Sailors of Stonehenge

It has taken me four years to write “Sailors of Stonehenge,” but it was worth the effort. I had to study about prehistory, astronomy, archaeology, mythology, navigation… and to gain some knowledge about all these matters has been a reward in itself.

When I now contemplate the same starry sky our ancestors looked at with admiration, I feel it like a familiar landscape, as if suddenly I could bridge the millennia that separate us. And you too can have now a similar feeling after reading “Sailors of Stonehenge,” because you too will learn about all these subjects, regardless you agree or not with the theories I put forward in it.

I wanted to include plenty of pictures and figures to make its reading more pleasant, and so I ended up inserting almost one illustration per page. I also chose a slightly larger format than the typical 9×6 inches to make it more roomy, and decided (against the advice of editors), to include footnotes wherever I thought it was necessary to clarify a point or to give additional information. My only purpose was to not lose any reader… (now you can tell me if I succeeded or failed).

If you think this is an interesting book, please lend it or let others know about it. (By the way, I’d appreciate if you could stop by the Amazon page and leave a comment.) Thanks for helping, and I hope you’ll enjoy it!

You can buy “Sailors of Stonehenge” by clicking on its cover, at the sidebar.

I also published it in Spanish, in case you prefer this option, as “Marineros de piedra,” and signed it with my full name (José Manuel Gómez Vega).

Just a warning note: Besides knowing the true history behind Stonehenge or Atlantis, “Sailors of Stonehenge” may change all your preconceived ideas about human history.

Sailors of Stonehenge

Avebury: The Venue Where to Renew the Kings

Avebury is a huge megalithic complex in the south of England. It comprises several stone circles, avenues, enclosures, mounds and long barrows, being its principal element a large henge (ca. 400 m in diameter), a type of megalithic construction consisting of a stone ring (the largest in Europe) surrounded by a ditch and a bank.

Its original purpose is unknown, although archaeologists believe that it was most likely used for some form of ritual or ceremonial usage. As a matter of fact, I am going to propose which could have been that ceremonial usage, and describe the ritual performed in it.

The first signs of activity at this megalithic complex can be traced back to the first half of the 4th millennium BC, but it was not until the end of this millennium that construction took on a larger scale, about the same time than in Carnac.

The complex has suffered severe damage, mostly from the 14th century AC onwards due to farming and religious zealotry, although reports from antiquarians and archaeological research have helped to reconstruct virtually its original aspect.

Inside the henge there are two extra stone rings; the north one containing three large stones (two extant) at its center known as The Cove, and the south one containing a single tall monolith called The Obelisk (non–extant) along with an alignment of smaller stones.

The henge had four opposing entrances, the south one connected with an avenue, the West Kennet Avenue, formed by paired standing stones that ended on top of a hill, at a wooden circle called The Sanctuary. A similar avenue, the Beckhampton Avenue, led out from the western entrance of the henge towards a structure called The Longstones.

A huge man-made mound, the largest in Europe (pre-modern times), known as Silbury Hill, is the other great element of the complex. It has a conical shape with an imposing height of 40 m ended in a platform that was reached by a spiraling ramp around the mound. Silbury Hill was erected near the source of the Kennet River.

Here we are proposing that Avebury was built as the venue where the Megalith Builders renewed their monarchy. The whole complex was designed as a schematic representation of the celestial scene visible during the heliacal rising of Orion’s brightest star, Rigel, some days after midsummer.

Avebury functioned, therefore, like a huge scenario where kings and princes enacted the drama they interpreted was being played in the sky.

Avebury: The Venue Where to Renew the Kings

Carnac: The Royal Mausoleum

The Alignments of Carnac are near the coasts of Brittany (NW peninsula of France), and constitute the largest and most spectacular megalithic monument in the world. This extraordinary complex contains more than 3,000 standing stones, huge granite menhirs aligned in several rows along approximately 4 km, divided into three main modules and a last one much smaller and degraded.

Many hypotheses have been raised, some really unusual, to explain the purpose of these alignments; for example, an antiquarian of the last century suggested that it could be the fossil of a large snake. Others suggested that it might be a Roman camp, or a way to temples disappeared, or even a prehistoric earthquake detector. A local legend says that they were Roman soldiers petrified by God while they were chasing St Cornelius, the local saint. Alexander Thom proposed, as he did with many other megalithic monuments, that they could have been an ancient astronomical observatory.

However, the most accepted hypothesis is that they formed a huge necropolis; in fact, in the vicinity of the alignments there are several mounds with a more obvious funerary purpose, such as that of Saint-Michel, one of the oldest megalithic constructions.

A colossal monument such as the Alignments of Carnac necessarily requires an equally colossal labor in its construction. Archaeology is faced with the dilemma of finding a megalithic society that complies with the grandeur of its monuments. What type of social organization would allow such a display? We should keep in mind that we are talking about the 4th and 3rd millennia BC, i.e. the European Megaliths Builders preceded the considered as the earliest civilizations, those of Mesopotamia and Egypt.

I propose as a working hypothesis that the builders of the Alignments of Carnac could have belonged to a solar culture, politically organized as a confederation of about ten kingdoms, each governed by a king who ruled for a fixed period of time established by a cycle of heaven. This monument in particular would be the royal mausoleum, each stone representing one of the kings of their history.

Carnac: The Royal Mausoleum

Who Were Really Our Prehistoric Ancestors?

I entered into the subject of this blog with the archaeological and astronomic expertise of an amateur, ignorant about the ideas that only later I found out are so dominant about the prehistoric people.

After several years of studying this subject I arrived to the conclusion that, if we really want to have a coherent view about our prehistoric ancestors, we need to relinquish some preconceived ideas, no matter how useful they were up to now.

We must elevate our eyes to the sky while keeping the feet on the ground, because the landscape they interacted with was the land below, the seas around and the sky above, without sharp demarcations in between.

It is impossible to be absolutely objective in writing about history, much the less about pre-history, when instead of written documents we have rock carvings, when the archaeological remains have been ravaged by the pass of millennia, and when the artifacts have been retrieved mostly from tombs. The academic interpretations equate the lack of archaeological remains to no-existence, from where only very limited hypothesis can arise. Restraining judgment only to the physical evidences can render interpretations as deviate from reality as giving free rein to the imagination, both equally off the mark.

This blog will begin by investigating the people who inhabited Western Europe during the Neolithic Age, known as “Megalith Builders” because they used big (mega) stones (lith) in some of their constructions. We’ll find out that they were neither tribal people dressed with furs that lived in scattered chiefdoms where aggression and superstition ruled supreme, nor they constituted a paradisiacal society. We will see that they could have had customs closer to our understanding of a classical culture, organized in societies expanding over large territories, able to navigate long distances and, overall, reached a deep understanding of the cycles of life and death, of the interconnection between the Earth below, the sky above and the humans in between.

This blog is based on the assumption that much of the knowledge of the Megalith Builders’ culture may not be properly represented in the archaeological record, but it may have survived and reached us encapsulated in myths, as well as in all kind of cultural, political and religious manifestations of modern society. We could say that this blog is going to interpret the results of a very special archaeological excavation, one that does not dig on the soil but on the prehistoric stratum where the memoirs of our megalithic ancestors remain stored in our collective unconscious.

I hope the readers who will open the pages of this blog will equally open their minds and will be able to see our prehistoric ancestors under the new light that reveals them as tremendously curious people and adventurous travelers whose main legacy is not so much the big stones of their monuments but the foundation of our civilization.

The first three mysteries will be the three most monumental megalithic sites: The Alignments of Carnac, the stone ring of Avebury, and Stonehenge.

Note: Now you may read all the information at once and in detail in my new book: “Sailors of Stonehenge.”

Who Were Really Our Prehistoric Ancestors?