1971:048 - CROAGHBEG, Donegal

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Donegal Site name: CROAGHBEG

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number:

Author: Mr. L.N.W. Flanagan, Department of Antiquities, Ulster Museum Financed by the National Parks & Monuments Branch, Office of Public Works

Site type: Megalithic tomb - court tomb

Period/Dating: Neolithic (4000BC-2501 BC)

ITM: E 564859m, N 874797m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 54.620185, -8.544102

The site, excavation of which was seriously begun in 1970, though a certain amount of preliminary clearance had taken place in 1969, is a two-chambered Court Grave, with a full court containing one surviving subsidiary on the north side, set in a rather narrow cairn some 40m long. It is sited on a steep and narrow ridge at the seaward end of a small valley containing two other full-courted two-chambered graves. (Bavan and Shalwy)

The 1971 excavation was devoted to the examination of the forecourt and the determination of a shape and extent of the cairn. Again few real surprises were encountered, apart from difficulties occasioned by the use of the forecourt as a potato garden in fairly recent times. This had caused the destruction of a considerable amount of cairn edge on the northern side of the cairn and the determination of the inner facade of the forecourt was also rendered difficult by this similarity of the rather more casual dry-stone walling of the tomb-builders to that of the garden-makers. The main portion of the cairn edge on both north and south was relatively well-preserved, however; what was slightly surprising was the choice of the site in the first place: the narrowness and steepness of the ridge had obviously made stabilising the cairn revetment an exceedingly difficult task, and in places the response to this problem had been a sort of mini-terracing.

The finds during this excavation, in addition to large numbers of flint flakelets, amounted to a mere handful of finished implements: 2 flint end scrapers, 1 flint hollow scraper and, to add to those from 1970, 2 flint knives.