Ancient Monuments

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Round, courtyard house, stone hut circle settlement and field system 275m north of Castallack Carn

A Scheduled Monument in Paul, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.0741 / 50°4'26"N

Longitude: -5.5687 / 5°34'7"W

OS Eastings: 144754.432755

OS Northings: 25431.343472

OS Grid: SW447254

Mapcode National: GBR DXMH.425

Mapcode Global: VH05P.FDFK

Entry Name: Round, courtyard house, stone hut circle settlement and field system 275m north of Castallack Carn

Scheduled Date: 29 September 1972

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1004654

English Heritage Legacy ID: CO 807

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Paul

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Paul

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a round, a courtyard house, a stone hut circle settlement and a field system situated close to the summit of a coastal ridge, overlooking the Lamorna Valley. The round, known locally as 'Castallack Round or Roundago', survives as a roughly oval enclosure defined by a partial rampart of large stones and slabs measuring on average 1.6m high and 1.8m wide. It is partially incorporated into field boundaries and defined in part by a scarp of up to 0.3m high. The surrounding ditch is preserved as a buried feature. The round was first depicted on the 1840 Tithe Map when it still had a massive stone outer wall with an entrance to the south and a colonnade of stones which led to an inner circular enclosure. When described by Blight in 1865, the inner enclosure could hardly be traced and the avenue had been removed. However, the ramparts were still massively constructed and Blight found a broken quern, pivot stone and spherical boulder amidst the ruins of the inner structure. By 1906 the Victoria County History described the round as 'nearly destroyed', but Henderson found segments of the wall within the field boundaries in 1914-17. The courtyard house lies to the north west of the round and survives as a series of very thick stone-built walls of up to 0.9m high, incorporating at least one curved recess and a door jamb, defining a circular internal structure of 7.5m in diameter. Up to three further stone hut circles have also been identified .The field system to the north west of the round survives as an extensive area of small irregularly-shaped plots defined by walls, scarps or lynchet,s some up to 1.1m high and 3m wide. In many places large orthostats are visible apparently forming demarcating lines and at least one boundary wall is composed of small stones.

Sources: HER:-
PastScape Monument No:-422633, 1342737 and 1342740

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Rounds are small embanked enclosures, one of a range of settlement types dating to between the later Iron Age and the early post-Roman period. Usually circular or oval, they have a single earth and rubble bank and an outer ditch, with one entrance breaking the circuit. Rounds are viewed primarily as agricultural settlements, the equivalents of farming hamlets. Over 750 rounds are recorded in the British Isles, occurring in areas bordering the Irish Seas, but confined in England to south west Devon and especially Cornwall. Rounds are important as one of the major sources of information on settlement and social organisation of the Iron Age and Roman periods in south west England. The courtyard house is a building form developed in south west England in the Roman period during the second to fourth centuries AD. It was usually oval or curvilinear in shape, taking the form of a thick coursed rubble wall containing rooms and some storage chambers. A central area - the courtyard - was enclosed by this wall and the rooms and the main entrance opened into it. The courtyard is generally considered to have remained unroofed. The national distribution includes over 110 recorded courtyard houses, mostly on the Penwith peninsula at the western tip of Cornwall, with a single example on the Isles of Scilly. Courtyard houses are unique within the range of Romano- British settlement types, showing a highly localised adaptation to the windswept conditions of the far south west of England. Despite some cultivation, the round, courtyard house, stone hut circle settlement and field system 275m north of Castallack Carn survive well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, function, development, relative chronologies, agricultural practices, trade, domestic arrangements, social organisation, the relationships between the different monument classes and their overall landscape context. Together they form an important juxtaposition which reflects changing agricultural, social and domestic settlements through time.

Source: Historic England

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