Monday, July 07, 2008

Orkney Orksplorations

Never been to the Orkneys but no adolescent who fell in love with The Once and Future King can hear "Orkney" without thinking of Morgan le Fay and that poor parboiled cat (Morgan never did find the right bone to make her invisible, did she?)

The BBC reports that a month-long archaeological exploration will commence at the Ring of Brodgar in Orkney. It's the third-largest stone circle in Britain but its age and purpose--even the exact number of original stones--is unknown.

So the archaeologists will dig up trenches from the 1970s, when the last attempt took place, and also do some geophysical surveys.

According to a Historic Scotland report (where this picture comes from), the Ring of Brodgar is included in a World Heritage Site and:

"is one of the best-preserved and largest known henges in the British Isles. It is almost a perfect circle and 36 out of c. 60 original stones survive. The stone circle is surrounded by a substantial rock-cut ditch with two opposing causeways. The monument is surrounded by other standing stones and at least 13 Neolithic and Bronze Age burial mounds."

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