A remarkable new Stone Avenue has been located by photographic evidence at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Avebury in Wiltshire. Previously, two other Stone Avenues known as the ‘West Kennet Avenue’ and the ‘Beckhampton Avenue’ are known to archaeologists as they still have some of the massive stones that line these avenues present, but this new Avenue was never thought to exist.
Robert John Langdon, an author and cartographer had been mapping the area over the last six years and has published a series of books and maps, based on his hypothesis that most of Britain was flooded directly after the last ice age and consequently, these ancient sites were built on the shorelines of the ‘wetlands’. “The maps I have produced” says Langdon “indicated that Avebury was a trading place for our ancestors. My assumption is that the nearby monument of Silbury Hill would have been used as a harbour, once the waters had eventually receded from the main site of Avebury. Therefore, a direct pathway would have been used from Silbury Hill to Avebury for goods, which according to archaeologists doesn’t exist.”
Silbury Hill is the largest man-made monument of prehistoric Europe and has always been a mystery to archaeologists throughout history as it doesn’t seem to have a real purpose. Recent discoveries by Whitehead et al (2012) showed that Silbury was indeed flooded in the past, but its construction is believed be for either religious or ceremonial purposes. However, Langdon insists that this ancient civilisation did not spend millions of man hours building a monument without a very good practical reason.
“If you are going to spend years or even decades building such a construction, there has to be a social or financial reward for your endeavours,” he continues “we now know through recent excavations that this mound was built in stages, starting small, then getting taller, if it was purely symbolic you wouldn’t need to change the size. You only change the height of this monument if it serves as a beacon to attract ships and boats to the trading place of Avebury, for the higher you build, the greater the visible range”
New Silbury Avenue
In the initial book of Robert’s trilogy ‘Prehistoric Britain’ called ‘The Stonehenge Enigma’, he describes Silbury Hill as Britain’s first ‘Lighthouse’ with a wood-burning beacon on the summit of the man-made hill. This concept and use of hills are commonplace at the time of the Roman Empire and thereafter, but it was not their invention. “The Romans inherited the idea from other cultures such as the Egyptians, who had their ‘Lighthouse of Alexandria’ –we have now found our very own ‘Lighthouse of Avebury’, but some two thousand years earlier.”
Langdon’s findings will need to be confirmed by excavation, although in 2011 at the top of this newly discovered Stone Avenue, dowsers found a series of stone holes in the same location as the new photographic evidence. Moreover, it seems that Britain’s ‘Indiana Jones’ can now add another remarkable discovery to his ever growing historic collection.
A video showing an animation of the new Stone Avenue and Silbury Hill as a beacon can be found on the author’s web site.