Restoration of the Hurlers, Cornwall


    FURTHER work of restoration on the Hurlers, the stone circles near Minions, Cornwall, has been carried out during the past four Weeks on behalf of the Office of Works under the supervision of Mr. R. Ralegh Radford, director of the British School of Archæology at Rome. These circles have been under the guardianship of, and owned by the Office of Works since 1935, when certain preliminary work of investigation and restoration of the central circle was undertaken. According to a statement made by Mr. Radford (The Times, August 12) the recent investigations have been directed to the examination of the northern circle. Four stones, additional to the previously known twelve, were found under modern tip heaps, and will be re-erected in the original sockets. Missing stones will be indicated, as in the central circle, by low stumps inserted in the original positions. The damage to the interior of the northern circle by mining test-holes and digging will be repaired by filling and levelling. A floor of granite fragments similar to that discovered in 1935, washed out of the surface soil, has been discovered covering the greater part of the interior of the circle. Its thickness is less than that of the previously discovered floor, this possibility, it is suggested, being due to it having remained in use for a longer period. An interesting feature now brought to light is a rough pavement between the northern and central circles, and running along their common axis. This pavement is about six feet wide but does not reach out to both circles. The suggestion of a ceremonial purpose will, no doubt, be elucidated when examination is completed before the close of the season's work. Flint implements, more numerous than in 1935, include several types characteristic of the early metal age, with some of an earlier period. Work will be continued in 1939, when it is hoped to restore the monument to its original appearance, so far as that is possible. It is also intended to explore the neighbouring barrow, in which the Rillaton gold cup, now in the British Museum, was found. This has never been explored scientifically.

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    Restoration of the Hurlers, Cornwall. Nature 142, 324 (1938).

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