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Round cairn 100m south of Down Tor

A Scheduled Monument in Sheepstor, Devon

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.5061 / 50°30'21"N

Longitude: -4.0034 / 4°0'12"W

OS Eastings: 258031.428823

OS Northings: 69284.42631

OS Grid: SX580692

Mapcode National: GBR Q2.YHH4

Mapcode Global: FRA 27HQ.J4S

Entry Name: Round cairn 100m south of Down Tor

Scheduled Date: 17 January 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008642

English Heritage Legacy ID: 24087

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Sheepstor

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Details

The monument includes a round cairn containing a cist situated on a south
facing slope below Down Tor overlooking the valley of the Narrator Brook. The
cairn mound measures 4.3m in diameter and stands up to 0.3m high. The centre
of the mound has been partially excavated to reveal a cist orientated east to
west. The interior of this cist measures 0.7m long by 0.45m wide and 0.5m
deep. The capstone, which measures 1.8m by 0.9m wide, has been displaced, and
now lies a short distance south of the cist.

MAP EXTRACT
The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Dartmoor is the largest expanse of open moorland in southern Britain and,
because of exceptional conditions of preservation, it is also one of the most
complete examples of an upland relict landscape in the whole country. The
great wealth and diversity of archaeological remains provide direct evidence
for human exploitation of the Moor from the early prehistoric period onwards.
The well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites,
major land boundaries, trackways, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as
later industrial remains, gives significant insights into successive changes
in the pattern of land use through time. Round cairns are prehistoric funerary
monuments dating to the Bronze Age (c.2000-700 BC). They were constructed as
earthen or rubble mounds, the latter predominating in areas of upland Britain
where such raw materials were locally available in abundance. Round cairns may
cover single or multiple burials and are sometimes surrounded by an outer
ditch. Often occupying prominent locations, they are a major visual element in
the modern landscape. Their considerable variation in form and longevity as a
monument type provide important information on the diversity of beliefs and
social organisation amongst early prehistoric communities. They are
particularly representative of their period and a substantial proportion of
surviving examples are considered worthy of protection. Dartmoor provides one
of the best preserved and most dense concentrations of round cairns in south-
western Britain.

Despite evidence for partial excavation, the round cairn 100m south of Down
Tor survives well and contains archaeological and environmental evidence
relating to the monument and the landscape in which it was constructed.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX56NE119,
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

Source: Historic England

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