Mar 11, 2013
By Michael Kramer
It’s one of the world’s enduring mysteries.
Now researchers have a new theory about the origins of Stonehenge.
They say it may have begun as a giant burial ground- in 3,000 BC.
Excavated human remains suggest that about 500 years before the site we know today was built, an even larger stone circle was erected at the same place as a community graveyard.
Professor Mike Parker-Pearson from University College, London says it’s believed the cremated remains were buried around 3,000 BC in an earlier circle which measured around 91 metres across and was larger than “the second Stonehenge” which is the monument still standing in the countryside in southern England today.
Various theories have been proposed about Stonehenge, including that it was a place for Druid worship, an observatory for astronomical studies, or a place of healing, built by early inhabitants of Britain who roamed around with their herds.
The study suggests that Stonehenge should be seen less as a temple of worship and more like a kind of building project that served to unite people from across Britain who brought their livestock and families for huge feasts and celebrations during the winter and summer solstices.