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Archaeology Notes

Event ID 675643

Category Descriptive Accounts

Type Archaeology Notes


NM93NW 4 9296 3639

(NM 9296 3639) Chambered Cairn (NR)

(Undated) OS annotation.

Standing in pasture is a cairn containing two burial chambers. The site was excavated by the RCAHMS between 1968 and 1970. There were two periods of construction. Originally a round cairn covered a single chamber, but subsequently a small passage grave was added to the SE edge of the cairn, and the cairn itself was enlarged to its present oval shape.

The original chamber is in the NW and measures 0.9 by 1.25 metres with a height of about 1 metre. The area of the chamber is enclosed by 5 upright boulders and a small gap between two of these indicates the original entrance, but once the cairn was erected, this chamber must have been completely sealed as there is no indication of a passage to the chamber through the cairn material. The cairn has been severely robbed, but kerbstones which survive in two places in the south and NE show that the cairn had a diameter of about 18 metres.

The later chamber, constructed on the SE part of the cairn perimeter, was entered through a passage 1.4 metres in length, 1.1 metres in breadth and about 0.9 metres in height. The chamber itself is enclosed by 7 large boulders with dry-stone walling between them. Two capstones survive, one in its original position. To cover this passage grave, the original cairn was extended to a length of 20.7 metres, retaining its original breadth of 18 metres at the NW end, thus giving an oval shape to the whole.

Excavation by the RCAHMS in 1968-70 produced finds which included sherds of Neolithic vessels, a flint knife and jet disc-beads, all of which are now in the National Museum of Antiquites of Scotland (NMAS).

A S Henshall 1972; J N G Ritchie 1973; RCAHMS 1975.

As described.

Visited by OS (DWR) 27 October 1971.

Surveyed at 1:2500.

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