Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Monday, 22 June 2020

Stonehenge - a continuing revelation

Stonehenge and the associated landscape around it continues to reveal secrets about life in Neolithic Britain. The latest discoveries are outlined on the BBC News website at Neolithic monument discovered near Stonehenge

This article has at the end a number of links to previous reports about related discoveries in recent years at the Wiltshire complex, and they are well worth looking at as well.

What the discoveries reveal and what the academic researchers indicate is becoming ever more evident is the importance of this ritual complex to the whole of the Britain that created and used it. That points to a much more extensive degree of social and ritual organisation than the remains we have on individual sites from the period might suggest in isolation. Some power or powers was able to attract people to this part of what is now Wiltshire for centuries to create and support a belief system that required attendance and participation on a systematic basis. That is no mean achievement.

That a site so well known, studied and theorised about as Stonehenge can continue to yield more and more information is fascinating in itself. What it tells us about life more than four millenia ago is stimulating and of great importance. All good for thought this Solstice season.

No comments: