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Stonehenge, according to the accepted methods of dating, a little younger than the famous Egyptian pyramids. But one of the ancient seven wonders of the world, he was not included - nothing about it do not write any Greek or Roman authors. Perhaps the Romans, these stones are not impressed, because they have seen the ancient Egyptian pyramids, and were themselves built magnificent temples.

Today it is impossible to determine who was the first biographer of Stonehenge. By the XII century all the information about its origin vanished into myth and no one remembered the true purpose of the monument.

Who built it?

Ancient British Stonehenge called "Dance of the Giants." The rumor attributed its authorship to the great magician Merlin. Other legends spoke of living at one time, before the first Flood giants - they who allegedly built Stonehenge. King James I, his visit, was impressed by what he saw and ordered the architect Inigo Jones sketch construction plan and to establish for sure who and when it was created. In 1655 he published a book of John Webb's "most remarkable antiquity of the UK, called colloquially Stone-Heng, the restored" - the first publication dedicated to Stonehenge. A point in the research put in 60-ies of XX century astronomer Gerald Hawkins, who proved that Stonehenge - an ancient observatory, which allows a high accuracy astronomical observations.

Stonehenge was built between 1900 and 1600 BC and building it took almost a century. The number of the population of Britain was in those early centuries small. From about 3000 BC. e. the islands were again settle farmers from the continent - the so-called uindmillhillskie people - under the name of the hill blih Stonehenge. It is thanks to them Salisbury Plain has become the focus of crafts and animal husbandry. After 2000 BC. e. there appeared Beeker. Their arrival coincided with the beginning of the Bronze Age. And three hundred years later here came uessektsy, lovers of long-distance travel - in their graves in particular often find items from all corners of the then ecumene - faience from Egypt, amber from the Baltic, rectifiers arrows from Mycenae, pins Germans ... From all of these people there is nothing left that It could shed light on their involvement in the megalithic constructions. We can only guess - one of them? Hawkins believes that all three of the people put their "hand" for the construction of Stonehenge.

Stones, of which Stonehenge complex, different. The main building material monoliths - dolerite, but there are lava (rio-lit), and volcanic tuff, and sandstone, and limestone. Three species - dolerite, rhyolite and tuff - is found only in one place - in Wales, in the mountains Preselli, off the coast of Bristol Bay. "Now there is no doubt - says researcher R. Atkinson Stonehenge - that the blue stones were taken to Stonehenge it is from this very limited area." The distance as the crow flies is 210 kilometers - three hours away by bus. But something drove them on rollers and on the water, and this distance is 380 kilometers. Eighty stones weigh up to a total of four hundred tons. Who else in ancient Europe made such an extraordinary raid? Perhaps no one. Scientists have traced the possible way builders and found that most of it took place on the water. Some large stones collected along the way.

Stones transported on wooden sled on logs. The experiment, conducted by scientists, helped clarify that the twenty-four people are able to drag thus a weight of one ton at a rate of a kilometer and a half a day. On the water situation was simpler: a few wooden canoes joined boards, kept a huge weight and easy to manage.

And the hardest stones - SARS? Their field is found much closer to Stonehenge, only thirty kilometers away. Weight of the largest "gray sheep" (so nicknamed these blocks) reaches fifty tons. It is estimated that thousands of people took them to the place of construction for seven years.

Ancient craftsmen skillfully treated lumps even before take them to the construction site of the complex, using impact and processing machinery and cold fire. Once upon a rock crack was planned, laid out a fire on it, and then poured cold water and beat stone hammers. And after the rough processing and delivery boulders into place followed by a fine work. Stones polished very clean, simple jewelry. However, the technique to evaluate today, alas, it is impossible - water and wind over the centuries have done their job.

Scientists had to figure out how to install the giants. It turned out that first dug pit with a length equal to the length of the part of the stone, which was supposed to be buried. The length and width of the wells was ninety centimeters larger than the stone. Three wells wall made steep, writes John Hawkins, a fourth asked tilt 45 degrees -. It was receiving ramp. Before you put the stone wall of the hole obkladyvali thick wooden stakes. Stone slid along it, not showering the ground. Then edifice using ropes and ropes set vertically. Very quickly - as long as those who held it strong enough - filled space around, not only would the stone fell. Rammed, was left alone for a few months, until the soil prosyadet and Xpress.

An important detail: the lower ends of the vertical stones were chipped to blunt cone - that after they lowered into the hole, the stones can be turned and set precisely.

And what have come to the top of the crossbar multi-ton? Not helicopters as they go up there. Maybe on embankments? It is this method as a hypothesis proposed in 1730 is still one of the first researchers Stonehenge S. Wallace. But the construction and unmount a mound for all thirty-five bars would require a huge work - more than the work expended on the entire complex. In addition, residues of embankments have not found, and this version was abandoned.

What if acted by throwing using stacks of logs? Something like: stone bar was placed on the ground at the foot of its future pillars, and then perpendicular to the stacked layer of logs, handled it on the log, and the place where she is to this lying, put have a double layer of logs, but parallel and perpendicular : back and forth, back and forth ... And the stone roof is already at the top.

The last task was to cross it on the prepared for the place - that all its nest lay on the support pins. It is estimated that such a tower of the longitudinal and transverse layers of cubic kilometers would require fifteen wood logs with a pre-cut out slots. And even calculated that for the construction of Stonehenge took three hundred years of experience and thousands of workers, just as took half a million man-days of physical labor.

In the name of what all this? Why build Stonehenge?

... On the day of the summer solstice at Stonehenge attracts crowds of people - watching the sunrise over the Heel Stone. The spectacle is really impressive. Through the lilac mist swirling usually in the valley at this early hour, suddenly breaks bright beam - is just above the top of the heel stone! Similarly, fixed beams of view, according to astronomers, forced the observer to look at certain parts of the sky, asking directions, where there were the expected effects. Thus, Stonehenge can be considered an ancient observatory, which has been used to predict the start of field work, and, as suggested by J. Hawkins, -. To predict eclipses. Hawkins drew attention to the fifty-six so-called "Aubrey holes" belonging to the ancient complex. "I noticed - Hawkins wrote - that these wells are located along the right circle at an equal distance from each other. The wells are approximately one and a half meters deep dug in shallow ground, and then again filled with powdered chalk. The priests could predict eclipses a year, say, winter moon, shifting stones from the hole in the hole on a circle at one well per year. " There were they, and other tools for such predictions.

... Five of the seven wonders of the world - the pyramids of Egypt, the statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Temple of Diana at Ephesus, the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus and the Lighthouse of Alexandria on Pharos island were made of stone. But nowhere, perhaps, the stone has not been used so skillfully for intelligent search of the ancient, as here, in the South-West of England, on the Salisbury Plain.

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