Discovery of Bluestonehenge, a “Mini-Stonehenge”


This past week, archaeologists announced the discovery of a miniature version of England’s Stonehenge, and located just a mile or so from the latter, which is of course the most famous megalithic stone circle in the world.   

The new discovery is called “Bluestonehenge,” owing to the color of the stones used to build it — though the stones were actually removed around 2,500 BC and incorporated into Stonehenge, leaving only traces at the old site.

The actual purpose of Stonehenge still remains a matter of considerable debate.  Gerald Hawkins’ argument that it served as an ancient astronomical observatory caused quite a stir when he first published his ideas in the 1960s (see his Stonehenge Decoded in the reading list below).  Hawkins described the monument as a sort of “neolithic computer,” designed to predict eclipses, among other things.

The discovery of Bluestonehenge comes thanks to the University of Sheffield’s Stonehenge Riverside Project, which has been involved in fieldwork at the site since 2003.  Archaeologists with the Riverside project have concluded “that burials were a major component of Stonehenge in all its main stages.”     

Occult, New Age and counter-cultural interest in Stonehenge continues, and in recent years modern-day Druids have regained access to the monument for solstice ceremonies and the like (which had been denied for some years).          

If you’re interested in reading further, Greensboro Public Library has a number of books on Stonehenge and other stone circles, though some of them are a tad dated.  These include:  Stonehenge by Rosemary Hill; Stonehenge by Catherine M. Petrini (juvenile); Great Stone Circles:  Fables, Fictions, Facts by Aubrey Burl; Rings of Stone:  The Prehistoric Stone Circles of Britain and Ireland by Aubrey Burl; Stonehenge Complete by Christopher Chippindale; The Enigma of Stonehenge by John Fowles & Barry Brukoff; Stonehenge and its Mysteries by Michael Balfour; Stonehenge:  The Indo-European Heritage by Leon E. Stover & Bruce Kraig; The Pattern of the Past by Guy Underwood; and Stonehenge Decoded by Gerald S. Hawkins in collaboration with John B. White.


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