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Avebury stone circle



Avebury - one of the world's biggest stone circles

Avebury is situated near to the Marlborough Downs, and is one of the most complete prehistoric complexes, including -
The
West Kennet Avenue, The Outer and two inner stone circles, Windmill Hill, The Sanctuary, West Kennet Long Barrow and Silbury Hill.
The Avebury Circle is thought to have been built before Stonehenge. The Sarsens used are local unworked stones selected for their shape, some weighing as much as 40 tons.
Click on the pic to see full size version
Avebury avenue
Avebury standing stone

The West Kennet Avenue

This runs for 2.5km with two rows of stones, linking the Avebury Circle with the Sanctuary. There seem to be
two different shapes of stone - pillars and diamonds - which may represent the aspects of male and female.

Some believe Avebury's stone formations could have been a monument dedicated to a fertility cult, with seasonal symbolic rituals celebrating the Solar year - ensuring the fertility of man, animals and the crops.
West Kennet Avenue

pillar shaped stone at Avebury
Avebury avenue
West kennet avenue
Avebury avenue
Avebury standing stone
Avebury henge

The Avebury Outer Circle

This is 421 metres in diameter and partly encloses the village. There would have been room for a vast crowd.
Surrounding the circle is a ditch and bank which form a henge - nearly a mile in circumference. The monument would have been a stunning sight with its white banks and ditch of exposed chalk. Within the main stone circle are two inner circles - northern and southern.
Avebury diamond stone

diamond shaped stone at Avebury
Avebury stone circle

standing stone
standing stone
Avebury stone circle
stone circle
Avebury sarsen
Avebury stone circle
Avebury megalith
Avebury standing stone

The amazing Avebury's Neolithic temple never fails to stun visitors as they experience its staggering monuments, and feel the power of the ancient natural and spirital energy that flows around the circle and surrounding complex.

Magical myths abound about the stones :

The Swindon Stone apparently revolves on its own axis at midnight and sometimes crosses the road.

Running 100 times anti-clockwise round The Devil's Chair Stone will summon up supernatural powers or even the devil - young women used to sit on the ledge on May Day Eve (Beltane) and make a wish.

When electronic items are used near the ancient ley lines that run through the village they mysteriously fail. The magical ley lines are known as Michael and Mary, and cross near the stones in the southern part of the circle.

As with Stonehenge we can only guess at what happened at Avebury - seasonal celebrations such as at the solstices - so important to agricultural communities, rituals to honour the dead, ceremonies communicating with the powerful forces of nature, worship of the sun and moon, fertility rites... as the midsummer sun rises over Hackpen Hill the mystery continues...


Recommended books on Avebury


Secrets of Avebury stones


The Secrets of the Avebury Stones
- Terence Meaden
June 1999 ISBN:028563501
8 £13.20

An interesting theory that most of the Avebury stones reveal profiles of human heads at certain times, and also a study of the male and female grading of stones and subsequently the possible reasons behind the building of the magnificent megalithic Avebury.

Avebury landscape


Avebury: Bi
ography of a landscape - Joshua Pollard, Andrew Reynolds April 2002 ISBN: 0752419579 £16.14

This book covers Avebury's stone circle and the surrounding landscape from Prehistoric to Medieval times. It discusses the people who would have lived nearby and those who visited this fascinating monument.

 

Avebury Summer Solstice pics 2010

more Avebury stone circle pics

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