Thursday, February 9, 2012

Top 5 Henges that aren't Stonehenge

In Neolithic Britain, a 1,000 years before any of Egypt's pyramids were built, humans built gigantic stone monuments (okay, not always stone, but often).  You know what Stonehenge is, but I'll be you've never heard of these...

5: Maumbury Rings, Dorset - The Romans used these ruins as an amphitheater.  The ruins were 2,500 years old at the time.  

4: Woodhenge, Wiltshire - Stone markers stand where 168 wooden pylons once rose into the air, the wood having long-since deteriorated.  A body of a child was buried in the center.  Nobody knows why...

3: Stanton Drew, Somerset - Several stone circles (the largest being 113 meters in diameter) where human bones and a bronze serpent ring have been found.  Legend has it that the devil turned a wedding party to stone after getting them to dance in a circle by playing his fiddle.  I guess the devil went down to Somerset (wokka wokka).

2: Avebury, Wiltshire - Three stone circles, including Europe's largest, dating back about 4,600 years.  One archaeologist believes this was built to appease nature's malevolence.

1: Ring of Brodgar, Orkney - 60 stones (27 remaining) set in a circular ditch and put there between 2500 and 2000 BCE.  It's ancient, it isn't well-understood, and it's beautiful.  It's also Scottish, making it the only henge on this list not found in England.

...And you thought Stonehenge was unique.  See, you learned something today!  Ever been to one of these sites?  Share your comments below.

4 comments:

  1. OH COME ON!!! Those henges are terrible - wouldn't even crack my top ten!  My grandmother could build a better henge!  :)

    Just kidding.  Great henges.

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  2. And "henge" is such a great word, isn't it?

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  3. Absolutely.  Hadn't thought of it as a word before....

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  4. I'm thinking about starting one in my back yard tonight to have included in a Kooz Top 5 several centuries from now.

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