Barony of North Cadbury
Somerset, England                                                                                                                                                                                                              

      Cadbury Castle



Cadbury Castle is Somerset's largest hill fort, from which the Barony of North Cadbury (Cadeberie - Cada's Fort) takes its name.                                                                                       Cadbury Castle also known as Camelot Castle, is a bronze and iron age hillfort in the civil parish of South Cadbury.

William Stukeley "Prospect of Camalet Castle. 15 Aug 1723." A view of Cadbury Castle, an Iron Age hillfort in Somerset, England.

This ancient site is deeply connected with the legendary King Arthur. The hill is the most probable site of King Arthur's principle court famously called Camelot.    

It is also be said by an ancient writer to have been one of the stations of the Round Table of King Arthur. The following account of this singular fraternity will be interesting to the reader: "This Round Table was kept at several places, especially at Caerleon in Monmouthshire, at Winchester, and at Camalet in Somersetshire."

   Excavations at Cadbury Castle

In June 1913 trial excavations were held on Cadbury Castle. The excavations took place in the south west corner of the hill said by some to be the 'Camelot' of King Arthur. Six men were employed in the excavation work. Many pieces of pottery of the Romano-British era were found as well as evidence of walls and ramparts and a small child's skeleton. The work was carried out on behalf of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. More recent excavations of the site were led in the 1960s to 1970 by archaeologist Leslie Alcock and since 1992 by the South Cadbury Environs Project.


The excavations


History table at Cadbury Castle

History table at the foot of Cadbury Castle in South Cadbury

Cadbury Castle aerial view

      Camelot Finds         

Findings from the excavations at Cadbury Castle 1960-1970 © Camelot Research Committee

         Glas bed, pre-Roman Iron Age
           Silver coin, Roman, 109 BC
          Gilt bronze letter from Roman temple
           Hinge from Roman soldier's armour
             Bronze brooch, 1st century AD


Findings from the excavations at Cadbury Castle 1960's-1970. © Camelot Research Committee

                                                                            Neolithic flint arrowhead                                                      
                                                                               Late Bronze Age knife    
                                                     Bronze harness fitting and ‘safety-pin’ brooch, Iron Age
                                                                    Rim of imported dish, 5-6th cent AD
                                                                         Gilt-bronze, mid-6th cent AD
                                                                                     Late Saxon knife



Archaeological clay fragments from the excavations at Cadbury Castle. Original press photograph c.1960's-1970.

Interesting description on the back.

Skeleton of a young adult male buried in the defences at Cadbury Castle. Probably 1st century BC/A.D. Photo postcard from the excavations 1960's-1970 © Camelot Research Committee

The book 'By South Cadbury is that Camelot...' Excavations at Cadbury Castle 1966-70 is an excellent reference about the excavations at Cadbury Castle in the years 1966-1970. This book of great archaeological and historical importance was published by Thames and Hudson Ltd in 1972 and it is interesting to note that it was also published in Germany by Gustav Lübbe Verlag, Bergisch Gladbach in 1974.

Among the excavations a vast number of unusual findings were found here, especially from the assumed time of King Arthur around the fifth and sixth century. This indicates that then a very rich and powerful personage had his seat at Cadbury Castle.