Ancient stones older than Stonehenge discovered on Dartmoor
Ancient stones which are thought to be 1,000 years older than Stonehenge have been discovered in Dartmoor.
The nine stones at Cut Hill, one of the highest points on Dartmoor in Devon, have been carbon-dated to around 3,500BC.
The discovery of the megaliths has delighted archaeologists and will reignite the debate about the purpose of Stonehenge, which is 120 miles away in Wiltshire.
Standing in a line they are 1,000 years older than Britain’s most famous prehistoric monument. It means they pre-date Stonehenge, which was not begun before 3,000BC.
Both monuments appear to be clearly aligned to mark the rising of the midsummer sun and the setting of the midwinter sun which suggested they both had symbolic and astronomical purposes.
Archaeologists are debating whether the find adds credence to the theory that Stonehenge was linked to prehistoric death rituals or whether it was seen by ancient Britons as a centre of healing.
Mike Pitts, of British Archaeology magazine, said: ‘This is a spectacular find and its alignment on the Solstice sun, at the exact same angle as Stonehenge, gives us fresh insights into the knowledge of Stone Age people.’