Chapter 2 Journal Activity
When, Who, How, Why?
The when question is probably the easiest part of this. Archeology has determined between approximately 3100BC and 2000BC Stonehenge evolved from a ditch to the stone construction we see part of now.
The who is possibly the hardest to answer. "The Neolithic" I hear you shout. Yes, I agree, but who within this timeframe. Especially when considering the whole landscape. This is not just one structure, but a group of structures that tie together. The planning and construction, and linking of everything together would have taken a powerful figure, with a powerful reason, to initiate the commencement of the constructions.
The how is intriguing. The enormity of the process is mindblowing. The strength, manipulation and engineering feats required to not only move the huge stones and erect them is overwhelming. Then, add the shaping of the stones and the absolute precision joints to hold everything together in such an accurate way. This wasn't just another meeting place. Stonehenge was THE place.
The clip about Wally Wallington was interesting, and he may be onto something. But he was working on cement slabs ...... ? It was thought provoking though.
WHY? This is my favourite bit!
I believe the Avon River is the link to the why. The Avon River runs as an artery between Durrington Walls and Stonehenge. Durrington Walls built with wood, Stonehenge built with stone and the river full of water flowing between. Both henges have an access road linking them to the river.
Wood is a temporary substance, it lives and dies and rots away. It tenure is temporary, just like life. Stone is permanent, just as death is. So consider Durrington Walls as place for family and friends to celebrate the life of a newly deceased person, the starting point into a journey into the afterlife. Perhaps they have the body ashes with them, or maybe cremate them here. After feasting and celebrating the life, they proceed to the River and make their way by boat to Stonehenge, the final destination. The ashes could be scattered on the way down river, letting the spirits free, or at Stonehenge. The final step to the permanence of death. A way of commerating life and death. A Rite of Passage.
The link of the wood and stone henges seems too coincidental to ignore. Stonehenge is aligned with the midwinter sunset and the midsummer sunrise. Durrington Walls is aligned with the midwinter sunrise and the midsummer sunset. Just coincidence?