Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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A Scheduled Monument in Llangelynin (Llangelynnin), Gwynedd

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Latitude: 52.6224 / 52°37'20"N

Longitude: -4.0986 / 4°5'54"W

OS Eastings: 258040

OS Northings: 304804

OS Grid: SH580048

Mapcode National: GBR 8R.7TRS

Mapcode Global: WH575.0BLY

Entry Name: Castell-Mawr

Scheduled Date:

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 2474

Cadw Legacy ID: ME073

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Hillfort

Period: Prehistoric

County: Gwynedd

Community: Llangelynin (Llangelynnin)

Traditional County: Merionethshire


The monument comprises the remains of a hillfort, which probably dates to the Iron Age period (c. 800 BC - AD 74, the Roman conquest of Wales). Hillforts are usually located on hilltops and surrounded by a single or multiple earthworks of massive proportions. Hillforts must have formed symbols of power within the landscape, while their function may have had as much to do with ostentation and display as defence. Castell-Mawr is an oval ridge-top enclosure, measuring c.80m north-east to south-west by 36m, with an annexe extending a further 24m to the north-east. The main enclosure is defined mostly by scarps above natural slopes. A rampart runs around the west and south sides, with a ditch and slight counterscarp on the west covering both enclosure and annexe. The bank here stands up to c.4m above the base of the ditch, which is c.1m below the crest of the counterscarp, which blends into the profile of the adjacent field. There is a possible east-facing entrance towards the north end of the main enclosure.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of later prehistoric defensive organisation and settlement. The site forms an important element within the wider later prehistoric context and within the surrounding landscape. The site is well preserved and retains considerable archaeological potential. There is a strong probability of the presence of evidence relating to chronology, building techniques and functional detail.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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