Sarsen stones are sandstone blocks found on Salisbury Plain and elsewhere. They are the remains of a cap of tertiarysandstone which once covered much of southern England. Natural sarsen boulders created by glacial and periglacial effects can be sometimes found scattered on the surface and the stone is also present in the surviving outcrops of the rock.
From the middle ages until the nineteenth century sarsen megaliths in Europe were a target for destruction by both religious zealots and commercial enterprise. The stones were sometimes toppled, cleared from fields under cultivation or broken up for reuse. Fire or explosives could be used to fracture or destroy the stone for use in buildings. Sarsen is not an ideal building material however, William Stukeley wrote that Sarsen is "always moist and dewy in winter which proves damp and unwholesome, and rots the furniture." In the case of Avebury the investors who backed the scheme to recycle the stone were bankrupted when the houses they built proved to be unsaleable and also prone to burning down.
Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here
Want to know more? Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:
Press Releases |
The Wikipedia article included on this page is licensed under the
Images may be subject to relevant owners' copyright.
All other elements are (c) copyright NationMaster.com 2003-5. All Rights Reserved.
Usage implies agreement with terms, 1022, m