Meet the Henge Builders

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Digit
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Post by Digit » Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:15 am

If you go back to 1926? there was a suggestion that the Blue stones had been transported by ice. Certainly the one face of the outcrop has been sheared away by ice and the drop from the face is into a glacial valley.
The popular press, along with Marduk, took that to mean that ice had transported several tonnes of building stone on Salibury Plain, which if you read the original report it simply does not state that, only that the stones were moved closer.
Marduk explained in his usual manner that the last GM did not reach that far south, once again, the original report does not attempt to state which GM moved the stones!
Subsequent research has indicated that one of several outcrops could have been the original source, they narrowed it down to 3 sites if I recall correctly.
Later the idea changed to the one popularised by Boy Scout activities trying to ship the stones by sea.
I live in the area, and from the outcrops to any waterway is bloody unlikely as west Wales is noted for being larger than England if it was ironed flat!
When glacial activity sheared the face of the high outcrop is must have moved the stones on and down valley, and if the ice cleared these hills overland trasport from that point, either to water or to the plain, would have been somewhat easier than from the original source site.
Wiki has a referrence to the resurection of the glacial idea.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

Minimalist
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Post by Minimalist » Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:41 am

It just seems that they have to change some of their other assumptions. The region simply could not have been thinly populated with a hunter/gatherer or even primitive herding economy and still be able to muster the manpower needed to make such an effort.

For that matter, I can't think of a single example where an HG or pastoral based economic system has engaged in any kind of monumental architecture.

Just think of the logistics involved in transporting stones that big without roads. Even the Sarcen stones, while originating much closer weighed much more. There simply had to be a more advanced society in the region to organize this project. Subsistence level humans simply do not have the time to devote to such projects.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

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Post by Minimalist » Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:55 am

test
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

Minimalist
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Post by Minimalist » Mon Jan 14, 2008 10:34 am

We failed the test.

I have alerted the boss to summon her Geeks.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

Ishtar
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Post by Ishtar » Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:00 pm

Digit wrote:The Dogon somehow knew about the fact that Sirius has a small partner that is invisible to the naked eye and they posessd no telescopes Ish.

RS, near where I live is a stone circle of undressed stones, no cap stones, just the megaliths, also there is a pair of standing stones with a cap stone across a bit further away.
It seems logical to me that henges, which are rarer than standing stones, probably represent the next stage up from standing stones or circles, after all, no standing stones equals no Henge!
Unless, of course, the henges had fallen over to form single standing stones. That could apply to at least a couple of the megalith formations shown in my photos earlier in the thread.

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Digit
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Post by Digit » Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:33 pm

Your comment about numbers of people Min are even more relevant here in the Presceli Hills. Maps sometimes refer to them as Mountains, which they are not.
The topography is thin soil over bedrock with rare pockets of soil in small areas intersperced with pools of moss filled water. It is one of the most barren , desolate, and in summer, one of the most beautiful places in Britain. Once you leave the foothills behind there is just one homestead till you reach the other side
Winter is a different story, the west side is exposed to the worst the Atlantic storms can throw at it, and even the Sheep are brought down during the winter leaving the area to Falcons, Hawks, and Buzzards.
Those who sit in their warm university offices are trying to convince me that stone age people from lowland England would somehow choose this spot to spend many weeks, months even, breaking Dolerite from cliff faces and moving it miles. This in an area that would provide them with little food, less shelter and no timber for sleds.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

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Post by Minimalist » Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:39 pm

I just find it odd (read - "annoying") that one of the primary reasons for the Egyptology Club to reject Schoch's observations about the age of the Sphinx is that "there is no known society which could have built such a structure before Dynastic Egypt."

Yet, others will insist that Stonehenge was built by exactly that type of non-agrarian culture.

Obviously, guys, we are dealing with an "UNKNOWN SOCIETY" in both places.

Not likely that conditions would have been all that different a few thousand years ago I take it, Dig?
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

Ishtar
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Post by Ishtar » Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:47 pm

Sorry to keep banging on about this, but was Sirius significant to the Dogons in any way? I'm sure you know why I'm asking!

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Post by Beagle » Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:54 pm

Ishtar wrote:Sorry to keep banging on about this, but was Sirius significant to the Dogons in any way? I'm sure you know why I'm asking!
This may help Ishtar.

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Post by Beagle » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:01 pm


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Digit
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Post by Digit » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:04 pm

There are the remains of 'hill forts' and burial chambers all over the Prescelis Min, but few on the high peaks, and unless the soils were washed out in historical times the soil is too thin for cultivation.
I would also ask why, in an area that to this day is thinly populated, would anyone in there right mind chose to live in such a bleak spot when some of the best farming land was available lower down!
I can see the Prescelis from my home and the usual comment is 'it looks black over Will's mum's' which is an old saying meaning it's raining over there, and believe me it's dark over Will's mum's more days than it's not!
Dolerite is softer than Sarcen, and using Occam's razor, I suggest that the reason that Dolerite was used at Stonehenge was simple, it was to hand.
If it wasn't why was it used? Sarcen, a notoriously difficult stone to work, was used simply because it was to hand. If they wished to embellish the Henge with some other stones, easier to work than the Sarcen, there were alternatives closer to hand than the Prescelis.
If you Google Presceli hills Min you will find lots of nice summer pictures, and you will find that the lower slopes are indeed beautiful, but there ain't much stone there either, you have to go a lot higher for that.
Heading out of the hills for my home I once ended up in a private driveway with no brakes, the pads having caught fire on the down slope. I had the Mother in law on board and she objected to my speed so I came down with the brakes partly on all the way. I have never repeated that mistake!
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

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Digit
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Post by Digit » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:09 pm

This will please you Ish. Note the Isis connection.
The Dogon are famous for their astronomical knowledge taught through oral tradition, dating back thousands of years, referencing the star system, Sirius. Sirius is the dog star. It is linked with the Egyptian goddess Isis. The astronomical information known by the Dogon since that time, was not discovered and verified until the 19th and 20th centuries, making one wonder how the Dogon came by this knowledge. Their oral traditions say it was given to them by the Nommo. The source of their information may date back to the time of the ancient Egyptian priests.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

Ishtar
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Post by Ishtar » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:13 pm

Beagle wrote:http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A2754524

Sorry, here's the link. :roll:
Thanks. An interesting and bizarre tale with a strange twist at the end. I liked this end line:

....the mystery of the Dogon link with Sirius does stem from contact with aliens, not the amphibious Nommo but the very terrestrial French anthropologists who sought to study them.

Anthropologists have a lot to answer for! 8)

Ishtar
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Post by Ishtar » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:15 pm

Digit wrote:This will please you Ish. Note the Isis connection.
The Dogon are famous for their astronomical knowledge taught through oral tradition, dating back thousands of years, referencing the star system, Sirius. Sirius is the dog star. It is linked with the Egyptian goddess Isis. The astronomical information known by the Dogon since that time, was not discovered and verified until the 19th and 20th centuries, making one wonder how the Dogon came by this knowledge. Their oral traditions say it was given to them by the Nommo. The source of their information may date back to the time of the ancient Egyptian priests.
Thanks Dig. I wish it were true. But unfortunately, according the article Beags just posted, their knowledge doesn't come from ancient Egyptian priests but from very modern anthropologists!

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Digit
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Post by Digit » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:55 pm

Perhaps this will terminate the long running debate on the source of Stonhenge stones.
Geochemistry, Sources and Transport of the Stonehenge Bluestones
O Williams-Thorpe & R S Thorpe
Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain, UK, is famous for its construction from large lintelled sarsen stones, and also because it has been proposed that some of its stones — the bluestones which are foreign to the geology of Salisbury Plain — were brought to the site by humans from a distant source in Preseli, South Wales. The bluestones include hard dolerites (mostly ‘spotted’) and rhyolites, and softer structurally unsuitable sandstones and basic tuffs. Chemical analysis of eleven dolerites originated at three sources in Preseli within a small area (ca. 2 km2), while the rhyolite monoliths are from four different sources including localities in northern Preseli and perhaps on the north Pembrokeshire coast, between 10 and 30 km apart. Opaque mineralogy of the dolerites supports the conclusion of a Preseli source, while modal analysis of a sandstone fragment excavated at Stonehenge shows that it is not from the Cosheston or Senni Beds of South Wales, as has been suggested. This variety of source implies selection of material from a mixed (glacial) source, not at a carefully human-chosen outcrop. Glacial erratic material from south-west Wales has been identified as far east as Cardiff, and early (Anglian) glaciation of the Bristol/Bath area is indicated by an erratic find and glacial landforms. The apparent lack of glacial erratics between Bristol and Stonehenge (except perhaps for the Boles Barrow boulder) and in rivers draining Salisbury Plain, is consistent with the irregular deposition of ‘free’ boulders at the edge of extensive ice sheets. Bluestone fragments on Salisbury Plain without clear archaeological context, and pieces incorporated, sometimes apparently accidentally, in monuments of Neolithic age onwards (some predating the bluestone erections at Stonehenge) may be remnants of erratics. Clearance of boulders from Salisbury Plain for agricultural purposes is clearly described by the geologist J. A. de Luc, and a boulder consistent in appearance with an erratic was found at Stonehenge in the 1920s.

It is concluded that the bluestones of Stonehenge were available locally to the builders, and were transported from south Wales not by humans, but by glacial activity of perhaps the Anglian period (ca. 400,000 years BP) or earlier. This conclusion has prompted re-examination of other suggestions of long-distance transport of megaliths. The sarsen stones at Stonehenge need not have been brought from 30 km to the north as has been suggested, since recent surveys show small concentrations of sarsens near Stonehenge, the remnant of boulders largely cleared during 18th–19th centuries. Calculations of the manpower required to construct Stonehenge need to be re-assessed in view of the absence of long-distance stone transport. Other megaliths in Britain and in northern Europe show no evidence for stone transport of greater than ca. 5 km, and reveal a preference for use of erratics in some glaciated areas. In at least some cases the availability of stone has dictated the location of the monuments. It is therefore inappropriate to interpret the positions of megaliths in terms of social or economic territories without first examining the geological constraints on their siting.

PBA 77, 133–161
I wonder Marduk is reading this? :twisted:

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