Monday, July 7, 2008


In 1979 I was 21 & in England with pretty much just two things on my mind: I wanted to visit Stonehenge & cross the causeway into Tintagel.

Stonehenge disappointed, even before they fenced it off completely. We wandered round with all the other tourists but whatever Stonehenge had once been it's ambiance & secrets were not for me. I was given something far better & I have remembered it clearly all the years in between, the important things, not frustrating things like name & location.

I know we were driving west, still stinging from the disappointment of Stonehenge, probably somewhere on Bodmin Moor. I don't have a good sense of direction even in my own country. It could have been anywhere in Devon or Cornwall but there are limitations. Someone might know where we landed.Driving down the road I noticed a small standing circle at the top of a hill on the side of the road.

I remember it had been raining. We had to pick our way over the fresh ploughed fields. The heavy clods of black soil made us cautious; it was obviously a working farm but the farmer graciously gave us permission to climb his hill & walk around this site.I remember the view. I remember standing under the tall dark trees staring out over a very English valley with its patchwork of hedgerows & small fields & grey rainy skies.I think we had found by accident the smallest stone circle in Cornwall, Duloe. Duloe stands in the corner of a farmer's field on a flat ridge overlooking the Looe valley. There are only 8 white quartz standing stones in the circle & they aren't big ones. Even the diameter is small ~ about 11m.

There was no~one else round but as I investigated the circle I was overwhelmed with a sense of darkness & evil. My skin prickled. Without a shadow of a doubt I *knew* blood had been shed here. I did not know then (how could I?) that in the 1800's, when a hedgerow growing through the centre of the circle was removed, that a burial urn with cremated human remains was also found. I know the Celts, along with most primitive peoples, practised human sacrifice. Whether they did or not at Duloe there is no way of knowing for sure.

I have had the same sense of evil & doom on other ancient sites & have grown more cautious but the love of archaeology is, at root level, the love of people & a huge curiousity about who they were & why they were the way they were.

Deuteronomy29:29 is applicable ~ The secret things belong to God alone, but the things revealed belong to us & to our children forever.


Mrs. Darling said...

Yikes Ive never been to such sites. It sounds scary. I dont think I ever want to.

Ganeida said...

lol, Mrs D. bit hard not to in England; the place is littered with ancient sites.