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Standing Stones

Standing stones, orthostats, liths or more commonly, megaliths because of their large and cumbersome size, are solitary stones set vertically in the ground and come in many different varieties. Where they appear in groups together, often in a circular, oval, or horseshoe formation, or henge. They are sometimes called megalithic monuments. These are sites of ancient religious ceremonies, sometimes containing burial chambers

 

Megaliths

Callanish, to give its English approximation,(Scottish Gaelic: Calanais) is a village (township) on the West Side of the Isle of Lewis, in the Outer Hebrides (Western Isles), Scotland. A linear settlement with a jetty, it is situated on a headland jutting into Loch Roag, a sea loch. It lies 13 miles west of Stornoway.
Calanais is the location of the Callanish Stones, a cross-shaped setting of standing stones erected around 2000 BC, one of the most spectacular megalithic monuments in Scotland. There is a modern visitor centre which provides information about the main circle and several other lesser monuments nearby.

Stonehenge is a prehistoric monument located in the English county of Wiltshire, about 3.2 kilometres (2.0 mi) west of Amesbury and 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) north of Salisbury. One of the most famous sites in the world, Stonehenge is composed of earthworks surrounding a circular setting of large standing stones and sits at the centre of the densest complex of Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments in England, including several hundred burial mounds. Archaeologists had believed that the iconic stone monument was erected around 2500 BC, as described in the chronology below. However one recent theory has suggested that the first stones were not erected until 2400-2200 BC, whilst another suggests that bluestones may have been erected at the site as early as 3000 BC (see phase 1 below). The surrounding circular earth bank and ditch, which constitute the earliest phase of the monument, have been dated to about 3100 BC.
Stonehenge is a place of pilgrimage for neo-druids, and for certain others following pagan or neo-pagan beliefs. The midsummer sunrise began attracting modern visitors in the 1870s, with the first record of recreated Druidic practices dating to 1905 when the Ancient Order of Druids enacted a ceremony. Despite efforts by archaeologists and historians to stress the differences between the Iron Age Druidic religion and the much older monument, Stonehenge has become increasingly, almost inextricably, associated with British Druidism, Neopaganism and New Age philosophy. Between 1972 and 1984, Stonehenge was the site of a free festival. After the Battle of the Beanfield in 1985 this use of the site was stopped for several years, and currently ritual use of Stonehenge is carefully controlled.

Avebury is the site of a large henge and several stone circles in the English county of Wiltshire surrounding the village of Avebury. It is one of the finest and largest Neolithic monuments in Europe dating to around 5,000 years ago. It is older than the megalithic stages of Stoneheng.
Within the henge is a great Outer Circle constituting prehistory's largest stone circle with a diameter of 335 metres (1,099 ft). It was contemporary with or built around four or five centuries after the earthworks. There were originally 98 sarsen standing stones some weighing in excess of 40 tons. They varied in height from 3.6 to 4.2 m as exemplified at the north and south entrances. Carbon dates from the fills of the stoneholes date between 2800 and 2400 BC.
Nearer the middle of the monument are two other, separate stone circles. The Northern inner ring measures 98 metres (322 ft) in diameter, although only two of its standing stones remain with two further, fallen ones. A cove of three stones stood in the middle, its entrance pointing northeast.
The Southern inner ring was 108 metres (354 ft) in diameter before its destruction. The remaining sections of its arc now lie beneath the village buildings. A single large monolith, 5.5 metres (18 ft) high, stood in the centre along with an alignment of smaller stones until their destruction in the eighteenth century. There is an avenue of paired stones, the West Kennet Avenue, leading from the south eastern entrance of the henge and traces of a second, the Beckhampton Avenue lead out from the western one.

The Devil's Arrows are three naturally-shaped stones or menhirs in an alignment erected near where the A1 road now crosses the River Ure at Boroughbridge in North Yorkshire, England.
Erected in prehistoric times and distinctively grooved by millennia of rainfall, the tallest stone is 22 feet 6 inches in height making this the tallest menhir in the United Kingdom after the Rudston Monolith which is 25 feet tall.The stones stand 150 feet from the A1 and it is thought that the alignment originally included up to five stones. One was apparently displaced during a failed 'treasure hunt' during the 1700s and later used as the base for a nearby bridge over a river. The stones are composed of millstone grit, the most likely source of which is Plumpton Rocks two miles south of Knaresborough and about nine miles from where the stones stand today.
The outer stones are 200 and 370 feet away from the central stone and form an alignment that is almost straight, running NNW-SSE. It is thought that they may have been arranged to align with the southernmost summer moonrise. The stones are part of a wider religious complex on the Ure-Swale plateau which incorporates the Thornborough Henges.
The name comes from a legend, which goes back 1721, that says the Devil threw the stones, aiming at the next town of Aldborough. He stood on Howe Hill and shouted, "Borobrigg keep out o' way, for Aldborough town I will ding down!". However, the stones fell short and landed near Boroughbridge instead

Ardgroom is a village on the Beara peninsula in County Cork, Ireland. It lies to the northwest of Glenbeg Lough, overlooking the Kenmare River estuary.
Near the village lie a number of megalithic monuments, the most picturesque of which is probably the stone circle to be found to the southwest of the village. It has the name "Canfea" but is sometimes called the "Ardgroom SW" circle to distinguish it from the remains of another stone circle northeast of the village. Unusually for a stone circle, its stones tend to taper toward points.

Swinside is a hamlet lying beside Swinside Fell, part of Black Combe, in southern Cumbria, England (map reference SD171881). It is noted for the Swinside stone circle that lies nearby, a near-perfect circle just under 29 metres in diameter. The circle is also known as Sunkenkirk, after a legend that the Devil made the stones sink into the ground to prevent them being used to build a church's foundation.

Carnac is famous as the site of more than 3,000 prehistoric standing stones. The stones were hewn from local rock and erected by the pre-Celtic people of Brittany. Local tradition claims that the reason they stand in such perfectly straight lines is that they are a Roman legion turned to stone by Merlin (Brittany has its own local versions of the Arthurian cycle).
The Carnac stones were erected during the Neolithic period which lasted from around 4500 BC until 2000 BC. The precise date of the stones is difficult to ascertain as little dateable material has been found beneath them, but c.3300 BC is commonly attributed to the site's main phase of activity. One interpretation of the site is that successive generations visited the site to erect a stone in honour of their ancestors.

 

[fonte Wikipedia]

Credits

Keyboards and Programming by Dario Belloni

 

Music

Composed and arranged, performed and mixed by Dario Belloni

Recorded between August and October 2008

Mixed and mastered during the night of 31 October 2008

Sounds:

For this work I used only synths module, no samples were used, except some weather sounds.

 

Style:

For this work I took inspiration from Jon Mark's masterpiece "The Standing Stone of Callanish"

 

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Creative Commons License
Standing Stones by Dario Belloni is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribuzione-Non commerciale-Non opere derivate 2.5 Italia License

 

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