Monday, August 3, 2009

Part Two - Piggle Dene

The great stone river of sarsens left over from some geological ice age happening is an impressive site, far more attractive than the Lockeridge outcrop a couple of kilometres away.

The 'grey wethers' or sarsen stones - a great drift or river of stone.

Trees and stones

There is a mystical element with the old hawthorns

Old stone gateways, there is another stone gateway in the top photograph

Joshua Pollard in his book, Avebury - A Biography of the Landscape, says that in the neolithic the people would have viewed the stones through this valley very differently and that they would have been set amongst a wooded landscape, giving a different 'feel' to them.
Differently shaped stones would have had an aesthetic and symbolic response to people passing by, the strange shapes of the sarsens would have acquired names or perhaps even neolithic folklore. Their flatness, buried in the earth gives them a benign nature, there is nothing aggressive about their smooth shapes, lichens colour the surfaces, there is a peaceful attractive -ness about them. There was a body found buried beneath a sarsen in the 19th century with a sarsen muller beside it. At Lockeridge as well a grave under one of the sarsens contained a crouched skeleton with a beaker and dagger.

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