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Lesson Transcript

One of the most famous sights in the world, Stonehenge is a collection of prehistoric monuments created between 3000-2000 years BC. The remains of a ring of standing stones, they stand in the middle of a complex network of Bronze Age and Neolithic standing stones in the English county of Wiltshire. An object of intense curiosity, fascination and mystery, this unique man-made temple inspires a sense of wonder in all who visit. It stands as a timeless monument to those who built it, and is physical evidence of the faith our prehistoric ancestors shared with many religious worshippers today. It is estimated that approximately thirty million hours of labour were required to complete the three stages of its creation. Speculation as to why it was constructed range from views of astronomy to human sacrifice. The first stage was a henge, or earthwork created around 3100 BC. The second stage, and most impressive, involved the transportation of 82 bluestones from the Preseli mountains in South West Wales. It is thought that these stones, weighing around four tonnes each, were dragged along rollers and sledges to the headwaters of Milford Haven. They were then loaded onto rafts and carried by water along the South Coast of Wales and along inland rivers. The last part of the incredible 240-mile journey was done both overland and by river. The third stage, completed in 2000 BC, saw the arrival of the Sarsen stones from 25 miles north of Stonehenge.