Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

Every year, at the Summer Solstice, Stonehenge is visited by thousands of people. In 2009, there was about more than 35 000 people crowded around the famous stone circle, literally fighting for a place under the sun. And they were right to do it: the spectacle of the sunrise in a perfect alignment with the huge megaliths during the longest day of the year is -- said by those who had ever watched it -- mystic and disturbing, but invariably beautiful. The occultism and paganism fans feel themselves taken by the moment, dressed with ritual suits and even simulating the supposed ancient druid practices. Weddings are celebrated. Stones are touched. Photographs are taken. Stonehenge is a spectacle beyond the sunrise.

For a long time, the monument and its meaning were evolved in a mist of mystery and originated several legends. A theory affirmed that it was erected by giants; another theory affirmed it was erected by celtic druids who used it for some kind of religious ritual. However, the explanation was simpler: Stonehenge was a colossal astronomic observatory destined to register precisely some important happenings, like the Summer Solstice. We mustn't forget that it was erected at the peak of the agricultural civilization, for who this kind of information was essential to the seed fields and to the harvest time -- in other words, to survival.

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

But this year, as in so many others before, the expecting crowd had a disappointment -- the Sun rose punctually at 4:58 a.m. (local time) and none saw it, as it was hidden behind a dense veil of clouds. It's nothing but the English climate vicissitudes.

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Akira Suemori's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Akira Suemori's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Akira Suemori's Photograph

 Stonehenge - Sunrise Celebration
Matt Cardy's Photograph

Source: Sacramento Bee - The Frame


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