Ghosts of Stonehenge

Archaeologists have uncovered provocative new clues about Stonehenge and the culture that drove its construction. Airing October 11, 2017 at 9 pm on PBS Aired October 11, 2017 on PBS

Program Description

Stonehenge is the grandest and most enigmatic of Europe’s prehistoric monuments, and it has inspired countless theories to explain who built it and why. Was it an ancient cathedral or burial place or even a Stone Age observatory or computer? Over the last decade, fresh answers have come from an ambitious program of research, including the first scientific study of human remains—thousands of fragments of cremated men, women, and children—buried at the site 5,000 years ago. In this Stone Age detective story, archaeologists analyze the bones and piece together tantalizing details of the elite families who presided over Stonehenge. Remnants of huge feasts that fed the laborers at the site have come to light, including evidence that they traveled from the far corners of the British Isles to raise the stones and celebrate the winter solstice. Yet Stonehenge’s place as a centerpiece of ancient culture was not to last. Join NOVA as we reveal intimate details of the Stonehenge people and why their power began to fade soon after they raised the mighty stones.

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Image credit (Stonehenge at Dawn)
© WGBH Educational Foundation

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