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Decoding the ancient astronomy of Stonehenge

The solstice alignments of Stonehenge, explained.

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Note: A previous version of this video referred imprecisely to “Neolithic Britain” when discussing the Newgrange tomb in Ireland. We have removed that phrasing. My apologies to the Irish.

Stonehenge is a popular destination for summer solstice celebrations because the 5,000-year-old monument points toward the summer solstice sunrise on the horizon. However, it also points to the winter solstice sunset in the opposite direction and there’s good reason to believe that this may have been the more important alignment for the Neolithic people who built Stonehenge.

We investigate by constructing a tiny model of the Stonehenge monument.

Sources:


http://media.astronomicalheritage.net/media/astronomicalheritage.net/entity_000006/ras_stonehenge_factsheet.pdf
http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/stonehenge/history/#
http://www.atmo.arizona.edu/students/courselinks/fall07/nats101s31/lecture_notes/sunpaths.html
https://archive.org/details/themysteryofstonehenge
Newgrange photos by:
Sean MacEntee https://www.flickr.com/photos/smemon/22454487890
Pdbreen https://www.flickr.com/photos/pdbreen/3796235534

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