Thursday, April 2, 2009


Avebury is a town that is surrounded by a mysterious stone cropping. It is kind of like Stonehenge except it is really just one giant circle that is 16 times as big with a smaller stone circle in the middle and it is not as touristy.

In the 14th century the Catholic church decided that these stones were evil and that they should be taken down. The rocks were so huge that the people did not know what to do with them so the town got together and pushed over and buried the ones they could and left the ones that were too big. Some of those stone have since been uncovered and re-erected. Under one stone they found the skeleton of a man who was standing in the wrong place in the wrong time when the stone was knocked over. Researchers determined that he was a Dr. because of some instruments he was holding. At that time they thought that the stones may be alive so when they were pushing them over they always made sure a Dr. was around. The towns people figured that the poor squished Dr. must have already been dead so they did not bother trying to move the stone again to get him out. I guess his remains were pretty well preserved and he is now in storage at that Natural Science Museum. Poor guy. What a way to go.

In the 18th century, residents decided to start breaking up the stones and using them for building material. Concrete markers now show were the missing broken-up stones once stood.

Around the outer ring of huge rocks there is a ditch and a chalk mound surrounding the whole thing. Most of the chalk hill is covered with grass now except for the path on the top that people walk around.

On our drive to our next destination we had a quick photo stop for this sight. I guess in this area of England the thing to do throughout the ages has been to carve horses into the side of hills. I forget how old this one is but it is pretty old. Apparently there are about 10 of them in the region. The most recent one was made to celebrate the millennium. Can you see it?

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