Friday, 26 April 2013

Grave Concerns: Bronze Age

The last Grave Concerns dealt with burial during the Bronze Age. All these subjects are huge, of course, so we can only scratch the surface.

We looked at crouched burials which had gradually replaced the communal tombs of the Neolithic. Dorset has many examples of round burial mounds dotted around the landscape and some of the early ones may be Beaker burials, after the distinctive pottery of the period:
Some mounds are standing alone, with others part of cemeteries

One of the most famous recent burials was the Amesbury Archer, found not far from Stonehenge, with several beakers, wrist guards, arrowheads and gold hair ornaments:

Two of the most famous barrows in the south west are the Clandon and Bush barrows, both of which had gold lozenge artefacts in them:
Bush Barrow

Clandon Barrow
Burial in the Bronze Age suggests a continuing change in emphasis toward the individual, with burial of wealthy individuals and children, some with apparently hereditary status. There may be a move toward concern with family and personal history rather than the power of the collective tribal ancestors, as previously.

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