Winter solstice feasts may have taken place around Stonehenge 4,500 years ago

December 26th, 2009 - 2:42 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, December 26 (ANI): In a new research, archaeologists have come across ancient animal bones near Stonehenge, which date back to 4,500 years, indicating a connection between the prehistoric site to winter solstice feasts that might have taken place during that time period.

According to a report in Discovery News, abundant cattle and pig bones recently unearthed a few miles from the megalithic site suggest that prehistoric people celebrated the connection between the stone circle and the sky with hundreds of roasts.

Initial research led by Mike Parker Pearson of the University of Sheffield, UK, suggests that the animals were walked from different places and for hundreds of miles to be slaughtered immediately after arrival at Durrington Walls, a massive circular earthwork, or henge, two miles northeast of Stonehenge.

Parker Pearson’s research has shown that this site attracted people in droves as far back as Neolithic times.

“The considerable quantities of pig and cattle bones, pottery, flint arrowheads and lithic debris indicate that occupation and consumption were intense,” he said.

So far, the archaeologist has found no evidence that Durrington was permanently inhabited.

He believes that the intense human activity was linked to feasting during the solstices.

“The small quantities of stone tools other than arrowheads, the absence of grinding querns and the lack of carbonised grain indicate that this was a ‘consumer’ site,” he said.

“The midsummer and midwinter solstice alignments of the Durrington and Stonehenge architecture suggest seasonal occupation,” he added. (ANI)

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