added by archaeologs A bank of earth which accumulates on the downhill side of an ancient plowed field as the disturbed soil moves down the slope under the action of gravity. It is a small-scale terracing effect visible particularly in ancient field systems which is caused by accumulation of soil against an obstruction such as a field boundary. Field boundaries, such as banks or walls, become enlarged and overlaid by material loosened in the cultivation process. A corresponding erosion from the downslope side of the boundary creates a negative lynchet. Lynchets are conspicuous in the square Celtic fields (Bronze Age to Romano-British in date) and in the long rectangular fields, the so-called strip lynchets, laid out on sloping terrain in post-Roman and medieval times.
added by archaeologs A step-like feature of the landscape, formed when colluvial material, eroded as a result of ploughing, accumulates downslope against a field boundary. Series of lynchets may develop up hillsides, marking the boundaries of ancient fields.
The Macmillan dictionary of archaeology, Ruth D. Whitehouse, 1983