Interpreting Rock-Cut Grave Cemeteries: The Early Medieval Necropolis and Enclosure of São Gens, Portugal

Stuart Brookes, Catarina Tente, Sara Prata

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

EXCAVATION AT SÃO GENS (Guarda district) in central Portugal has revealed an early medieval rock-cut grave cemetery and settlement, along with Roman and prehistoric evidence. The site presents an exceptionally rich palimpsest of archaeological monuments. This paper reviews the findings and seeks to address the problem of interpreting rock-cut grave cemeteries, by describing a spatial analytical methodology that draws on comparisons with early medieval cemeteries in England, as a means of enhancing the information deficit of such necropolises. In the light of these analyses, an interpretation of the São Gens site is offered in conclusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-238
Number of pages24
JournalMedieval Archaeology
Volume61
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2017

Keywords

  • Rock-cut graves
  • Portugal
  • Anglo-Saxon England
  • cemetery analysis
  • hunting settlement

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