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Lilla Howe

Round Barrow(s)


Lilla Howe is said to be the grave of King Edwin of Northumbria's minister, Lilla. An assassin had been sent to kill the king, but loyal mate and Christian, Lilla leapt in front of the poisoned sword blade. He was buried where he fell. Edwin renounced his heathen ways and became a Christian. A cross - Lilla Cross - was erected on the howe.

Really Lilla was around in the 8th century, whereas the cross is thought to be 10th century - and of course, the mound was originally built in the Bronze Age. But don't let this distract you from a good story.

Whatever, it's been an important part of the landscape and the way people interpret the landscape, for a very long time. It's on the junction of two medieval packhorse tracks, and also marks the boundary between four medieval parishes.

The cross has been moved about, but this is its original spot - it was mentioned in a 11thC manuscript as a boundary marker. The barrow itself was reused for burials in Anglo Saxon times and finds from that era have turned up in excavations.

(info largely from the sm record on Magic).
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
12th August 2007ce
Edited 12th August 2007ce

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