I have received quite a bit of feedback concerning last week's Tip, "Confession o' the Decade" that had to do with the inaccuracy of my previous claim about the Glastonbury Tor and Stonehenge being due East/West of each other, and Stonehenge and Avebury being due North/South of each other. IMHO neither True E/W nor N/S work for me anymore.
A friend of mine in South Wales writes:
"Did you know that Peter Knight has now made a geomantic astrum including this triangle, and Hambledon Hill, and others, to get a 6 pointed star.... He doesn't seem to mind it is not at the same latitudes. And thank you for 'flatitudes,' I have total problems getting that one straight...."
I asked Peter to tell us about this alignment, And he writes, "The Axis of Astrum is indeed 3.8 degrees west of due north, so this makes Avebury - Stonehenge - Glastonbury all work out with the angle very nearly being exactly 90 degrees." He has kindly sent me this image:
The Wessex Astrum
from Peter Knight's
The Wessex Astrum - Sacred Geometry in a Mystical Landscape*
Peter Knight's work is both interesting and exciting. I have visited some of the places he has identified as a result of his long-distance geometry work; however, the claim I had been making was that Stonehenge is due East of the Glastonbury Abbey. That means that they must be on the same latitude. Please understand that with his Astrum, Peter is not making that claim.
Another reader writes: "... OK but it still looks pretty tight. I don't think they had GPS satellite in those days either. and considering that even the geologic fault lines wiggle and waver beneath the crust the actual fault line aren't precise either because of their depth. Maybe the surface has shifted over the thousands of years also. Still it seems pretty amazing!! thanks for your observations and notes. many blessings..."
While I have no rebuttal to the possibility of Earth movement, here-in lies the difficulty. How close is close enough? For example, above, Peter Knight says of his Astrum that it is, "the angle very nearly being exactly 90 degrees." - Again, how close is close enough?
I believe that this is one of the reasons why the Editors of "The Ley Hunter" magazine ultimately lost their confidence in the whole notion of Alfred Watkins' perfectly straight alignment of ancient sites. First they couldn't convince the archaeological establishment that our 'primitive' ancestors were intelligent enough to have built in straight lines, and second, the doubters said that leys that were given as examples were full of "yeah, buts." "Yeah, but ... you are not taking into consideration the curvature of the Earth." "Yeah, but ... our modern transits show clearly that these are not exactly straight lines." "Yeah, but ..." "Yeah, but ..." - it goes on and on.
We do need to remember that on one hand, Neolithic awareness of visual astronomy was far more advanced than that of most modern archaeological researchers. I believe that this is also true for most of the rest of us as well. (I'll be talking about that issue in next week's Tip o' the Week # 63 - "Stars Get in Your Eyes.") Those Neolithic people with their "short and brutish lives" clearly knew a lot about astronomy - especially Solar and Lunar - not to mention their awareness of advanced geometrical forms like ellipses and 3-4-5 right triangles long before the Greeks were supposed to have invented them. However, let's not forget that our foremothers and fathers were working with stone tools, not finely crafted and superbly machined metal tools. So, how close is close enough? It's like a mythtory - it's all lies, all truth. You make up your own mind... I've made up mine.
Another kind of reaction was:
"We all make mistakes. It is when we do not learn from them and keep saying the same thing is when we need someone to say HEY!!! WAKE UP..."
and in a similar vein:
"How lovely, and endearing, and very joyous, to find someone amongst all those others who speak certainties they cannot prove who admits he has made a mistake."
In any event, I made one. And Stonehenge just ain't due East of the Glastonbury Abbey.
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*The Wessex Astrum - Sacred Geometry in a Mystical Landscape by Peter Knight and Toni Perrot. Stone Seeker Tours and Publishing. . Copies are available either directly from Peter (Phone: 0775 408 2691) or from Growing Needs and Labyrinth Books in Glastonbury. Websites: www.stoneseeker.net and www.MySpace.com/wessexastrum. Peter is doing field trips to many Astrum localities this year. Contact him for further information.