Lanyon Quoit is perhaps the best known and most photographed of any of Cornwall’s prehistoric monuments – but it also unfortunately one of the least authentic! It originally dated from the early Neolithic period (3500-2500 BCE) and consisted a large capstone 5.3m (171⁄2ft) long and 2.7m (9ft) wide on 4 upright support stones, similar to Chûn Quoit on the moors to the west [available as a downloadable leaflet]. However, in 1815 it collapsed in a storm and some stones were fractured, so that when it was re-erected in 1824 (at right angles to its original position) the capstone was placed on only 3 uprights which were shortened and squared off. It is thus much lower than before, and does not retain the distinctive rectangular box-like appearance of other Quoits. It originally stood at the northern end of a burial mound 27m (90ft) long and 12m (40ft) broad, the outline of which is still visible. At the southern end is a collection of stones which may originally have formed a small chamber or cist. In the 18th century Dr.Borlase dug at the site and reported that between the support stoones, he had found a grave containing ‘black earth’.