Issue: Resistivity imaging survey of Capo Long Barrow, Aberdeenshire

Publication Type
Abstract Non-invasive fieldwork carried out on the Neolithic long barrow at Capo, present-day Aberdeenshire (NGR NO 633 664) has considerably enhanced our knowledge of this monument. Topographical survey has provided the first detailed record of the barrow and its environs. Resistivity imaging has revealed key elements of the structure of the long barrow, including side revetment walls, a flat fa�e and possible mortuary structures, confirming that the barrow at Capo is of a similar morphology to the nearby (excavated) long barrow at Dalladies. The resistivity survey has demonstrated that rabbit burrowing and the roots of the tree stumps that covered the barrow have had little effect on the integrity of the major structural elements of the monument (the revetments and fa�e). However, it is not possible to assess the more subtle damage, such as mixing of archaeological layers, which may have been caused. It is concluded that, whilst resistivity imaging at the survey density employed here is time-consuming and would not be appropriate at many sites, as a management tool and as a means to explore sites that are unavailable for excavation, such as scheduled ancient monuments, it has been demonstrated to be of considerable value.
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Author Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
Editor Colin R W Wallace
Publisher Society of Antiquaries of Scotland
Other Person/Org Graeme Warren (Author contributing)
Year of Publication 2003
Volume 6
ISBN 0-903903-75-X
Subjects / Periods
BIAB: Resistivity Survey
Source DigitalBorn
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Abstract
Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
0
Non-invasive fieldwork carried out on the Neolithic long barrow at Capo, present-day Aberdeenshire (NGR NO 633 664) has considerably enhanced our knowledge of this monument. Topographical survey has provided the first detailed record of the barrow and its environs. Resistivity imaging has revealed key elements of the structure of the long barrow, including side revetment walls, a flat façade and possible mortuary structures, confirming that the barrow at Capo is of a similar morphology to the nearby (excavated) long barrow at Dalladies. The resistivity survey has demonstrated that rabbit burrowing and the roots of the tree stumps that covered the barrow have had little effect on the integrity of the major structural elements of the monument (the revetments and façade). However, it is not possible to assess the more subtle damage, such as mixing of archaeological layers, which may have been caused. It is concluded that, whilst resistivity imaging at the survey density employed here is time-consuming and would not be appropriate at many sites, as a management tool and as a means to explore sites that are unavailable for excavation, such as scheduled ancient monuments, it has been demonstrated to be of considerable value.
1
Non-invasive fieldwork carried out on the Neolithic long barrow at Capo, present-day Aberdeenshire (NGR NO 633 664) has considerably enhanced our knowledge of this monument. Topographical survey has provided the first detailed record of the barrow and its environs. Resistivity imaging has revealed key elements of the structure of the long barrow, including side revetment walls, a flat facade and possible mortuary structures, confirming that the barrow at Capo is of a similar morphology to the nearby (excavated) long barrow at Dalladies. The resistivity survey has demonstrated that rabbit burrowing and the roots of the tree stumps that covered the barrow have had little effect on the integrity of the major structural elements of the monument (the revetments and facade). However, it is not possible to assess the more subtle damage, such as mixing of archaeological layers, which may have been caused. It is concluded that, whilst resistivity imaging at the survey density employed here is time-consuming and would not be appropriate at many sites, as a management tool and as a means to explore sites that are unavailable for excavation, such as scheduled ancient monuments, it has been demonstrated to be of considerable value.
2 - 4
This section describes the background to the project and the location of the archive. The intention was to determine how similar the Capo long barrow is the nearby Dalladies monument and to assess the extent of the damage caused by rabbit burrowing and tree-roots.
Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
5
The site was first identified in 1968 when it was surveyed. In 1990 shrubs and small trees surrounding and covering the long barrow were removed.
Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
6 - 7
Four components were identified including a natural terrace, long barrow, a low mound to the east of the long barrow and a trapezoid enclosure system of banks and ditches enclosing the barrow and mound. The relationship between the low mound and the long barrow could not be established. Two flints were recovered from eroded parts of the earthen bank around the long barrow. They were a small secondary chunk of yellow pebble flint, probably a by-produce of knapping and a broken fragment of an unusual plano-convex flint knife of Neolithic or Bronze Age date.
Graeme Warren
7
Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
8 - 14
Capo long barrow is covered with tree stumps and bracken so was considered unsuitable for a geophysical radar survey. A detailed account of the method of resistivity imaging is provided. A total of 48 profile views were taken along with plan views. Profiles taken to the east of the long barrow in front of the presumed entrance and over the low mound proved to be inconclusive.
Lindsey Collier
Bruce A Hobbs
Tim Neighbour
Richard Strachan
15
Resistivity survey has been successful in revealing key elements of the structure of the barrow including side revetment walls, a flat frontal façade and possible mortuary structures confirming that the monument has the same morphology as Dalladies. Rabbit burrowing and tree roots have had little effect on the integrity of the major structural elements (revetment and façade) though it has not been possible to assess the more subtle damage that might have occurred.
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