The Earthwork





Visitors entering Stonehenge are apt in their eagerness to reach the

stones to overlook a definite banked Avenue leading from the

north-east towards the Hele Stone, and entering the circular earthwork

enclosure. This earthwork is not very considerable to-day, but in the

Stonehenge of yesterday it was probably far more marked and imposing.

This Avenue extends from Stonehenge in a straight line northwards for

about five hundred yards, where it divides into two branches, one

going eastward towards the Avon, where there is an ancient ford, the

other continuing northward until it joins yet another earthwork,

generally known as the Cursus, about half a mile distant. The whole

Avenue has suffered greatly in recent years and is fast disappearing

entirely. Both the circular form of the earthwork enclosing

Stonehenge, as well as the straight and parallel banks of the Avenue,

are specially worthy of notice. They belong to a class of earthwork

quite unlike the usual planning of cattle enclosures, and defensive

works, and exhibit a precision in setting out which is only associated

with the sepulchral and religious earthworks of prehistoric times in

this country.





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