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Site name Ascott-Under-Wychwood, Oxf 6
Site number 137
Burial codes 5005 5007 5009 5021 5023 5025 5028 5030 5032 5043 5045 5046 5051 5052 5053 5065 5072 5085 5093 5094 5096 5097 5103 5107 5108 5109 5110 5111 5128 5143 5152 5156 5181 5182 5200
3500bc - 2500bc Long barrow oriented to E. There were 4 stone cists, in two pairs two thirds of the way down the barrow, 1m square boxes. There were bones of 46-47 individuals in the paired cists and outside each cist entrance. Between the destroyed barrow wall and the southernmost cist was a dump of mixed bone and rubble, with 2 of three skulls present placed at the corners of the deposit and separated by stones from the remainder of the bones. Under the bones was a broken incomplete Abingdon ware bowl.

The southernmost cist of the 2 pairs contained human skeletal material of 3 adults and 1 juvenile; the partly articulated male adult had possibly been killed by the flint arrow head in the 3rd lumbar vertebrae. In the southern inner cist was a child burial and the disarticulated human skeletal material of 2 adults, one possibly killed by an arrow head found beneath a rib. On the stone packing between the 2 pairs of cists was a group of fragmented bones including a skull, one bone fitting another from the bone dump. The inner of the northern pair held human skeletal material from 3 adults, one child and a foetus or newly born infant, and a cremation deposit of at least 2 persons. In the outer of the northern pair there was nothing. Just outside that cist on the north side was the contracted burial of an old female, oriented E, lying on the right side, with the atlas vertebrae not fitting the otherwise complete spine.

The barrow appears to have been constructed in one piece. A row of hurdles formed a central spine, and offsets also of light hurdles were laid at right angles to form a series of compartments. This may have gone on while the cists were being built. Gangs then filled the compartments with spoil from quarry pits dug along the north side of the barrow. Small thin limestone slabs were placed upright against the hurdles as the mound was raised, whereas in other areas partitions of boulders were formed. Around the outside, the barrow was delineated by a drystone wall, double for most of the circumference, elsewhere triple. An elaborate blind entrance may have been a later addition. The barrow was built on a site occupied from Mesolithic times, with evidence for Neolithic huts in the area of the barrow, in an area of forest clearance.

RC: BM-835 3248 +/- 225, BM-833 3070 +/- 92, BM-832 2992 +/- 74, BM-491b 2943 +/-70, BM-492 2785 +/-70, BM-837 2764 +/-166, BM-836 2495 +/- 61
Remains/Period Y5
County Oxfordshire
Region SE
National grid square SP
X coordinate 300
Y coordinate 176
Bibliographic source Benson 1971, Chesterman 1977, Benson and Clegg 1978


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Last updated: Tues Aug 10 2004