The hidden remains of a massive stone monument only two miles from Stonehenge, have been discovered hidden under the bank of a nearby stone-age enclosure.
At least 90 enormous stone monoliths, some measuring up to 15 feet, lined an “arena” forming what researchers have called a “superhenge” near the neolithic site in Wiltshire, England. Archaeologists believe they may have been used for religious rites or solstice rituals.
“It’s truly remarkable,” said Vince Gaffney, one of the archaeologists leading the project. “We don’t think there’s anything quite like this anywhere else in the world. This is completely new and the scale is extraordinary.”
Now lying on their sides covered by three-feet of earth, researchers believe the stones were placed around 4,500 years ago along the south-eastern edge of what later became the Durrington Walls — a large Neolithic settlement.
The circular enclosure ringed by a ditch and bank is nearly a mile across. It is the largest earthwork of its kind in the U.K.
“These things are theatrical,” said Gaffney of Britain’s University of Bradford. “They’re designed to impress and impose; to give the idea of authority to the living and the dead. It really does create a massive impression.”
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