The megalithic monuments of Britain and Ireland

by Christopher Scarre

Book, 2007



Call number

GN805 .S33


Publisher Unknown


An authoritative overview of the wide range of British and Irish Neolithic monuments. From Stonehenge to Newgrange, some of the most varied megalithic monuments in Europe can be found in the British Isles. From the Neolithic Age and the arrival of pottery and farming some 6,000 years ago to the beginning of the Bronze Age, people used megaliths ("large stones"), earth, and wood to build grandiose monuments. The number and sheer diversity of these structures is astonishing, from massive stone rows and circles to barrows, chambered tombs, and earthwork enclosures. Henges and cursus monuments, which often lacked stone elements, also belong to the same general category of monumental prehistoric architecture. Graves, sanctuaries, places of cult and of memory: the megalithic phenomenon assumed numerous functions in these prehistoric societies. Transforming the landscape, such grand structures must have represented for Neolithic communities a particular way of responding to changing social and symbolic needs, from processing the dead to gathering for ceremonies to embellishing locations that were of sacred significance. 172 illustrations, 20 in color.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member LMJenkins
This topic is endlessly fascinating to me. This book, however, is not visually enticing...the font is small and illustrations are not always on the page that describes their meaning. It's pretty technical and textbook-y. But I still enjoyed all it had to offer.

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