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Stonehenge in Amesbury, UK

Sophistocated Design From a Prehistoric Era


One of the world's most famous archaeological sites, Stonehenge reveals the science and skill of a Neolithic civilization.
Stonehenge in Amesbury, United Kingdom

Stonehenge in Amesbury, United Kingdom

Press photo © 2000-2006 NewOpenWorld Foundation

Before recorded history, Neolithic people erected 150 huge rocks in a circular pattern on the Salisbury Plain in southern England. Most of Stonehenge was built about two thousand years before the Common Era (2000 BC). No one knows for certain why the structure was built or how a primitive society was able to raise the enormous rocks.

About Stonehenge:

Location: Wiltshire, England
Completed: 3100 to 1100 BC
Architects: a Neolithic civilization in Britain
Construction Materials: Wiltshire Sarsen sandstone and Pembroke (Wales) Bluestone

Why is Stonehenge Important?

Surrounded in mystery, Stonehenge was a finalist in the campaign to choose seven New Wonders of the World. Stonehenge is also on the UNESCO World Heritage list. UNESCO calls Stonehenge "the most architecturally sophisticated prehistoric stone circle in the world," citing these reasons:

  • size of the prehistoric stones, the the largest weighs over 40 tons (80,000 pounds)
  • sophisticated placement of the large stones in a concentric architectural design
  • artistic shaping of the stones
  • constructed with different kinds of stone
  • precision of engineering, stone lintels locked horizontally in place by carved joints

Learn More About Stonehenge:

Also See: Monoliths, Mounds, and Prehistoric Structures

Source: Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, United Nations [accessed August 19, 2013].

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