stonehenge essay research paper i

Stonehenge Essay, Research Paper

I. On Salisbury Plain in Southern England stands Stonehenge, the most celebrated of all megalithic sites. Stonehenge is alone among the memorials of the ancient universe. Isolated on a windswept field, built by a people with no written linguistic communication, Stonehenge challenges our imaginativeness.

The impressive rock circle stands near the top of a gently inclining hill on Salisbury Plain about 30 stat mis from the English Channel. The rocks are seeable over the hills for a stat mi or two in every way. Stonehenge is one of over 50 thousand prehistoric “megalithics” in Europe.

As Stonehenge is approached, the 40 elephantine rocks seem to touch the sky. Most of the rocks stand twenty-four or more pess high. Some rocks weigh every bit much as 40 dozenss. Others are smaller, weighing merely five dozenss. At first glimpse, the rocks may look to be a natural formation. But a closer expression shows that merely human imaginativeness and finding could hold created Stonehenge.

II.The Stonehenge today looks rather different from the Stonehenge of old. Wind and weather have destroyed a small of Stonehenge over the ages. Peoples have destroyed much more.

Today, less than half of the original rocks still stand as their builders planned. Many of the one time unsloped rocks lie on their sides. Religious fiends, who felt threatened by the enigmas posed by Stonehenge, knocked over many of the standing rocks. They toppled some of the immense rocks, which so split into pieces; they buried others.

Other rocks were “quarried” over the centuries as free constructing stuff and hauled off. Even into this century, visitants have come with cocks to transport away a bit of rock with them.

III.Only in recent old ages have the rocks been protected from the immense sums of people that see them every twelvemonth. No longer can anyone roll among the rocks. Excessively much harm, knowing or non, has been done by the 100s of 1000s of visitants. Today, tourers are even prevented from walking between the rocks for fright that the 1000000s of footfalls every twelvemonth might do the rocks unstable.

IV.The twelfth-century English author and historian, Geoffrey of Monmouth, foremost recorded Merlin’s edifice of Stonehenge in his celebrated book History of the Kings of Britain. Geoffrey claimed that his book was a interlingual rendition of “a certain really ancient book written in the British language.” However, no other bookman or historian knows of the being of such a book.

Harmonizing to Geoffrey, the great rocks were brought from Ireland to England to tag the burial topographic point of a group of slain British princes. These prince-warriors had been faithlessly killed by Hengist, the leader of an ground forces of Saxons who invaded Britain around 450 Ad

Others said to hold built Stonehenge were the Devil, ( disguised as a gentleman ) , the Romans, the Druids, the people of the Lost Continent of Atlantis, Indians of North America, and the Phoenicians of Greeks.

V.There look to be three stages of building known as I, II, and III.

Stonehenge I ( 3100 to 2300 B.C. )

Stonehenge I was a big alfresco circle about one hundred paces across. A soil bank six pess high and a ditch seven pess deep and 10 to twenty pess broad made the circle. The first phase of Stonehenge was rather simple. It had two round embankments separated by a ditch. The Aubrey Holes were dug and the Heel Stone was in topographic point. There may hold been a wooden construction in the center.

Merely within the bank was a circle of 56 holes, named “Aubrey’s Holes” after their inventor. Some of these were used for entombments. The four Rocks of the Seasons, placed harmonizing to the place of the Sun at the morning of the summer solstice, were in the centre of the platform.

Stonehenge II ( 2150 to 2000 B.C. )

Europe was still in the Neolithic age when the 2nd stage of Stonehenge began. The entryway was widened into an avenue to the terminal rock, or Heel Stone, merely outside the chief group. Blue/hued rocks were brought from the Prescelly Mountains in Wales, some 125 stat mis off. They were arranged in two homocentric circles on the platform. How these rocks were transported is one of the greatest enigmas of Stonehenge, even today.

This 2nd stage was ne’er to the full completed. Suddenly it was replaced by a new, more grandiose undertaking, and the bluish rocks were taken off. No 1 knows where they were taken. The 3rd stage began about instantly after this happening.

Stonehenge III ( 2000 B.C. to 1100 B.C. )

For this stage, new rocks were brought from a prey in Marlborough Down, 27 stat mis from Stonehenge. Once carved, they were arranged to organize a broad circle covered with a uninterrupted header. The 30 perpendicular verticals and the horizontal holes were ingeniously fitted together.

In the centre of the circle stood five great trilithens. Each of these constructions was formed of three rocks in signifier of an upside-down “U.” The trilithens were arranged in a semi-circle, so that merely one gap led to the inside. At morning on the forenoon of the summer solstice, the first beam of Sun penetrats the interior point; after go throughing over the Heel Stone, to make the really centre of the semi-circle formed by the trilithens.

Subsequently in the Bronze Age, the memorial underwent some minor alterations. Some of the bluish rocks from Prescelly were recovered and put in the infinite outlined by the five trilithons. The construction so consisted of three homocentric circles of unsloped rocks.

The clip period for this building was comparatively short. Within about one-hundred old ages, the major part of Stonehenge had been completed. Therefore, about four-thousand old ages ago the cardinal portion of Stonehenge stood excellently on the Salisbury Plain. Some of these bluish rocks were taken down and moved once more. Around 1000 BC,

the avenue was extended all the manner to the River Avon.

VI.Gerald Hawkins, an uranologist from Harvard College Observatory, felt that the most obvious intent for Stonehenge was a immense of import calendar, taging one major twenty-four hours in the twelvemonth, the summer solstice. After more computing machine research, Hawkins found that Stonehenge besides seemed to tag important rises and scenes of the Moon. He programmed his computing machine to nail where the Sun and Moon rose and set in 1500 BC. The consequences were amazing. Hawkins wrote, “There was no uncertainty. Those of import and frequently duplicated Stonehenge alliances were oriented to the Sun and moon. &#8221 ;

Harmonizing to Hawkins theory, Stonehenge was a mammoth celestial calendar. Hawkins theorized that Stonehenge besides served as a beginning of power for priests and their people. Hawkins besides theorized that Stonehenge “served as an rational game.” Hawkins questioned why these thought, intelligent people would halt with the simple alliance of Stonehenge.

He answered his ain inquiries, composing, “I think that the work forces who designed its assorted parts enjoyed the mental exercising above and beyond the call of responsibilities. They had to put themselves more challenges, and seek for more hard, honoring, and dramatic solutions, partly for the greater glorification of God, but partially for the joy of adult male, the thought animal. &#8221 ;

Hawkynss returned to the Stonehenge mystery in 1964. This clip he focused his energies on the alliance of the Aubrey Holes, and came to a decision. He concluded that the Aubrey Holes were used to foretell occultations of the Moon. He theorized that the holes were a immense “Neolithic computing machine”, proposing that the priests of Stonehenge placed wooden markers in certain Aubrey Holes. By traveling the markers, people could cipher and predict occultations of the Moon. Hawkins reached that decision by observing that eclipses occur in a perennial rhythm of every 18.61 old ages.

Three times 18.61 rounded off is 56, the exact figure of the Aubrey Holes. By traveling markers from hole to hole around the ring, occultations of the Moon could be predicted.

Another celebrated British scientist, Fred Holye, professor of uranology at Cambridge University, made his analysis of the astronomical usage of Stonehenge after analyzing Hawkins sight lines. Hoyle agreed that Stonehenge was an astronomical sight; nevertheless, he disagreed with Hawkin’s thoughts about the standing rocks of Stonehenge III.

Hoyle believed that while these builders had great accomplishment, they did non hold the astronomical accomplishment to build such a complicated celestial calendar. Stonehenge can be used to foretell Easter and Passover, two spiritual vacations unknown by the early builders of Stonehenge. The early builders may non hold understood all the elaboratenesss of the Stonehenge heavenly calendar.

Hawkin’s theory seemes to reply many inquiries about the astronomical significance of Stonehenge.Yet, his theories posed many more inquiries.

VII.Hundreds of books and articles have been written about Stonehenge. Almost every writer has had new thoughts or theories about it. Over the old ages, some of the secrets have been uncovered. Archaeologist digs have revealed many things about Stonehenge. However, we can merely think at how these alliances were used. We can merely theorize as to the ceremonials performed around the great rocks.

Besides, we can merely speculate as to why Stonehenge was of all time conceived and constructed. The rocks still tower over the Salisbury Plane. They stand and have stood for 1000s of old ages.

We may ne’er cognize all the replies to the inquiries environing Stonehenge. Until we can stand in the footfalls of the people of Stonehenge, we will ne’er reply all of the inquiries and conundrums environing it. Still, the great soundless rocks challenge us to seek to unknot their secrets.

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