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Mystic Twilight
March 21st, 2002, 01:03 AM
i was curious to the history or stonehenge. is it beleived to have a pagan background? im having trouble finding websites.
does anybody know anything about it. I see the place in my dreams - almost like it is calling to me.
does that sound strange? i just wondered if someone can provide me with a background on it. :)

Theres
March 21st, 2002, 02:53 AM
Stonehenge was actually built in at least three separate phases over a period of about 1500 years (including 'Woodhenge'), so it's hard to say exactly who built it, or why, but the chances are pretty likely that they were Pagan, as that was the dominant belief system of the indigenous people of the time.
there have been many theories put forth over the years, some plausible and some just outrageous. but it is likely that the purposes of the different builders varied as much as they did.
some say it is a great cosmic calendar. others that it was a sacred Druid circle (the Romans thought everything they found in Britain was of druidic origin). and then there is the theory that it was built as a landing site for alien spacecraft!
unfortunately there is no hard evidence to support any of these theories. it will likely remain a mystery, and i think that is part of the attraction.
i to have been fascinated by this place for as long as i can remember. so much so that i actually built my own!
it is true that there are more religiously significant stone circles than Stonehenge. Avebury for one, or Callinesh. but it is the great mystery of Stonehenge that appeals to many, and the fact that in an age where technology SEEMS to be able to do virtually anything, it still cannot answer some of these ancient questions (yet!). and i find that to be very reassuring.

here's a few good titles to peruse...
>'Stonehenge Decoded' by Gerald S. Hawkins. this one is a little dated, but still interesting.
>'The Enigma of Stonehenge' by John Fowles and Barry Brukoff.
>'The Ancient Stones Speak; A Journey to the World's Most Mysterious Megalithic Sites' by David D. Zink.
>'Megaliths and Their Mysteries; A Guide to the Standing Stones of Europe' by Alastair Service and Jean Bradbery.

as far as websites, that should be an easy enough search. type in 'Stonehenge' and you'll probably find dozens.

Danustouch
March 21st, 2002, 08:44 AM
They have also found ancient human remains there, which would suggest that it was possibly, at first, a burial ground. There were several stages to stonehenge, First, there were wood markers around the perimiter. The outer stones came next, and then the great blue stones. I watched a great documentary on it at one point, I wish I could remember it all...

Theres
March 21st, 2002, 02:41 PM
and the blue stones came all the way from Wales!

Danustouch
March 21st, 2002, 02:57 PM
Yep..the documentary also showed people trying to drag them from Wales, to Salisbury...heh..not easy!

kblackthorne
March 23rd, 2002, 12:29 AM
There's also some excellent discussion of Stonehenge (along with tons of other prehistoric British monuments of various types) in Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles by Ronald Hutton. (Hey, it's just a cool book in general, though I think when I re-read it, I may 'skip' the first two chapters & read them last.)

And since the non-Pagan religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) hadn't been invented yet: yes, it was built by pagans. How similar their religion was to modern Paganism? Well, that's another question!

Myst
March 23rd, 2002, 02:20 AM
I like the ideas presented in Marion Zimmer Bradley's books (presumably based on her study into history and possible theories as to their origin).

kblackthorne
March 24th, 2002, 01:34 PM
Bearing in mind always that MZB is a fiction writer, and is concerned with telling a good story, not doing in-depth historical research.

(It is always dangerous to assume fiction=reality. And MZB is not a historian, an archeologist, or even an anthropologist. She is a fiction-writer. And a fiction writer who happens to be Christian to boot... although her readers often claim she is Wiccan. She would be the first to tell you not to take her fictional stories as fact.)

Theres
March 24th, 2002, 02:54 PM
well, she might be the first to tell John Edward that.
if she were to say it to me, i really WOULD be impressed!

kblackthorne
March 25th, 2002, 06:14 PM
well, she might be the first to tell John Edward that.
if she were to say it to me, i really WOULD be impressed!

Define "she" in that sentence -- are you refering to Ms. Bradley? If so, she has been quite outspoken in several places about fans who cannot seem to tell the difference between fact and fantasy... with fiction writing -- including her own -- falling firmly on the "fantasy" side. Read some of her editiorials sometime. I'll see if I can track some of it down... I know she has included such remarks before at least one of Mercedes Lackey's "Tarma & Kethry" stories in the "Sword & Sorceress" series, as well as in similar anthologies that she has editied.

Demeter
March 25th, 2002, 08:07 PM
You might be interested in looking at the linked excerpts from Stone Circles by Rob Roy. Roy has long been fascinated by stone circles, has built one circle and one other stone arrangement, and his book tells about ancient circles, modern circles, and the people who built and and are still building them. This is not an ancient history book. It is for the modern megalith builder, but it does give some great insights into how Stonehenge might have been built.


http://www.cordwoodmasonry.com/Stones.html

Theres
March 25th, 2002, 09:39 PM
my comment was in reference to the fact that 'she' no longer inhabits this mortal coil.
Marion Zimmer Bradley died a couple of summers back.

kblackthorne
March 26th, 2002, 03:41 PM
OK, gotcha. :)

Can't say I'm surprised -- she certainly lived a long & prolific life! I have a friend who buys all her books... and I tend to borrow them from her. So I'm not surprised she passed on & I didn't know.

Sorry for the misunderstanding.