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Unsettling The Science On The Stonehenge Sarsens

Living between Avebury and Stonehenge I have always been interested in how the massive Sarsen stones, weighing up to 45 Tons, were moved from near the former to the latter.

There is a consensus answer which has been told to millions of people over the last fifty years. It involves a large detour to the west and then across the Pewsey Vale near Etchilhampton.
But that means the sarsens were dragged across fields where I have stood knee deep in the slime waiting for snipe to fly. I could barely drag my cartridge bag so forget dragging massive blocks of stone.

The science was obviously wrong, so I'm glad to see a new route proposed which seems to make more sense. See what you think.

Sarsen Stone Leaflet.pdf

Comments

I've always thought the stones were moved to site during a mini ice age .. easy peasy

I'd move them in winter across a naturally firm and lubricated surface, it would save all of that buggering about with rollers and rafts.....downhill sections of the route would be fun...not much chance of them breaking if they hit anything.
Having got the stones there they could be slid up compacted snow ramps, saves the bother of excavating earth for the job... and the spring thaw would do the job of removing the ramp.
Presumably there wasn't much farming to be done in winter, hunting was easier perhaps in winter, so manpower could be used for stone fetching and folly building when there was nothing much else to do.

Yeah, while I stand in admiration of the builders given their lack if resources, one thing I always remind myself of is that "time is a great lever"

We moderns think in terms of minutes, hours, seasons, and try how to imagine we'd move these rocks and what we think is a snails pace, but may have been speedy viewed by the optics of the builders.

I have seen large & heavy objects moved by one or two men, using nothing technology, levers, rollers, some rope, and time. They moved the massive objects in question, millimeters at a time, but what they was amazing was they kept at it like the sea...relentless. By the end of the day a 50tonne object had moved. I could easily see a small team of semi professional stone movers constantly working in shifts, grind these things across vast distances if they had support. It'd be like watching paint dry, but it'sd work.

And as the other commenter put it, you do it in winter and the ground is hard, and most trad societies are just waiting for spring anyway, you could augment your crews and thus speed.

Alternately:
Hey, you think these guys could organize armies? I think so, you think maybe some leaders thought up a nice competition to keep the boys from rape, pillage and killing one another? Ok lads, instead of killing the other tribe, this winter the first one to get 5 stones to the top gets a big BBQ thrown in their honour and the gods will be pleased!

Imagine 600 young strong men, in 8hr shifts of 20o, told to move a large locks and hand them some logs, rope and levers. I think we'd be SHOCKED how fast the stupid stones would travel.


And there was I thinking it was built by men in flying saucers.

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