10 April 2017

Ancients

Yesterday, here on The Isle of Anglesey, we visited a little church that was first established in 440 AD. Imagine that! It is certainly one of  the oldest British churches I have ever seen. 

But go back in time. Much further back. This island is home to many tantalising ancient sites dating back 4000 years or more to The Bronze Age and even back beyond that.

It was a rather grey day while England and South Wales were apparently bathed in yet more bright spring sunshine. We pottered around Cemaes Bay on the north coast where a happy old spaniel called Morgan adopted us for an hour or so. Then we headed inland to the village of Llanfechell.

We were going there specifically to see The Llanfechell Triangle - three standing stones dating back to The Bronze Age. They are each over six feet tall and sit on high ground looking out towards yet more ancient hilltops.

It was a struggle to get there. No footpath signs and the path up to the ridge was not well-trodden. We were glad we had donned our walking boots as the sheep pastures were squidgy underfoot. But then we reached them. It was as if they were in conversation.

Nobody is sure what these standing stones were for. They may have had a spiritual significance or perhaps they were the upright struts of a tomb that was once capped with a large horizontal slab like a dolmen. Whatever they were for it would have taken great determination and togetherness to erect them.

I am fascinated by ancient history and as I stroked those stones I did so with reverence, sensing the invisible lines that connect all humanity back through the ages. Once there was another world where the wind blew in from the sea and the jewels of the sky above were like signals explaining the nature of things if only you could unlock the universe's secret code. And there our ancestors walked feeling the rain upon their cheeks, observing the plants of the earth and sometimes standing in wondrous silence when rainbows arched over the untamed landscapes they knew. 

15 comments:

  1. The gorse in the foreground completely draws the eye - so much further on than here in the east and so clear that I can almost smell it.

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    1. That picture doesn't do full justice to the blooming gorse we have seen roundabouts. So bright and buttery.

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  2. I am so enamored of standing stones! And I'm privileged to have seen them in isolated rural settings where I was able to walk amongst them and put my arms around them. For another "ancients fix", might I recommend the Orkneys and my all-time favorite, The Ring of Brodgar.

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    1. I have never been to The Orkneys Mary but I have read about some of their ancient sites - including Skara Brae and Brodgar Ness.

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  3. I would have had to go put my hands on them, too. Ancient history really is fascinating. I'm glad you're having such a nice vacation!

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    1. In just three days we have done and seen so much and talked with several local people. Round here they have time for other folk.

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  4. Like you, I am fascinated by (ancient and less ancient) history. I am sure the three standing stones are mentioned in this book I read a few years ago.

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    1. Today we saw a neolithic tomb and also a small ruined church that I know you will love to see when I post it.

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  5. Great imagination of ancient history. the past was very spiritual.

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    1. Native Americans may not have been great builders but they knew The Earth and The Sky better than we do.

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  6. You've put words to what I haven't been able to, YP - the "invisible lines that connect all humanity" ... and you did the same on Steve's post about postcards. I need to sit down and put my own words to these feelings, too.

    Did Morgan introduce himself to you, or did you name him for an hour? :)

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    1. An old man came out of a shop and told us the dog's name. He said it was the same every day - Morgan wandering about and picking up new friends.

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  7. A grey day on ynis Mon this afternoon

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  8. Terrific! It's hard to imagine how strange the world must have seemed to our neolithic ancestors. Lots of questions, and wondering, and not many answers...except those they could guess at. Which I guess we're still doing, in some ways, albeit with more scientific knowledge.

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  9. I've just caught up. I'm glad that you are enjoying Anglesey. I think I mentioned that I spent time there over the years and my Uncle lived there in his later years. It's a very interesting place in so many ways (as you are discovering). It's good to be there through you. Have you ever been to the Callanish Standing Stones on Lewis? Actually we have a lot here.

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