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Depicting the Dead: Commemoration Through Cists, Cairns and Symbols in Early Medieval Britain

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 May 2007

Howard Williams
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology, University of Exeter, Laver Building, North Park Road, EX4 4QE, UK; h.m.r.williams@exeter.ac.uk.

Abstract

This article develops recent interpretations of mortuary practices as contexts for producing social memory and personhood to argue that early medieval cairns and mounds served to commemorate concepts of gender and genealogy. Commemorative strategies are identified in the composite character, shape and location of cairns and in their relationship with other commemorative monuments, namely Class I symbol-stones. The argument is developed through a consideration of the excavations of early medieval cists and cairns at Lundin Links in Fife.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2007 The McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research

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