Salisbury Plain, located in the city of Wiltshire in the southern part of England, is home to a very interesting structure with thousands of years of history: Stonehenge. Thought to have been placed on the site by a mysterious human community thousands of years ago, these huge stones are filled with information that could completely change what we know about ancient societies, possibly! However, the mystery of this interesting structure called Stonehenge has not been solved for hundreds of years. Still, there are some surprising things we know about Stonehenge. Here are 10 interesting facts about the ancient and mysterious Stonehenge, one of Britain’s landmarks, that you probably haven’t heard before…
1. Human traces at the site of Stonehenge date back to 3100 BC
It is thought that huge stones were brought to the region for the first time between 2400 and 2200 BC. However, it is estimated that the circular monument, which has become a great mystery today, took its final shape between 1930 and 1600 BC.
2. We have no information about the people who built the monument
Because this community does not have a written source. This is the main reason for the unknown about the monument.
3. Stonehenge may have been designed as a cemetery
In 2013, a group of scientists working in the region found bone remains that can be dated to 3000 and 2500 BC. These remains included 50,000 different bone fragments, estimated to belong to 63 different people. For this reason, some scholars have suggested that Stonehenge may have been built as a cemetery. However, it is unknown what the monument was actually built for.
4. It is thought that the stones were brought from a distance of about 320 kilometers to the region where they are located today.
Considering that each of the stones is at least 4 meters long and weighs tons, it is indeed a great achievement! How the stones were transported is a mystery, like so many other things about the monument!
5. Stonehenge is also called “The Ringing Rocks”
Because the stones that make up the circular monument have an extremely strong acoustic feature. Some scientists think that the stones were transported from miles away because of these properties. However, it is known that some ancient cultures attributed healing properties to rocks with this feature.
6. Stonehenge is featured in ancient British legends
According to this, one of the most important figures in British mythology, the magician Merlin in the legend of King Arthur, removed the huge stones erected in Ireland by the giants and brought them to where they are today. Because there was a bloody war in the area where the monument is located and 3,000 British nobles lost their lives. Merlin, on the other hand, wanted to honor the nobles who lost their lives with this monument.
7. A body was found in 1923 in the area where the monument is located.
This decapitated body was from the 7th century!
8. The earliest known realistic painting of Stonehenge was made in the 16th century
Flemish painter Lucas de Heere completed the watercolor painting on the site of the monument between 1573 and 1575.
9. Stonehenge caused a small-scale “war” in 1985!
In 1985, a community called “New Age Travelers” in England wanted to organize a festival in the area where the monument is located. However, state officials responded to this request by banning the festival. On the other hand, travelers who wanted to achieve their goals set out for the area where the monument was located. Of course, what awaited them there wasn’t just huge stones thousands of years old…
According to the records, the quarrel that broke out between 1300 police officers and 600 travelers soon escalated and turned into a small-scale war. This event, which lasted for several hours, in which dozens were injured and hundreds of people were detained, was called the “Battle of Beanfield”.
10. Visited by more than 1 million tourists every year