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Rotten Bottom

Bow (Weapon)

Site Name Rotten Bottom

Classification Bow (Weapon)

Canmore ID 71910

Site Number NT11SW 10

NGR NT 146 144

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

C14 Radiocarbon Dating


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Dumfries And Galloway
  • Parish Moffat
  • Former Region Dumfries And Galloway
  • Former District Annandale And Eskdale
  • Former County Dumfries-shire

Archaeology Notes

NT11SW 10 146 144

A longbow (C14 date 4040-3640 cal BC, 2 sigma) was found near the base of a peat stack in the Tweedsmuir Hills by Dr Dan Jones of Melrose. Around two-thirds of it survives; it appears to have broken in antiquity. Now in NMS, following a Treasure Trove enquiry: registration number IP 6.

Daybook no: DB 1991/65.

NMS 1992.

In 1990 a broken yew longbow was found at about 660m OD, near the base of a peat hag and close to the underlying iron pan. It sustained slight damage during recovery and dried out before being formally examined.

The remains measure 1.36m in length, comprising about two-thirds of a bow of original length 1.74m. One limb survives complete; the other was broken in antiquity. The bow is made from a single piece of wood with a constricted grip. The limbs are virtually straight, D-shaped in section and up to 25mm wide. The thickness:width ratio is about 1:15, and there is no wear at the tip.

The bow falls in size between the Neolithic examples from Meare and Ashcott Heaths, England. It probably had a draw-weight of between 11 and 18kg for an arrow of length 0.71m, and would thus be less powerful than a modern hunting bow.

The bow has been dated by radiocarbon to 2520 +/- 100bc (OxA-3540).

A Sheridan 1992.


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