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Archaeological excavation report, E3541 Danesfort 1, County Kilkenny.

Jennings, RP and Coughlan, T (2012) Archaeological excavation report, E3541 Danesfort 1, County Kilkenny. National Monument Service. Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Dublin..

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Abstract

Irish Archaeological Consultancy Ltd (IAC), funded by the National Roads Authority (NRA) through Kilkenny County Council, undertook an excavation at the site of AR080B, Danesfort 1 along the proposed N9/N10 Kilcullen to Waterford Scheme, Phase 4 – Knocktopher to Powerstown (Figure 1). The following report describes the results of archaeological excavation at that site. The area was fully excavated by Richard Jennings under Ministerial Direction A032 and Excavation Registration Number E3541 issued by the DOEHLG in consultation with the National Museum of Ireland for IAC. The fieldwork took place from 25 June to 11 July 2007. A circular geophysical anomaly recorded by ArchaeoPhysica Ltd (2005) was re- examined in the fieldwork phase and was shown to be a ringditch. It had a total diameter of 11.8m and an internal diameter of 7.8m. The ditch was U-shaped and no deeper than 0.75m. The ringditch was almost perfectly circular apart from a kink in its south-east side, the reason for which is unknown. The ditch was filled with a stony basal layer, a charcoal- rich middle layer and an upper layer of silting. Three deposits of cremated animal bone and some animal teeth were found within the charcoal-rich layer. No cremated material or features were found in the interior of the ringditch. No conclusive evidence survived to indicate whether there was originally an associated bank or mound. Three small postholes were identified a short distance away from the ringditch. Their function is unknown and it is unclear what their relationship to the ringditch is, if any. A sample of charred hazelnut shell from ringditch fill C4 was radiocarbon dated. The 2 sigma calibrated result was AD28–215 (UBA 15556). The site at Danesfort has identified the remains of a ringditch that was probably used in the middle Iron Age for ritual and burial purposes. Token depositions of cremated bone, despite the absence of confirmed human bone, show that careful and considered deposition took place at the site. The presence of a possible personal ornament in the form of fused glass, possibly a bead that had been subject to high temperature, is further evidence of token deposition at the site. The site is of local importance as it widens our understanding of Iron Age activity in this area, together with complimentary evidence from other sites excavated in the area as part of the N9/N10 Phase 4. The significance of the site in terms of the further study of ringditches from the wider region cannot be underestimated.

Item Type: Other
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
Divisions: Biological & Environmental Sciences (new Sep 19)
Publisher: National Monument Service. Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Dublin.
Date Deposited: 20 May 2021 11:14
Last Modified: 20 May 2021 11:14
DOI or Identification number: 10.7486/DRI.st74s655h
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/14920

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