Kleinenkneter Steine 2


Country: Germany Land: Lower Saxony, Bremen Type: Passage Grave
Nearest Town: Wildeshausen Nearest Village: Kleinenkneten
Latitude: 52.862790N Longitude: 8.437221E



submitted by RunaStera

Unique funnel-beaker site consisting of three passage-graves within a kerbed long-barrow near Wildeshausen in Lower Saxony.

(Site description submitted by Martin_L , June 2009)

This site is rather exceptional. Among the several thousand neolithic funnel-beaker sites in Northern Europe (esp. Denmark, Germany, Poland, Sweden, Netherlands) it is the only site where there are three passage-graves within a long-barrow enclosure. The only similar neolithic long-barrow is situated near Emmen (D43 Langgraf Emmen Schimmeres) in Drenthe, Netherlands and contains two passage-graves. Of course there are a few funnel-beaker sites, where megalithic long-barrows contain two, three or even four chambers, but in all these cases these tombs are 1- or 2 capstone chambers (dolmen or extended dolmen) not larger chambers as in this two cases. The site was excavated in 1934 and some restoration took place.
Remark: All numberings used in the following descriptions start in the West.

Enclosure:
The nearly completely preserved enclosure is orientated approximately SW-NE and measures 34 x 8m. At least 55 kerbstones are almost in situ. As usual the largest kerbstones are placed at the narrow sides. The long sides' width varies between 6m near the centre and 8m near both ends. The narrow sides probably are/were slightly rounded. Nevertheless the enclosure nowadays appears to be nearly rectangular (although this seems be a result of the partly reconstruction). Professor Sprockhoff assumed, that first there just were two passage graves (Passage grave 1 and 3) each with their own oval enclosure. Passage-grave 2 was built later between them and a joint enclosure was established.

Earthwork/Barrow:
Barrows' earthwork is largely removed.

Passage-grave 1:
Rectangular chamber built of 14 orthostats (1 on each narrow side, 6 one each long side), clear size approximately 8m x 1,8m. Lateral passage between orthostat NW3 and NW4, length 2,5m, built of 1 pair of orthostats and the adjacent pair of enclosure kerbstones. The chamber has 4 capstones. Capstone 2 was already blown into pieces, but the remaining fragments were reassembled.

Passage-grave 2:
Slightly trapezoid chamber built of 14 orthostats (1 on each narrow side, 6 one each long side), clear size approximately 5m x 1,5m. Lateral passage to the SE, length 3m, built of 2 pairs of orthostats between chamber-orthostats SE3 and SE4. Nowadays all 6 chamber-capstones are in situ, but this is a result of the reconstruction. When Sprockhoff et al. examined the site in the 1920s all capstones of this chamber were missing. Under excavation lots of grave goods were found in this chamber as it was less robbed than the other chambers.

Passage-grave 3:
Rectangular chamber built of 14 orthostats (1 on each narrow side, 6 one each long side), clear size approximately 7m x 1,8m. Lateral passage situated in the middle of the south-eastern long side, length 2,5m, built of 1 pair of orthostats and the adjacent pair of enclosure kerbstones. Only the impressive chamber-capstone 1 is preserved in situ, the other 5 capstones and the passage-capstone(s) are missing.

Remarks:
During my last visit in May 2009 the site unfortunately was somewhat neglected and urgently needed some gardening. Several small trees were growing inside the enclosure and the chambers. Although the opening ceremony for the recently established “Strasse der Megalithkultur” (“Road of megalithic culture” a signposted road leading along several sites in the western part of Lower-Saxony) was held at this an the neighbouring site there obviously was not enough money to care for it.

References:
[1] Sprockhoff in: Körner, G. (Ed.), Sprockhoff, E. Atlas der Megalithgräber Deutschlands, Niedersachsen-Westfalen, Rudolf Habelt Verlag GmbH, Bonn 1975, p. 65
[2] Rothmann, B. - www.steinzeugen.de (Excellent website covering megalithic tombs and barrows in the „Naturpark Wildeshauser Geest“, “Emsland” and other nearby regions)

Runastera wrote in 2005:
An irregeluar shaped enclosure, 34m in length and 6 to 8m wide surrounding 3 burrial chambers. The stones of the middle chamber are proportionally smaller than those of the other two. Kleinenkneter Steine II, as well as Kleinenkneter Steine I, were excavated between 1934 and 1939. Over 10,000 pieces of pottery, some stone axes, amber beads and a small copper disc were found. This very impressive site (I made about 80 photos ;-) is located 4km south of the city of Wildeshausen in the county of Oldenburg (OL): 52° 51.77' N 008° 26.23' E



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
Overview from a height of approximately 3,5m. Standing beside the south-western narrow-side of the enclosure. Three passage graves in a row. Photo taken in May 2009. The site needs some gardening.



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
Enclosures' south-western narrow side with four impressive kerbstones. Scale 1,83m/6ft. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
North-eastern narrow side of passage-grave 2. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
South-western half of passage-grave 3. Only one impressive capstone remained. The orthostats are in situ. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
Passage-grave 1 viewed from the East. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
Looking along the chambers. Foreground: Passage-grave 3. Centre: the only remaining capstone of chamber 3. Viewed from the East. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by Martin_L
Looking along the chambers. Foreground passage-grave 1. Viewed from the West. April 2008



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by greywether
Looking NE with the capstones of the SW chamber in the foreground and the large triangular stone in the distance covering the NE chamber.August 1994



Kleinenkneter Steine 2 submitted by RunaStera
Entrance of chamber 3

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