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Reply to "Stonehenge lore"

Originally posted by dear joshua:
the outer stones were chosen and used for to vibrate by placing large circles of people making a low gutteral noise that would cause the stones to vibrate they were calling the one from beyond the stars (God) to witness

Secular calendar theory

Most theories have guessed at a cultic purpose behind the astronomical design of the monument, on the grounds that such a mammoth undertaking must have had an ideological rather than practical basis. They derive from anthropology rather than from cultural and technological history. But Joseph Norman Lockyer (Stonehenge Astronomically Considered, 1906) and others have pointed out the practical value of astronomical observation at a time when there was no other way to establish precise calendar dates, whether these were needed for agricultural, social, or seasonal-religious reasons.

The double-level circle and the central stone of the monument define an observational vantage-point from which the precession of constellations could be accurately established. It would have been known from earlier and less massive constructions that these events corresponded precisely with the cycle of seasons, but wooden edifices, earth-mounds and even standing-stone circles would not retain accuracy over any long period. Without at least one authoritative standard, events and seasons had no chronological index, since the exact length of the year (including part-days) was not known, nor would the mathematics have been available to extrapolate from it. There was a good reason for a massive and permanently immobile construction at a flat inland location where all sides of the sky could be equally measured.

The modern view of astronomy as a pure-science, which would seem to be of little practical use to primitive Britons, can make us forget that astronomy was a key factor in the transition from the hunter-gatherer culture to an agricultural one. The motivation for the sort of co-operative effort needed by such a large constructive undertaking can be appreciated in relation to the unique value of accurate dating for the whole region of southern Britain, but our ignorance of the social context of the time makes it difficult to speculate on how it might have been organised.

Since there was a considerable dividend for the whole population, Stonehenge could have been the culmination of lesser regional investments in this kind of technology over a long period. What sort of society might have existed which could draw labour and commitment from a wide geographical area, and over presumably a long period of years while the monument was being erected? Perhaps the astro-technology of that era was sufficiently trusted and valued to make this possible.

And a hearty welcome Joshua! Nice topic. Happy to have you at Givnology. Wave

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