Spring Equinox at Stonehenge, 2010

by Dennis on March 27, 2010

A little while back, I mentioned the Spring Equinox at Stonehenge while admitting that I didn’t have a great deal to say about it. Well, it appears that my assumption that little of note took place there was wrong, so perhaps this post will do a slightly better job of recording the event.

There was a customary gathering among the stones, while those in attendance consisted of Druids, pagans and a few hundred interested onlookers, all of whom braved the cold and initial rain. One of those present made the superb video that I highlighted in a previous post, but there was also a reporter present from the Heritage Key site. Perhaps I’m too immersed in Stonehenge’s past to sit up and take notice of much that happens in the present, but if that’s the case, then it’s clear that many others are interested in what takes place at the monument now, as opposed to what may have taken place there centuries or millennia ago.

Heritage Key is a site that specialises in presenting mysteries of the ancient world to a global audience, so they must have had good reason to send Nicole Favish along to Stonehenge to cover the Equinox celebrations. You can see her account on this link, which also includes the Stonehenge Druid Frank Somers speaking at some length about the importance of the equinox. As you’ll hear, this video also contains music from Druidicca, among others, so it seems that Stonehenge Present is just as alive and involved, in its own way, as Stonehenge Past.

As for Stonehenge Past, we can see a faint shadow of its earliest days in the photograph below, where the gentleman in the high-visibility jacket is standing on the centre of Stonehump, the large mound that appears to have been one of the very earliest features on this mesmerising site.

Photographs provided thanks to the generosity of Alex Down.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Ann March 27, 2010 at 10:17 am

Isn’t it strange that Stonehenge seems the only Neolithic monument where people still ‘worship’ or celebrate nowadays?

Jim March 27, 2010 at 1:39 pm

There are countless sites around the country where people worship regularly. Pick one and go on the Sabbatt and see. What’s strange is that people don’t know this. Look at Avebury for example. There’s an obvious one.

Talla March 27, 2010 at 1:44 pm

Actually, if you go to Stanton Drew or Avebury you will usually find someone who is ‘worshipping’ in some form or other. Probably true of other megalithic sites. I do find it strange that the sites with stones seem to attract most modern pagans, especially ‘Druids’. I’ve not met any at natural springs or in groves of trees which were supposedly where they worshipped. But I may be maligning them and have just missed them.

Dennis March 27, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Talla!

I completely understand your misgivings about ‘groves’ v ‘stone circles’, but I’m absolutely certain that if you were to approach any of the Druids or pagans at these gatherings, they would immediately refer you to my intensive studies of the accounts of the first century AD geographer Pomponius Mela, with a particular emphasis on his use of the word ‘specus’ and the implications thereof, as recounted in great detail on these pages.

But then again, perhaps they might not.

Jim March 28, 2010 at 9:09 am

The Pagans of Avebury use the Swallowhead Spring, West Kennett Long Barrow, Silbury Hill, The Sanctuary, Adam’s Grave, Windmill Hill, Woden Hill, The Winterbourne and Avebury. We have even been known to work with the Well in the pub.

Dennis March 28, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Thank you for that, Jim – I’d never given it much thought, I must admit, but it’s interesting to learn of the various sites that pagans frequent. Doesn’t Terry Dobney also conduct ceremonies at Silbury Hill?

frank March 29, 2010 at 12:54 am

Druids like to gather in Stone circles as principally these are places marked out by our ancestors as being ‘special’, and by ‘ancestors’ we are not limited to reverence for those of the Iron Age. Woodland groves remain popular for gatherings such as ‘Kingly Vale’ in West Sussex.

Michael Bott April 6, 2010 at 1:13 pm

Hello there. If you have more than a passing interest in standing stones, stone circles and other megalithic sites, may I recommend the DVD ‘Standing with Stones’? It is billed as a “Journey through megalithic Britain & Ireland” and, as far as I know, is the only film available about the ancient megalithic sites beyond Stonehenge. There is more information at http://standingstones.tv

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