I hope this wasn't already posted and discussed.  I just ran across this info.

Gizmodo.com  "If Stonehenge is actually a giant musical instrument, what does it sound like?"

These videos from that link.


Maybe that's wishful thinking. This article - Alternews.co.uk states that "stones sound like bells, drums, and gongs when played".  "He theorised that stone age people living in Wales might have used the rocks to communicate with each other over long distances as there are marks on the stones where they have been struck an incredibly long time ago.

'It is not controvertial [sic] to say that prehistoric people would have known of the stone's capabilities. We can see indentations on the rocks - the area is amazingly untouched,' he added.

He believes that Stonehenge can be described as the first real musical instrument - after the voice and basic drums - and it had the potential to be make noise over long distances, a little like a chruch  [sic] tower."

Acoustic mapping - with stone percussion - you can click below the figures to hear some stone percussion.

BBC.com  with a beautiful image of Stonehenge. 

Image from commons.wikimedia.org, thought to be taken between 1890 and 1900

File:Stonehenge, near Salisbury, England-LCCN2002708089.jpg

Also from wikimedia commons, a 19th century image.

File:Frith, Francis (1822-1898) - n. 721 - Stonehenge.jpg

If I had a bucket list, Stonehenge would be on it.

Views: 240

Replies to This Discussion

Intriguing thought, 4,500 years ago, during the Neolithic Age (New Stone Age), those ancient people hauled huge stones from Pembrokeshire, Wales to the site at Stonehenge and built that magnificent monument. I wonder if those who did the work, do so willingly, or were they under the lash? Was part of their reward the singing stones? Did prevailing winds off the west coast of UK or off the make a sound as it blew through and past the stones? @Dr. Terence Meaden, have you heard the sounds of the stones? 

I have been researching Stonehenge deeply since 1983. Been there hundreds of times. Most recent visit was yesterday. I live 30 miles away. 

Please go to my Facebook pages (1) Terence Meaden, (2) Stonehenge Answers.

In September 2014 at the next world conference of prehistory (UISPP, held every 3 years, next time in Spain) I shall be giving two lectures in different sessions on the reasoning behind the design plans of Stonehenge and related stone circles

Suggestions that "Stonehenge was the first real musical instrument....etc" are publicity-seeking rubbish. One might as well go into a church with hammers and bang on the walls and stone floors . . .     

Stonehenge is a Mother Earth monument like most others in the British and Irish Neolithic and Early Bronze Age (4000 to 1500 BC overall). I can point you to existing references on the Internet, but the best will be the latest which I shall soon publish. Only at the summer solstice can the light of the rising sun enter the monument and reach the cult stone. Four minutes after sunrise the sun is eclipsed by a waiting external standing stone called the Heel Stone whose penetrating shadow enters the female monument and has union with the female cult stone (called the Altar Stone). It is the hieros gamos of ancient Mesopotamia and the later Classical Greeks. 

The stones that came from South-West Wales (ca. 2900 BC) are the small ones, chiefly 2 - 3 tonnes in weight. The huge sarsen sandstones (6 to 60 tonnes) came from the Avebury Hills about 20 miles to the north, from about 2550 BC onwards. 

The driving force was the power of religious belief and the assurances given by spiritual specialists. Work now, worship now, and fertility will be promised-------and your place in the afterlife assured. Sounds familiar doesn't it? 


UISPP, Spain 1 to 7 September 2014.   Abstract for the session A20 run by Professor Anati


G. Terence Meaden terencemeaden01@gmail.com Kellogg College, Oxford University


For Neolithic and Bronze Age Britain and Ireland this research explores aspects of the nature, range and meaning of symbols and images used for storing knowledge, transmitting information, and expressing the spiritual concepts of religious non-literate agricultural communities.

Portable stone artifacts and megalithic settings and structures from particular sites in Southern England and Southern Ireland were studied with regard to shapes, artwork and positioning—together with the place of megaliths in the broader archaeological context of the open landscape—for evidence of planned symbolism.

It was found that skilful flintwork had produced what devotees saw as spiritually expressive forms that could serve as meaningful charms or talismans. Thus at a newly-recognized Neolithic site in Wessex in southern England—namely, a megalithic shrine with a cavity used for long-term storage—the author found artifacts including nine stones chipped into lozenges which is a shape anciently and enduringly associated with the female gender. Also at this site among related examples, a13 kg isosceles-triangular stone had been drilled through at the apex to articulate its feminine fertility significance. At another site a kilometre away two similar triangular portable stones bore a cup mark hollowed at the apex. The usefulness and eloquence of such images and symbolism stem from a belief that divinities would comprehend and react sympathetically. Symbols served as signs without writing.

Furthermore, the pillar and lozenge megaliths at Drombeg Stone Circle when seasonally paired by sunshine and shadow at the equinoctial sunrises create a breathtaking communicative fertility spectacle—the same as visibly happens at Stonehenge at midsummer sunrise via the principle of the hieros gamos. This same symbolic intercourse by sunlight and shadow between positioned stones has been witnessed and photographed at Drombeg for all eight festival dates of the ancient agricultural year. Avebury is explained similarly. Symbolic coupling between male and female stones is a sensational dramatic stage-set. It is the ultimate in a community’s articulate expression of Earth/Sky union displaying high spirituality. As a consequence, the meaning of the design plan of Stonehenge is fully explained, not only for the summer solstice union at sunrise but for a midwinter sunrise coupling between two other positioned stones. In this fashion dramatic artistry is intelligently combined with religion in a manifestly moving spectacle.                                   


Terence, thank you. for your shedding light on this topic. I certainly appreciate you sharing your expertise. Your image of banging on church stone walks and floors is very funny, like a scene out of Monty Python!

I always take things with a grain of salt. I wondered, for exampke, what the would have used to hit the stone. A steel hammer would not exist for millenia.

I hope people dont follow these stories by hitting stones of ancient sites with hammers. They are way to precious for that.




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