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COYGAN CAVE

Site Details



NPRN 103399

Map Reference SN20NE

Grid Reference SN28480913

Unitary (Local) Authority Carmarthenshire

Old County Carmarthenshire

Community Laugharne Township

Type of Site CAVE

Period Palaeolithic

Site Description Limestone cave, explored on occasion through the 19th-20th centuries, producing Palaeolithic faunal remains & artefacts: possible site of Roman patera hoard (see Ward 1976), associated with Coygan Camp (Nprn107373).

Sources: Grimes & Cowley 1935 (AC 90), 95-111;
Clegg 1969 (Carm. Ant. 5), 13-20;
Aldhouse Green et al. 1995 (PPS 6), 37-79;
Ward 1976 (Carm. Ant. 12), 22-5.

Threatened by quarrying (Nprn114659).

RCAHMW AP955108/49, 55

J.Wiles 11.01.05

Coygan Cave, a limestone cave near Laugharne now destroyed by quarrying, was extensively excavated and produced evidence of human and animal occupation dating from the last (Devensian) Ice Age.
The human presence at the site dates from the Middle Palaeolithic. Archaeological finds were few but included two hand axes of Mousterian type which are associated with Neanderthals. This occupation has been dated to c.64,000-38,000 years ago, most likely before 50,000 years ago. Upper Palaeolithic and Postglacial occupation may also be represented at the site.
The excavations yielded an extensive and characteristic 'hyaena den' fauna which included woolly rhinocerous, horse and bison. The Mousterian occupation was stratified close to the base of this accumulation which possibly extended until about 24,000 years ago.
See sources listed above.

David Leighton, RCAHMW, 26 October 2007

Archive Records