Famed British Geologist Was Spectacularly Wrong About Stonehenge

By Laura Geggel, Senior Writer | July 6, 2018 11:23am ET

In 1923, famed British geologist Herbert Henry Thomas published a seminal study on Stonehenge, claiming to have found the precise spots where prehistoric people had quarried the stones.

There was just one problem with his analysis: It was wrong. And it has taken geologists about 80 years to get it right, a new study finds.

"At best, he [Thomas] was forgetful and sloppy, but at worst he was being deceptive," said study co-researcher Rob Ixer, a geologist at the University of Leicester and an honorary senior research associate at the Institute of Archaeology at University College London, in England. [Stonehenge Photos: Investigating How the Mysterious Structure Was Built]

In addition to debunking Thomas' influential work, the researchers announced an additional Stonehenge discovery: Prehistoric people likely didn't boat the stones though Bristol Channel on the way from where the stones were quarried, in western Wales, to where Stonehenge stands today, in Salisbury Plain.

Rather, ancient people probably used a so-called inland superhighway, although this finding has yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal, said Ixer and study co-researcher Richard Bevins, a geologist at the National Museum Wales. Such a monumental procession would have been akin to transporting the space shuttle Endeavor in a parade, for all to see and celebrate, the archaeologists said.

Read more: https://www.livescience.com/63003-sl...nge-study.html