Region : Orkney Home
Island : Papa Westray (Papay) Map
Town or village : Holland List
Grid Reference : HY 483 518 Glossary
Period : 3500-3100 BC Bibliography
Knap of Howar

Knap of Howar image

Two oblong stone-built houses, dating from 3500 BC. Both were subdivided into rooms by upright stone slabs and were furnished with hearths, pits and cupboards.
The larger building (in the photo) was the farmhouse, divided into an outer living/sleeping room and an inner cooking room (the quern is still in position). The smaller building, added later, seems to have been a store or a workshop.
Today they are situated on the coast, but 5500 years ago the seashore was farther west. It is probably the oldest surviving human settlement in western Europe.
In care of Historic Scotland