It's been known for quite some time that Stonehenge's pieces were transported 140 miles from the Preseli Mountains in Wales and erected into a magnificent monument, but why the stones were lugged across such a great distance has long remained a mystery. Speaking with the Telegraph, Mike Parker Pearson, a professor at the Institute of Archaeology at University College London, explains some archaeologists' new theory that the Welsh brought the stones along with them when they relocated to Wiltshire in tribute to their dead ancestors.
“The Welsh connection isn’t just about stones it’s likely to be a long-term movement from west to east at this particular time," Prof Parker Pearson told the Hay Festival. "Why dismantle an original monument? We’re wondering if it actually might have been a tomb with a surrounding stone circle which they dismantled. If that were the case they were basically carting the physical embodiment of their ancestors to re-establish somewhere else.
“Their idea of packing their luggage was rather more deep and meaningful than our own. They are actually moving their heritage, and these stones represent the ancestors. They are actually bringing their ancestors with them. The more we find out about Neolithic society, their culture and religion, it is focussed on the ancestral dead. If you build in stone for the dead, that is a society that is worshiping its ancestors.”
Head over to the Telegraph to read more.