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HER Number:MDV6252
Name:Eastern Cist on north side of Blackbrook River, Dartmoor Forest


Easternmost cist in a group of three north of the Blackbrook River. Referred to by the Ordnance Survey (1950 onwards) as cist 'A.' A well defined cist which has two stones supporting the slabs in the south-east corner. The chamber measures 0.95 metres by 0.85 metres and about 0.4 metres deep. A turf-covered stony spread around the cist may be part of a robbed cairn.


Grid Reference:SX 605 738
Map Sheet:SX67SW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDartmoor Forest
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishLYDFORD

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Structural remains of a group of at least four prehistoric cists in an area of streamworking adjacent to the Blackbrook River

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX 67 SW 18
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX67SW/21
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX67SW/21/4
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX67SW18
  • Pastscape: 443283
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

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

Full description

Burnard, R., 1890, Notes on Dartmoor Kistvaens, 203 (Article in Serial). SDV265355.

Prowse, A. B., 1901, The Antiquities of Ockery and Roundhill, Dartmoor, 496-7 (Article in Serial). SDV233834.

Worth, R. H., 1912, 31st Report of the Barrow Committee, 84, plate 4 (Article in Serial). SDV233835.

(Estimated 1911). The eastern most of the three. Well preserved, coverstone missing.

Worth, R. H., 1925, 44th Report of the Barrow Committee, plate 1, figure 3 (Article in Serial). SDV237295.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1950-1951, SX67SW18, Cist 'A' (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV233931.

On the left bank of the Blackabrook, and lying south of Round Hill, just 18 feet from the river bank…, is a fine example, 4 feet long, 2 feet wide and 3 feet, 6 inches deep. The south end stone has been displaced for convenience in rifling; the other slabs are in position, the coverstone (5 feet by 4 feet) has been removed and is nesting on the western side of the cist. Ordnance Survey notes (04/09/1950) state; “This appears to be ‘A’.”
Twelve feet north is another kistvaen with two side stones in position but end stones broken and imperfect. This cist is almost buried. No trace of coverstone, circle or barrow. Ordnance Survey notes (04/09/1950) state; “? ‘B’.”
About 6 yards east of the last described is a very imperfect remnant of another kistvaen and about 12 feet in the same direction is a more perfect specimen with the vertical slabs standin, 3 feet long, 2.5 feet wide and 2 feet deep, lower stone has disappeared. [Citing Burnard, 1890].
Group of four kistveans. (Description supplied but position of each not clear). [Citing Prowse, 1901]
(Visited 24/02/1950) Three cists each surrounded by numerous large stones. Capstone of C (southern) displaced: shape irregular, diameter 4 feet 6 inches, thickness 8 inches, depth of C 3 feet or more.
No signs of cist at 'B' (westernmost) where there ought to be one. No erosion in progress. I doubt if there were any more cists. Almost a circle of ruined cists; the river cuts off the south side. Nothing else like it in Dartmoor except Willings Wall Circle in the Plym Valley (Small sketch plan shows location of three cists: B is westernmost, C is southern and A is easternmost).
(Visited 04/09/1950) Kistvaen A. Two side stones and two end stones remain in position. No coverstone. Depth of kist 0.45 metres, 0.75 metres wide at northern end, 0.7 metres at southern end, 0.85 metres long. (Sketch plan (not to scale) included).

Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 152, Lydford 82 (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

(Visited 25/7/1976) Cairn enclosing cist placed south-east by north-west, capstone missing. Diameter 3 metres, height 0.15 metres.

Butler, J., 1993, Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East, 230-1, Map 65, Figure 65.4.4 (Monograph). SDV337765.

Round Hill cist '3' at SX60527385 . One of three cisted cairns sited along the riverbank; an unusual location, and positioned so close together that the original cairns must have almost touched one another. Little now remains of the covering mounds. The eastern cist is well preserved with all four sides in place.

Parks, D., 2017, Clarification of Blackbrook cist details, East cist (Un-published). SDV360093.

Blackbrook, East Cist (SX 60528 73873). Site visited 04/06/2016 and three cists photographed and located using Garmin GPS system. Photographs can be seen on Prehistoric Dartmoor Walks website: http://www.dartmoorwalks.org.uk/resource/search.php?OS=605738&Distance=0.25

Ordnance Survey, 2017, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV359962.

MasterMap shows a group of four cists at this location, the easternmost is shown at SX60527386. Has not been used to locate as the site has been more accurately mapped by GPS; see Parks, 2017.

National Monument Record, 2017, Pastscape, Accessed 27/02/2017 (Website). SDV359964.

Close to the north bank of Blackbrook River are three cists aligned approximately north/south. The fourth cist (Blackbrook E.) at SX 60527386, measures 0.95m. by 0.65m. and 0.4m. deep and has no coverstone. A small, level stone platform adjoins it east side. Surveyed at 1:10 000 and at 1:2500 for AO Records. (citing Ordnance Survey Field Investigators Comments, 18-JAN-80).
SX 60527386 (Blackbrook East). A well defined cist which has two stones supporting the slabs in the south-east corner. The chamber measures 0.95 metres by 0.85 metres and about 0.4 metres deep. A turf-covered stony spread around the cist may be part of a robbed cairn. (Citing Fletcher, M. J., Royal Commission on the Historic Monuments in England Field Investigation, 11-FEB-88)

Sources / Further Reading

SDV233834Article in Serial: Prowse, A. B.. 1901. The Antiquities of Ockery and Roundhill, Dartmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 33. Unknown. 496-7.
SDV233835Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1912. 31st Report of the Barrow Committee. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 44. Unknown. 84, plate 4.
SDV233931Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1950-1951. SX67SW18. Oakford Archaeology. Card Index. Cist 'A'.
SDV237295Article in Serial: Worth, R. H.. 1925. 44th Report of the Barrow Committee. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 57. Unknown. plate 1, figure 3.
SDV265355Article in Serial: Burnard, R.. 1890. Notes on Dartmoor Kistvaens. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 22. A5 Hardback. 203.
SDV273224Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 152, Lydford 82.
SDV337765Monograph: Butler, J.. 1993. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East. Dartmoor Atlas of Antiquities: Volume Four - The South-East. Four. Paperback Volume. 230-1, Map 65, Figure 65.4.4.
SDV359962Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2017. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #129230 ]
SDV359964Website: National Monument Record. 2017. Pastscape. http://www.pastscape.org.uk. Website. Accessed 27/02/2017.
SDV360093Un-published: Parks, D.. 2017. Clarification of Blackbrook cist details. Digital. East cist.

Associated Monuments

MDV6253Related to: Blackabrook, West Cist, Dartmoor Forest (Monument)
MDV6254Related to: Blackbrook, South Cist, Dartmoor Forest (Monument)
MDV6250Related to: Cairn circle 280 metres south of Roundhill Farm, Dartmoor Forest (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8627 - Roundhill Farm Duchy Farms Survey

Date Last Edited:Mar 15 2021 1:24PM