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Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Those fantastical quarries -- here we go again........



The National Park's favourite archaeologist will be in St David's on Thursday evening to regurgitate the same old story about those wonderful "quarries".  His unshakeable conviction is more than a little bizarre, and it appears that he is intent upon completely ignoring the opinions of those of us who know a little about geology and geomorphology.......  it appears that MPP does not read the literature, unless he wrote it himself.



A talk by archaeologist Professor Mike Parker Pearson:

Stonehenge, the Welsh Connection

Thursday 2 June
6pm - 8pm, Discovery Room
Oriel y Parc, St David's

Excavation of two quarries in the Preseli Hills in Pembrokeshire by a UCL-led team of archaeologists and geologists has confirmed that they are sources of Stonehenge’s ‘bluestones’ and shed light on how they were quarried and transported. “We have dates of around 3400 BC for Craig Rhos-y-felin and 3200 BC for Carn Goedog, which is intriguing because the bluestones didn’t get put up at Stonehenge until around 2900 BC,” says Professor Parker Pearson. “It could have taken those Neolithic stone-draggers nearly 500 years to get them to Stonehenge, but that’s pretty improbable in my view. It’s more likely that the stones were first used in a local monument – somewhere near the quarries – which was then dismantled and dragged off to Wiltshire. Stonehenge was a Welsh monument from its very beginning. If we can find the original monument in Wales from which it was built, we will finally be able to solve the mystery of why Stonehenge was built and why some of its stones were brought so far…”

£5 per person
Booking Essential: 01437 720392

13 comments:

TonyH said...

Well, it's a mystery to me anything claimed by Parker Pearson with respect to Rhosyfelin etc "quarries" isn't officially classified in the SCIENCE FICTION areas of bookshops and libraries. This man clearly lives in a parallel universe to the rest of us mere mortals.

Furthermore, it is immoral to completely ignore the recently - published findings of glaciologists and geomorphologists on how they interprete, with their specialist understanding of glacially - affected landforms. He is taking the public, Mr and Mrs and Master and Ms Punter, for a Pied Piper ride, whisking them off in his RIM [rampantly imaginative machine] to his Wonderful Land.....

cysgodycastell said...

I had forgotten about this.

It would be fascinating to hear whether anyone attended and was brave and persistant enough in asking those awkward questions.

Any response from MPP to the critisms and challenges to his work will be worth hearing.

Jon Morris said...

"If we can find the original monument in Wales from which it was built, we will finally be able to solve the mystery of why Stonehenge was built and why some of its stones were brought so far…”

That's a strong claim. Anyone know where the final planned dig locations are yet?

BRIAN JOHN said...

As we know, Jon, MPP has a long reputation for scattering strong claims and even outrageous ones with gay abandon, just as one might scatter confetti at a wedding.......

Jon Morris said...

Could be Brian, but we have yet to hear what will happen as a result of the excavations that I guess must be planned. For all we know, he might be on to something?

It's an interesting claim from my point of view though because, according to the hypothesis that I've been looking at, even if you knew where the 'original monument' was (that is the blue-stones "monument"), that information could not possibly give the full answer to why Stonehenge was built (convoluted story why that must be the case).

So this indicates that his team are not looking at that hypothesis. Useful to know because I had been thinking of bringing some work forward just in case.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Yes, I would accept that there is a remote possibility that the jolly diggers might find some stone sockets somewhere near Bedd yr Afanc. What will that tell us? It will certainly tell us nothing at all about why Stonehenge was built. It will not even tell us that the Stonehenge bluestones were set up in the area before being moved to Stonehenge -- even though that claim will undoubtedly be made. All it will tell us is that some stones of unknown origin might have been set up somewhere before being taken away again or falling over. How many thousands of such small pits or sockets must there be in North Pembs, I wonder? I fear that every bit of non-evidence, no matter how obscure, will be seen through the filter of the MPP ruling hypothesis, and invested with significance.....

Jon Morris said...

Is it definitely Bedd yr Afanc that they are looking at? I thought it was but am not really sure what the logic is behind the search that's going on (so it's really difficult to work out why there's so much confidence about what they will find).

If/when Neil gets over here, we may take a run over your way to see what's going on (in the middle of building an extension so unlikely to be anytime soon)

BRIAN JOHN said...

Well, Bedd yr Afanc has been mentioned several times, so it's a good bet that that is where the hunt will be located. It's about halfway between Rhosyfelin and Carn Goedog, and on a slight rise which is a bit drier than the surrounding terrain. Chris and I wandered about there a year or two ago......

It will be good to meet up -- after 6th July will be best for me -- assorted travels before that...

Jon Morris said...

Good idea! Meet up for a couple of bevvies. May not be this year though (Neil has to get over from the States)

TonyH said...

Bedd yr Afanc, if my memory serves me well, is the location of a causewayed enclosure which, by definition, is early Neolithic. Consequently, the MPP Boys and girls would be keen for this area to reveal ALL to suit their robustly rigid ruling hypothesis obsession which persistently and stubbornly closes it eyes, heroic Horatio Nelson - style, to the plain fact that Preseli's Quaternary landscape WAS glaciated.

Rivals to MPP, namely Prof. Tim Darvill of Bournemouth and retired Geoff Wainwright of North Pembrokeshire, dug there. We may all check this site out no doubt via Brian's excellent Search Engine on his Blog; or, alternatively, by Googling Bedd yr Afanc. I think the well - known SPACES team (sadly, nothing to do with comedian and actor Simon Pegg!) were also involved at this site.

Dave Maynard said...

Tony,

'There are Places I Remember' by the Beatles; you're almost there but not quite. You'll have to do what Myris says and look at the (primary) literature. The causewayed enclosure is on the south of the Preselis, while Bedd y Afanc is on the north.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Yes, Bedd yr Afanc, which is now deemed to have been at the centre of a circle of bluestones, is an unusual passage grave or gallery grave. It is pretty ruinous and not very spectacular. Dyfed Archaeological Trust does not think there is anything very remarkable about it, but it will be at the centre of some serious stone socket searching this summer, presumably by the same team (UCL and others) which conducted the Rhosyfelin and Carn Goedog digs.

TonyH said...

At least I got others to contribute, and I did point you all towards Brian's Magnificent Search Engine!!

There's plenty of pointers in the MPP and co - authors (in lower case, of course) 2015 Stonehenge book, 2015, I've highlighted in my comments in 2 adjoining Posts. GO AND READ THAT BOOK! Actually, it is well expressed and not at gung ho as the Hay Festival etc remarks from the "Great Man".