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Landscape and Identity: Archaeology and Human GeographyKurt D. Springs 2015 © BAR Publishing
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The Chalcolithic wedge tombs of Ireland represent a dramatic re-emergence of megalithism over a millennium after most Neolithic megaliths were built and many centuries after most had gone out of use. This resurgence of building monuments associated with the dead may well have been associated with a period of social instability caused by the expansion of exchange networks and associated with the introduction of metallurgy. Regional, group, and individual identities all seem to have undergone change at this time, probably in a dynamic demographic context. Variations in the distribution and scale of wedge tombs in Co. Clare, on the west coast of Ireland, provide an interesting study that may reveal a pattern of clan affiliations, status competition, and enduring links to an important and ancient locale.
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