Universiteit Leiden

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Research project

Beyond and Before Barrows

Prehistoric burial mounds are still ubiquitous in the Northwest European landscape, but not much is known on the landscape they were part of, nor on what preceded them.

David Fontijn

Municipality of Apeldoorn

Kroondomein ‘t Loo

LDE Centre for Global Heritage

Research question

In what sorts of landscape were barrows situated?

What was there before these monuments were constructed?

How can we best protect these remnants of the prehistoric past for future generations?



Fieldwork is carried out to reconstruct the (pre-)historic environment of newly discovered barrows in the municipality of Apeldoorn, the Netherlands. Research focuses on sites located in natural reserves of the Veluwe, in areas that are still ‘terra incognita’, but where archaeological features run the risk of disappearing with a trace. Aim is to assess the potential of the surroundings of barrows, to valorize this information to land owners, and interested visitors of the Veluwe, and to find ways to protect these landscapes as archaeological heritage.

Special attention is paid to detecting traces of pre-barrow settlement from the Palaeolithic,  Mesolithic and Neolithic 

Fieldwork leader Arjan Louwen investigates a mysterious mound deep in the forests of Apeldoorn


Leiden students research a puzzling prehistoric feature in the vicinity of a barrow


Guided tours for visitors!


Leiden Archaeology students discovered the remnants of a prehistoric long barrow



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