Tumulus (destroyed): OS Grid Reference – SK 961 052
Also Known as:
- Wicheley Warren
Archaeology & History
This tomb and, it would seem, another 200 yards away, have long since been smashed up. The only decent reference to the site comes from Reginald Haines’ address to the Society of Antiquaries in January, 1903, where he told:
“In a quarry worked for freestone on Major Brathwaite’s land…was found in 1900 a skeleton, probably neolithic. The body was in a crouching position, with ‘the knees tucked under the chin,’ at a depth of about 3 feet. Unfortunately, no one interested in such things was at hand, and the remains were incontinently thrown aside and (are) presently buried under a mass of rubbish from the tunnels which were being worked for stone. Mr V.B. Crowther-Beynon was only able to recover a few teeth, though he seems to have found a few fragments of animal bones and bits of pottery at or near the spot.
“In December 1901, at a point about 200 yards from the last, where a fresh excavation was being made, a second interment was found. In this case the soil containing the remains came down in one block, and a few broken fragments of bone came to light, with a lower jaw. The jaw is now in Mr V.B. Crowther-Beyson’s possession, who communicated with Lord Avebury on the subject, sending the jaw, and received the following reply:
“‘to judge from your description (i.e., of the interment) it is certainly probable that the interment you mention belonged to the stone (neolithic) age. This, however, in the absence of weapons or implements, cannot be put higher than a probability. I think that lower jaws like very this might be found among our existing people, though I fear with hardly such good teeth. Their soundness and the way they were worn point strongly to a great antiquity.’
“Near the second interment occurred little patches of burnt soil of a conspicuously red colour. These may have been the sites of hearths.”
Mr Haines makes a final note about the scarcity of prehistoric remains found hereby, saying that “the only other relics of the stone age that claim notice here are an arrow-head of flint, picked up in a field near Market Overton in November 1990, by Mr Wing” — which is quite a distance away!
- Haines, “Prehistoric Graves at Wicheley Warren,” in Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, volume 19, no.2, 1903.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian