Some of the ideas discussed in this blog are published in my new book called "The Stonehenge Bluestones" -- available by post and through good bookshops everywhere. Bad bookshops might not have it....
To order, click

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Is Tim Darvill a quarrying sceptic?

I have been looking back over a few old articles, and on looking at one of the more balanced pieces on the MPP quarrying and Proto-Stonehenge hypothesis, by Tia Ghose, I came upon this snippet which demonstrated a certain scepticism.

.............However, the evidence in support of the theory is scant: a few traces of burnt material and one oddly positioned rock. And not everyone is convinced that these clues point to an earlier Stonehenge-like monument.

"While this work adds some detail, it doesn't change the main picture," said Timothy Darvill, an archaeologist at Bournemouth University in England, who has excavated at Stonehenge but was not involved in the current study. "The Preseli Hills are extensive and geologically very complicated, with the result that matching stones to particular outcrops is fraught with difficulties."

In addition, it's possible that much of the archaeological material uncovered is "entirely natural" — not evidence of human work on the landscape, Darvill said.

I hadn't noticed the quote from Tim Darvill on a previous reading, and it's rather interesting that he says pretty well exactly what Dyfed Elis-Gruffydd, John Downes and I said in those two articles which MPP and his colleagues so studiously ignore!


TonyH said...

Tim Darvill used quite a few geomorphological terms in his fairly recent article, written jointly with Geoff Wainwright, for the magazine Current Archaeology. I commented upon these when we discussed the article a few months back.

Not altogether surprising, really, that he began to take what seems to be a serious interest in landscape formation processes as well as geology, given that he worked on the SPACES research project in N Pembrokeshire for around 10 years.

Why not drop him a line at his Bournemouth University address, Brian?

BRIAN JOHN said...

Actually TD does take a landscape-based approach to his interpretations of the Stonehenge area -- this is apparent from his books. So that's quite pleasing.....

But my post is slightly tongue-in-cheek, since in the big chapter in the County History of Pembs, written with GW, the pair of them were pushing quarrying flat out -- especially their extremely dubious "quarry" at Carn Meini. "My quarry is a quarry, but probably yours isn't....."