Monday, June 24, 2013

New Book: "Stonehenge—A New Understanding"

Revelers at a Celtic summer solstice celebration at Stonehenge.
Each year revelers like these travel to Stonehenge to celebrate the summer solstice.
Photograph by Jim Richardson, National Geographic

Rachel Hartigan Shea
Published June 21, 2013

Druids—and sometimes aliens—have been suspected of planting the 4,500-year-old stones. Is Stonehenge an astronomical calendar or a place of healing or a marker for magical energy lines in the ground? For a long time, no one really knew, though some theories were more grounded in reality than others.

But now, we may be a little bit closer to understanding the monumental Neolithic site. Archaeologist Mike Parker Pearson and his colleagues at the Stonehenge Riverside Project, whose research was funded in part by the National Geographic Society, spent seven years excavating Stonehenge and its surroundings. This month, Parker Pearson published the project's findings in a new book, Stonehenge--A New Understanding: Solving the Mysteries of the Greatest Stone Age Monument.

The important thing was not to dig just at Stonehenge but to actually investigate the wider landscape around it and to begin by looking at this area of the timber circles close by. It was there that we found that the place of wood had indeed to do with the living.

When we came back to Stonehenge and dug there, we recovered some 60 cremation burials inside Stonehenge. What we now know is that Stonehenge was the largest cemetery of its day.

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Source: National Geographic Society.

The Experiment Publishing Company: New Book Stonehenge--A New Understanding: Solving the Mysteries of the Greatest Stone Age Monument:
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Related Blog Posts ---

Stonehenge: Burial Site for Stone Age Elite ?  (2013 March 9):

Link >>>

Stonehenge: Massive Stones Preceded Smaller Stones  (2012 Dec. 2):

Link >>>

A Swedish Stonehenge?  (2012 Oct. 22):

Link >>>

Stonehenge Laser Scan Shows Importance of Solstices  (2012 Oct. 10):

Link >>>

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