Located in England, Stonehenge is an outstanding ancient monument, dated to as early as 3000
BC; it is surrounded mystery, awe, and various theories; some of which are incredibly far fetched, others
entirely plausible. Because Stonehenge was constructed by a culture that made no written records, the
complete history and purpose of Stonehenge are left entirely up for debate. There are literally dozens
different theories and studies that have been formed on the monument. We do know that there is no
conclusive evidence on how stonehenge was constructed; which in turn leaves many doors open for
exceptionally imaginative theories on how the monument was built. The monument is of large standing
stones set in earthworks; the monument also contains several hundred burial grounds; until recently
scientists were not entirely sure where the stones came from, in 2011 researchers announced that the
source of the rocks had been identified from a source 140 miles from the existing monument site. This
discovery opens more doors to exciting theories and concepts about the great monument.
The most far fetched of theories may be the most intriguing of theories and in all honesty could be
feasible. The ancient alien theories came from the centuries old theory that life exists on other planets
and that humans and extraterrestrials have crossed paths in the past. The extraterrestrial theories
regarding stonehenge do present a practical and quite believable story to the construction of the
monument; given the mass of the stones used. Some theorists argue that extraterrestrials came to Earth
thousands of years ago to share their abundant understanding of science and engineering with ancient
civilizations here on earth; with this knowledge, the builders were able to build the architectural wonder.
Other theories suggest the monument was built by extraterrestrials; some suggest it was a landing pad
for their space crafts. Far out or not, alien theorists do have credible evidence to back up their strong
claims. The first are ancient religious texts in which humans witness and interact with gods or other divine
beings that boast remarkable powers descending from the sky; often in crafts that resemble spaceships.
The second is physical specimens like artwork portraying extraterrestrial beings.
Another legendary theory suggested by 12th century author Geoffrey of Monmouth was
considered accurate well into the Middle Ages. This account states that Stonehenge is the glorious work
of the wizard Merlin. The story states that hundreds of British nobles were slaughtered by the Saxons and
buried at the Salisbury Plain. King Aureoles Ambrosias desired to erect a memorial for the fallen; he sent
an army to defeat Ireland and return with a stone circle known then as the Giants Ring; the ring was
believed to have been built by ancient giants and built from magical African bluestones. His soldiers
actually defeated Ireland but failed to retrieve the ancient stones. The King enlisted Merlin to move the
stones across the sea, and place them over the burial ground. The Merlin theory is particularly intriguing;
science has established that Stonehenge predates the existence of Merlin by several thousand years,
thus making this suggestion nothing more than make believe.
There are several theories that are much more realistic; whilst they do not directly touch on the
actual construction of the monument; the universal theories align better with today's way of life. Realistic
theories regarding construction of the monument involves sledges, rollers and boats. Even though it is
known that the monument was built in several phases. We see the stones did come a vast distance, and
this idea functionally works best. It is that the artisans built sledges and rollers out of tree trunks to haul
the stones from the Preseli Hills. They then transferred the stones on to a boat and sailed the stones
down the Welsh Coast and up the Avon River to Salisbury. It is that the builders use a primitive type of
stone age technology. When using weights and leverage they could get the stones into a standing
One of most reasonable uses of stonehenge, is a theory proposed by Geoffrey Wainwright and
Timothy Darvill; they suggest Stonehenge was a place of healing, thus the graves in the area; some of
which show significant trauma. Another Sensible concept is yet another from that of the 12th century by
Geoffrey of Monmouth; he extolled the medicinal properties of the stones and was the first to advocate
the idea that Stonehenge was constructed as a funerary monument; which is quite reasonable
considering the vast amounts of burial sites in the area.
Regardless of the spiritual or supernatural elements that surround stonehenge, its design
includes an astronomical observatory, the use proven by Gerald Hawkins. Hawkins located 165
astronomical alignments at Stonehenge associated exclusively with the Sun and Moon and not with any
stars that can be viewed by the naked eye. This would have allowed for predictions of eclipses, solstice
and other planetary events helpful to us today. Regardless of the mysteries of Stonehenge it is especially
obvious that the monument was built for functionality and spirituality.
"Ancient Alien Theory." History.com. A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2012. <http://
"Astro-Archaeology at Stonehenge." Tiverton A.S. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2012. <http://
"Solving the Riddle of Stonehenge's Construction." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 13 Dec. 2010.
Web. 03 Sept. 2012. <http://www.history.com/news/solving-the-riddle-of-stonehengesconstruction>.
"Stonehenge." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 09 Mar. 2012. Web. 03 Sept. 2012. <http://
"Theories about Stonehenge." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 19 Aug. 2012. Web. 03 Sept. 2012.
Art: Prehistoric Essay !