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The mystery of Stonehenge’s ‘bluestones’

Geological Society of London blog

new paper published in the Journal of the Geological Society has lent support to recent theories about the origin of the mysterious ‘bluestones’ of Stonehenge.

Stonehenge, a World Heritage Site Stonehenge, a World Heritage Site

It has long been known that some of the rocks that make up Stonehenge must have travelled a long distance before becoming part of the monument. Whilst the larger sandstone blocks (‘sarsen’ stones) that make up its outer circle are thought to have a local origin from the Marlborough Downs area, the smaller ‘bluestones’ are exotic to the region.

Plan of the central Stone Structure at Stonehenge as it survives today. c. Anthony Johnson Plan of the central Stone Structure at Stonehenge as it survives today. c. Anthony Johnson

The term ‘bluestone’ in relation to Stonehenge encompasses around twenty different rock types, including rhyolites, dolerites and ‘calcereous ashes.’

In 2011, a megalithic bluestone quarry was discovered at a site in South West Wales known as Craig Rhos-y-felin. Since then, it has been suggested as the source…

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