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Burying the Best in Saxon Berkshire
Saxon King in Lowbury Mound?


Saxon Grave under the Lowbury Barrow -  Nash Ford Publishing

 

  • On Lowbury Hill, on the border between Aston Upthorpe and Aldworth, there is a big Saxon burial mound.
  • A man was buried there in the late 7th century, next to an old Roman Temple.
  • The burial mound and the ruined temple became so well known that the hill was named after them. Lowbury means 'Burial Mound by the Enclosure (of the Temple)'.
  • The man buried there had lots of things with him: a spear, a sword, a shield, a knife, a small pair of shears (scissors), a bone comb in a small case and a posh bronze hanging bowl.
  • They were Saxon types of spear, sword and shield. The spear and the bowl were decorated with colourful and expensive enamel work. The Romano-British were good at doing this. The patterns were Celtic not Saxon.
  • The man might have been a king or chief of the 'Gewissae' (pronounced Yoo-iss-eye). These were a group of Saxon people living in the Vale of the White Horse.
  • Archaeologists think the king was buried on the hill by the old Roman temple to show that, although he was a Saxon, he ruled over Romano-British people too.
  • There were lots of Romano-British people living in Wallingford in the valley below the hill. The name means 'Welsh people's ford'. 'Welsh' is the Saxon word for the Romano-Britons.

 

    Nash Ford Publishing 2009. All Rights Reserved. This location is now administered by Oxfordshire County Council.