The Purpose Of Stanton Drew Stone Circles

4267 words - 17 pages

Stanton Drew Stone Circles

The site I am studying is the Stanton Drew stone circles. These are
located North East of the village see figures one and two. Stanton
Drew is in the South West of Britain around 6 miles south of Bristol.
The stones survived from a Neolithic period carbon dated to around
4,000 years ago.

The site consists of three stone circles: The Grand Circle, The North
East Circle and The South East Circle which is inaccessible as it is
in a private garden. There are other features including The Cove and
Hautville's Quoit see figure 2.

The Great circle consists of 28 stones though it looks like there
could have been at least 30 originally. These stones don't have a
pattern to where they are placed as shown in diagram 3. The Diameter
from North to South is around 115m and slightly less from East to
west. The average distance between the stones (along a straight line)
was 7.4m and the average height of the stones (the four remaining
standing) was 2.47m. The Stones themselves seem to be from Dundry, 3
miles north as the same stone is found there, oolite or from local
sources and made of Conglomerate. The stones are believed to represent
male and female genitilier although as you can see from the photos
they can hardly be recognised as 2 different types and it is doubtful
the stones themselves were meant to represent this, however the site
as a whole may represent fertility due to the nearness of the river
and there being a connection with death, due to the bones found in the
site there is a strong possibility that birth and life have a
connection with the site. An Avenue extends from the Grand Circle
heading downwards towards the River Chew, the avenue consists of 8
visible stones four in the north row and four in the south row.
Another Avenue extends from the North East circle, which joins the
avenue. The avenues may have been placed there to lead towards the
River Chew as it was defiantly involved around the Stone circles in
some way. However the avenue doesn't lead all the way to the river
although the river may have been closer in the past or the rest of the
stones leading to the river may have sank into the ground or been
washed away.

The North Eastern Circle is around 30 m in diameter and consists of
eight stones which are larger and in better condition than the stones
from the other two circles and Avenues. The four stones on the
southwestern side are still standing the other stones are still there
but have toppled over. These stones seem to be around the same
distance apart unlike those of the great circle. The average distance
apart from the stones is 7.8 m and the average height of the stones
which are still standing is 3.12m.This Stone Circle has an avenue
heading off from the circles east side which joins with the avenue
coming from the Great...

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