Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Winter Solstice 4:49 GMT

Funny that I'd check solstice time against my local time, and because I have impeccable timing it so happens to be that exact moment.  Score again.

It's the time of year for weirdos with tambourines to be pissing on and carving their names into ancient megaliths.  In fairness, it's probably true to purpose anyway.

Anyhow, the Telegraph UK has a quick trivia guide to solstice day [here].

Speaking of which, if you scroll down in the Telegraph article, there is indeed a weirdo with a tambourine!  Score yet again!


  1. Merry Christmas and Happy 2016 :) .
    Interesting article on Christmas Origins btw -

    1. Merry Christmas to you as well! And thanks, I'll give it a look

  2. Hi!,
    I'm really interested to know, about your opinion on the latest Irish aDNA, which also show steppe signals around ~2000 BC.

    1. And do you think this goes along with this?.

      Metallurgy arrived in Ireland with new people, generally known as the Bell Beaker People, from their characteristic pottery, in the shape of an inverted bell.[9] This was quite different from the finely made, round-bottomed pottery of the Neolithic. It is found, for example, at Ross Island, and associated with copper-mining there. It is thought by some scholars to be associated with the first appearance of Indo-Europeans in Europe (possibly Proto-Celtic),[10] though this theory is not universally accepted.

      The Bronze Age began once copper was alloyed with tin to produce true Bronze artefacts, and this took place around 2000 BC, when some Ballybeg flat axes and associated metalwork were produced. The period preceding this, in which Lough Ravel and most Ballybeg axes were produced, and which is known as the Copper Age or Chalcolithic, commenced about 2500 BC.

    2. Thanks for the heads up. I just saw the notification, been brewing and will have to comment tomorrow.

      The BBC is the best candidate for change as you say. It's a time when the sharpest contrast in physique can be seen.

  3. I was recently learning a bit more about Nabta Playa (possibly the oldest stone ring monument on Earth, located in Nubia) and I just realized that the Stonhenge disposition (also 3D rendition) seems to follow the same pattern along two axes a S-N one and a NE-SW one. This last axis obliges to contemplate the winter solstice (optimally within the structure's design) in the evening and the summer solstice in the morning. You could design it the other way around but it's not, so I'm feeling conceptual continuity here between these two monuments separated by so much space and time.

    One could say it's a coin toss but in fact other designs are also possible, such as a structure that allows to see both in the evening, both in the morning, etc., so the real chance of coincidence is much lower in fact.

    1. Well, I'll say this. For whatever reason in European archaeology, North Africa basically doesn't exist, even though it participates in (or precedes) many of the same recent phenomenons prior to the Islamic age. There is a Maritime Impresso event which appears to wick up the Atlantic coast of Europe, a very strong megalithic and religious tradition that mirrors the Atlantic and a pastoral phase that inches its way into Western Morocco and finally Western Iberia. There are also earlier connections between Northwest Nubia and the North Pontic and Mesopotamia that are very strong.

      I think part of this is that much of the archaeological research is in older paper publications available in French only or in PDF but not translatable by engine. The other is the current security situation for modern archaeologists, which is very bad.

      As you point out, they certainly had a similar cosmology.

    2. Well, you know I often reject the "Africa first" hypotheses but this issue of stone rings it's clearly an exception. Along with Nabta Playa there is another known ring near Asilah (south of Tangiers) known as Mzora. For what I can find online it seems to resemble British structures but no idea if it's more recent or older. If older, it could be a stepping stone in the process of cultural diffusion of this kind of astronomical architecture, else it should be an offshoot (Asilah is closer to England than to Nubia).

      There are other known African stone ring in Gambia but they are clearly more recent, still interesting for considerations about ancient North Atlantic long distance navigation (or trans-Saharan travel maybe) but not for a search for the origins of Megalithic astronomy and ring-style architecture.

    3. PS- Also spelled Msoura. It's not just European archaeologists, Moroccans themselves don't seem to appreciate the massive potential value (not just for tourism but for research) of their own ruins. The dating remains unknown for all I can find.