The Ancestors – Stonehenge – 02 Dr Christopher and Jacquetta Hawkes
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Prehistoric Britain – Dr Christopher and Jacquetta Hawkes
A pitch of architectural refinement was achieved at Stonehenge unparalleled in the prehistoric west. The transverse slabs which make a continuous architrave round the outermost sarsen ring are not only curved lengthwise to fit the circumference of the circle, but grow broader towards the top to compensate for the foreshortening when viewed from the ground.
In addition, they, like the cross slabs of the trilithons, are secured by mortices hollowed out to fit over tenons projecting from the tops of the uprights. All this detail becomes more remarkable when it is remembered that enormous patience must have been required to shape such stones with no better tool than a clumsy stone maul.
The bluestones, though dwarfed by the towering sarsens about them, are in fact no less remarkable. Geology has shown that they were brought here from Pembrokeshire, whence they were probably carried most of the way by sea.
This journey of at least 200 miles gives insight alike into the unexpected possibilities of prehistoric transport and the great sanctity which must already in Wales have hallowed the blue-stones to prompt such a prodigious undertaking.
It is a source of mortification to archaeologists that the two monuments about which they are most often questioned, Stonehenge and Silbury Hill, are precisely those which have proved most difficult to interpret. In the case of Stonehenge this is partly due to the pre-scientific digging which its fame attracted. For instance, one recent excavator, on lifting a fallen slab in search of dating evidence, found instead a bottle of port wine generously laid down by an earlier investigator. However, despite such set-backs, certain facts are well established.
The source of the experienceThe Ancestors
Concepts, symbols and science items
ConceptsMap of the Egg
Science ItemsSacred geography
Sacred geography - altars
Sacred geography - barrows
Sacred geography - beacons
Sacred geography - cross
Sacred geography - crossroads
Sacred geography - cursus
Sacred geography - enclosures and camps
Sacred geography - henges
Sacred geography - hollow roads
Sacred geography - ley lines
Sacred geography - mark stones
Sacred geography - natural hills
Sacred geography - rivers and streams
Sacred geography - sacred grove
Sacred geography - underground secret passages