Moving on to another ancient discovery, let's discuss the magnificence and mystery of
Stonehenge. Theree kilometers west of a town called Amesbury stands a large, tall
stone ruin known as Stonehenge. This unique monument has stood for over 5 000
years in an open downland of Salisbury Plain in Southern England.Stonehenge is not
a single structure, but consists of a series of earth, wood, and stone structures that
were revised and re-modeled over thousands of years. How were the stones moved
into place? No one knows exactly, but it is definite that it took a lot of muscle power
and numerous men to move these heavy stones in place. The next logical question
might be: why was Stonehenge built? Well, to answer this question, we can look at the
findings of an 18th century British scholar named William Strukeley who noticed that
the horseshoe of great stones and the houseshoe of 19 smaller stones called
bluestones opened up in the direction of a midsummer sunrise. He concluded that
these stones were placed not accidentally, but deliberately positioned and planned so
that on a midsummer's morning the sun rose directly over the Deel Stone and the fist
rays shone into the centre of the monument between the open arms of the horseshoe
arrangement. This discovery has had tremendous impact on how Stonehenge has been
interpreted. Both Stukeley in the 18th century and Sir J. Norman Lockyer, a British
astronomer and scientist, in the 20th century, belived that this alignment implied a
ritualistic connection with sun worship. Their conclusions led to the belief that
Stonehenge was built as a temple to the sun. Nowadays, an astronomer named Gerald
Fawkins disagrees with Stukeley and Lockyer's conclusions and instead argues that
Stonehenge is not simply aligned with solar and lunar astronomical events, but can be
used to predict other events such eclipses. In a nutshell , he believes that Stonehenge
was not built as a temple; instead it was built as an astronomical calsulator.
What is the main topic of the lecture?
A Two different views on the original purpose of Stonehenge.
B The detailed history of how Stonehenge was built.
C The geological explanation about the stones used in building Stonehenge.
D The Astronomical significance of the midsummer sunrise and eclipses.