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Launceston Down North Group

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery


Details of Barrow cemetery on Pastscape

A group of up to seven round barrows, all ploughed out, clustered together on Launceston Down. RCHME mentions "at least 5 small barrows located around ST 95451145", whereas the Ordnance Survey initially identified 6 (marked on the 1891 6 inch map), a seventh being identified in 1954. Grinsell, following the Ordnance Survey, lists six barrows (as Tarrant Launceston 19a-f). The area plan in RCHME's "Bokerley Dyke" volume again shows only 5. This group has been identified with 5 "low, small tumuli" examined by Warne and Shipp "on the longest day of 1864". Numbered 36 - 40 by Warne, details are as follows: 36 - nothing found; 37 - a secondary burial comprising a damaged urn containing cremated bone and ashes plus the tip of a bronze dagger; 38 - a possible primary cremation in an urned contained within a pit below the mound; 39 - a probable secondary cremation in an upright urn; 40 - a primary cremation within a pit below the mound, plus two secondary cremations, one within an urn. Further discoveries occurred in 1938. S and CM Piggott investigated some World War 1 training trenches , one of which cut through the barrow group. They found the remains of three Deverel-Rimbury vessels exposed in the sides of the trench, each containing cremated bone, one of them also containing a bronze spearhead fragment. A small hole was also found, containing the remains of a further pottery vessel but lacking any associated cremation. The Piggotts felt that these represented an "urnfield" (ie a cremation cemetery rather than a further levelled barrow) broadly contemporary with the small barrows, the pottery recovered by Warne being broadly comparable.
Chance Posted by Chance
2nd April 2016ce

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