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HER Number:MDV8743
Name:King's Barrow on King Tor, Hookney Down


Large circular cairn. Largely grassed over but head-sized granite boulders visible. No remains of kerb visible, but there is a slight trace of an encircling ditch. The centre of the barrow has been robbed.


Grid Reference:SX 709 814
Map Sheet:SX78SW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishNorth Bovey
Ecclesiastical ParishNORTH BOVEY

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX78SW8
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 445634
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX78SW/21
  • Old SAM County Ref: 860
  • Old SAM Ref: 34421
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX78SW8

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CAIRN (Bronze Age - 2200 BC to 701 BC (Between))

Full description

Spence Bate, C., 1872, Researches into some Antient Tumuli on Dartmoor, 554 (Article in Serial). SDV336926.

Excavated about 1872. A "tumulus known as 'King's Barrow', consisting throughout of stones and earth. This has been imperfectly explored without result by...Rev R Kirwan."

Wall, J. C., 1906, Ancient Earthworks, 627 (Article in Monograph). SDV341465.

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/CPE/UK/1824, 3040 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352344.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1953, SX78SW8 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV303962.

(19/03/1953) King's Barrow (tumulus) SX 7092 8144 Diameter 20m, height 1.5m. It has a central hollow with a diameter of ?8.5m and a depth of 1.5m and has been further mutilated by apparent trenching in the south-east. It has no encircling ditch.
The cairn is turf and heather covered with sufficient stones exposed to indicate its composition.

Ancient Monuments, 1971, Schedule notes (Schedule Document). SDV303964.

(13/01/1971) King's Barrow on Hookney Down. Large circular cairn. Largely grassed over but head-sized granite boulders visible. No remains of kerb visible, but there is a slight trace of an encircling ditch. The centre of the barrow has been robbed and some of the material has been piled around the rim of the barrow making it appear higher than it actually was.
Diameter 20m, height 2.3m. Central pit is result of 1872 excavation. Ditch 4m wide, 0.15m deep visible on southern side.

Grinsell, L. V., 1978, Dartmoor Barrows, 158, N. Bovey 4 (Article in Serial). SDV273224.

(24/07/1972) SX 7092 8143 Cairn with large hollow towards centre and possibly ditch. Excavated without result by R. Kirwan (citing Bate, 1872, 554). Diameter 21.0m, height 2.1m.

Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1985, Aerial Photograph Project (Dartmoor) - Dartmoor Pre-NMP (Cartographic). SDV319854.

Barrow visible and recorded.

English Heritage, 2001, Scheduling amendment (Schedule Document). SDV303969.

SX 70928144. A round cairn known as King's Barrow, located on the summit of King Tor on Hookney Down. The cairn mound measures 21 metres in diameter and stands up to 2.3 metres high. A pit in the centre of the cairn is the result of the partial excavation carried out by the Reverend R Kirwan in 1872. No artefacts were recovered during this investigation. A 4 metre wide and 0.15 metre deep ditch is visible around the southern side of the mound. The remainder will survive as a buried feature. Scheduled.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV273224Article in Serial: Grinsell, L. V.. 1978. Dartmoor Barrows. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 36. A5 Paperback. 158, N. Bovey 4.
SDV303962Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1953. SX78SW8. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV303964Schedule Document: Ancient Monuments. 1971. Schedule notes. The Schedule of Monuments. Unknown.
SDV303969Schedule Document: English Heritage. 2001. Scheduling amendment. Amendment to Schedule.
SDV319854Cartographic: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1985. Aerial Photograph Project (Dartmoor) - Dartmoor Pre-NMP. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Aerial Photograph P. Cartographic.
SDV336926Article in Serial: Spence Bate, C.. 1872. Researches into some Antient Tumuli on Dartmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 5. Digital. 554.
SDV341465Article in Monograph: Wall, J. C.. 1906. Ancient Earthworks. Victoria History of the County of Devon. Hardback Volume. 627.
SDV352344Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/CPE/UK/1824. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 3040.

Associated Monuments

MDV26664Related to: Line of trial pits south-west of King Tor (Monument)
MDV128882Related to: Pool south-west of King's Barrow, King Tor (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV8614 - Excavation at King's Barrow, King's Tor

Date Last Edited:Jun 15 2021 11:07AM