The Journal of Antiquities

Ancient Sites In Great Britain & Southern Ireland

Yockenthwaite Stone Circle, North Yorkshire

SD8997 7938. The so-called Yockenthwaite stone circle stands by a footpath in a valley on the north bank of the river Wharfe close to the hamlet of Yockenthwaite in Langstrothdale, just west of the B6160 road. Buckden village is 4 miles to the south-east, while another hamlet, Deepdale, lies just a little to the north of the winding country road to Hawes. The circle is near to Yockenthwaite farm. Although many historians call it a stone circle it is actually a Bronze-Age ring cairn with a circle of small stones (kerbstones) that are still quite clearly defined.

The stone circle consists of 20 small stones set almost edge to edge that are roughly 3 feet high, covering a diameter of 25 feet. These stones are, infact, the kerbstones of what remains of a burial cairn or ring cairn where a prominent tribal chieftain was buried. Just outside the circle at the north west side are a few other stones that make up an outer, concentric ring and a few portal stones that formed the entrance. In the middle of the circle a small mound can just be made out, which would have been the site of a burial. Originally, there would have been a mound of earth covering the stones but this has long since gone. Just to the north of the circle are what could be the remains of another burial cairn.

English: Yockenthwaite Stone Circle A small (2...

Yockenthwaite Stone Circle (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The name Yockenthwaite is said to be of Scandinavian origins. Thwaite meaning ‘a clearing’, while Yocken could be a derivation of ‘Eogan’ of probable Irish origins – hence we get the place-name ‘Eogan’s clearing’. Thwaite is quite a common place-name is the Yorkshire Dales and also in north-eastern England giving us some idea where Norse invaders came to settle in the 9th-11th centuries.

 

Source:-

Raistrck, Arthur., The Pennine Dales, Arrow Books, London, 1972.

Author: sunbright57

I am interested in holy wells, standing stones and ancient crosses; also anything old, prehistoric, or unusual.

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