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HER Number:MDV3928
Name:Three Inscribed Stones in Vicarage Garden, Tavistock

Summary

Three Early Christian inscribed stones of the 5th to 6th century located in the Vicarage Garden in Tavistock

Location

Grid Reference:SX 481 742
Map Sheet:SX47SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishTavistock
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishTAVISTOCK

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: 437968
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX47SE/4
  • Old SAM County Ref: 100
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX47SE5

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • INSCRIBED STONE (IV to VI - 400 AD to 600 AD (Between))

Full description

Department of Environment, Inscribed Stones in the Vicarage Garden (Schedule Document). SDV346175.

Three inscribed memorial stones of the 5th-6th century in the Vicarage Garden in Tavistock.
Stone 1: inscribed "SABINI FILI MACCODECHETI". Granite stone 6 feet (1.83 metres) high found in blacksmith's shop at Buckland Monachorum in 1804.
Stone 2: inscribed "NEPRANI FILI CONBEVI". Granite stone 6 feet 7 inches (2 metres) high found in the pavement of West Street in Tavistock in 1780.
Stone 3: inscribed "DOBUNNI FABRI FILII ENABARRI". Ogam on arris "ENABARR" found as a gatepost on Roborough Down in 1804.


Ordnance Survey, 1855-1895, First Edition 1:500 Town Map (Cartographic). SDV338879.

Three inscribed stones marked in the garden to the south of the vicarage.


Alford, D. P., 1890, The Inscribed Stones in the Vicarage Garden, Tavistock, 230-3 (Article in Serial). SDV346180.


Chanter, J. F., 1910, Christianity in Devon before AD 909, 481 (Article in Serial). SDV870.


Anon, 1937, 76th Annual Meeting, 14 (Article in Serial). SDV346181.


Alexander, J. J., 1937, 8th Report on Early History, 154 (Article in Serial). SDV93411.


Alexander, J. J., 1942, The Beginnings of Tavistock, 178 (Article in Serial). SDV256363.


Farrant, J. R., 1949, Proceedings at the Eighty-seventh Annual Meeting at Tavistock, 15-6 (Article in Serial). SDV346176.

Tavistock possesses three of the dozen early Christian inscriptions found in Devon. One of these memorial stones was found in use on the pavement of West Street near the churchyard in Tavistock. The other two were brought from Buckland Monachorum. One was first noted built into a blacksmith's shop outside the churchyard and the other stood as a gatepost beside the path leading from the village to Roborough Down. None of the stones were found in situ but all are likely to have been set up near the places where they were first recorded. Two of the stones probably came from the respective churchyards and illustrate the normal practice of Christian burial. The other stone is the earliest of the three and demonstrates the survival into the earliest Christian period of the pagan custom of interment by the roadside. The inscriptions at Tavistock are:
Buckland Monachorum (Roborough Down): "DOBUNNI FABRI FILI ENABARRI" - (the stone of) Dobunnus the Smith, the son of Enabarrus. The name "(E)NABARR" is repeated in Ogham characters. The top of the stone has been broken off and it is possible that there is a missing initial word indicating the person was a member of the Dobuni tribe which settled on the Lower Severn in the Roman period.
Tavistock: "NEPRANI FILI CONBEVI" - (the stone of) Nepranus, the son of Conbevus.
Buckland: "SABINI FILI MACCODECHETI" - (the stone of) Sabinus, the son of Maccodechetus.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1950 - 1953, SX47SE5 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV346178.

Three inscribed stones in the vicarage garden at Tavistock.
Stone a) at SX48137428 stands 7 foot 2 inches (2.2 metres) high by 17 inches (0.4 metres) at the base and 14 inches (0.3 metres) at the top with the inscription "SABINI FILII MACCODECHETI"
Stone b) at SX48097429 stands 7 foot (2.1 metres) high with a cross section 11 inches (0.3 metres) by 21 inches (0.5 metres) with the inscription "NEPRANI FILI CONDEVI"
Stone c) at SX48127427 stands 1.5 metres above the ground with a Latin inscription "to the memory of Dobunnus Faber, son of Enabarrus" and with an Ogham inscription on its edge. It was in use as a gatepost in a field between Buckland Monachorum and Roborough Down and was brought to the vicarage garden in 1868.


Hoskins, W. G., 1954, A New Survey of England: Devon, 488 (Monograph). SDV17562.

Three inscribed stones are preserved in the vicarage garden, probably funerary monuments of the 6th century. Two were found at Buckland Monachorum and one in Tavistock. All have Latin inscriptions, but one of the Buckland stones also has Ogham characters.


Grinsell, L. V., 1970, Discovering Regional Archaeology: South Western England, 29 (Monograph). SDV304192.


Pearce, S. M., 1982, Church and Society in South Devon, AD 350-700, 1-18 (Article in Serial). SDV336077.

Proximity of stone (1) to the parish church hints that it came from the churchyard, and if so, then the minster church itself succeeded to an Early Christian graveyard.


Weston, S., 1990, Untitled Source (Personal Comment). SDV346182.

Locations as given. No change to condition in 1990. Vicarage garden still belongs to the vicarage.


Turton, S. D. + Weddell, P. J., 1991, Archaeological Assessment of Four Areas of Land Adjoining the River Tavy and Plymouth Road, Tavistock, 4; figure 2 (Report - Assessment). SDV256444.


West Devon Borough Council, 2009, Tavistock Conservation Area Management Plan, 21 (Report - non-specific). SDV351411.


National Monuments Record, 2011, 437968 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV346179.

Three inscribed stones, bearing debased Latin inscriptions and dated between the 4th and 6th centuries positioned in the 19th century in the Vicarage Garden at Tavistock. One of the stones also has an Ogam inscription. The stones came from various locations, one from a pavement in West Street, one from a blacksmith's shop in Buckland Monachorum and one was a gatepost near Buckland Monachorum.


Ordnance Survey, 2011, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV346129.

'Stone' shown on the west side of the garden and 'Stones' shown to the south-east.


Pearce, S. M., 2012, Early Medieval Ecclesiastical Sites in South-western Britain: their dates, characters and significance, 81 - 108 (Article in Serial). SDV361501.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV17562Monograph: Hoskins, W. G.. 1954. A New Survey of England: Devon. A New Survey of England: Devon. A5 Hardback. 488.
SDV256363Article in Serial: Alexander, J. J.. 1942. The Beginnings of Tavistock. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 74. A5 Hardback. 178.
SDV256444Report - Assessment: Turton, S. D. + Weddell, P. J.. 1991. Archaeological Assessment of Four Areas of Land Adjoining the River Tavy and Plymouth Road, Tavistock. Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 91.33. A4 Stapled + Digital. 4; figure 2.
SDV304192Monograph: Grinsell, L. V.. 1970. Discovering Regional Archaeology: South Western England. Discovering Regional Archaeology: South Western England. Unknown. 29.
SDV336077Article in Serial: Pearce, S. M.. 1982. Church and Society in South Devon, AD 350-700. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 40. Paperback Volume. 1-18.
SDV338879Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1855-1895. First Edition 1:500 Town Map. First Edition 1:500 Town Map. Map (Digital).
SDV346129Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2011. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital). [Mapped feature: #90216 ]
SDV346175Schedule Document: Department of Environment. Inscribed Stones in the Vicarage Garden. The Schedule of Monuments. Foolscap.
SDV346176Article in Serial: Farrant, J. R.. 1949. Proceedings at the Eighty-seventh Annual Meeting at Tavistock. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. A5 Hardback. 15-6.
SDV346178Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1950 - 1953. SX47SE5. OSAD Card. Card Index + Digital.
SDV346179National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 2011. 437968. National Monuments Record Database. Website.
SDV346180Article in Serial: Alford, D. P.. 1890. The Inscribed Stones in the Vicarage Garden, Tavistock. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 22. A5 Hardback. 230-3.
SDV346181Article in Serial: Anon. 1937. 76th Annual Meeting. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 69. A5 Hardback. 14.
SDV346182Personal Comment: Weston, S.. 1990.
SDV351411Report - non-specific: West Devon Borough Council. 2009. Tavistock Conservation Area Management Plan. West Devon Borough Council Report. a4 Stapled + Digital. 21.
SDV361501Article in Serial: Pearce, S. M.. 2012. Early Medieval Ecclesiastical Sites in South-western Britain: their dates, characters and significance. Antiquaries Journal. 92. Paperback Volume. 81 - 108.
SDV870Article in Serial: Chanter, J. F.. 1910. Christianity in Devon before AD 909. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 42. A5 Hardback. 481.
SDV93411Article in Serial: Alexander, J. J.. 1937. 8th Report on Early History. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 69. A5 Hardback. 154.

Associated Monuments

MDV3933Related to: St. Eustachius's Parish Church, Tavistock (Building)
MDV3919Related to: Tavistock Abbey (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Aug 2 2018 12:55PM