A Bronze Age Cist Cemetery at Howick, Northumberland

Clive Waddington, Geoff Bailey, Ian Boomer, Nicky Milner, Ann Clarke, Phil Clogg, Jacqui Cotton

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2 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports the results of the excavation of an Early Bronze Age cist cemetery on the mid-Northumberland coast at Howick. The Bronze Age site was discovered during the investigation of a Mesolithic hut site, the latter having been published separately as a monograph. A total of five cists were found with only one being adult-sized, the rest presumably for infants. Due to the acidic conditions on the site, only a few fragments of a small skull were found in Cist 2. Other small finds included a small sherd of Food Vessel urn in an area of disturbance next to Cist 5, smoothed limestone cobbles and some nodules of yellow ochre. Flints were found in most of the feature fills, but these are considered to be residual as they are directly comparable to the narrow blade material found within the Mesolithic hut and its environs. The siting of Early Bronze Age cist burials in coastal locations is thought to reflect contemporary settlement on the coastal margin and its hinterland. With no Bronze Age dwelling sites known from this area, these cemeteries have an added significance as they provide indirect evidence for Bronze Age settlement on the North-East coastal plain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-95
Number of pages31
JournalArchaeological journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


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