A second Stonehenge have been found!

Posted: October 6, 2009 in Archaeology, Excavation, History
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

During an excavation this summer archaeologists made a remarkable find, a new Stonehenge not far from the world-famous one! The new Stonehenge got the name “Bluestonehenge” after the 25 Welsh stones the monument consisted of. The monument was discovered on the west side of the river Avon. The monument have probably been about 10 metres in diameter and was surrounded by a henge which was a ditch with an external bank. The leader of the excavation is the archaeologist and Professor Mike Parker Pearson from the University of Sheffield.

Even if this new “Stonehenge” isn’t  really big it has quite an interesting story to tell. The bluish Welsh stones gathered at Preseli mountains of Wales 150 miles away from the site was removed thousands of years ago. The monument have probably been a sign marking the end on a route from Stonehenge to the river Avon and was constructed during the end of the Stone Age. The henge surrounding the monument was built about 2400 BC but during the excavations arrowheads were founds. The arrowheads was typological dated to be 500 years older so it is probable that the henge was built about 2900-2400 BC. Carbon-dating have been taken from the site but the results are not finished but will reveal more dating material to the site.

I think we have found incontrovertible proof that the river was very important to the people who used Stonehenge. I believe that the river formed a conduit between the living and the dead and this is the point where you leave the realm of the living at the river and enter the one of the dead at Stonehenge” says Parker Pearson.

Even if it is quite likely that the river have been important to leave the realm of the living and enter the one of the dead it is very hard to say today. Talking about peoples feeling in the past several thousands years ago is very difficult and are often based on ethnology and what we know about more modern times. Nevertheless sometimes it can be important and necessary to at least try to discuss peoples feelings from the past to understand our history and how humans have developed religion, society, rituals and so on over time. And when talking about human feelings it is sometime the way we feel most connected with the prehistoric human.

When the monument was constructed the builders used deer antlers as pickaxes which is quite common. The use of deer antlers was quite common during in the Stone Age and was quite common in Scandinavia and other places as well. The “Bluehenge” might be a form of form of early hengemonument related to the Stonehenge. The blue stones could have been moved from the river bank to Stonehenge but results from carbon-dating hopefully show if that is the case. Stonehenge was rebuilt about 2500 BC which the stones from “Bluehenge” could have been removed and incorporated in the Stonehenge. At 2500 BC the Stonehenge became Britain’s largest burial ground and archaeologist Parker Pearson thinks it is possible that people were cremated at “Bluehenge” and the ashes were later buried at Stonehenge. But the new monument show that the river Avon most likely have been of great importance and seems to a have relationship with Stonehenge. Hopefully the new results will present more information about the new henge as well as making the knowledge about the Stonehenge and Stone Age more rich and complete.

Read the full article here

Picture from gurdian.co.uk


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