The Megalithic Yard: A Consequence of Circumferential Distribution?


Implications for Seahenge

The potential presence of two complementary units at Stonehenge in the dimensions of the inscribed panel, the Sarsen Circle circumferences and the diameters of the Aubrey Ring, the ditch and the bank may be suggested at other sites.
Seahenge Layout

Figure 15: Seahenge, at left after Brennand and Taylor.
The layout of the Seahenge ring could not readily or easily be described as a circle, misshapen or otherwise, having the appearance of three arcs forming a spade shape (the card suit). The diameter (minor axis) is widely given as six metres (Figure 15).

The ring was found to have fifty-six timbers including a large upturned trunk at centre and a particularly small peg at northwest. An entrance at southwest, potentially solstitial, was formed from a ‘Y’ shaped timber and closed off by a timber outside.
The significance of the site with respect to this study is an observation in the excavation report. This reads, “One long, straight and probably coppiced stem or pole (240) was set between timbers 32 and 33. This stem was approximately 839mm long and 25 mm in diameter”, (Brennand & Taylor, 2003, 14: my italics and emphasis).

The thought is that this pole could have been a measuring rod with a length of one Megalithic Yard as used at this site, and that the diameter of the ring may have been seven of these lengths, that is, 5.87 metres.

In this case, the diameter of the originating circle would be 112 diametric units with a circumference of 112 perimetric units thus averaging two units per timber.

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