Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cross Dyke reave

A Scheduled Monument in Shaugh Prior, Devon

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Latitude: 50.4556 / 50°27'20"N

Longitude: -3.9968 / 3°59'48"W

OS Eastings: 258345.836

OS Northings: 63657.0057

OS Grid: SX583636

Mapcode National: GBR Q3.1R59

Mapcode Global: FRA 27JV.DQ4

Entry Name: Cross Dyke reave

Scheduled Date: 1 December 1965

Last Amended: 3 December 1992

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1010811

English Heritage Legacy ID: 10611

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Shaugh Prior

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon


The Dartmoor reaves are part of a highly elaborate and extensive system of
Prehistoric land division, introduced some time around 1700 BC. The reaves
consist of simple linear stone and earth banks used to mark out discrete
territories, some of which are tens of kilometers in area. The systems are
defined by parallel, contour and watershed reaves, dividing the lower land
from the grazing zones of the higher moor.
Cross Dyke runs for some 600m up the southern slope of Lee Moor towards
Cholwich Town Reave North, a major contour reave. It is a bank of earth and
some stone, up to 2m in width and 0.5m in height, with a ditch on its
eastern side. It is closely associated with a standing stone, known as
Hanging Stone, and terminates at a cairn at its northern end. Cross Dyke is
part of a parallel reave system and is considered to have had a territorial
role, dividing the Cholwich Town reave territory from that of the Plym

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 succesive changes in the pattern of land use through time.
Elaborate complexes of fields and field boundaries are some of the major
features of the Dartmoor landscape. They have important implications for
studying Prehistoric land divisions and communal systems of land-holding,
not just in this region, but also nationally.
The Cross Dyke reave survives comparatively well in close association with
Hanging Stone and a cairn at its north end. This is one of numerous
contemporary monuments surviving in the area.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Fleming, A, Collis, J, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in A Late Prehistoric Reave System Near Cholwich Town, Dartmoor, , Vol. 31, (1973), 5
Devon County SMR SX56SE-075,
Devon County SMR SX56SE-21,
Devon County SMR SX56SE-226,

Source: Historic England

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