How and when was Stonehenge built? Who's the mind behind it? We may never really know, but here are the most likely answers.
Stonehenge is one of the United Kingdom's most treasured monuments and one of the world's most mysterious ancient sites. Its enormous stone structures, and massive size, have attracted scientists and tourists for centuries, but why and how was it built?
Here we will attempt to answer these deceptively simple questions, and explore some other interesting information about the site.
Who built Stonehenge and why?
Stonehenge is one of the world's most iconic and mysterious ancient monuments. It was built on what is today Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire, England.
Given its size and scale, it must have been a site of incredible importance to the people who built it. But why exactly did they bother making such an enormous effort?
The problem is we can only really make educated guesses as to why these ancient people built it. Suggestions range from an enormous celestial calendar to an ancient druid temple.
However, the most compelling explanation comes from more recent excavations. Large amounts of human bones have been found at the site, most of which show signs of cremation.
This appears to indicate that the site was a highly sophisticated ceremonial burial ground. Other discoveries also seem to support this theory too.
"In 2010 archaeologists discovered a second stone circle located just over a mile away from the more famous landmark. Dubbed “Bluestonehenge” for the 25 Welsh bluestones that originally made up the site, this secondary monument provides more evidence that Stonehenge could have been part of a huge memorial complex where high-ranking individuals took part in elaborate rituals and ceremonies honoring the dead. Yet as no written records exist, this theory—like all those about Stonehenge’s purpose—can only remain a matter of speculation." - History.com.
When was Stonehenge built?
Stonehenge was built between 3000 BC with major additions occurring between 2500 and 2200 BC. Other minor alterations also appear to have continued at the site until around 1500 BC.
This places its construction between the Neolithic and Bronze age.
How was Stonehenge built?
Given the age, size, and scale of Stonehenge, it is wondrous thinking just how people in the Neolithic age were able to build such a thing. Without the benefit of metal tools and modern construction equipment, somehow they managed to build something that remains largely intact today.
Unsurprisingly there have been various theories put forward as to just how it was done, but the general consensus is as follows. We have used English Heritage as the main source for this information as they are the de facto custodians and authorities of the site today.
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