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| Cerrig Duon stone circle |
[700 x 647 jpg]
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|Description ||The huge bulk of the Maen Mawr stone makes it impossible to see any of the stones immediately behind it in the Cerrig Duon circle. However, using an elevated camera as here (approx height 8m), we can see everything and determine if there are any alignments between the stone circle and other stones. The two low stones nearest the camera align on the huge Maen Mawr stone to form a 'three-stone row' that is aligned just to the east of north. Therefore, this view is looking just to the west of true south (SSW). Maen Mawr leans to the west, so the measuring point for it was the centre of its base.|
The first thing to note is that the alignment of the three nearest stones does not accurately bisect the circle; it instead slices through the circle's eastern half. The second thing to note is that the 'circle' is in fact an ellipse, its longer side aligned ESE to WNW, approximately indicated here by the blue arrow.
Visually, we can align the three-stone row with the southernmost stone in the circle (indicated by the yellow arrow) along the yellow dotted line. This also aligns with a 'notch' cut into the distant horizon. This alignment is more clearly seen on the ground, where using binoculars the 'notch' on the horizon is marked by a wind farm on the distant hill (not visible in this photo).
However, a more accurate straight-line view along the row fails to line up with any on the circle’s stones; passing to the east of the northernmost stone (indicated by the black arrow) and passing to the west of the southernmost stone (indicated by the yellow arrow). This straight-line view is indicated by the black dotted line, which also fails to line up with anything noteworthy along the valley or on the distant horizon.
The third thing to note is that these are purely visual ‘alignments’ and the camera’s lens and angle of view will distort the eyeball view, albeit only slightly. When compared with a properly surveyed plan of the site (which can’t be posted here for copyright reasons), these visual ‘alignments’ are not there. Alignments on the northern horizon are perhaps more interesting, but I’ll save those for another day. Note too that there are two additional stone rows to the NE of this site which have their own interesting alignments.
My conclusion: any ‘alignments’ between the standing stone, stone row, and stone circle are coincidental and, therefore, not intended by the builders. Indeed, the visual associations between these features are so notably absent they suggested to me that the separate objects were built at different times; their only association being that this site was obviously important to these people over a long period. But I’m usually wrong, so I await your comments.
| Nice one Thingy, well thought out. Maybe you could make this into one of Andy's featured articles. I'm sure it would get lot's of interest, it's certainly got mine.|
| One thing you may have missed Thingy, the bedding plane in Maen Mawr. When you look along this it lines up with another possible notch in the horizon. It can be seen on your pic about 1/2" to the right of your black line. It is formed by trees but I assume they reflect the contours of the horizon.|
This adds another puzzle. Has the stone leaned to the right or were two sight lines intended?
|Martin L |
| Great research Thingy. |
| The ESE/WSW alignment of the circle is found in other circles in the Beacons area too. The difference with Cerrig Duon is that there is no collection of slabs in the SE corner , as in your photo of Ynis Hyr circle. Cerrig Duon is an oddity in this respect. In Pen y Beacon circle (Hay on Wye) the only remaining upright stone is the sole intact survivor of this feature. It seems as though there may have been some kind of a slab built arch type arrangement in the Breconshire circles in the SE quadrants. |
| Thanks very much for all this detailed observation Thingy. You've been very thorough. It's prompted me to add my 2005 dowsing plans of Cerrig Duon, so you should see them up this evening. One focal point of that 'ritual' was the taller/ tallest? stone of the circle, that lies prone, at the NE arc. (I posted a photo of it a few years ago.) Another feature of the 'ritual' was final exiting to the south, where there are cairns (posted photos of them recently too.) My more recent dowse of C.D. also exited to south [twice] but re-entered and ended up focusing on Maen Mawr, unlike the 2005 exercise. Neither were worked out to their ultimate end, as I ran out of time (or maybe 'steam' on first occasion!) Thanks, too, to Cerrig for all his great input.|
| Thanks for the comments. Sem, I've added a couple of sightlines to another pic; is this what you meant? See here: http://www.megalithic.co.uk/a558/a312/gallery/wales/powys/Thingy0063A.jpg|
Angie, thanks for the dowsing plans - intriguing as always.
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