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Prehistoric Timber Circles

  • M. E. Cunnington
Extract

The photographs here reproduced, were taken from the air on 30 June 1926, by Squadron-Leader Insall, V.C., M.C., who was then stationed at Netheravon. The large circular earthwork which appears with a series of concentric dots within its area had always been regarded as a “ring” or “disc” barrow much wasted and defaced as a result of many years cultivation. The ring barrow is a type of pre-historic burial place which occurs comparatively frequently on the Downs of Wiltshire and adjacent counties but is rare elsewhere. It consists of a circular earthen bank with a corresponding ditch, usually on the inner side. The actual burials, apparently invariably after cremation, are usually found in one or more mounds near the centre of the circular area thus enclosed. The banks and ditches are continuous and form unbroken rings; they vary in size from a few yards in diameter up to nearly 200 ft. The smaller dark rings shown on the lower part of the photographs near the Amesbury road probably represent the filled-in ditches of barrows that have been destroyed by cultivation.

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Antiquity
  • ISSN: 0003-598X
  • EISSN: 1745-1744
  • URL: /core/journals/antiquity
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