Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Cist south-west of Gutter Tor

A Scheduled Monument in Sheepstor, Devon

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Latitude: 50.4839 / 50°29'2"N

Longitude: -4.0084 / 4°0'30"W

OS Eastings: 257609.255564

OS Northings: 66828.070243

OS Grid: SX576668

Mapcode National: GBR Q2.ZVKR

Mapcode Global: FRA 27HS.86M

Entry Name: Cist south-west of Gutter Tor

Scheduled Date: 22 November 1965

Last Amended: 18 October 1991

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012472

English Heritage Legacy ID: 10580

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Sheepstor

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon


Many examples of prehistoric funerary monuments are preserved on Dartmoor,
mostly dating to the Bronze Age (c.2500-500 BC). To celebrate or commemorate
the dead, mounds of earth or stone were piled in roughly hemispherical shape
over the burial, which was sometimes contained in a small rectangular
structure, or cist, made of stone slabs. Some monuments also include
kerbstones marking the outer edge of the mound and surrounding ditch.
This cist lies 200m south-west of Gutter Tor and is orientated north-west/
south-east, it has three sides remaining, the eastern side and capstone are
displaced, but lie beside the cist and there is no trace of a mound. The
cist is 1.2m in length, 0.6m in width and 0.5m in depth. It lies
approximately 100m to the north-west of a cairn and cist and within 200m of
two hut settlements, all the sites being near the summit of Gutter Tor.

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 provides 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.
This cist is a relatively well-preserved example and occupies a prominent
position on the brow of Gutter Tor. Its relationship to other monuments in
the immediate vicinity indicates the wealth of evidence relating to
settlement and the ritual side of life on this part of the Moor.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Grinsell, L V, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in Dartmoor Barrows, , Vol. 36, (1978), 166
Devon SMR, SX56NE/012,

Source: Historic England

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