Is Newgrange a fake?

Malcolm Redfellow

Moderator
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
4,961
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
Repeat question.

There is a similar archelogical find in the Orkney islands with mid-Summer solstice as the time when the sun is lined up.

Is that 'fake' too?
Maes Howe is not 'fake', but a substantial reconstruction. Just as well it's off the main tourist drag, else it may have fared as Newgrange.

The 1861 excavation was as brutal as any thing done in that era. It involved 'decapitating' the mound and removing the earth-fill that way. What we see today is heavily reshaped from what existed then.

Continuing studies of the Orcadian sites still turn up unexpected alignments. Alexander Thom was into such things, and involved himself in all sorts of astronomical speculation.

There seems to be evidence that the Vikings who used the chamber also did a bit of reconstruction.

There are at least half-a-dozen other chambered tombs in the Orkneys.
 


jmcc

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2004
Messages
46,246
Interesting. Very.

I see one of my school book-prizes (all the way from 1960, and still here) was Nicholas Thomas's newly-published A Guide to Prehistoric England. At some time after that I started adding stuff by Professor Thom. Around the time I was graduating, the Newgrange phenomenon came along (it was little more than muddy fields then). So, after a long lifetime brushing up against such stuff, I'm quite prepared to accept this is a credible 'find'.
Didn't Thom propose the concept of a common "Megalithic Yard" based on measurements of various megalithic sites? Did he survey Newgrange or any of the Irish sites?
 

shiel

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
19,606
Maes Howe is not 'fake', but a substantial reconstruction. Just as well it's off the main tourist drag, else it may have fared as Newgrange.

The 1861 excavation was as brutal as any thing done in that era. It involved 'decapitating' the mound and removing the earth-fill that way. What we see today is heavily reshaped from what existed then.

Continuing studies of the Orcadian sites still turn up unexpected alignments. Alexander Thom was into such things, and involved himself in all sorts of astronomical speculation.

There seems to be evidence that the Vikings who used the chamber also did a bit of reconstruction.

There are at least half-a-dozen other chambered tombs in the Orkneys.
Thanks very interesting.
 

Malcolm Redfellow

Moderator
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
4,961
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
Didn't Thom propose the concept of a common "Megalithic Yard" based on measurements of various megalithic sites? [1] Did he survey Newgrange or any of the Irish sites? [2]
[1] Yes, indeed. Based on his surveys of a couple-of-hundred sites he statistically arrived at ±2.72 feet (0.83 m). He then induced a 'megalithic rod (pole or perch)' at around one foot, and '40 'megalithic inches' to the 'megalithic yard'. He even suggested a central European standardising agency.

We were all incredibly impressed, except those who spotted that this 'megalithic yard' was remarkably adjacent to a pace. It then seemed that Sandy Thom had expended enormous efforts in proving that natural, human-body-derived measurements hadn't changed greatly in five millennia. Individual distances still vary.

[2] You have me there. My recollection is that Thom didn't venture farther than Britain and Brittany.
 

jmcc

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2004
Messages
46,246
[1] Yes, indeed. Based on his surveys of a couple-of-hundred sites he statistically arrived at ±2.72 feet (0.83 m). He then induced a 'megalithic rod (pole or perch)' at around one foot, and '40 'megalithic inches' to the 'megalithic yard'. He even suggested a central European standardising agency.
A standardising agency doesn't sound improbable because it very well could have been based on religion or a class of people who designed these things. Megalithic Europe seems to have been far better connected than previously thought and the communication routes were the rivers and seas. Newgrange is situated near a river and that possible henge is adjacent to the river.

We were all incredibly impressed, except those who spotted that this 'megalithic yard' was remarkably adjacent to a pace. It then seemed that Sandy Thom had expended enormous efforts in proving that natural, human-body-derived measurements hadn't changed greatly in five millennia. Individual distances still vary.
Thom was very much an engineer and many of those who objected to the Megalithic Yard had no STEM expertise and didn't take any measurements. The one obvious objection to the "pace" idea is that human beings tend to have different heights and thus would have different pace lengths.

[2] You have me there. My recollection is that Thom didn't venture farther than Britain and Brittany.
A pity. It would have been nice to see if there was a consistent metric in Irish sites.
 

Norman Bates

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 22, 2011
Messages
16,700
Twitter
norman60bates
A standardising agency doesn't sound improbable because it very well could have been based on religion or a class of people who designed these things. Megalithic Europe seems to have been far better connected than previously thought and the communication routes were the rivers and seas. Newgrange is situated near a river and that possible henge is adjacent to the river.

Thom was very much an engineer and many of those who objected to the Megalithic Yard had no STEM expertise and didn't take any measurements. The one obvious objection to the "pace" idea is that human beings tend to have different heights and thus would have different pace lengths.

A pity. It would have been nice to see if there was a consistent metric in Irish sites.
Quite right. People's then were also shorter ...
 

Malcolm Redfellow

Moderator
Joined
Sep 29, 2009
Messages
4,961
Website
redfellow.blogspot.com
Twitter
mredfellow
Quite right. People's then were also shorter ...
Anecdotage:
At the age of (around) sixteen I had my first experience of working on a dig. It was (we assumed) a Saxon site in East Anglia. I was graciously allowed to bucket trowellings made from Jack. Jack was on leave from the Rhodesian Police (ahem!) and working a third hot, now-thundery day on the main stiff. Stiff — by the way — had instructive rust separating left ribs. Think about that.

Both excavator and excavatee were over six foot in height or length (depending on orientation). Weedy visitor peeps over the baulk: 'Is it true they were smaller in those days?'

The ensuing muttered expletives added to my vocabulary.

Yes, better nutrition improves average height and health. Yes, too, because most of us now achieve full maturity graveyards are not so full of immature specimens. Essentially, the human hasn't evolved greatly over the last couple of millennia.
 

jmcc

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2004
Messages
46,246
Yes, better nutrition improves average height and health. Yes, too, because most of us now achieve full maturity graveyards are not so full of immature specimens. Essentially, the human hasn't evolved greatly over the last couple of millennia.
What about the differences between hunter-gatherers and farmers?
 

nationalsday

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
3,726
Maes Howe is not 'fake', but a substantial reconstruction. Just as well it's off the main tourist drag, else it may have fared as Newgrange.

The 1861 excavation was as brutal as any thing done in that era. It involved 'decapitating' the mound and removing the earth-fill that way. What we see today is heavily reshaped from what existed then.

Continuing studies of the Orcadian sites still turn up unexpected alignments. Alexander Thom was into such things, and involved himself in all sorts of astronomical speculation.

There seems to be evidence that the Vikings who used the chamber also did a bit of reconstruction.

There are at least half-a-dozen other chambered tombs in the Orkneys.
Not only but also..

Bryn Celli Ddu in Anglesea where a Boyne-type passage grave appears to have been constructed on top of a pre-existing henge monument



Bryn Celli Ddu Burial Chamber

"The Bryn Celli Ddu passage tomb consists of a long passage that leads to a polygonal stone chamber. Human bones, both burnt and unburnt, were found in the passage of the tomb. Other finds were few, but included quartz, two flint arrowheads, a stone bead, and limpet and mussel shells.

A decorated pattern stone has also been found at Bryn Celli Ddu. The stone was discovered near a ceremonial pit at the back of the chamber. A replica of the stone has been set up at the site.

What sets Bryn Celli Ddu apart from the other tombs on Anglesey, is that it is the only one to be accurately aligned to coincide with the rising sun on the longest day of the year. At dawn on midsummer solstice, shafts of light from the rising sun penetrate down the passageway to light the inner burial chamber"


From British Archaeology 2006 -
http://www.archaeologyuk.org/ba/ba89/news.shtml

"Steve Burrow, curator of neolithic archaeology at Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, says the mound's stone passage points at the midsummer rising sun. Postholes outside, previously thought to be contemporary with the tomb (c3000BC), have been dated to over 6,000 years ago. Both discoveries have far-reaching implications.

Burrow noticed that Norman Lockyer, a scientist who in 1906 published the first systematic study on megalithic astronomy, had argued that Bryn Celli Ddu marked the summer solstice, but was ridiculed by Welsh archaeologists. At midsummer dawn last year, Burrow was inside the chamber waiting to see what would happen. It was his second time; in 2004 the sky was cloudy.

"It's stunning", he says. "First there is a sparkle through the trees, then the sun rises out, it's quite exhilarating". The rays light up a quartz-rich stone at the back of the tomb.

The alignment links Bryn Celli Ddu with a handful of other famous sites. Chambered tombs at Maes Howe, Orkney and Newgrange, Co Meath point at the midwinter sun (setting and rising respectively); a "lightbox" at Newgrange that lets in the rays may be matched at Bryn Celli Ddu. The Stonehenge Heelstone marks the rising midsummer sun, but the monument is also aligned on midwinter sunset, which some archaeologists now argue was the more important. Burrow's discovery shifts interest back onto midsummer."
 
Last edited:

McTell

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 16, 2012
Messages
8,587
Not only is newgrange a very nice modern fake, but it turns out that when we arrived here after 2000 BC we "replaced" the earlier builders of the original.

Not only is it a fake, but it is also sold as part of our gaelic heritage, when in fact our gaelic ancestors invaded and took over from the newgrange / stonehenge builders.

According to David Reich's new book "Who we are and how we got here".

Ain't history a biaatch?
 
Last edited:


New Threads

Most Replies

Top Bottom