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Camlork Keeill and Burial Ground

Period: Early Medieval

NGR Easting: 235770

NGR Northing: 478690

Description: Medieval chapel and burial ground. The site lies in a field traditionally known as the 'Chapel field'. The chapel and a small sub-rectangular enclosure surrounding it are left undisturbed at the edge of a cultivated field.

The chapel is orientated east-west, and measures 5.8 by 3.5m internally. The walls vary in thickness between 0.9 and 1.2m, and stand 0.3 to 0.6m high, though at the time they were recorded by the Manx Archaeological Survey in 1918, survived up to a maximum of 1.2m. The north-west corner of the structure is particularly damaged. The walls are faced with stone in irregular courses and the fill in between made up of earth and small stone. A slight indication of the altar against the east wall still survives, though this is only discernible as a rise in the turf. A slight bank of material outside the walls probably comprises material derived from the collapse of the walls.

The surrounding enclosure is roughly 25 by 17m, and is visible as a rise in the ground. The Survey was of the opinion that the enclosure had been cut through by the road to the south, and it would seem likely that it has also been abbreviated by ploughing on the north-east side. The bank defining the enclosure was recorded by the Survey as about 1.2m wide, but in some places was spread as much as 2.4m, and rising in places to a height of 1.3m; it is much reduced now. A number of large stones lying on the surface would appear to have been placed relatively recently, and probably derive from agricultural disturbance in the surrounding field.

There are no recorded burials, but the once substantial nature of the surrounding bank and the raised interior would together seem to imply that the enclosure was once used for this purpose. The localised presence of clay inside the chapel, taken by the Survey to indicate decayed Bronze Age burials predating the Christian use of the site, has since been dismissed as unfired clay daub.

View map location on Archaeology Data Service

Site & Monument Type: keeill

Category: National Monuments Record: Statutory Ancient Monuments

Site ID number: 0684.00


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