Climate

"The priority for our communities, movements, and decision-makers must now be to end the era of fossil fuels and transform our societies and economies towards sustainable systems designed to address peoples’ needs, safety and wellbeing, not profit and greed."

Thursday, June 30, 2022

A defended Prehistoric Stone Fort

Carn Meyn above with Carn Alw below;  By Dylan Moore, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.
Carn Alw

 I was going to start with megalithic photos from Cornwall that appeared today in memories.  But another memory sailed by.  A couple of days ago in TMA someone had put up a drone photo of, for me,  a rather mysterious stone assembly in the Preseli Hills.  It rises from the plain as an untidy jumble of stones but within the stones you can find enclosures, whether for cattle or horses who knows.   Also there are 'Cheval de Frise' walls, either for defence or for keeping the animals in.  A Cheval de Frise wall can be seen in medieval wars when stakes are stuck into the ground pointing outward to stop the enemy, this form of defence starts as early as prehistory and there is another Welsh site (Bryn Cader Faner) that has a more spectacular one.  Here is the one at Carn Alw .

One more photo from Geograph, taken by the magnificently named Natasha Ceridwen de Chroustchoff


A photo of the stones which seem to form a pathway here in this photo.  Taken by Toby Driver in 2006.

There is magic in prehistoric stones as we try to guess their significance to the people who once lived and used them to build their religion, houses, and defences.  But the magic lies in the landscape as well.  Carn Alw always intrigued me, it was a long way from where I had left the car when I was visiting Foel Drygarn with its three spectacular barrows set on the crest of this settlement and I never visited at the time.  Wales is indeed a land of mystery and landscapes too difficult to farm so that its past inheritance of old churches and megalithic stones still lie scattered around.  The Preseli Hills was a place I wanted to move to but Paul felt it was too far out in the wild - bless him.

But if I could have lived in a place where the unfathomable surrounded me I would have been quite happy trying to unravel the mystery.  And if you don't believe me, fall under the spell of the soft Welsh lilt of this short video on Foel Drygarn....



profile

13 comments:

  1. Just living amongst them would be enough for me. I like a bit of unsolved mystery.

    ReplyDelete
  2. True of course, they would lose their magic if you knew everything. I am still updating the above at the moment. Looking for Prof. Geoffrey Wainwright's study of acoustic music. Now he was head of of English Heritage for a time but even he went in search of the magic of the Preseli Hills and lived there during his retirement.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I can remember climbing Foel Trigarn on an Archaeology Field Trip, and I had a chest infection at the time so the climb was quite a challenge! We were sent to search for hut platforms. I don't know the Prescelis very well, but a lovely place to live. A shame Paul thought moving to Wales was too much a trip to the middle of nowhere.

    ReplyDelete
  4. The best hut platforms I found were at the end of St.Davids Head Jennie. I see you have called it by its other name.

    ReplyDelete
  5. We used to holiday regularly near the Preselli area and it was always a place we visited where an area of mystery still surrounds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Welsh hills are very different to the Yorkshire Dales Pat.

      Delete
  6. The narrator's beautifully delivered Welsh language seemed just right for reflecting upon such an ancient and fascinating location.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Parts of Yorkshire have been colonised by prehistory, you can tell by the barrows that cluster on the moors in certain places... The Welsh video has that lovely cadence of voice and you can see why they fought to keep their language alongside English in their schools.

      Delete
  7. Humans have been fighting wars for a long time. Wonder why we cannot get along.
    The video was so interesting and I was amazed at the Welsh spoken as I have never really heard it much before. Thanks, Thelma.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you liked it Ellen, the woman narrator knew just how to deliver it. The poet Waldo she mentions in the video has a memorial stone set up for him there to.

      Delete
  8. I loved that film, thank you for posting it.

    ReplyDelete

Love having comments!