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Stonehenge As Seen in 1867

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Machipness
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« on: September 24, 2009, 03:14:13 am »

Stonehenge As Seen in 1867



Stonehenge southwest view / 1867. Ruined state of the final stage of megalithic stone building at Stonehenge as completed c.1800 BC.
Photo ­- Blumenberg Associates LLC
Original, Unretouched Photo ­- British Library

Photographs of Stonehenge were published in 1867 by England’s Ordnance Survey under the auspices of Colonel Sir Henry James. He was a strong believer that photography should be a major tool for mapping and survey work. The shots shown here provide a glimpse of the photographic capabilities of the 19th Century while offering an opportunity to reflect on the chronology of a truly iconic landmark.

Stonehenge is the world’s most famous large megalithic stone circle and is well known as a site used for religious worship in Neolithic Britain. The first use of this locality for documented ritual activity goes back to the Mesolithic and the **** of several large totem poles perhaps as early as 8,000 BC (Stonehenge O).

Lunar observations preceded the construction of a causeway c.3200 BC, followed by an earth circle and Heel Stones c.3100 BC (Stonehenge 1a) and the Aubrey Holes (Stonehenge 1b). The Stonehenge site was then abandoned for about 1,000 years when large bluestones quarried in Wales were brought to the site and made into the Double Bluestone Circle with Avenue c.2150 BC (Stonehenge II). Soon thereafter sarsen stones were brought in from Avebury to build the great Sarsen Circle and Trilithon Horseshoe, 2100 BC (Stonehenge IIIa). Bluestones were brought back and added as the Bluestone Circle and Bluestone Horseshoe, 1800 BC (Stonehenge IIId). The sacred avenue was extended to the River Avon, 1100 BC (Stonehenge IV), the last phase of megalithic construction at this site.
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Machipness
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« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2009, 03:14:45 am »

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Machipness
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« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2009, 03:15:13 am »

Stonehenge Trilithons B & C / 1867
Photo ­- Blumenberg Associates LLC
Original, Unretouched Photo ­- British Library

The great stone circle and all construction at the Stonehenge site was completed several hundred years before we can postulate that Celtic druids were in the vicinity. Stonehenge was embedded within a large ritual complex, where several of the ten megalithic constructions were also monumental in scale. Integration between these structures may not have been well planned in advance, but assuredly was articulated as each was built. Go to Source #3 for further material about history and meaning at Stonehenge.

In 1867, England’s Ordnance Survey published a limited edition, large format volume with photographs and plans of Stonehenge and Turusachan on the Isle of Lewis. The author of this article is very fortunate to own a copy of this rare book. Col. Sir Henry James, Director-General of the Ordnance Survey, was a strong believer that photography had to be utilized as a major tool for mapping and survey work and he employed the Royal Engineers for that purpose. Colonel James appears in several of the Stonehenge photographs published by the Ordnance Survey and he is seen in the two prints featured here.

Sources –

1, 2, 3

Leslie G. Blumenberg contributed invaluable technical expertise with digital image editing and restoration.

http://www.environmentalgraffiti.com/sciencetech/stone-henge-seen/14219
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