads had a hole made through it; the others were bored on one side, probably for the admission of a pin.
He describes eight barrows being dug, then "There was a ninth barrow in this line, but stated to have been removed, in order to supply materials for a wall in the vicinity."
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
11th June 2010ce
Edited 11th June 2010ce

Should anyone be in the area; a standing stone was recorded at Priddy close to the wall of St.Lawrence Church at ST 528513 standing 0.7 m above ground, (much weathered) also stones at ST510524 and SO595238. There is a tumulus nearby, just off Nine Barrows Lane.
Proceedings of Somerset Arch. Soc; Vol; 1984
moss Posted by moss
7th July 2006ce

I wasn't that impressed when I read that with the help of four labourers and his personal servant, Reverend John Skinner dug eight of the 'Priddy Nine Barrows' in a week in September 1815. I guess he wasn't the only one doing speed tombrobbing at the time. But you'd think a Reverend might have more respect for the burial mounds of the dead.

(spotted in 'Excavations at Camerton' by WJ Wedlake, 1958)
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
17th August 2005ce
Edited 17th August 2005ce

Bronze Age barrow cemetery of seven barrows in Priddy parish (PRNs 23952 23953 23954 23955 23956 23957 23958) and two further ones in Chewton Mendip parish (PRNs 23243 23244 ). Comprise Tratman's T328-T336 and Grinsell's Priddy 28-34 and Chewton Mendip 13-14. See individual PRNs for individual descriptions. There is another possible barrow to the SW (PRN 24008). {1}

Wick's concluded that this chain of barrows had been wrongly named and the name should apply to the group to the N on Ashen Hill (PRNs 23813 23814 23815 23816 23817 23818 23819 23820). {2}

This was challenged by Grinsell who examined the available documentary evidence and revealed that this S group had been consistently known as Nine Barrows since 1296 and was often mentioned in several medieval and later surveys because the Chewton Mendip-Priddy parish boundary passes through them. {3}

Group of seven barrows in approx NW-SE alignment with two detached. All under pasture and standing 1.2-1.5m high. Prominent position and in good condition. Scheduling revised 1992. {6}

References:
1 Personal communication - Dennison, E SCPD 29.08.85
2 Mention - Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological. Nat. History. Soc. Wicks, A.T 1952 "Priddy Barrows: an error..." vol 97, 185-6
3 Mention - Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological. Nat. History. Soc. Grinsell, L.V 1982 "Priddy Nine Barrows...correction... vol 126, 103-4
4 Detailed records - Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division 1982 ST55SW75 SCPD
5 Detailed records - HBMC Field Monument Wardens report SCPD
6 Correspondence - HBMC to SCC 22 Jan 1992

Record created by:
Ed Dennison in August 1985

© Copyright Somerset County Council 2003

With thanks to the Somerset Museums Service for the link to this information.
jimit Posted by jimit
14th November 2003ce

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Somerset Historic Environment Record


jimit Posted by jimit
14th November 2003ce