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  • We're here at the Nympsfield long barrow. It's situated right on the Cotswold escarpment

  • with impressive views, but in fact it's one of about a hundred such long barrows scattered

  • across this part of the Cotswolds. Now these long barrows were built by early

  • farming communitiesNeolithic groups as we know themaround about 3,800 BC. They

  • were primarily built as burial places and they put in the remains of their community

  • to give them a long term future. But they were also monuments that connected those communities

  • with their landscape. The capstones I'm afraid are missing. They

  • were taken long ago. But we can appreciate the site and we can understand a little bit

  • about it worked how it would have looked in Neolithic times. We've got the entranceway

  • and that provides if you like a little vestibule inside, then we've got these extraordinary

  • stones which constrict the entranceway and by constricting them we create this new space

  • beyond which is essentially the passage leading into the main part of the tomb.

  • It's in this area that the burials were placed. Now, these monuments lasted for about

  • three generations - perhaps 75 or 100 years in total. And over that period they would

  • accumulate about 30 or 40 corpsesburials placed in here. Now they didn't keep them

  • as corpses, they brought them in and as they decayed bits of bone would be moved further

  • and further into the chamber, so that we'd have little piles of skulls, we'd have little

  • piles of long bones, we'd have piles of other body parts. Which means that as you

  • came in here to visit these people you would have quite literally been walking on the bones

  • of the ancestors. We also have to remember that the tomb itself

  • may have symbolic meaning. The shape of the mound may well be the shape of an axe for

  • example. Or perhaps it was the form of a human torso. Perhaps a female torso such that the

  • chamber represented the womb and the dead were being placed back into the womb as if

  • they were going back in the earth and back into the mother.

We're here at the Nympsfield long barrow. It's situated right on the Cotswold escarpment

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ニンプスフィールド・ロングバロー (Nympsfield Long Barrow)

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    Summer に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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