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stonehenge_work by yaofenji


									A mystery for the history of the
1.- Stonehenge
2.- More about Stonehenge.
3.- When it was build.
4.- Who build Stonehenge?
5.- Why Stonehenge is build?
6.- Phases and investigations of Stonehenge
          6.1.- Phase I
          6.2.- Phase II
          6.3.- Phase III
                   6.3.1.- Sub-phase 3¡
                   6.3.2.- Sub-phase 3¡¡
                   6.3.3.- Sub-phase 3¡¡¡
                   6.3.4.- Sub-phase 3¡v
                   6.3.5.- Sub-phase 3v
                   6.3.6.- Sub-phase 3v¡
7.- The Heel Stone
8.- Archaeoastronomy and Stonehenge
9.- The bluestones
10.- Myths and legends
11.- How to get there
12.- In plot
13.- Some words
14.- My opinion

Stonehenge is a mysterious place where you can go if you want to
see his surprising things.
For over 5000 years it has stood silent vigil over the earth. It has
been excavated, x-rayed, measured, and surveyed. Yet despite all
that has been learned about its age and construction, its purpose
still remains one of the great mysteries of the world.
A lot of Archeologist, scientist and other people that study this
place, say that the most probably is that around 3500 BC the semi-
Nordic peoples that populated the Salisbury Plain began to build the
monument now known as Stonehenge.
                                                     The original
                                                     construction was a
                                                     circular ditch and
                                                     mound with 56 holes
                                                     forming a ring around
                                                     its perimeter.

The first stone to be placed at the site was the Heel Stone. It was erected
outside of a single entrance to the site. 200 years later 80 blocks of
bluestone was transported from a quarry almost 200 miles away in the
Prescelly Mountains.
It is surmised that these blocks were transported by way of rafts along the
Welsh coast and up local rivers, finally to be dragged overland to the site.
These stones were erected forming two concentric circles. But
the most surprising thing is that some of these massive stones
weigh as much as twenty six tons. It remains a mystery how
such huge stones could have been moved from the quarry at
north Wiltshire by a supposedly primitive people.
As much of a mystery is how the construction itself was
accomplished. Carefully carved lintels were placed on top of
pairs of upright stone blocks, held in place by the use of ball
and socket joints. These constructions have become known as
"trilithons". The final element to be added was the alter block, a
large block of green sandstone from South Wales that was
placed in front of one of the trilithons.
But well, these things that I’ve just to tell you, are very superficially; let’s go
to explain more about Stonehenge!
          More about Stonehenge
   The name Stonehenge is derived from the Old
 English words Stanhen gist meaning the 'hanging
    stones' and has given its name to a class of
monuments known as henges. Archaeologists define
henges as earthworks consisting of a circular banked
          enclosure with an internal ditch.

    How I have said, Stonehenge is a megalithic
 monument on the mainly of thirty upright stones,
 aligned in a circle, with thirty lintels (6 tons each)
     perched horizontally atop the sarsens in a
   continuous circle. There is also an inner circle
composed of similar stones, also constructed in post-
                  and-lintel fashion.
                Constructed without the use of draft animals and shaped by stone tools,
           Stonehenge was erected many miles from the quarry from which the stones came.
              It is an amazing feat of engineering. The building of Stonehenge is usually
            portrayed as a grand project commissioned by the King of Britain (be it Arthur,
            Aurelius or Uther). However, the archaeological evidence at Stonehenge simply
           does not support this. The archaeology points to a construction date between 5,000
            and 3,000 years ago (more than likely, several construction dates over this time).

   No one is quiet sure how old it is,
who built it or what it's function was.
   There are many theories, ranging
 from an astronomical observatory (it
   is aligned such that it can predict
eclipses etc) to religious temples or to
               a calendar.
      More than nine hundred stone rings exist in the British Isles,
Stonehenge is special because these megalithic structures as rings rather
than circles since only 2 percent of the structures are in the shape of true
   circles; the other 98 percent are constructed in a variety of elliptical
   shapes. And Stonehenge, however, is roughly circular. And that is
 another reason for made Stonehenge an interesting thing, because, not
 just that we don’t know certainly who build Stonehenge, when it was
    build or why it was build too, also, Stonehenge is very especial in
relation to another stone rings that exist in the British Isles. Stonehenge
 is unique among all the other sites in England. Its sophistication goes
           beyond the simple stone circles found in other areas.
When it was build?

The Stonehenge complex was built in several construction phases spanning 2,000
years although there is evidence for activity beforehand and long afterwards on
the site. Three large Mesolithic postholes have been found nearly by
archaeologists, beneath the modern carpark and dating to around 8000 BC
although there is no suggestion they are connected with the later monument. The
burial of a decapitated Saxon man has been excavated at the site and dated to the
seventh century AD. Dating and understanding the various phases of activity at
Stonehenge is not a simple task; it is complicated by poorly-kept early
excavation records, surprisingly few accurate scientific dates and the disturbance
of the natural chalk by periglacial effects and animal burrowing.
It is nearly impossible to precisely date the stone rings, but it is known that it
could be constructed during the Neolithic period. In southern England the
Neolithic period dates from the development of the first farming communities
around 4000 BC to the development of bronze technology around 2000 BC, when
the construction of the megalithic monuments was mostly over.
Who build Stonehenge?

The question of who built Stonehenge is largely unanswered, even
today. The monument's construction has been attributed to many
ancient peoples throughout the years, but the most captivating and
enduring attribution has been to the Druids. This erroneous connection
was first made around 3 centuries ago by the antiquary, John Aubrey, in
the seventeenth century, well before the development of archaeological
dating methods and accurate historical research; he surmised that
Stonehenge and another megalithic structures were constructed by the
Julius Cesar and other Roman writers told of a Celtic priesthood who
flourished around the time of their first conquest (55 BC). By this time,
though, the stones had been standing for 2,000 years, and were, perhaps,
already in a ruined condition. Besides, the Druids worshipped in forest
temples and had no need for stone structures.
The best guess seems to be that the Stonehenge site was begun by the
people of the late Neolithic period (around 3000 BC) and carried
forward by people from a new economy which was arising at this time.
These "new" people, called Beaker Folk because of their use of pottery
drinking vessels, began to use metal implements and to live in a more
communal fashion than their ancestors. Some think that they may
have been immigrants from the continent, but that contention is not
supported by archaeological evidence. It is likely that they were
indigenous people doing the same old things in new ways.
During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, prehistorians
attributed Stonehenge and other stone rings to Egyptian and
Mycenean travellers who were thought to have infused Europe with
Bronze Age culture. With the development of Carbon dating
techniques, the infusion-diffusion conception of British Neolithic
history was abandoned and the megalithic monuments of Britain (and
Europe also) were shown to predate those of the eastern
Mediterranean, Egyptian, Mycenean, and Greek cultures.
Why Stonehenge is build?

Stonehenge is angled such that on the equinoxes and the solstices, the
sun rising over the horizon appears to be perfectly placed between
gaps in the megaliths. But this is purely coincidence - the Earth's orbit
has shifted several times in the 5000 years since it was built, and at
the time of it's construction, the sun would not have lined up with the
gaps at all!

The monument is believed to have been an astronomical calendar used for
clocking and predicting the seasons. Some researchers link it to the Crop
Circle phenomenon and visitors from other worlds.
        Stonehenge has been called an astronomical observatory for marking
       significant events on the prehistoric calendar. Others claim that it was a
     sacred site for the burial of high-ranking citizens from the societies of long

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Oxford University engineer Alexander Thom and the
astronomer Gerald Hawkins pioneered the new field of archaeoastronomy - the study of
the astronomies of ancient civilizations. Conducting precise surveys at various stone rings
and other megalithic structures, Thom and Hawkins discovered many significant
astronomical alignments among the stones. This evidence suggested that the stone rings
were used as astronomical observatories. Moreover, the archaeoastronomers revealed the
extraordinary mathematical sophistication and engineering abilities that the native British
developed before either the Egyptian or Mesopotamian cultures.
Hawkins (in 1964) asserted the existence of twenty-four solar and lunar alignments at
Stonehenge, and he proposed the theory that the monument could have been used as a
calculator to predict eclipses....However, it is now recognized that Hawkins was clearly
wrong about Stonehenge's possible use as a calculating machine to predict eclipses. And it
is also agreed that he overestimated the number of solar and lunar alignments
involved....The 'discovery' of known alignments in megalithic sites has give the
impression of remarkable astronomical knowledge on the part of late Neolithic builders,
whereas in most cases the precision involved derives fundamentally from the investigator
who knows the relevant alignments in advance and 'finds' them in the site.
Two thousand years prior to Euclid's elucidation of the Pythagorean triangle
theorems and at least 3000 years before the sixth century AD sage Arya Bhata had
"discovered" the concept and value of Pi, the British megalithic builders were
incorporating these mathematical understandings into their stone rings.
Current thinking regarding the use of Stonehenge suggests the primacy of ritual
function rather than astronomical observation. Astronomical observations would
indeed have been performed. Rather than being for the sake of accumulating data
regarding the movement of celestial bodies, as is the sole purpose of modern
observatories, the Stonehenge observations were probably intended to indicate the
appropriate days in the yearly ritual cycle. (The structure was clearly not used to
determine the agricultural cycle; in this region the summer solstice occurs well after
the growing season begins and the winter solstice well after the harvest is
finished.) Likely the primary purpose of the structure was its use as a ritual site,
while its secondary use was as an astronomical observation device in service to that
ritual function. In speaking about its architectural form and function, Benjamin
Ray suggests that Stonehenge, especially in its middle and later form, was intended
to be a stone (and thereby imperishable) replica of the kind of wooden sanctuary
that was locally common in Neolithic times. Had the ancient builders been
interested primarily in making precise astronomical observations, they would not
have chosen Stonehenge's circular form with tall stones. That form contains far
more stones than are needed, has too many imprecise sightlines, and prevents
observation over the tall stones.
What was the nature of the rituals performed at Stonehenge? Ray theorizes
that, because Stonehenge is situated in an area rich in burial tombs, it may
have had some relevance in burial rituals. Its shape, which resembles that of
Neolithic ceremonial buildings, however, points more to its possible use as a
shrine for the living rather than for the dead. As a temple for the living,
Stonehenge's capacity to determine the dates of the solstices and equinoxes
becomes all important. Throughout the ancient world people have regarded
the sun and moon as sacred beings whose (apparent) cyclical rhythms, with
their seasonal strengthening and weakening, had a positive, magical, and
rewarding effect upon the life of human beings. Stonehenge and the large
number of other stone rings located throughout the British Isles (and the
world) are part solar/ lunar observatory and part ritual structure. The mystery
remains: Why?
Phases and investigations of Stonehenge

In the 1940s and 1950s, Richard Atkinson proposed that construction occurred in
three phases, which he labelled Stonehenge I, II, IIIa, IIIb, and IIIc. This sequence
has recently been revised in Archaeological Report published by English Heritage.
In the summer of 1996 investigator and friend, Colin Andrews, discovered a 7 inch
glyph in the inner ring of a stone about four feet from the ground. The pattern
matches one of the Crop Circles.
Stonehenge has a long history of building and remodelling, but excavation has
revealed that there were 3 main periods of building. The first beginning, about 3100
BC, was late in the Neolithic age and included the digging of a circular ditch and ring
of 56 pits called the Aubrey Holes. In the second period, about 1,000 years later, the
massive rock pillars were somehow transported from Southern western Wales, and
put up in two distinct concentric rings around the center of the site. It is believed that
this double circle was never finished and was dismantled during the period of
Phase I (2950-2900 BCE)

The earliest portion of the complex dates to approximately 2950-2900 BCE
(Middle Neolithic) (A lot of scientists think that it could be around 3100 BC).
It is comprised a circular bank, ditch, and counterscarp bank of about 330 feet
(115 metres) in diameter. Just inside the earth bank is a circle of 56 holes
known as Aubrey holes after John Aubrey, the seventeenth century
antiquarian who was thought to have first identified them. The pits may have
contained standing timbers although there is no excavated evidence of them.
Phase II (c. 2900-2400 BCE)

Evidence of the second phase is no longer visible but people place it for the
second and third millennium BC. After 2900 BCE and for approximately the
next 500 years (until 2400 BCE), post holes indicate timber settings in the
centre of the monument and at the north-eastern entrance. The bank was
purposefully reduced in height and the ditch permitted to silt up. At least
twenty five of the Aubrey Holes are known to have contained later, intrusive,
cremation burials dating to the two centuries after the monument's inception.
It seems that whatever the holes' initial function, it changed to become a
funerary one. Thirty further cremations were placed in the enclosure's ditch
and at other points within the monument, mostly in the eastern half.
Stonehenge is therefore the earliest known cremation cemetery in the British
The numerous post holes indicate timber structures but no clear patterns or
configurations are discernible that would suggest their shape, form, or
Pieces of unburnt human bone have also been found in the ditch. Late
Neolithic Grooved ware pottery has been found in connection with features
from this phase providing dating evidence.
Phase III

Sub-phase 3¡

Archaeological excavation has indicated that around 2600 BC, two concentric crescents made
from holes (called the Q and R Holes) were dug in the centre of the site. Again, there is little
firm dating evidence for this phase. The holes held 80 standing bluestones brought from the
Preseli Hills, 250 km away in modern day Pembrokeshire in Wales. The stones were mostly of
spotted dolerite but including examples of rhyolite, tuff and volcanic and calcareous ash and
weighing around 4 tons. What was to become known as the Altar Stone, a six ton specimen of
green micaceous sandstone twice the height of the bluestones, was also brought from Wales and
may have stood as a single large monolith.
The entrance was also widened at this time with the result that it precisely matched the
direction of the midsummer sunrise and midwinter sunset of the period. The monument was
abandoned unfinished, the bluestones were apparently removed and the Q and R holes were
purposefully backfilled. The monument appears to have eclipsed the site at Averbury in
importance towards the end of this phase and the Amesbury Archer, found in 2002 three miles
(5 km) to the south, would have seen the site in this state.
The Heel Stone may also have been erected outside the north eastern
entrance during this period although it cannot be securely dated and
may have been installed at any time in phase 3. At first it was joined
by a second stone, now no longer visible. Two, or possibly three, large
portal stones were set up just inside the north eastern entrance of
which only one, the fallen Slaughter Stone, 16 ft (4.9 m) long, now
remains. Other features loosely dated to phase 3 include the four
Station Stones, two of which stood atop mounds known as 'barrows'
although they do not contain burials. The Avenue), a parallel pair of
ditches and banks leading 3 km to the River Avon was also added.
Ditches were later dug around the Station Stones and the Heel Stone,
which was by then reduced to a single monolith.
sub-phase 3ii

During Phase III the monument underwent a complicated
sequence of settings of large stones. The first stone setting comprised a series of
Bluestones placed in what are known as the Q and R Holes (sub-phase 3i). These
were subsequently dismantled and a circle of Sarsens and a horseshoe-shaped
arrangement of Trilithons erected (sub-phase 3ii).
The next major phase of activity at the tail end of the third millennium BC saw 74
enormous Sarsen stones brought from a quarry around 20 miles (30 km) north to the
site on the Marlborough Downs. The stones were dressed and fashioned with
mortice and tenon joints before 30 were erected as a 30 m diameter circle of standing
stones with a 'lintel' of 29 stones resting on top. Each weighed around 25 tons and
had clearly been worked with the final effect in mind. The orthostats widen slightly
towards the top in order that their perspective remains constant as they rise up from
the ground whilst the lintel stones curve slightly to continue the circular appearance
of the earlier monument.

                                   Part of the outer Sarsen Circle with lintels in place.
                                   In front of them are stones of the Bluestone Horseshoe
Within this circle stood five trilithons of dressed sarsen stone arranged
in a horseshoe shape. The huge stones, ten uprights and five lintels,
weigh up to 50 tons each and were again linked using complex
jointings. The images of a 'dagger' and 14 'axeheads' have been seen
carved on one of the sarsens, known as stone 53. Further axehead
carvings have been seen on the outer faces of stones known as
numbers 3, 4 and 5. They are difficult to date but are morphologically
similar to later Bronze Age weapons.
This ambitious phase is radiocarbon dated to between 2440-2100 BC.
The Sarsen Circle, about 108 feet (33 metres) in diameter, was
originally comprised of 30 neatly trimmed upright sandstone blocks of
which only 17 are now standing. The stones are evenly spaced
approximately 1.0 to 1.4 metres apart, and stand on average 13 feet (4
metres) above the ground. They are about 6.5 feet (2 metres) wide and
3 feet (1 metre) thick and taper towards the top.

      They originally supported sarsen lintels forming a continuous circle around the top.
      Each lintel block has been shaped to the curve of the circle. The average length of
      the rectangular lintels is 3.2 metres (10' 6"). The lintels were fitted end-to end using
      tongue-and-groove joints, and fitted on top of the standing sarsen with mortice and
      tenon joints. The Sarsen Circle with its lintels is perhaps the most remarkable
      feature of Stonehenge in terms of design, precision stonework, and engineering.
Sarsen stones are hard-grained sandstone with a silaceous cement. They were
probably brought to the site from the Marlborough Downs, about 30 kilometres to
the north of Stonehenge.

The Trilithons are ten upright stones arranged as five freestanding pairs each with a
single horizontal lintel. They were erected within the Sarsen Circle in the form of a
horseshoe with the open side facing north-east towards the main entrance of the
monument. They were arranged symmetrically and graded in height; the tallest is in
the central position. Only three of the five Trilithons are now complete with their
lintels. The other two both have only one standing stone with the second stone and
lintel lying on the ground.

Bluestones may have been added next (sub-phase 3iii) but were subsequently

        Two of the Trilithons
        In front of them can be seen two of the upright bluestones, which
        originally formed an oval inside the horseshoe of Trilithons
Sub-phase 3iii

Later in the Bronze Age, the bluestones appear to have been re-erected for
the first time although the precise details of this period are still unclear.

Sub-phase 3 ¡v

This phase saw the further rearrangement of the bluestones as they were placed
in a circle between the two settings of sarsens and also in an oval shape in the
very centre. Some archaeologists argue that some of the bluestones in this period
were part of a second group brought from Wales. In sub-phase 3iv, a Bluestone
Oval added within Trilithon Horseshoe and a Bluestone Circle added outside
the Trilithon Horseshoe but inside the Sarsen Circle. The Altar Stone may have
been moved within the oval. Although this would seem the most impressive
phase of work, Stonehenge 3iv was rather shabbily built compared to its
immediate predecessors, the newly re-installed bluestones were not at all well-
founded and began to fall over. This period dates to 2280 to 1930 BC
The term "Bluestone" refers to various types of mostly igneous rocks including
dolerites, rhyolites, and volcanic ash. It also includes some sandstones. The
Bluestones at Stonehenge are believed to have originated from various outcrops
in the Preseli Hills in Pembrokeshire in Wales. How they were transported to the
site at Stonehenge has been the subject of much speculation.
sub-phase 3v

Soon afterwards, part of the northern section of the Phase 3iv Bluestone circle was
removed, creating a horseshoe-shaped setting termed the Bluestone Horseshoe.
This mirrored the shape of the central sarsen Trilithons. and is dated to 2270-1930
BC. This phase is contemporary with the famous Seahenge site in Norfolk.
Sub-phase 3vi

In the final sub-phase (3vi), two circles, one inside the other, known as the Y and Z Holes
were dug for the placement of stones but were never filled.
Probably also dating to Phase III are the four Station Stones (only two of which survive, and
one of them has fallen). These sarsen stones stood just inside the Bank on more or less the
same line as the Aubrey Holes. Two of the Station Stones were surrounded by circular ditches
10 to 12 metres in diameter. These have caused the area enclosed by the ditch to appear
mound-like and have lead to the erroneous identification of each mound as a burial barrow.
Assigned to Phase III are also Stoneholes D and E and the recumbent sarsen known as the
Slaughter Stone located on the north-east side in a break in the bank-and-ditch in what is
regarded as the main entrance of the monument.
At this time was also laid out an earthwork known as the Avenue that extends north-east
from the break in the bank-and-ditch.
Located further along the Avenue , and most likely dating to this period, is the so-called Heel
Stone. The sarsen Heel Stone is approximately 16 feet high (4.88 metres), with another 4 feet
(1.22 metres) buried below ground. The Heel Stone is surrounded by a circular ditch of
approximately the same dimensions as the ditch surrounding each of the two Station Stones.
The stone now leans out of vertical but most likely once stood upright. Originally, the Heel
Stone may have been paired with another stone now missing (Stonehole 97).
Two further rings of pits were dug just outside the stone circle, called the Y and Z Holes.
These were each of thirty pits but were never filled with stones however and were permitted
to silt up over the next few centuries; the upper fills contain Iron Ageand Roman material.
Monument building at Stonehenge appears to have been abandoned around 1600 BC.
Stonehenge at the end of Phase III
The Heel Stone

Finally, mention should be made of the so-called Altar Stone, a
large dressed block of sandstone that lies embedded in the
ground within the Trilithon Horseshoe and "in front of" of the
central and largest Trilithon pair. Two fallen stones now lie across
it. The stone is believed to be Cosheston Beds Sandstone from
south Wales, and is the only example of this type of stone at
Stonehenge. It is 16 feet long (4.9 metres), 3 feet 6 inches wide (1
metre), and 1 foot 9 inches thick (0.5 metres).
Archaeoastronomy and Stonehenge

The monument is aligned north east - south west and it has been often suggested that
particular significance was placed by its builders on the solstice and equinox points so that for
example, on midsummer's morning, the sun rose close to the Heel Stone, and the sun's first
rays went directly into the centre of the monument between the horseshoe arrangement. It is
unlikely that such an alignment can have been merely accidental.
A huge debate was triggered by the 1963 publication of Stonehenge Decoded, by British born
astronomer Gerald Hawkins, who claimed to see a large number of alignments, both lunar and
solar and argued that Stonehenge could have been used to predict eclipses. Hawkins' book
received wide publicity, partly because he used a computer in his calculations, then a rarity.
Archeologists were suspicious in the face of further contributions to the debate coming from
British astronomer C. A. Newham and Sir Fred Hoyle, the famous Cambridge Cosmologist, as
well as by Alexander Thom, a retired professor of engineering who had been studying stone
circles for more than 20 years. Their theories have faced criticism in recent decades from
Richard Atkinson and others who have suggested impracticalities in the 'Stone Age calculator'
interpretative approach.
Today, the general consensus is that some of the astronomical case, although not all, was
overstated. Even so, since the sun rises in different directions in different geographical
latitudes, for the alignment to be correct, it must have been calculated precisely for
Stonehenge's latitude of 51° 11'. This alignment, therefore, must have been fundamental to the
design and placement of at least some of Stonehenge's phases. The recent discovery of a
neighbour to the Heel Stone has challenged the interpretation of it as a midsummer sunrise
marker and it may have instead been one side of a 'solar corridor' used to frame the sunrise.
Sun worship is certainly not an uncommon phenomenon amongst Neolithic peoples given
their reliance on it for crop fertility.
The bluestones

Roger Mercer has observed that the bluestones are incongruously finely worked and has
suggested that they were transferred to Salisbury Plain from an as yet unlocated earlier
monument in Pembrokeshire. Most other archaeologists agree that the Bluestones are only
roughly worked however compared with the sarsens. If Mercer's theory is correct then the
bluestones may have been transplanted to cement an alliance or display superiority over a
conquered enemy although this can only be speculation. Oval shaped settings of bluestones
similar to those at Stonehenge 3iv are also known at the sites of Bedd Arthur in the Preseli Hills
and at Skomer Island off the south west coast of Pembrokeshire.
 Some archaeologists have suggested that the igneous bluestones
and sedimentary sarsens had some symbolism, of a union
between two cultures from different landscapes and therefore
from different backgrounds.
Recent analysis of contemporary burials found nearby known
as the Boscombe Bowmen, has indicated that at least some of
the individuals associated with Stonehenge 3 did indeed
come from modern day Wales. Petrological analysis of the
stones themselves has verified that they could only have
come from the Preseli Hills and it is tempting to connect the two.
Aubrey Burl contends that the bluestones were not transported
by human agency at all and were instead brought by glaciers at least part of the way from Wales
during the Pleistocene. No geological evidence has been found for any glacial activity between
Preseli and Salisbury Plain however and no further specimens of the unusual dolerite stone
have been found in the vicinity.
Myths and legends

The Heel Stone was once known as the Friar's Heel. A folk tale, which
cannot be dated earlier than the seventeenth century, relates the
origin of the name of this stone: The Devil bought the stones from a
woman in Ireland, wrapped them up, and brought them to Salisbury
plain. One of the stones fell into the Avon, the rest were carried to the
plain. The Devil then cried out, "No-one will ever find out how these
stones came here." A friar replied, "That's what you think!,"
whereupon the devil threw one of the stones at him and struck him on
the heel. The stone stuck in the ground, and is still there.
Another Stonehenge’s legend

The legend of King Arthur provides another story of the construction of Stonehenge. It is told
by the twelfth century writer, Geoffrey of Monmouth, in his History of the kings of Britain
that Merlin brought the stones to the Salisbury Plain from Ireland. Sometime in the fifth
century, there had been a massacre of 300 British noblemen by the treacherous Saxon leader,
Hengest. Geoffrey tells us that the high king, Aurelius Ambrosius, wanted to create a fitting
memorial to the slain men. Merlin suggested an expedition to Ireland for the purpose of
transplanting the Giant's Ring stone circle to Britain. According to Geoffrey of Monmouth,
the stones of the Giant's Ring were originally brought from Africa to Ireland by giants (who
else but giants could handle the job?). The stones were located on "Mount Killaraus" and were
used as a site for performing rituals and for healing. Led by King Uther and Merlin, the
expedition arrived at the spot in Ireland. The Britons, none of whom were giants, apparently,
were unsuccessful in their attempts to move the great stones. At this point, Merlin realized
that only his magic arts would turn the trick. So, they were dismantled and shipped back to
Britain where they were set up (see illus. at right) as they had been before,
in a great circle, around the mass grave
of the murdered noblemen.
The story goes on to tell that Aurelius,
Uther and Arthur's successor, Constantine
were also buried there in their time.
                                    How to get there

By road

From Amesbury

2 miles west on the junction of A303 and A344/360

From London Gatwick Airport

Take the M23 motorway and join the M25 motorway, following the signs for Heathrow
From the M25, exit at junction 12 for the M3 motorway towards Basingstoke.
Once on the M3 follow it to junction 8 signed A303 Andover.
Continue on the A303 ALL the way until you reach a roundabout.
Go straight over this and 2 miles on bear right onto the A344 and the car park is on the right
hand side about 500 metres on.

From London Heathrow Airport

Follow signs to the M4 West.
Continue for about 2 miles and come off at junction 4b onto the M25 South bound.
Follow the signs for Gatwick Airport. From the M25, exit at junction 12 for the M3 motorway
towards Basingstoke.
Then follow the directions as above.
By train

The nearest train station to Stonehenge is Salisbury about 9.5 miles
From London the trains depart from Waterloo Station to Salisbury.
Check for times and prices as these may be subject to change, although
you can expect it to cost roughly £25 return and the trains depart
approximately every hour. The journey takes about an hour and a half.

By bus

The buses depart from Heathrow Airport and from Victoria Coach Station in the centre of
London. The journey takes about 2 hours and there are 3 departures daily.
Get off at Amesbury.
From there you can either walk (about 2 miles), catch a local bus, or get a taxi.

You can buy tickets on the coach, at the coach station, or from ticket agents for National
Express. You can expect it to cost about £12 return. It is the cheapest way to travel to
Stonehenge. If you are coming from Gatwick Airport you will need to first get to
Heathrow Airport or to Victoria coach station (you can do this by bus) and from there
change buses to Amesbury.
       => In plot

· Stonehenge take place in the Salisbury Plain, in
England. A lot of Archeologist, scientist and other people
that study and research things about Stonehenge, thinks
that the most probably is that around 3500 BC the semi-
nordic peoples that populated the plain began to build
this monument.
· Stonehenge is a megalithic monument made up of thirty
upright stones, aligned in a circle, with thirty lintels
(around 6 tons each) perched horizontally atop the sarsens
in a continuous circle. There is also an inner circle
composed of similar stones, also constructed in post-and-
lintel fashion.
· The original construction was a circular ditch and
mound with 56 holes forming a ring around its perimeter.
The first stone to be placed at the site was the Heel Stone.
It was erected outside of a single entrance to the site. 200
years later 80 blocks of bluestone was transported from a
quarry almost 200 miles away in the Prescelly Mountains.
· Stonehenge is very interesting with regard to another stone rings in
England because its one of very few 100% circular rings, the most of the
other rings, aren’t 100% circular.
A lot of archeologist and scientist, have studied this place, and haven’t
known when it could be construct, who could build it, or why people
built this… But well, there are a lot of theories and investigations:
A lot of researchers, think that it could be build around 4000 BC and 2000
BC, for the Neolithic period because of the studies that they have done.
There are a lot of theories for the question, “who built Stonehenge”.
Many researchers thinks that the semi-nordic people that populated the
Salisbury plain built it, but there are other ideas about it. Other, think
that it could be the Druids, who used Stonehenge to made his rituals.
Another possibility, is that the last (or not) Neolithic people built it, and
that is a very accepted idea, but it isn’t certainly who built the
And another question! Why Stonehenge is build? Nobody knows
certainly why, but there are a lot of theories too.
For example, many people think that it could have been an astronomical
calendar used for clocking and predicting the seasons. Other ideas are, for
example, that it could use for Neolithic ceremonials, or as a shrine for the
living rather than for the dead. As a temple for the living, the Stonehenge’s
capacity to determine the dates of the solstice and equinoxes…, etc.
· Stonehenge is divided in three phases: phase I, phase II, and phase III, the
third, is composed for sup-phase 3¡, sup-phase 3¡¡, sup-phase 3¡¡¡, sup-phase
3¡v, sup-phase 3v and sup-phase 3v¡. Which one, has one progress or more
that one, from the beginning until how it is now approximately.
Some words

1.- “trilithons”: Trilithons are constructions that have lintels placed
on top of pairs of upright stone blocks.
2.- Heel Stone: Is how the principal stone. How the heel of the
3.- Lintel: It is a piece of stone or wood over a door or a window.
4.- Megalith: It is a very large stone that stands on the ground and
that is thought to have been put there by people a long time ago.
5.- Solstice: It is one of the two times in the year when the sun is
farthest away from the equator. In the northern hemisphere, the
summer solstice is on June 21 or 22, and the winter solstice is on
December 21or 22. (A lot of people go to Stonehenge for the solstices
and the equinoxes)
6.- Equinox: It is one of the two days in the year when the day and
night are of equal length.
My opinion…
Stonehenge, is especial with regard to another stone
rings that exist in England, right, but I think that these
people that research Stonehenge's history want to put
stories where there aren’t anyone.
It’s true that it has a special form, and the technology
can’t know when it has constructed, what was her
function or who construct Stonehenge; and are very
interesting the things that a lot of researchers have
found, and the lot of times it has reconstructed and
redesigned… But… Will it change anything of our live?
The history that we learn at the school, is important,
because it has more interesting for us than four stones
that nobody know anything certainly; well, Stonehenge
is interesting for know another thing and have more
knowledge, why not, but I prefer sound ideas than a lot
of conjectures.








                                             Laura Oncins Antúnez 4rt ESOB

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