A new Stonehenge theory suggests that the ancient ruins may have been a hunting site. The new theory comes after archaeologists discovered a site with evidence dating roughly 5,000 years before the structure was built.
The site, which was occupied continuously for more than 3,000 years, also had evidence of burning, thousands of flint tool fragments, and the bones of wild aurochs.
Together, the data suggests that the area around Stonehenge could have been an auroch migration route. The site could have been for feasting in ancient times, with the migration route drawing different cultures in the region together for the purpose of hunting the extinct giant cows.
Lead researcher David Jacques of the Open University in the United Kingdom, stated, “We may have found the cradle of Stonehenge, the reason why it is here.”
The mystery surrounding the ancient stone structure has existed for decades and new Stonehenge theories are ruthlessly debated among scholars. The stone structure was erected about 5,000 years ago in the plains of Wiltshire, England. But no one can definitively say why the giant stone structure was built.
Some theories for its existence include a burial ground, a place of worship, a sun calendar, a symbol of unity, or even that Stonehenge was created because of a sound illusion. The structure consists of large megaliths, also called sarsens. They are up to 30 feet tall and weigh upwards of 25 tons.
It also includes smaller bluesones, which weigh up to four tons. Researchers believe the massive boulders came from a quarry near Marlborough Downs, which is 20 miles from the mysterious site. The bluestones likely came from Preseli Hills in Wales. The hills are almost 156 miles from it.
The new Stonehenge theory could also help identify the people who first built the massive structure. Aside from a few giant pine posts that could be totem poles, which were raised between 8,500 and 10,000 years ago, there has been little evidence of occupation predating Stonehenge. The new research also suggests that the ancient boulders could have been raised in honor of the sacred hunting ground.
Do you think Stonehenge is a sacred hunting ground? What about an ancient burial ground?
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