Spatial Structures and Symbolic Systems in Irish and British Passage Tombs: the Organization of Architectural Elements, Parietal Carved Signs and Funerary Deposits

Guillaume Robin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Passage tombs are the most elaborate monuments that were built during the Irish and British Neolithic, not only because of their complex monumental architecture but also because they are the only type of tomb that has carvings and such a diversity of funerary objects. This article focuses on the spatial organization of these three components of passage tombs and identifies several recurrent structures that are classified into three groups. From these spatial structures, an abstract elementary model is proposed that helps to understand the conceptual principles and the symbolic significations that guided the construction, decoration and use of the monuments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-418
Number of pages46
JournalCambridge Archaeological Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010



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