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Stonehenge

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Rolling Stones


Tuesday November 30, 2004, The Guardian

A carpenter's new theory on how Stonehenge came about could roll away old theories on Britain's megalithic monument, finds Patrick Weir

For more than 20 years, Derbyshire carpenter Gordon Pipes has been striving to find an answer to a 4,000-year-old question that still confounds archaeologists; namely how, without roads or wheels, did Neolithic man transport 80 sarsen stones, each weighing an average of 30 tons, 20 miles from the Marlborough Downs to Salisbury Plain to construct Stonehenge? The site also comprises 98 blue stones, each weighing six tons, from the Preseli Mountains in Wales. The question of how these were conveyed over land - it is agreed they must have been ferried in boats along the Severn Estuary and River Avon - is also unanswered. But Pipes is convinced he has found the solution.

"What fired my imagination was a book about the stone statues on Easter Island by Norwegian scientist Thor Heyerdahl," he explains. "Working out how the ancients were able to move such heavy megaliths became an obsession.

In terms of Stonehenge, theories that one stone could have been dragged a mile a day by 700 men using rope and wooden rollers seemed as viable to me as alien involvement. The rollers wouldn't have taken the weight and the physical effort required would have been super-human.


Continues here
Jane Posted by Jane
30th November 2004ce
Edited 15th February 2005ce

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