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Knowe of Lairo, Neolithic long horned cairn
Knowe of Lairo, Rousay, Orkney
The Knowe of Lairo is an early Neolithic (c.3600-3200 BC) Orkney-Cromarty long horned cairn with a tripartite chamber. The mound has horns at its east end and measures just over 45m long from the mouth of the chamber to its tail. It is 17m wide at the horns and over 4.5m high.
The chamber would originally have been stalled, but additional walling was inserted during the life of the tomb, creating a chamber c.4.5m long by less than 1m wide. This chamber rises to an incredible 4.2m high and narrows to around 50cm wide. Various lintels run across the chamber above head height.
The passage is 5.8m long and just 50cm wide at the entrance. Although the chamber is 1.2m high inside, the collapse of a lintel during the life of the tomb restricts the passage to just 50cm x 40cm part way along!
For info see CANMORE: https://canmore.org.uk/site/2203/knowe-of-lairo
Thanks to Kirsty Mainland for permission to access and model the tomb.
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