Ancient Monuments

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Cist 430m ESE of Yealm Steps

A Scheduled Monument in Cornwood, Devon

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Coordinates

Latitude: 50.4555 / 50°27'19"N

Longitude: -3.9433 / 3°56'35"W

OS Eastings: 262147.224912

OS Northings: 63540.94442

OS Grid: SX621635

Mapcode National: GBR Q6.MLW9

Mapcode Global: FRA 27MV.HKS

Entry Name: Cist 430m ESE of Yealm Steps

Scheduled Date: 7 July 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1008646

English Heritage Legacy ID: 24103

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Cornwood

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Details

This monument includes a stone cist situated on the eastern edge of a large
stone hut circle settlement, lying on a south-facing slope overlooking the
valley of the River Yealm. The cist survives as a 0.68m long and 0.22m wide
rectangular area defined on the north and west by upright stone slabs standing
up to 0.6m high and on the east by a two small stones protruding through the
turf. There is no trace of a cairn mound, but the old ground surface beneath
this may survive as a buried feature.

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. Cists are small rectangular stone
structures used for burial purposes and date to the Bronze Age. On Dartmoor
they are made up of regular stone slabs forming a box-like structure sometimes
topped by a larger coverstone. Short cists survive as free-standing monuments,
with no enclosing stone and earth cairn. On Dartmoor cists are also associated
with cairns, ring cairns and cairnfield groups, but these free-standing
examples form a separate group in their own right. Their longevity, having
been in use for a millennium or so, provides insight into the range of
ceremonial and ritual practices of the contemporary farming communities. The
Dartmoor examples provide one of the best preserved and most dense
concentrations of this class of monument in south-western Britain and, as
such, a high proportion of surviving examples are considered worthy of
protection.

The cist 430m ESE of Yealm Steps survives comparatively well and lies in close
proximity to a large, broadly contemporary settlement.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX66SW31,
MPP fieldwork by S. Gerrard,

Source: Historic England

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