The Stones of Time

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Older than the pyramids and predating Stonehenge by at least a thousand years, the stone complexes of ancient Ireland have been extensively excavated and studied, yet they have refused to give up their mystery. Archaeologists have speculated that the chambers were tombs. Art historians have tried to interpret the enigmatic designs painstakingly carved into the faces of the stones. But the real function of these ancient structures can be understood only when the art and architecture are seen to be parts of a unified whole. Through a combination of careful observation, analysis of the astronomical alignment of the sites, and insightful interpretation of the megalithic symbols and carvings, Brennan argues that the mounds and art are interconnected, sophisticated calendar devices.At critical times of the year, the rising sun or setting sun projects beams of light into the inner chambers of the mounds, illuminating specific images carved on the stones. Those images - seemingly abstract wheels, spirals, and wavy lines - suggest provocative new insights into their makers' understanding of celestial cycles and the importance of those cycles in human affairs.