Chapter XVII


Disclosing also Method of "Sighting" the Circles

"The hoary rocks of giant size
That o'er the land in Circles rise,
Of which tradition may not tell,
Fit circles for the wizard's spell."-
MALCOLM, "Autumn Blast."
"These lonely Columns stand sublime,
Flinging their shadows from on high,
Like dials which the wizard Time
Had raised to count his ages by."-

THE great "prehistoric" Stone Circles of gigantic unhewn boulders, dolmens (or "table-stones") and monoliths, sometimes called "Catt Stanes," still standing in weird majesty over many parts of the British Isles, also now appear to attest their Phoenician origin. The mysterious race who erected these cyclopean monuments, wholly forgotten and unknown, now appears from the new evidence to have been the earlier wave of immigrant mining merchant Phoenician Barats, or "Catti" Phoenicians of the Muru, Mer or Martu clan-the "Amorite Giants" of the Old Testament tradition; and from whom it would seem that Albion obtained its earliest name (according to the First Welsh Triad) of "Clas Myrd-in (or Merddin)" or "Diggings of the Myrd."1 (On Morites in Britain probably about 2800 B.C., see Appendix VII, pp 413-5.)

1. This Early Phoenician title of Muru, Mer, Maratu or Martu, meaning "Of the Western Sea (or Sea of the Setting Sun)", which now seems obviously the Phoenician source of the names "Mauret-ania" or "Mor-occo" with its teeming megaliths, and of "Mor-bihan" (or "Little Mor") in Brittany, with its Sun-cult megaliths, is also found in several of the old mining and trading centres of the earlier Phoenicians in



It was long ago observed that the distribution of these prehistoric megaliths or "great stones," over a great part of the world followed mainly the coast lines, thus presuming that their erectors were a seafaring People, though of unknown prehistoric identity and race.1 Moreover, as these monuments are most numerous in the East, it is generally agreed that this cult in Britain, Brittany, Scandinavia, Spain and the Mediterranean basin was derived from the East. Latterly, owing to the great antiquity of Egyptian civilization, and to a few of these monuments (of which some are funereal) being found on the borders of Egypt, it has been conjectured by some that this cult arose in, and was spread from, Egypt. But as there is no evidence or presumption that the Ancient Egyptians were ever great mariners, it is significant that the agents, whom Prof. Elliot Smith is forced to call in to distribute the monuments over the world, are the Phoenicians. Prof. Smith supplies a great deal of striking evidence to prove that the chief agents in spreading these megalith monuments (as well as other ancient Eastern and characteristically Phoenician culture) "along the coastlines of Africa, Europe and Asia and also in course of time in Oceania and America" were the Phoenicians;2 although as an ardent Egyptologist he still credits the origin of the cult of these rude stone prehistoric monuments to the Egyptians, notwithstanding the relative absence of such unhewn monuments in Egypt itself.

This Phoenician agency for the "distribution" of these megalith monuments is further attested by an altogether different class of evidence, even more specifically Phoenician than the seafaring character of their erectors. It has been observed by Mr. W. J. Jerry that "the distribution of megalithic monuments in different parts of the world would

Britain, associated with Stone Circles and megaliths and mostly on the coast, eg. Mori-dunum, port of Romans in Devon, and several More-dun, Mor-ton and Martin, Caer Marthen, West Mor-land, rich in circles and old mines, More-cambe Bay, Moray, and its Frith and seat of Murray clan, &c.
1 Pitt-Rivers, J.E.S., 1869, 59, etc.; J.(R.)A.I., 1874-3, 389, etc. And Ferguson, F.R.M. map, p. 532; and T.E. Peet, Rough Store Mons., 1912, 147, etc.
2 S.E.C., 3, etc., based partly on Mrs. Z. Nuttal's great work on Fundamental Principles of Old and New World Civilization, Harvard. 1901.


suggest that their builders were engaged in exploiting the mineral wealth of the various countries."1 He proves conclusively by a mass of concrete facts that these megaliths alt the world over are located in the immediate neighbourhood of ancient mine workings for tin, copper, lead and gold or in the area of the pearl and amber trade. His details, geographic and geological, regarding the correlation of these monuments to mines in England and Wales, are especially decisive of the fact that their builders were miners for metals and especially tin, and not agricultural colonists; for many of the monuments with remains of prehistoric villages and mines are located on barren mountain tracts, where only the old mine workings could have attracted these people to settle on such spots2 (see Sketch Map). And he concludes, in illustration of what was happening at the other mines with their megaliths, that "the men who washed the gold of Dartmoor were also extracting the tin and taking it back to the Eastern Mediterranean in order to make bronze."3

Strange to say, notwithstanding the clear indications that this seafaring people who erected these megalith monuments in Britain came from the Eastern Mediterranean, and were solely engaged in mining operations, expressly for tin, were Phoenicians, yet Mr. Perry, in this article, does not even suggest the obvious inference that they were Phoenicians, nor even once mentions that name. There was, however, no other ancient seagoing trading people of the Early Bronze Age who explored the outer seas, came from the Eastern Mediterranean, had a monopoly of the bronze trade of the Ancient World, and who worked in prehistoric times the tin-mines and gravels in Cornwall and Devon.

1. PMM. (A.) 1915, 60, No. 1. Regarding India, for instance, in the Hyderabad State, the Inspector of Mines, Major Munn, found that Stove Circles and dolmens were invariably situated close to mines of gold, copper and iron. Manchester Memoirs, 1921, 64, No. 5.
2. Where no metalliferous strata are found on the sites of megaliths, as at Stonehenge etc., in Wilts and in Devon, there are found old flint-factories for the tools needed by the miners to extract the ores in Cornwall, etc. P.M.M. (B.) 11-18. Surface tin, now exhausted, formerly occurred in ore widely in the drift and gravels, as tin and gold are in the same geological formations, so that it may have occurred on surface near Stonehenge, etc. Caesar says that the tin supply came from the Midlands, (D.B.C., 5, 5) where no trace of tin now exists.
3. P.M.M. (B.), p. 7.


Moreover, actual articles of special Phoenician character or association, apart from bronze, have been found at some of these megalithic monuments and in the sepulchral barrows near those sacred sites. At the Stonehenge Circle and some others have been found shells of the Tyrian purple mollusc, oriental cowries and jewellery including blue-glazed and glass

Sketch Map showing Distribution of Stone Circles and Megaliths in England and Wales.
(After W. J. Perry.1)

beads such as were a speciality of the Phoenicians. The blue-glazed beads of an amber necklace exhumed from an Early Bronze tomb near Stonehenge and others found in that circle itself and it other prehistoric sites, are of the identical kind which were common in Ancient Egypt within the

1. By permission of Manchester Lit. and Phil. Socy.

restricted period of between about 1450 B.C. to 1250 B.C.1 But the obvious Phoenician origin of these blue beads at Stonehenge and other parts of Britain has not been remarked. The Phoenicians were the great manufacturers of fine necklaces in the ancient world, as recorded by Homer, and specialists in glass and glazes, as attested by the remains of their great glass factories at their port of Cition and elsewhere.

Now, the blue-glazed beads in question first appear in Egypt at the beginning of the Phcenician Renaissance in that country, usually called "The Syrian Period" of Egyptian Civilization -Egyptologists suppressing its proper title of "Phoenician" in the modern vogue of depreciating Phoenician influences. This "Syrian" fashion, which transformed and exalted Egyptian art and handicraft, was introduced about 1450 B.C. with the seizure and annexation of Phoenicia, and the carrying off captive to Egypt hundreds of the artists and skilled craftsmen of Tyre, Sidon, etc., as well as their chief art treasures as plunder. Writing of that great event, Sir F. Petrie tells us that the "Syrians" [i.e., Phoenicians] "had a civilization equal or superior to that of Egypt, in taste and skill . . . luxury far beyond that of the Egyptians, and technical work which could teach them rather than be taught."2 And great numbers of their artists and skilled workmen were carried off, and continued to be sent as tribute, to Egypt.3 Significantly, these blue-glazed beads first appear in Egypt at the beginning of this Phoenician period, and they suddenly cease when the Phoenicians regained more or less their independence from Egypt about 1250 B.C. The inference is thus obvious that the blue beads found at Stonehenge Circle and elsewhere in Britain are Phoenician in origin, and were carried there by Phoenicians of about that period. And here also it is to be noted that the finest of the art treasures recently unearthed at Luxor from the tomb of Tut-ankh-amen, along with those of his predecessor Akenaten the Sun-worshipper and his Hitto-Mitanian (or Mede) ancestors, which belong to this same period, and are admittedly of a naturalistic type foreign to previous Egyptian art, are also now disclosed as Aryan Phoenician.

1. H.R. Hall, J. Egypt, Archaeology, 1. 18-19.
2. P.H.E. 2, 146.
3. Ib., 147.


Significantly many of the motives of this "Syrian," properly Phoenician, art are reproduced on the monuments and coins of the Early Britons. Thus, for example, the finely carved chair of "Syrian" workmanship found in the tomb of the "Syrian" high priest who was the grandfather of Akhen-aten (see Fig. 26) contains a sacred scene unknown in Egyptian art, but which, we shall find later (chapter XX), is common not only on Phoenician sacred seals and coins, but also on the prehistoric monuments and coins of the Ancient Britons.

FIG. 26.-Phoenician Chair of 15th century, B.C., with Solar scene as on Early Briton Monuments and Coins.
From tomb of Syrian high-priest in Egypt.
(After A. Weigall.1)
Note the Goat is worshipping Cross, as in Phoenician and Briton versions, pp. 334-5.

Still further fresh evidence for the Phoenician origin of the megalithic monuments in the British Isles and Western Europe has recently been elicited by the explorations of M. Siret in the ancient tumuli near megaliths of the Late Stone Age in Southern Spain and Portugal, the Iberian "half-way house" of the Phoenicians on their sea route to

1 Life of Akhenaton, p.48. It was found in tomb of the Syrian high priest Yuaa, maternal grandfather of Akhen-aten, and his mummy discloses him to be of a fine Aryan type (Ib., pp. 24, 28).

their tin-mines in Britain. This discloses the existence there in the Late Stone Age of colonies of Eastern sea-traders, presumably from "Syria" and in contact with Egypt and N. Europe, who searched for metallic ores and bartered manufactures like the Phoenicians. Their culture was in several ways like that of the builders of the Stone Circles in Britain.

[M. Siret found1 that these prehistoric Stone Age settlers in S. Spain were civilized sea-going traders from "Syria," seeking ores, and they traded in and manufactured [as did the Phoenicians] oriental painted vases in red, black and green pigments - the latter two colours derived from copper, also statuettes in alabaster of non-Egyptian type, supposed to be "Babylonian," alabaster and marble cups and perfume flasks of Egyptian type, burials with arched domes and corridor entrances of Egypto-Mycenian type, amber from the Baltic and jet from Britain, and a shell from the Red Sea; and they introduced already manufactured the highest grade flint implements of the Late Stone Age period, and axes of a green stone which is found in veins of tin ore. They exported to the East all the tin and copper ore they obtained; and although thus engaged in the bronze trade, they appear to have left no traces in Spain of that precious metal in their graves. This is explained on the supposition that they kept the natives in the dark in regard to the value of bronze; and that they preceded the later bronze-using people of the Bronze Age proper.]

Against the probability of Phoenicians being the erectors of the prehistoric megaliths in Britain and Western Europe it was argued by Fergusson, who attempted to prove that both Stonehenge and Avebury were post-Roman, that no dolmens had been reported from Phoenicia in his day.2 Since then, although Syria-Phoenicia. is as yet little explored, "a circle of rough upright stones" is reported to stand a few miles to the north of Tyre itself;3 and several "Stone Circles" have been reported by Conder,4 Oliphant and others in South Syria as well as in Hittite Palestine,5 and especially

1 L'Anthropologie, 1921.
2 F.R.M., 409.
3 Stanley, cited by A.P.H., 105.
4 C.S.S., 42; Heth [= Hittite] and Moab, chaps. 7 and 8; Thirty Years Work in Holy Land (Pal. Expl. F.) 142 and 176, 187, pp. 394, 410, etc.
5 See distribution map and figures, H. Vincent, Canaan, Paris. 1914.


to the east of the Jordan; and Macalister has unearthed at Gaza, etc., rows of megaliths in the "cup-marked rocks in their neighbourhood." But, we have seen, that the later restricted Roman province of "Phoenicia" itself formed only a part of the Eastern Phoenician empire, while in the Persian Gulf area which the earlier Phoenicians occupied before coming to the Levant, Stone Circles like Stonehenge, dolmens and other megaliths are reported along with "Catti" names (see Map).

[Between the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea, in the district of Kasin, are reported three huge rude Stone Circles, which are described as being "Like Stonehenge" and, like it, composed of gigantic trilithons about 15 ft. high;1 and several huge Stone Circles in the neighbourhood of Mt. Sinai, some of them measuring 100 ft. in diameter.2 On the old caravan route from the Cilician coast via "Jonah's Pillar" to Persia (or Iran of the ancient Sun-worshippers), several megaliths are incidentally reported by travellers. Near Tabriz, to east of Lake Van, are "several circles" of gigantic stones ascribed to the giants "Caous" (? Cassi) of the Kainan dynasty.3 In Parthia at Deh Ayeh near Darabgerd, is a large circle.4 On the N.W. frontier of India, on the route from Persia near Peshawar, is a large circle of unhewn megaliths about 11 ft. high, and resembling the great Keswick Circle in Cumberland.5 And amongst the many megaliths along the Mediterranean coast of Africa, so frequented by the Phoenicians, are several Stone Circles in Tripoli and the Gaet-uli hills with trilithons, like Stonehenge.6]

The probability that the Phoenicians were the erectors of the megalithic tombs, often in the neighbourhood of the Circles, in Britain is also indicated, amongst other things, by the substantial identity proved by Sir A. Keith to exist between the tomb of the Late Stone Age Briton with that of the "Giant's tomb" in Sardinia.7 This latter island also abounds in Stone Circles,8 and its earliest civilizers and

1 S. Palgrave, Central and East Arabia, 1, 251, and others cited by F.R.M. 444, etc.
2 Palmer, Desert of the Exodus.
3 Chardin, Voy. en Perse, 1, 267. These stones are described as "hewn."
4 W. Ouseley, Trav. in Persia, 2, 124. (with figure).
5 A. Phayre, J.A.S. Bengal. 1870, Pt. I, No. 1. It is about 50 feet in diameter, like many British circles.
6 Barth, Trav. in Cent. Africa, 1, 58 and 74.
7 K.A.M., 19.
8 P.C.S., 56, etc.


colonists were Phoenicians, whose remains and inscriptions from its southern Port Hercules northwards, are abundant, as we have seen.

The approximate date for the initial erection of these rude Stone Circles and other early megaliths in Britain appears to have been many centuries and even a millennium or more before the arrival of Brutus about 1100 B.C., or about 2800 B.C. or earlier. This is evident from the geographic and geological correlation of these monuments to the prehistoric tin and copper mine workings, flint-factories and neolithic villages. These relationships make it clear that these monuments were erected by the earlier branch of the sea-trading Phoenicians, who were exclusively engaged in mining for the bronze trade in the East, and using that metal in Britain sparingly themselves, and not engaged to any considerable extent, if at all, as agricultural colonists, such as were Brutus and his later Brito-Phoenicians, who used bronze more freely, as attested by their tombs, bronze sickles, etc. Whilst the numerous "Barat," "Catti" and "Cassi" place-names on so many of their sites and the "Catt-Stanes" testify that their erectors were "Catti" or "Cassi" Barats or Brito-Phoenicians, as were the Amorites.

The physical type of the builders of these Stone Circles and megaliths is obviously that represented by the skeletons of tallish Nordic type found (with some others of the smaller river-bed and mixed Iberian or Pictish type) in the long barrow burial mounds, chambered cairns and stone cists of the Late Stone and Early Bronze Ages in the neighbourhood of these circles. And it was presumably early pioneer stragglers of this same Nordic race at the end of the Old Stone Age who are represented by the "Red Man" of Paviland Cave, in the Gower peninsula of Wales, of the mammoth age,1 and the "Keiss Chief" in the stone cist at

1. This early man of the tall, long-headed and broad-browed type found at Cro-Magnon in Bordeaux was unearthed at the "Goat's Hole" cave at Paviland; and first described by Dean Buckland in 1824 (Reliquiae Diluv.); and later by Boyd Dawkins (Arch. Jour., 1897, 338, etc.) and others. He is named "Red Man" on account of the rusty staining of his bones (by a red oxide of iron) regarded as a religious rite. Beside him in addition to his rude stone weapons, were a necklace and rings of ivory and the paw-bone of a wolf as a religions charm.

Keiss (Kassi ?) in Caithness. Both of these are interred with rude stone weapons, and are of the superior and artistic Cro-Magnon type of early men, which seems to have been the proto-Nordic or proto-Aryan. Indeed, the associate of the Keiss chief had a cranium described by Huxley1 as "remarkably well formed and spacious" and of the modern Nordic type. These early Nordic people, who were buried near the Circles, were generally found in their tombs laid on their right side, and their face usually facing eastwards to the rising Sun, thus evidencing their solar religion and belief in a resurrection.

The purpose of the great Stone Circles now appears, somewhat more clearly than before, from the new observations now recorded, to have been primarily for solar observatories; whilst the smaller Circles seem mainly sepulchral, and sometimes contain dolmens and interments of the Bronze Age.2

Popularly called "Druid Circles," the larger ones, on the contrary, are now generally believed by archaeologists to be of solar purpose. This opinion was formed by observing that they are generally erected on open high ground commanding wide views of sunrise and sunset, and that the orientation of many of the Circles, as indicated by the outlying stones and avenues (which are preserved in several instances and which existed formerly in many others where now removed3) is often to the North-East (as at Stonehenge), i.e., in the direction of sunrise about the midsummer solstice or longest day

1. L.H.C., 88. This Keiss chief is described by Laing (ib. 15) as "a tall man of very massive proportions," lying extended, with his face to the East. Huxley found his cranial index was 76, with projecting eyebrow ridges which gave the forehead a "receding" aspect and the forehead "low and narrow," but, as shown in his Fig. (No. 11), it is wider than the Iberian type. The other tall type of man at Keiss (cist 7) is described by Laing as "nearly 6 feet in height, whilst those previously found did not exceed 5 feet or 5 feet 4 inches (ib. 14). Huxley found his cranial index to be 78, "the forehead, well arched though not high rises almost vertically from the brow." Nose is good, jaws massive and chin projecting (ib. 85, etc.)
2 These have been called by Mr. A. L. Lewis "Burial Circles" and "Barrow Circles" (Man, 1914, 163 f.), and their stones are not usually pillars but short stumpy boulders.
3 Thus at Shap in Westmorland, visited by me, Camden describes "a double row of immense granites extending about a mile" (C. B. Gough, 3, 414) of which only a few blocks now remain.


in the year. So it was supposed that they were intended for observing and fixing officially this date in the calendar year, for economic as well as sacred purposes, as this date was one of the chief festivals in the Sun religion.l On the other hand, a few archaeologists are still of opinion that all the Stone Circles are essentially sepulchral,2 although no traces of any ancient burial are found in the larger Circles.

The conflicting results obtained by different modern writers in attempting to estimate the exact orientation of these Circles, and the manner in which they were used by their erectors as solar observatories, is, owing to ignorance of the exact point from which the erectors made their observations, and also to different individual opinions as to what was the true centre of the circle, as most of the Circles are not perfectly circular. Hitherto the point of observation for taking the sight-line of the sunrise has been assumed to be the "centre" of the Circle.3 It is supposed that the observer stood at this centre, and looked along the axis to the N.E. indicated by the outlying stones or avenue, and that, when the rising sun was seen along this line, it fixed the required solstice date.

But I found by personal examination of many of those great Circles which are still more or less complete, such as at Stonehenge, Keswick, Penrith, etc., that the point of observation was not at the Centre of the Circle but at the opposite or S.W. border, where I found a marked Observation Stone in the same relative position as in all the greater Circles containing the S.W. Stone which I examined, and which has hitherto escaped the notice of previous observers.

This "Observation Stone" I first found at the fine Keswick Circle, which is locally called "Castle Rigg," or "Castle of

1 A. L. Lewis, Arch. Jour., 49, 136, etc., J.R.A.I., 1900, etc. Sir N. Lockyer and others. Lockyer supplied some confirmatory solar observations in regard to Stonehenge and other Circles with outlying stones and avenues to N.E. (L.S., 62, etc., 153, 265, etc.); but he impaired his results by taking arbitrary lines and by introducing extravagant astronomical theories, supposing these Circles' use to be for observing the rising of stars; and he, moreover, believed that the early Circles were intendedlfor the observations of May Day of an agricultural and not a solar year.
2 Sir A. Evans, Archaeol. Rev., 1889, 31, 3, etc. R. Holmes, R.A.B., 476, 479, etc.
3 L.S., 58, 176, etc.; and similarly other writers.


the Rig," a title of the Gothic kings, and cognate with the Latin Rex, Regis, and the Sanskrit Raja of the Indo-Aryans, and the "Ricon" of the Briton coins (see later). In searching for possible markings on the stones of this Circle in August, 1919 -no markings having been previously reported -I enlisted the kind co-operation of my friend Dr. Islay Muirhead, in a minute scrutiny of each individual stone, and we started off in opposite directions. Shortly afterwards a shout from my friend that he had noticed some artificial marks on a stone on the western border brought me to the spot, where I recognized that the undoubted markings on this stone (see Fig. 27) resembled generally the Sumerian linear script with which I had become familiar. The marks read literally in Sumerian word-signs "Seeing the Low Sun" which was presumably "Seeing the Sun on the Horizon,"1 and it was written in characters of before 2500 B.C.

FIG. 27.-Sighting "Sumerian" Marks on Observation Stone in Keswick Stone Circle.

a.    Sign on Stone of Keswick Circle, viewed from north.
b.    Sumerian word-Sign in Script of 3100 B.C.2
c.                    do.                    do.         2400 B.C.3
d.                    do.                    do.         1000 B.C.

The position of this marked or inscribed stone in the Keswick Circle is in the S.W. section of the Circle. It is the stone marked No. 26 in the annexed survey-plan of the Keswick Circle by Dr. W. D. Anderson.4 The stone is an undressed boulder, like the other stones of the Circle, but is broad and flattish and, unlike most of the other stones of the

1 See Fig. 27 b-d. Br. 9403.
2 cp. B.B.W. 414.
3 Ib. 414, and T.R.C. 243.
4 C.A.S. XV (New Series) 1914-15, 99. The Keswick Circle like many others of the larger Circles, has a radius of about fifty feet. In the Plan the unshaded stones are supposed by Dr. Anderson to indicate sunrise, and the shaded to have been probably used for star observations.


Circle, it could never have been a standing pillar-stone. It is what I call, in view of the evidence to be seen presently, "The Observation Table-Stone," and it bears the inscribed signs on its flattish top. It appears to be in its original site, but swung round or fallen somewhat forward to the S.E., presumably through undermining (possibly in search for buried treasure, as has happened with similar stones elsewhere). Or it may have been deliberately swung slightly out of its original position and tilted to its present position by the later erectors of the inner quadrangle or so-called "temple" (see Plan), which is clearly a late structure and presumably Druidical, erected after the site was abandoned by the "Sun-worshippers" (probably after their conversion to Christianity) and analogous to the quasi-Druidical building which, we shall see, was erected within the Stonehenge Circle. For this marked stone of the Keswick Circle is now orientated towards the northern border of the inner "temple," and in a line which has no solar or astronomical significance whatsoever. The engraved signs, despite the weathering of ages, are distinct though somewhat shallow, the lines being about a quarter of an inch deep and about a third of an inch wide.1 And these signs on this stone in Cumber-land or the "Land of the Cymrs or Cumbers" (or Sumers) may be read as the Sumerian word-sign for "Seeing the Sunrise."2

The manner in which the Sunrise was observed by the early astronomers who erected this Keswick Stone Circle in "prehistoric" times is now clearly disclosed by the location, orientation and inscription on this Observation Stone, bearing these markings. A reference to the plan on p. 229 will show that these engraved marks on this stone (No. 26), forming an Observation Table-Stone, namely, the "diamond" and

1. The "diamond" portion of the sign is not a true rectangle (and this also is the case in the Sumerian script) but has a width of 4 9/10 inches from N. to S. and 3 1/2 inches from E. to W., with sides about 3 inches in length.
2 The marking on this Keswick stone is substantially identical with the Sumerian compound word-sign, which is a picture-sign for Eye (or Si, thus disclosing Sumerian origin of our English word "see" (and the Sun, in which the Sun is for lapidary purposes represented as a "diamond" shape. This compound sign is given the value of "Rising Sun" (B.B.W., 2, 215); and thus meaning literally "Seeing the Rising Sun."


Plan of Keswick Circle, showing position of Observation
Stone in relation to Solstice, etc.
(After Dr. Anderson, by kind permission of Cumberland and Westmorland Antiq. Soc.)


arrow-head-like signs, were used like the back-sight of a rifle (see Fig. 28) aimed at the point of the Sunrise, so as to obtain an exact sight-line in "Shooting the Sun" as with a sextant.

FIG. 28.-Mode of Sighting Sunrise         FIG. 29.-Sighting Sunrise by
   by Observation Stone in                       Observation Stone in
         Keswick Circle.                              Stonehenge Circle.

The eye of the observer, stationed at this Table-Stone in the S.W. of the Circle, looked along the middle line of the "diamond" (the apex and angular sides of which, supplemented by the arrow-head angles, correspond to the angular notch on the back-sight of a rifle) and gained thereby a sight-line which passed through the centre of the Circle, and beyond this passed in the axis of the circle out to the horizon along the edge of the corresponding standing pillar-stone on the N.E. (presumably stone No. 6 on plan, which acted like the front-sight of a rifle). When the Sunrise point coincided exactly with this sight-line, it yielded the required date in the Solar calendar of the Phoenician erectors of this Stone Circle observatory.

This observation stone and its marking may now help to settle the existing confusion of opinion as to the position of the "centre" of this particular Circle. For this Keswick


Circle is not a true circle, but is somewhat pear-shaped; and Dr. Anderson's "centre" differs considerably in position from the centre as estimated by previous observers.1

[Moreover, his alignment of the midsummer solstice sunrise in the plan appears to have been drawn, not from the actual visible sunlight point on the hilly skyline to the east of the Keswick Circle, but from the theoretical sunrise point on the invisible lower horizon beyond the hills, which is considerably to the north of the actual sunrise on the hilly skyline.2 All these differences, if corrected, may tend to bring the solstice sightline towards the stone with the Sumerian markings No. 26. In view of all these differences of personal equation in the various estimations of the centre of the circle and in the summer solstice line, it is desirable that further fresh observations of this line and the actual Centre be made with special reference to this stone No. 26 bearing the markings.]

Following up the discovery of the Observation Stone at Keswick, I searched several other of the larger Circles for corresponding stones in the S.W. sector for such markings; and I found similar flattish stones in the same relative position in all of the larger relatively complete Circles containing that sector which I have been able to examine.

At Stonehenge, which I visited later in that year (1919) I went by my compass straight to the corresponding S.W. stone in the Stonehenge "older" Circle; and, although hitherto unremarked by previous writers, I found that it was a Table-Stone, and that this Stonehenge Table-Stone bore the same old diamond-shaped sign engraved upon the middle of its flat top as at Keswick.

This Stonehenge Observation Table-Stone with its Sumerian markings is unfortunately very much worn by the weather and more especially by the feet of visitors, who use it as a stepping stone, its top being flat and only about two feet above the ground level, and the stone of a somewhat

1 C. W. Dymond in his plan in C.A.S., 1879-1880, obtains a centre to the west of Dr. Anderson's, in the middle line of the N. and S. entrances; and Prof. J. Morrow (Proc. Durham Univ. Philosoph. Socy., 1908-1909) selected a centre to the south of this, and about 18 inches N.W. of Dr. Anderson's centre (see Anderson loc. cit., 102). There is also an earlier plan with different orientation by J. Otley in 1849 (see L.S., 35).
2 See Anderson, loc. cit., 104-106.


friable boulder sandstone formation (the so-called "Sarsen" stone). On my arrival I found people standing upon it, and this friction by the feet of visitors during the centuries has worn down the signs very shallow and almost worn them away in places. Yet the engraved marking is nevertheless still quite unmistakable in its main features. The "diamond" is of almost identical size with that of the Keswick Circle, and is somewhat more rectangular in shape.

This Observation Stone at Stonehenge lies probably in its original spot and prone position; and is not a "fallen" stone or fragment, as supposed. Its location with reference to the great horse-shoe crescent of colossal lintelled "trilithons," the so-called temple, a structure which now forms the most conspicuous feature of the modern Stonehenge, discloses the important fact that this "trilithon" temple is of relatively late origin, and erected by a different people from those who erected and used the Stone Circle, and belonging to a non-Sun-worshipping cult. This is evidenced by the fact that the "trilithon" temple completely blocks the view from the Observation Stone to the centre of the Circle and from thence out along the axis of the outlying index pillars and great avenue to the N.E. to the point of Midsummer Sunrise; and also by the fact that the users of this "trilithon" temple and its "altar" stone must in their ritual have habitually turned their backs on the Rising Sun. This trilithon temple was thus presumably erected by later Druids, like the later "temple" within the Keswick Circle. The Druids were anti-solar, and worshippers of the Moon-cult of the vindictive aboriginal Mother goddess and addicted to bloody and human sacrifices, which were antagonistic and abhorrent to the "Sun-worshippers." It thus appears probable that this "trilithon" temple at Stonehenge was erected by later Celtic Druids within the old Circle of the Sun-worshipping Aryan Britons, after the latter had abandoned it, presumably on their conversion to Christianity; and that it probably dates to no earlier than about the sixth century A.D., when we are told by Geoffrey that the Druid magician Merlin erected buildings of gigantic stones at


Stonehenge.1 And the tooled or worked condition of the stones supports this late date.2

The orientation of the original old Stonehenge Circle of the Sumerian "Sun-worshippers" for the Midsummer solstice observation is abundantly attested by the great earthen embanked "avenue" extending from the Circle for about five hundred yards to the N.E. in the axis of the Circle, and in the exact line of the summer solstice sunrise; and also by the two great monolith pillars of undressed Sarsen stone, obviously for sight-lines placed in the middle line of this "avenue," namely the so-called "Friar's Heel," about 250 feet from the Circle, and a similar one nearer the Circle, now fallen and fantastically called "The Slaughter Stone" on the notion that it was originally laid flat and used by the Druids to immolate their victims there.3

The function of this Observation Stone at Stonehenge was clearly identically the same as that of the corresponding Observation Stone at Keswick. It also acted in the same way as the back-sight of a rifle in aligning the Sunrise or "Shooting the Sun." Before being blocked out by the erection of the trilithon horse-shoe temple, it commanded a straight view to the N.E., through the centre of the old Circle and out beyond the edge of the N.E. pillar of the Circle, along the northern edges of the two outstanding index or indicator monolith pillars (the "Slaughter Stone" and "Friar's Heel") and right along the middle of the great "avenue" beyond these to the point of Midsummer solstice sunrise. This fact is graphically shown in the annexed diagram (Fig. 29), wherein the real use of the outstanding indicator monolith pillars is now disclosed for the first time. It is seen to be the northern perpendicular edges of these pillars which provided the sight-line, and not the top of, the middle peak of the "Friar's Heel" pillar, as surmised by

1 G.C., 8, 10-11; and C.B. 1, 134.
2. Sir A. Evans on archaeological grounds dates the massive part of Stonehenge with its trilithons no earlier than "the end of the fourth and beginning of third century B.C." (Arch. Rev., 1889, 322, etc.); whilst Fergusson ascribed it to the Roman period or later.
3 It is not impossible, however, that it may have been so used by the Druids after it had fallen and the circle was abandoned by the Sun-worshippers.


Sir N. Lockyer and others. This "Friar's Heel" peak, indeed, while soaring to the south of the middle line of the "avenue" and far above its plane, could not possibly give the point of Sunrise on the horizon, as by the time the Sun had risen to the top of the Friar's Heel pillar the actual sunrise had long passed, and that at a point considerably to the north of the Friar's Heel peak.

Similar observation stones I also found in several other of the larger Circles containing the S.W. sector, and bearing the diamond marking obviously for the back-sighting in the observation.1 It is thus evident that the primary purpose of these great prehistoric Stone Circles erected by the Brito-Phoenicians was for solar observatory determination of the summer solstice; though the existence of outlying indicator stones and avenues in other directions in some Circles suggests that they were used secondarily sometimes for fixing other solar calendar dates. These great observatories thus attest the remarkable scientific knowledge of solar physics possessed by their erectors, and their habit of "shooting the sun," as well as their great engineering skill in moving and erecting such colossal stones.

These Stone Circles have been supposed to have been used also as Sun temples. This has been inferred from the existence of special entrances at the cardinal points, and also from the elaborate avenues attached to some of them, and supposed to have been used for ritualistic processions; and it is also suggested by the apparent later use of some of them by the Druids as temples. They were undoubtedly considered sacred, as seen in the frequency of ancient burials in their neighbourhood. This is especially evident at Stonehenge where the great numbers of tombs of the Bronze Age in the neighbourhood of that monument, and the remarkable riches in gold and other jewellery interred along with the bodies implies that it had been a sacred burial place for the royalty and nobility of a considerable part of Ancient

1. Thus "Long Meg" Circle, near Penrith in Cumberland (where the Obervation Stone is a roundish boulder "table" with mark on the top nearly breast high), and the Circles at Oddendale and Reagill in Westmorland near Shap.

Britain for many centuries. And even the round-headed Huns of the East Coast had been attracted to it, as evidenced by some round barrows with round-headed skulls.

They also appear to have been used at times as Law-Courts. Homer, in describing the famous shield of Achilles, which was probably made by the Phoenicians, like most of the famous works of art in the Iliad, states that elders of the early Aryans were represented thereon as meeting in solemn conclave within the Stone Circle.1 And in Scotland the Stone Circle was also used at times as a Law-Court.2 This supplies the reason, I think, why these Circles are sometimes called "Hare-Stanes," as at Insch near the Newton Stone, and elsewhere.3 This term "Hare" seems to me to be the "Harri" or "Heria" title of the ruling Goths in the Eddas, which I show is the equivalent of the Hittite title of "Harri" or "Arri" or "Arya-n." It is thus in series with the title of the Circles at Keswick, etc., as "Castle Rig" - "Rig" being the title of the Gothic kings and princes. And the name "Kes-wick" (with its ancient copper mines) means "Abode of the Kes" i.e., the Cassi clan of the Hittites.

We thus see that the great prehistoric Stone Circles in Ancient Britain were raised by the early Mor-ite scientific Brito-Phoenicians as solar observatories, to fix the solsticial and other dates for the festivals of their Sun-cult; and that their descendant Britons continued to regard them as sacred places down to the latter end of the Bronze Age and the beginning of the Christian era; and this sacred tradition survived until a few centuries ago.

1 "The elders were seated on the smooth stones in the sacred circle," Il., 18, 504.
2 In the Aberdeen Chartulary of 1349 is a notice of a court held at the Standing Stones in the Don Valley, "apud stantes lapides de Rane en le Garuiach," when William de St. Michael was summoned to answer for his forcible retention of ecclesiastic property (Regist. Episcop. Aberdon, 1, 79 and again, in the Chartulary of Moray a regality court was held by Alexander Stewart, Lord of Radenoch and son of Robert II. at the Standing Stones of Raitts, stating "apud le standard stanes de la Rath de Kinguey." And when the Bishop of Murray attended this Court to protest against certain infringements of his rights, it is stated that be stood outside the circle:- "extra circum." Regist. Episcop. Morav., p.184.
3 And Kirkurd, Peebles; Feith Hill, Inver Keithney, Banff. Trans. Hawick Archaeol. Socy., 1908, p. 26.

<< Previous Chapter | TOC | Next Chapter >>