Once again, a strange mixture of fantasy and fact, with assorted gruesome reconstructions of the brutal lives led by our highly sophisticated ancestors...... and the shaman looked like the sort of fellow one wouldn't have liked to get on the wrong side of.....
But some interesting information. A few thoughts:
1. It was simply assumed that the sarsens all came from the Marlborough Downs -- no attempt to support that hypothesis with actual evidence. I was not convinced.
2. It was suggested by Katy Whitaker that all the sarsens were beaten with hammer stones over every square inch of their surfaces, to give a pristine white surface which must have made the whole monument -- when complete -- a truly spectacular appearance. Nice pictures, but I was not convinced.
3. Wolfgang Neubauer suggested that the sarsens were dragged from the Marlborough Downs by the most direct route possible, which means along the route of the Avenue -- although it was not there at the time. There was mention of "glacial striations" -- by which I suppose they meant the wonderful periglacial stripes. But it was unclear from the commentary whether they thought that the dragging of the sarsens caused the grooves and scratches shown in the surveys, or whether they simply used these existing grooves to ease the transportation by sledges etc. All speculation, and of course meaningless if the sarsens were really collected up in the Stonehenge area.
4. Tony Johnson demonstrated how Stonehenge was laid out with the aid or ropes and pegs. All fair enough, but that does not demonstrate that Stonehenge ever was finished or accurately built......
5. The crop marks -- interesting evidence which MIGHT show that there were pits at some of the locations where stones are assumed to have been positioned -- but I have problems with this (and so does Kostas) since a place where there is a hidden pit would have deeper soil and one would assume -- better moisture retention in case of drought. On the images below the lower one is computer enhanced, and is not to be trusted. Another thing is that even if there were sockets in the places where the crop marks are prominent, that does not tell us that there ever were any stones in them, and this is absolutely NOT "compelling evidence that Stonehenge was completed." Even if there were big sarsens in these supposed sockets, they could have been moved about and relocated. If they played about with the bluestone settings over many centuries, is it not possible that they did exactly the same with the sarsens?
6. On the bluestones, the commentary said "geological analysis proves they were quarried in Wales" -- which is of course nonsense. There was remarkably little about the bluestones in the programme, which went on to suggest, with great conviction, that the family of six whose teeth and bones have been analysed actually came from West Wales, providing a link with the bluestones. That is over-egging the pudding to a considerable extent -- the published evidence does very little to support that hypothesis.
7. I felt really sorry for the poor fellow who seems to have been crushed beneath a falling monolith, but was greatly relieved to hear that he survived to tell the tale....... and as for that nasty shaman, the less said about him, the better......
All in all, another curate's egg of a programme, which told us relatively little we didn't know already.