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Sulbrick Keeill

Period: Early Medieval

NGR Easting: 230910

NGR Northing: 474620

Description: Medieval chapel and burial ground. The keeill is orientated ENE-WSW, and measures internally 5.3 by 2.5m. The walls are 1m thick and survive to a height of up to 1.2m above the original floor level. The walls have the appearence of drystone construction but are bound together with clay mortar and topped with turf. Boulders and surface stones were used and the irregular coursing may have encouraged the partial collapse of the 'east' wall to the extent that the Manx Archaeological Survey of 1918 recorded that the outer face of the wall appeared to be absent. The outer face of all four walls was found to be partially obscured by collapsed masonry.

The doorway is located in the 'west' gable, and the Survey suggested that traces of a window cill survived at the east end of the 'south' wall. The collapsed condition of the 'east' wall as found was thought to preclude the survival of evidence for a window in the gable.

The floor was intermittently paved, mainly near the entrance, and the subrectangular base of the altar could be traced, with maximum dimensions of 1.3 by 0.75m, standing to a maximum height of 0.6m. The front of the altar foundations was marked by a slab of granite, in front of which was found a larger slab which was thought to represent the top of the altar table. This stone was later investigated in 1937 and proved to have cup marks on the underside, suggesting an earlier, prehistoric, use. The stone is now stored by the Manx Museum.

The Survey uncovered a total of thirteen graves, five of which were partially overlain by the chapel, indicating that the graveyard was established before the chapel was built. The full extent of the graveyard cannot now be traced on the surface, though the area now enclosed by the protective fence is slightly raised.

Manx Cross 62 is assumed to have come from this site, on the basis that no other chapel and burial ground are known in the vicinity.

View map location on Archaeology Data Service

Site & Monument Type: keeill

Category: National Monuments Record: Statutory Ancient Monuments

Site ID number: 0752.00