2003:1750 - GEORGE'S LAND (Site 24), Tipperary

NMI Burial Excavation Records

County: Tipperary Site name: GEORGE'S LAND (Site 24)

Sites and Monuments Record No.: N/A Licence number: 03E0507

Author: Liam McKinstry, for Judith Carroll Network Archaeology Ltd.

Site type: Fulacht fia

Period/Dating: Undetermined

ITM: E 609499m, N 641028m

Latitude, Longitude (decimal degrees): 52.520547, -7.860028

Phase 2 excavation was carried out at Site 24 on behalf of South Tipperary County Council in advance of construction of the N8 Cashel Bypass and N74 Link Road. The scheme involves a 6km bypass route of the town and a 2km link road of the N74.

Site 24 had previously been tested during Phase 1 pre-construction works in 2002 by Anne Marie Lennon (Excavations 2002, No. 1704, 02E0286). A fulacht fiadh spread was identified during this phase of the work. This feature had been heavily disturbed by modern drainage works and the positioning of a farm gate. Excavation of this area as part of Phase 2 investigations took place in July 2003.

Site 24 was located on the south-western side of Site 23 (No. 1750, Excavations 2003, 03E0508) and south of Site 25 (No. 1752 , Excavations 2003, 03E0731). The topsoil across the site had an average depth of 0.15m and the underlying natural subsoil was a compact grey/blue clay formed by natural lying in water.

There were three phases of use on Site 24. The first phase is a large ovoid pit with three fills and timbers in its base, which was then overlain by a burnt mound. The pit had a flat base and steep, almost vertical, sides and a north-south orientation. It measured 3.4m by 1.6m by 0.75m deep. All three fills contained timbers. Large tree-trunk pieces came from the basal fill and smaller pieces came from the other two fills. A number of these timbers are possibly worked. The pit is thought to be a tree bole formed prior to the deposition of the fulacht layer.

The second phase was the creation of a burnt mound. It overlay the large ovoid pit, a naturally formed layer of peat and a layer of clay. The burnt mound was c. 15m in diameter and c. 0.3m deep. No trough was found in this feature. The burnt mound had been truncated by a modern drainage ditch and had also been affected by modern vehicle disturbances and ruts. It is possible that there may have been a trough with the burnt mound and it may have been removed when the modern drainage ditch was cut.

9 Ballantyne Place, Steamboat Quay, Limerick