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HER Number:MDV6537
Name:Assacombe Stone Row, Fernworthy

Summary

The stone alignment including two parallel lines of upright stones leading downslope for 125 metres from an encircled cairn. The lower end of the alignment is denoted by a blocking stone. Midway along the alignment a length of reave crosses the row and leads towards two stone hut circles situated to the south.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 660 826
Map Sheet:SX68SE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDartmoor Forest
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishLYDFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • MPP Archaeological Item Dataset: 144149
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX68SE/3
  • Old SAM County Ref: 594
  • Old SAM Ref: 28655
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SE68SE4

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • STONE ALIGNMENT (Early Neolithic to Late Bronze Age - 4000 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Worth, R. N., 1892, The Stone Rows of Dartmoor, 389 (Article in Serial). SDV237176.

Worth gives details from unpublished field notes of R. Burnard, the row is ?m long, contains 84 stones, 0.15 - 0.45 metres high. Blocking stone, 2 metres long and 0.75 metres wide lies prone


Worth, R. N., 1894, The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 3., 298 (Article in Serial). SDV234309.


Brailsford, J. W., 1938, Bronze Age Stone Monuments of Dartmoor, 445, 447 (Article in Serial). SDV304210.


Worth, R. H., 1946, The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 1, 304 (Article in Serial). SDV251172.

Row No. 43. Assycombe. A double row, the stones small for the most part. Three larger stones stand next to the cairn which forms the terminal at the north east. The row is nearly perfect but markedly irregular; the width across the lines varies from 1.68 metres to 1.98 metres centre to centre of the stones. To the south of the row, 3 metres from the south-west row end is a hut circle.


Worth, R. H., 1953, Dartmoor, 224, Pl.62 (Monograph). SDV231148.


Turner, J. R., 1976, Ancient Monuments on Forestry Commission Land. Field Report (Report - non-specific). SDV351823.

Fernworthy Plantation. Assacombe Site No. 7C. Double stone row and cairn at eastern end. Double stone row, almost perfect. 131 metres long, constructed of small stones just 0.45 metres above the ground with three larger stones next to the cairn. Blocking stone at western end. The row is crossed by a reave half way along running north-south. The cairn at the eastern end is 6.8 metres diameter with a circle of small stones. Not planted over.
February 1976. The stone row, cairn and hut circle are enclosed as one area. Trees on the southern side are within falling distance of the row and hut.
Included in 1955 Spooner and Dixon report (A) Region south of the Teign (Assacombe and Lowton), Site No. 10.


Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 146 (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

Site visit 15th October 1975. Plantation on Assycombe Hill. Cairn with indication of inner and outer retaining circles, double stone row, descends to west-south-west.


Turner, J., 1978, Report of Work Carried Out by the Forestry Commission since January 1976 (Report - non-specific). SDV351816.

Trees removed but site covered with fallen trees and debris.


Emmett, D. D., 1979, Stone Rows: The Traditional View Reconsidered, 111 (Article in Serial). SDV251087.


Robinson, R., 1983, List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983 (Un-published). SDV345762.

Site visit 24th June 1983.


Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1985, Aerial Photograph Project (Interpretation). SDV319854.

This monument is not visible due to tree cover on the RAF1946 photos.


Butler, J., 1991, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North, 167, Fig. 35.10 (Monograph). SDV219155.


Smith, N., 1992, Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology with Woodland Areas 1992 (Un-published). SDV351819.

Fernworthy, Assycombe No. 7C.
Site visit 27th May 1992. Site marked. Vegetation managed. Stability of site very good. Recommended that present management policy of site be maintained. Photos.


Gerrard, S., 1992-2002, Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset., 144149 (Report - Survey). SDV277946.

Site visit 29th April 1997. Stone alignment at Assycombe. A large number of the stones are very loose and could be moved very easily. The largest stones are nearest the cairn, with the largest standing up to 1.8 metres high. Row is partly overlain by a reave. Blocking stone is 1.27 metres high, 0.3 metres wide at base and 0.15 metres thick.


Dartmoor National Park Authority, 1996, Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology within Woodland Areas 1996 (Un-published). SDV351820.

Fernworthy, Assycombe Group No. 7C. Double stone row with cairn at end.
Site visit 27th September 1996. In a cleared area between two forest tracks. Aligned east-west. Only 1 post at the west end of the stone row. At least one additional post is required for the east end. One of the stones on the right hand side appears loose and needs consolidating. Photo.


English Heritage, 2011, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV347072.

The monument, which falls into three areas, includes a stone alignment, dispersed stone hut circle settlement, medieval long house and post-medieval farmstead situated on a west facing slope overlooking the Assycombe Brook. The stone alignment includes two parallel lines of upright stones leading downslope for 125 meters from an encircled cairn. The lower end of the alignment is denoted by a blocking stone. Midway along the alignment a length of reave crosses the row and leads towards two stone hut circles situated to the south. (Amended 1998) Other details: SAM ID: 28655. Map object based on this Source.


Newman, P., 2013, Fernworthy Forest Sites Survey (Un-published). SDV351708.


Newman , P., 2013, The Archaeology of Fernworthy Forest, Dartmoor, Devon, 16, 19, 21, 61-3 Figs 13, 14, 16-18 (Report - Survey). SDV351784.

Part of a major concentration of prehistoric evidence within the Fernworthy newtake located along the eastern hillslope of the Assacombe Brook. Interestingly the site was not recorded until 1889 and is not marked on the first edition Ordnance Survey map of 1886 although it is marked on the 1905 map. The first and only detailed archaeological investigation of the site was by Burnard and Baring Gould in 1894 who re-erected several of the taller stones at the top, eastern end of the row.
The stone row comprises two parallel alignments, 117 metres long, ascending the eastern slop of Assacombe from west-south-west to east-north-east. A blocking stone makes up the western terminal of the southern row and a cairn forms the western terminal of both rows. The stones which are arranged in pairs vary in shape and height but are mostly small, some barely protruding above the turf. The two rows are 1.25 metres apart. Row A has 59 stones in situ including the western blocking stone. At least 12 stones are missing or buried and the two tall stones at the eastern end which were re-erected by Burnard and Baring Gould have fallen. The tallest stone, also re-ected, is 1.85 metres high. Row B has 64 stones in situ with four missing. The tallest stone at the eastern terminal which was likewise re-erected is in danger of falling. Of the remaining stones the tallest is 1 metre high.
Slightly to the west of halfway a low stony bank crosses the rows. This probable reave can be traced across the clearing and into the trees on the south side for a distance of several metres but cannot be seen beyond the northern edge of the clearing.
Now crowded by trees Assacombe stone row has lost the outward vista it once possessed but pollen evidence in fact suggests that monuments of this type were often placed in especially prepared woodland clearings. However, the tall conifers present an equally false context.
Assacombe is a fairly typical example of a double stone row but the steep gradient of the hillslope means that the ends of the row are not intervisible which is unusual for a row only 117 metres long. Also of note are the offset terminal barrow, the positioning of which must have a story to tell and the fact that there is a hut circle close by. It is most unusual for Bronze Age ceremonial and domestic structures to be so closely associated.


Ordnance Survey, 2014, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV355681.

Stone Row marked on modern mapping. Map object based on this source.


Quinnell, N. V., 22/03/1995, Assycombe Stone Row (Personal Comment). SDV275583.

Runs from SX66008529 to SX66108564. About 110 metres long.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Unknown, SX68SE4 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV356539.

An almost perfect but irregular double stone row about 430 feet long aligned north-east to south-west and terminating in a cairn at the north-east end. The distance between the rows varies from 5.5 feet to 6.5 feet and the stones are generally small, about 18 inches high except for the last three adjoining the cairn which are 4.5, 4.5 and 7.5 feet respectively.
The stones were re-erected by Revd. Baring Gould. Half way along the row is crossed by a reave.

Sources / Further Reading

  • Monograph: Butler, J.. 1991. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Two - The North. Two. Paperback Volume. 167, Fig. 35.10.
  • Monograph: Worth, R. H.. 1953. Dartmoor. Dartmoor. Hardback Volume. 224, Pl.62.
  • Article in Serial: Worth, R. N.. 1894. The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 3.. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 26. Unknown. 298.
  • Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1946. The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Part 1. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 78. A5 Hardback. 304.
  • Article in Serial: Worth, R. N.. 1892. The Stone Rows of Dartmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 24. Digital. 389.
  • Article in Serial: Emmett, D. D.. 1979. Stone Rows: The Traditional View Reconsidered. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 37. Paperback Volume. 111.
  • Personal Comment: Quinnell, N. V.. 22/03/1995. Assycombe Stone Row.
  • National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2011. National Heritage List for England. Website.
  • Un-published: Robinson, R.. 1983. List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983. Lists of Field Monument Warden Visits. Printout.
  • Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 146.
  • Article in Serial: Brailsford, J. W.. 1938. Bronze Age Stone Monuments of Dartmoor. Antiquity. 12. 445, 447.
  • Report - Survey: Gerrard, S.. 1992-2002. Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset.. Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset.. Mixed Archive Material + Digital. 144149.
  • Interpretation: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1985. Aerial Photograph Project. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Aerial Photograph P. Cartographic.
  • Un-published: Newman, P.. 2013. Fernworthy Forest Sites Survey. Digital.
  • Report - non-specific: Turner, J. R.. 1976. Ancient Monuments on Forestry Commission Land. Field Report. Dartmoor National Park Authority Field Report. A4 Comb Bound.
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Unknown. SX68SE4. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
  • Report - non-specific: Turner, J.. 1978. Report of Work Carried Out by the Forestry Commission since January 1976. A4 Stapled.
  • Un-published: Dartmoor National Park Authority. 1996. Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology within Woodland Areas 1996. Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology within Woodland Areas. A4 Ring Bound.
  • Un-published: Smith, N.. 1992. Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology with Woodland Areas 1992. Condition Survey of Identified Archaeology with Woodland Areas. A4 Ring Bound.
  • Report - Survey: Newman , P.. 2013. The Archaeology of Fernworthy Forest, Dartmoor, Devon. Digital + A4. 16, 19, 21, 61-3 Figs 13, 14, 16-18.
  • Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2014. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV6538Related to: Cairn at eastern end of Assacombe Stone Row (Monument)
MDV14575Related to: Flint Scatter to south of Assycombe Stone Row (Monument)
MDV6569Related to: Hut Circle on south side of Assycombe Stone Row (Monument)
MDV6540Related to: Reave across Assacombe Stone Row (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV6203 - Archaeological Survey of Fernworthy Forest
  • EDV6216 - Condition Surveys of Ancient Monuments on Forestry Commission Land

Date Last Edited:Nov 13 2015 3:08PM