The picture above, by Pete Glastonbury, shows the ring ditches uncovered in the field to the south of Woodhenge during the course of the recent excavations by Professor Josh Pollard and his staff.
Anyone is welcome to submit a comment to this site and express and opinion one way or the other. If you have something to contribute concerning Stonehenge, then all the better, because I’ll be interested to read it and it’ll be published here for everyone else to study if they wish to do so.
I’d particularly like to hear from anyone who has lived in the locality of Stonehenge who has any old pictures or stories about the ruins, because you never know how valuable these things may turn out to be. Christopher Chippindale has done an excellent job of chronicling the long history of Stonehenge in the various editions of his Stonehenge Complete books, but I know for a fact that there’s more material out there.
If you wish to send it in, then it will be welcomed, published and credited here, as was the case when I published the various posts and contributions on the Berwick St James stones. I should make clear that I’m not expecting to learn of a Bronze Age skeleton or treasure coming to light in someone’s garden or anything of that scale, because any local tradition, story, picture or rumour about Stonehenge will almost certainly prove to be both interesting and illuminating.
If you’ve not seen it before, there is a link on the right under Current Media Links of an interview I did for Meridian Television when they covered the Altar Stone story. Mike Pitts, author of Hengeworld and editor of British Archaeology, appears in this interview to give an opposing view to mine, so you’re welcome to make up your own minds on this matter or indeed on any other that I’ve presented here, because we’re only interested in the truth about Stonehenge, regardless of the means by which we ultimately arrive at it.
Otherwise, the picture at the end of this entry shows one the excavations currently taking place at the western terminal of the Cursus, under the direction of Professor Julian Thomas. I was intrigued by what Professor Thomas had to say about the square construction of the Cursus terminals when I spoke with him last Thursday, but I’ll wait until I talk with him again about this matter so that I can do better justice to what he had to say.
The Cursus excavations are once more searching for evidence of bluestone or else for evidence of a lost bluestone monument that may once have stood in this area, while the archaeologists are also looking for datable material such as antler picks that may give us a clearer idea of when this colossal structure was put in place. We are virtually certain that the Cursus predates the earliest earthworks at Stonehenge by some centuries, but the current excavations may produce finds that enable us to be slightly more accurate in our estimates of its age.
Otherwise, I’ve had many emails, reports and phone calls commenting on my Lost City of Apollo story, all of them favourable, I’m pleased to say, although I’m sure there must be some dissenting voices out there somewhere. I’ve been asked to do a number of radio interviews on this subject, so if and when these are confirmed, I’ll post the details up here in another entry. Other sources have also expressed an interest in the matter of this City of Apollo as described by Pytheas of Massilia, but again, as soon as I hear of any concrete developments, I’ll post them up.
Finally, my study of what Pytheas of Massilia had to say was described as a marathon in one of the comments, but the simple truth is that there is a very great deal more to the matter than simply establishing the location of the temple and the city he described.
I personally don’t see any reason at all why Pytheas of Massilia should have been either lying or exaggerating when he wrote of the temple and city of Apollo. I’ve gone into the descriptions and locations of these two structures in great detail in a previous entry, while I’ve also touched on the matter of the priests he described, as they sound very much like the ancient British Druids.
However, Pytheas also mentioned that there were guardians of this temple and it might at first sight seem to be a completely hopeless task to try to find and identify these elusive sentinels on the basis of such a fleeting and isolated reference. However, from what I’ve seen, there is a highly compelling body of evidence to suggest that Stonehenge did indeed have extremely well-defined guardians during the time of Pytheas’ visit to these islands in or around 350 BC.
There are one or two facts I have to check first and due to their nature, I can’t do this during the course of the holidays, but if I can establish that I’m correct on these key points, I’ll post up my findings in a month or so, hopefully. In the meantime, I’ll continue to report on the findings of the Stonehenge Riverside Project’s 2007 excavations.
Words by Dennis Price.