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Stonehenge, United Kingdom:

Stonehenge

Stonehenge prehistoric monument in Wiltshire, England, Great Britain

Stonehenge is the most important prehistoric monument in Britain and one of the seven ancient wonders of the world. A unique site attracting thousands of visitors each year.

This giant megalithic construction is located on Salisbury Plain, in the county of Wiltshire, Uk. It is 13 kilometers (8.1 mi) from Salisbury and around 3 kilometers (2.0 mi) from the city of Amesbury.

The famous circle of standing stones is a most valuable source of astronomical knowledge. The name Stonehenge - literally ’hanging stones’ - comes from stan meaning ‘stone’ + to hengan ‘to hang’ in Old English.

 

It is still unknown the origin and purpose of this ring of monolithic stones. Archaeologists indicate the stones were erected in the Neolithic period (around 3000 BC), and that the site may have been used as a solar sanctuary, a calendar, burial, worship, or as a religious site.

Stonehenge impressive engineering construction in United kingdom

Either its spiritual, mystical or religious purpose, Stonehenge’s astronomical observatory might have predicted eclipses, equinoxes and solstices. The circle, with its continuous lintels, matches the rising and setting points of the sun and moon, one of its most remarkable features. Nowadays, the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year, is celebrated at Stonehenge.

The central megalith is the Altar Stone. The stones weight from 4 to 25 tonnes and their height ranges from 2 to 4 meters. The tall upright stone erected and arranged in a circular is called Menhir, thought to be aimed at aspects of the cult of the dead. When the monoliths are placed together and covered over by a flat stone, the monument is called a Dolmen. And a Cromlech is the circle of standing stones which is believed to have been used for social purposes.

Avebury henge monument is another Neolithic monument containing three stone circles and is believed to be even older. Both Stonehenge and Avebury are World Heritage Sites.

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