Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Solving Stonehenge - The New Key to an Ancient Enigma

If you are going to visit Stonehenge then I highly recommend reading this book first
Solving Stonehenge - The New Key to an Ancient Enigma
Astronomy or Architecture?
The construction of Stonehenge reflects the empirical discovery of mathematical truths. Its design embodies the elegant and universal symbolism of numbers and geometry. 4,500 years ago Neolithic surveyors and engineers understood and employed the relationships between squares and circles. They accurately created polygons which included hexagons pentagons decagons; the classic 30 sided figure which determined the positions of the Sarsen Circle (a 'triacontagon') is itself a product of these fundamental shapes.

The 'horseshoe' form of the central array was derived from the same markers that determined the position of the Sarsen Circle. Beyond the circle, the four 'Station Stones' sit in perfect spatial and geometric relationship with the central group. A modern preoccupation with 'alignments' has masked the elegantly simple formulae used by the prehistoric designers.

" This is a wonderful book--the most attractive, readable, sensible, and most comprehensive exploration of Stonehenge available. Happily, it rises above the arcane astronomical theories so fashionable in recent years, emphasizing what can be truly seen on the ground, not on what some claim to see in the sky. It is a haunting, graceful tribute to prehistoric genius, Neolithic administrative expertise, premeditated geometric design, and careful peg and cord surveying. For 15 centuries, the actual experience of creating and recreating Stonehenge was probably equal to the glory of the final product itself. Johnson (Oxford) finds his evidence in both the existing monument and in early British sketches, particularly the meticulous 1740 work of John Wood. In April 2008, for the first time in four decades, a tiny archaeological excavation was permitted at Stonehenge. Its full results have not yet
been published, but they will be minor adjustments. Johnson's present synthesis will stand the test of time. The book is a tribute to him and to the high standards of Thames & Hudson, and should be profitable, delightful reading for everyone.

Stonehenge Tour Guide

Monday, 18 July 2011

Tours from Antiquity - Stonehenge Archaeology Tours

Tours from Antiquity – Stonehenge Archaeology Tours

A new London tour operator has launched guided tours that depart frequently from London.  Tours from Antiquity offers a unique opportunity to explore the awe inspiring world famous Stonehenge and Avebury Prehistoric Landscapes with an expert service, guided by a qualified archaeologist. Offering a superb day long tour from the centre of London to these fantastic prehistoric wonders.

The tour includes -
West Kennet Long Barrow - One of the largest Neolithic burial tombs in Britain. The West Kennet Long Barrow was constructed about 3700 BC, and was in continual use for well over 1000 years.
Silbury Hill - The largest man-made mound in ancient Europe, Silbury Hill was constructed c2800 BC. Even after centuries of research, archaeologists have still not discovered the original purpose of the Hill - ideas include it use as a territorial marker, burial mound and as a cenotaph.
Avebury Henge, Stone Circle and West Kennet Avenue - The largest stone circle in Europe, Avebury formed the centre of one of the most impressive Neolithic ceremonial landscapes in Britain. The great circles, 200 standing stones arranged in an outer and 2 inner circles, surrounded by a massive bank and ditch, were the focal point of the area. They were connected by the West Kennet Avenue of standing stones to other locales in the region, including the Sanctuary on Overton Hill - the site of a postulated temple. Hundreds of great sarsen stones from the downland around, often weighing over 20 tonnes, were used in the construction of the site, some 2500-2200 BC.

Durrington Walls - is the site of a large Neolithic settlement and later henge enclosure. It is 2 miles north-east of Stonehenge. Recent excavation at Durrington Walls, support an estimate of a community of several thousand, thought to be the largest one of its age in north-west Europe. At 500m in diameter, the henge is the largest in Britain and recent evidence suggests that it was a complementary monument to Stonehenge
Woodhenge - Neolithic monument, dating from about 2300 BC, six concentric rings, once possibly supported a ring-shaped building
Stonehenge Cursus - (sometimes known as the Greater Cursus) is a large Neolithic cursus monument next to Stonehenge. It is roughly 3km long and between 100 and 150m wide. Excavations by the Stonehenge Riverside Project in 2007 dated the construction of the earthwork to between 3630 and 3375 BC. This makes the monument several hundred years older than the earliest phase of Stonehenge in 3000 BC.
Bronze Age round barrows - The Stonehenge UNESCO world heritage site is said to contain the most concentrated collection of prehistoric sites and monuments in the world. One monument type missed by the casual observer is that of the Bronze Age round barrow (burial mounds). As we walk through this landscape, you will come into contact with these intriguing ancient burial sites and through the expertise of our tour leaders, you will come face to face with the customs and people of Bronze Age society buried in close proximity to the unique stone circle of Stonehenge.

Stonehenge Avenue - Walk along the Stonehenge Avenue and approach this unique stone circle as was the intended route experienced by the Stonehenge's contempories.

Admission to Stonehenge - The great and ancient stone circle of Stonehenge is an exceptional survival from a prehistoric culture now lost to us. The monument evolved between 3000 BC - 1600 BC and is aligned with the rising and setting of the sun at the solstices.
You will enjoy the passion and enthusiasm expressed by our professional Archaeologist tour leaders.

Why choose Tours From Antiquity?

Tours From Antiquity conduct ONLY Archaeology Tours, and as a result we believe we offer an excellent up-to-date specialist service; giving you the opportunity to learn in great detail about these amazing prehistoric sites, but also leaving you time to explore your surroundings by yourself.

Tours From Antiquity is owned by qualified archaeologists and our tourleaders are all qualified archaeologists, offering the most professional service possible.

On our tours you will be travelling with no more than 17 other people - guaranteed. With smaller group sizes comes a more personalised excursion experience.

Our tour coaches offer luxury transport, with good air circulation and clear PA system.

Our itineraries are carefully planned offering the very best experience while you discover as much as possible.

Alternatively you could use the  'The Stonehenge Tour Company' (established 1995) who offer a wide range of Stonehenge and Avebury Tours -
Or 'Salisbury Guided Tours -
or HisTOURies UK for private tours of Stonehenge and Avebury -

Stonehenge Tour Guide

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Australian Stonehenge - Close to completion........

JILLIAN and Kim Beale’s construction of what is thought to be the world’s only life-size replica of the ancient Stonehenge ruins on their 1,066 acre Merivale Road property has taken another step forward with the addition of a new outer circle.

The Esperance couple took on the challenge of what they have called StoneHengeEsperance after the stones, which were originally cut for a similar project which was planned for Margaret River, became available when that project fell through.

Until three weeks ago, the build had included ten horseshoe stones – the highest being 7.7 metres and weighing anywhere from 38-55 tonnes – set with an 18 tonne lintel on top of each pair.

Following a brief construction lapse, the Beales have now erected an outer circle of 19 trilithon stones, surrounded by a circle of 30 sarsen stones weighing 28 tonnes.
“We have already had the most fantastic response from visitors,” Jillian Beale said

Stonehenge (UK) Tour Guide