48. Wainwright's Site IV - a henge in its own right - was discovered inside the far greater Mount Pleasant henge, a mile to the east of Dorchester in Dorset.
Built by Beaker People, who at this time, were crawling about all over the place. The carefully-placed posts in the middle of Site IV proves the 9-megalithic-inch-long Bush Barrow lozenge to be astronomical, not geometrical. Its 80 and 100-degree angles pronounces it as Beaker-style astronomy, where like the 50-degree axis of Stonehenge, its angles are confined to the nearest 10-degree.
The egg-shaped-outer-ring of timber is aligned on the northernmost setting of the moon. The second ring in, also an egg, is aligned on the setting summer solstice - as proven by John North. Not that he said as much! Professor John North, Stonehenge: Neolithic Man and the Cosmos.
The many 80 by 100-degree rhomboids displayed by the timber posts of Site IV prove exponential growth, where they are seen to grow in size in steps of 10 plus one, up to and beyond 36 megalithic yards. Thus showing respect to the 36MY internal diameter of Stonehenge.
The system works equally well when the lozenge is rotated through 90-degrees.
The 1.5 megalithic inch 60-degree Bush Barrow lozenge is accommodated equally well.
The megalithic inch is one-fortieth of the megalithic yard and is equal to 0.8166 imperial inches, 20.743mm.
The Clandon Barrow lozenge of gold was found in a round barrow at the western end of Maiden Castle, Dorset. It was measured by Doctor Joan Taylor of Liverpool University, who found it to be 15.5cm long by 11cm wide. Allowing for its rounded corners, common amongst every gold lozenge, the Clandon Lozenge measures 7.5MI.
30 and 60-degrees for the small Bush Barrow lozenge, Clandon Barrow is 70; 80 and 100-degrees for the large Bush Barrow; and finally, the Clandon Barrow lozenge at 110-degrees. As for the missing 90-degrees that will have to wait upon the following...
The system will no doubt work for the Little Cressingham rectangle of gold, presently in Norwich Castle Museum, if only we could wrest the size of it from the powers that be. A recent visit to Norwich Castle shows it to be around three by four megalithic inches in size, in which case, this rectangle is based on a pair of 3:4:5 Pythagorean triangles.
The Little Cressingham rectangle might complete the full set of 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100 and 110. What more proof do we need to show that some great geometers, interested in astronomy over a 1.5-thousand-year span, had tried to bring the sun and moon to heel?
Picture 49. Bush Barrow gold lozenge turned though 90-degrees works equally well as before. The rhomboids still grow exponentially but at a different rate. Sizes are...19, 27, 36, 46 and 57.
The system works equally well for the 1.5MI Bush Barrow lozenge, as does the 7.5MI lozenge found in the Clandon Barrow.
50, The Thickthorn terminal in 2017. It’s surrounding ditch can also be seen in this picture.
The Dorset Cursus, to which this terminal is connected, is a six mile long, 280 foot wide prehistoric avenue consisting of a pair of ditches excavated into chalk subsoil with external banks running parallel to the ditches. The ditch was not deep and the banks not particularly high, because the cursus's simple purpose was to connect three vitally important terminals together. The cursus is not dead straight, but makes a curving path as it travels over the Downs (hills) and across valleys gouged out thousands of years ago by torrents of glacial melt water. So, serving purely as a link, the avenue of ditches and banks have no alignments of their own.
The Thickthorn terminal is easy to find.
Leave Blandford Forum NNE via the A345 to Salisbury, and, after some six and a half miles from the centre of Blandford, (five and a half from the Blandford ring road) turn right at Thickthorn Cross and park up in the layby in Millers Lane – if there is a clear space for you to do so. Exit car in bright coloured ridiculous clothes, or do as I did in 2007 and make yourself look clown-like by holding aloft a colourful brolly on a bright summers day! All this is to keep you safe. Millers Lane is dead straight. There are no pavements, and cars drive up and down it as if everyone is late for work.
Proceed up the hill on foot. Pass hedgerows threaded with barbed wire, and continue until you reach a metal gate. Climb the gate and enter the field. You are now trespassing. You could have asked the farmers permission, I suppose, but that would let the cat out of the bag of what you are up to, and you might well get told No!
Carry on to the bottom of the field, passing several monuments, to arrive at the southern terminal of the cursus.
51. An aerial view, courtesy of Bing images 2017.
The Thickthorn terminal is the only terminal left standing; another, half way along the cursus, and a third at its northern end, have been completely destroyed by the plough. Sadly, as I write this, I have to report that this one remaining terminal, having survived the hand of man for over 5,000 years, was violated by the plough in 2018. And perhaps by now, is already gone.
52. Photo looking northeast from the Thickthorn Down terminal. Here the cursus crosses the Gussage valley on its way to the top of Gussage Down where it incorporates the famous long barrow known as Gussage St Michael III . We cannot walk from the terminal because a thick hedge, growing right across the cursus, blocks the way. So, photo was taken through a gap in the hedge. Importantly, we can see how the cursus goes one way and the terminal goes another - The Thickthorn terminal is actually aligned on the massive Wor barrow (Handley 1) and the 18.61-year northernmost rising of the moon.
The Wor barrow was completely excavated in 1894 by General Pitt Rivers. It consisted of a primary and a secondary mound. The primary mound held six male skeletons. The much larger secondary mound was built using chalk taken from an outer ditch. In the ditch where two male skeletons, a man and boy. The man had been shot.
Also, and from the recommended book....A Landscape Revealed. 10,000 years on a Chalkland Farm by Martin Green. Remarkably, Pitt Rivers, the excavator, also found a crouched Beaker burial to the south-east of this barrow. I would ask: What was so remarkable about it... Its early date, perhaps?
Lets take a virtual walk along the cursus to stand alongside the Gussage St Michael III long barrow, which sits on the crest of Gussage Down.
53. Looking northeast again but from in front of the long barrow of Gussage St Michael III. Here, the cursus crosses the Allan valley. Many monuments could once be seen from here and on both sides of the cursus. Most are only visible today from the air.
Climbing out of the valley on the left of the picture is Wyke Down, where many monuments have been found.
Despite some confusion, the terminus is known as Bottlebush Down. We will walk to this terminal and turn about to see why it falls short and what the Dorset Cursus is most famous for.
54. It's from the terminal of Wyke Down that the winter solstice sun can be seen to enter the barrow of Gussage St Michael III. So too did the brightest star Sirius. If the terminal was any higher, the long barrow would not shape the sky line but some distant landmass, instead.
55. Several pairs of long barrows are known to exist. But I don't know of any that look at one another like Gussage St Michael III and IV. But there is a reason why these two look like a pair of dogs in a face off!
56. This is my rendition of the extant northern terminal on Bokerley Down. The arrow, normal to the terminal, points all the way back, not to the barrow St Michael III, but its partner St Michael IV and the setting moon. Today, however, the path to St Michael IV and the southernmost setting moon is blocked by the Salisbury plantation.
A likely scenario.
The rolling hills and high ridges called ‘Downs,’ and the valleys that run from northwest to southeast across Cranborne Chace, owe their great beauty to torrents of glacial meltwater that flooded over and through the Dorset chalkland, many thousands of years ago.
One especially long and level ridge took the eye of people living on the Downs some six thousand years ago for the way that the most southerly position of the setting sun - the winter solstice, appeared to sink into it. That ridge today is called Gussage Down, and people had watched the sun disappear into it for many years while sitting a little below the top of the Bottlebush Down ridge, almost two miles to the north of Gussage Down.
From around 4,000BC, generation after generation had sat and watched the sun sink into Gussage Down; and while doing so, noticed something else. The brightest star, Sirius, which also sank into Gussage Down, was getting closer and closer to the maximum southerly sunset.
The meeting of these two finally occurred around 3,500 BC and lasted for a couple of hundred years. So, building a long barrow on Gussage Down to try and capture them together, was an obvious thing to do.
Meanwhile, people standing on a low rise at Bokerley Down, some five miles further north, had noticed the position of the lit braziers placed to mark the sun’s position on Gussage Down.
People, while at Bokerley, noted the position of the southernmost setting moon and took note of how it set a little to the left of the brazier which marked where the long barrow of Gussage St Michael III had been built.
This called for a second long barrow to be built on top of Gussage Down - Gussage St Michael IV- and the terminal on Bokerley Down was aimed at it.
This bringing of the sun, moon and a star together in one place was still not enough for such ambitious folk. So they went to the next ridge south and built another terminal on top of Thickthorn Down. This third terminal was aligned on where the northernmost moon rises out of the massive Wor barrow, some four miles distant.
Maximum moonrise and maximum moonset seen leaving and entering barrow mounds - catching the sun and brightest star in one place – it’s all there. What was needed now was to connect the whole lot together with a six mile long avenue, scratched into the chalk, but no alignments of its own.
57. I am not ashamed to say that this is what I wrote in my book ‘Stonehenge Secrets 2007.’
The Dorset Cursus as a love nest.
“If you had been fortunate enough to find yourself standing at the Wyke Down terminus, 4,500 years ago, and at the right time of year, you might have seen the sun as he disappeared into the long barrow known as Gussage St Michael III. This apparition occurred when the sun set in the southwest on the day of the setting midwinter sun.
If you had then travelled to the Thickthorn Down terminus at the southern end of this cursus and looked towards the northeast, you would have seen the rising moon as she left this long barrow – no doubt adjusting her dress. This was when the moon reached her most northerly point of rising. All this can still be seen today of course. But where was her baby to have been born? Presumably, and in view of her rising; this child was, perhaps, meant to be born in heaven.
As also was the case with the long barrow known as Amesbury 42 that once stood at the end of the Stonehenge Great cursus, no primary human burials were ever found in Gussage St Michael III.”
You can see from the above that I was on the right track. There are some mistakes though: First, the date for the building of the cursus is more likely to be around 3,500 BC. Secondly it wasn't one barrow but two barrows, Gussage St Michael III and IV, which acted as a pair.
To sum up, we have that both north and south terminals were dedicated to the moon. One on moonrise, the other on moonset. No wonder some ignorant shet wants the one remaining terminal at Thickthorn destroyed.
Once more I find it necessary to repeat the words of Professor Mick Aston of the Time Team.
“I’m not proud of the Time Team, it hasn’t worked. And I’m totally dissatisfied with my time at Bristol University. Archaeology in Britain is a shambles from top to bottom. The forces of darkness and evil are stalking the land again.” British Archaeology Magazine, March/April 2012.
Bibliography: The Dorset Cursus Complex: A Neolithic Astronomical Observatory? Penny. A. Journal - Royal Archaeological Institute 130 1973.