2003:1375 - GRANGE RATH, Colp West, Meath

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Meath Site name: GRANGE RATH, Colp West

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E0641

Author: Robert O'Hara, Archaeological Consultancy Services Ltd.

Site type: Fulacht fia

Period/Dating: Chalcolithic (2500 BC-2201 BC)

ITM: E 711165m, N 773901m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 53.702963, -6.316368

The site was discovered during mechanical removal of topsoil under supervision. It is the most recent of a number of excavations within the development, including significant prehistoric and medieval settlements investigated by Donald Murphy (Excavations 2000, No. 748, 99E0472) and fulachta fiadh excavated by Linda Clarke (Excavations 2001, No. 954, 01E0931). A house site was located to the north-east of this site and was excavated under a separate licence (No. 1376, Excavations 2003).

The site consisted of two large pit/trough features, one roughly circular (1m by 1.4m in diameter by 0.45m deep), with sloping sides, and the other rectangular (1.4m by 2m by 0.21m deep), with straight sides and a stake-hole in each of its four corners. Two small bowl-shaped pits and one slightly triangular cut were probably ancillary to the main activity being carried out at the pits/troughs outlined above. All the features were filled with the usual heat-fractured stone deposits in a charcoal and clay matrix. Four thin spreads of blackened material including fractured stone were interspersed among the cut features and are believed to be the remnants of small mounds removed in antiquity. The largest measured 3m by 2m and was 0.1m thick. All the features were contained within an area measuring 15m by 15m and, although not stratigraphically related, may indeed be contemporary. A date of BC 2585–2205 was recorded for one of the trough features and is within the range of dates for other fulachta excavated within the townland (BC 2580–2200 and 2470–2120; Linda Clarke, op. cit.).

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