Type

Journal Article

Authors

Frank Prendergast

Subjects

History

Topics
passage tomb archaeology cultural astronomy classical archaeology and art history ireland neolithic orientation archaeoastronomy

Interpreting Megalithic Tomb Orientations and Siting Within Broader Cultural Contexts (2016)

Abstract This paper assesses the measured axial orientations and siting of Irish passage tombs. The distribution of monuments with passages/entrances directed at related tombs/cairns is shown. Where this phenomenon occurs, the targeted structure is invariably located at a higher elevation on the skyline and this could suggest a symbolic and hierarchical relationship in their relative siting in the landscape. Additional analysis of astronomical declinations at a national scale has identified tombs with an axial alignment towards the rising and setting positions of the Sun at the winter and summer solstices. A criteria-based framework is developed which potentially allows for these types of data to be more meaningfully considered and culturally interpreted within broader archaeological and social anthropological contexts.
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Full list of authors on original publication

Frank Prendergast

Experts in our system

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Frank Prendergast
TU Dublin
Total Publications: 24