Foamhenge, the U.K. version

foamhenge

Foamed polystyrene, often known by one of its brand names, Styrofoam, makes an attractive material for Stonehenge replicas. It is light and can be formed into any shape. Lintels no doubt help to keep the light uprights in place.

We know of two Foamhenges. One is in Virginia in the States (to be covered later), and one was a temporary construction, built on the Wiltshire Downs by Channel 5 TV in the U.K., and then sold on Ebay. This was a full-sized careful reconstruction of the monument at its height, rather better-looking than many because the real shapes and irregularities of the stones were taken into account. Is the odd pink cast meant to be the colour of the megaliths when they were first cut?  We welcome any information that would shed light on the mystery of the flesh-coloured stones!

foamhenge

Many thanks to brilliant photographer Pete Glastonbury for permission to use his pictures. Permission to use them elsewhere must be given by him. Our original score for this henge replica was a solid (well, as solid as they can be, made of carpet tubes and polystyrene) 8 druids, but recent conversation has caused us to reconsider and this entry’s score has been increased to 9, with a future possibility. Very nice!

Just found this: a Youtube video [link] showing the research done at this Foamhenge. Brilliant! Stonehenge has always represented midwinter to us, and this bears that intuition out.

Virtual Henges, Part One

reconstructed

Okay, so right off we admit, these henge replicas don’t exist out in the real world. They are figments of the base 2 realm. Even so, they merit a look as more evidence of the Stonehenge-building imperative. There are a number of them out there, and at first we were inclined to post them all as one. But there is enough  on the site posted by reader sarsen56 for us to make a whole post just from that.

sarsen56

At the top is a reconstruction of how Stonehenge’s stones may once have stood. The lower image is a reproduction of the stones as they are today. The page the second picture comes from has many more images of interest to Stonehenge fans and we recommend a look. We hesitated at first to post what is after all just a few runs of zeros and ones, but in a way, wasn’t the original Stonehenge a sort of grid, a way of reducing the landscape or at least the horizon to a series of zeros and ones in order to bring order to the information it contained?

How to score this? Difficult to say. We like the second image very much, and the first one also has its charms. Still, they don’t exist, do they? No biscuits or cheese puffs to eat at the end of the day, no tourist revenue, no waiting for sunrise or misty weather in order to catch the perfect photo. Score: 6½ virtual druids.

Stroudhenge: Clonehenge goes on assignment

stroudhenge1

Some partial lists of Stonehenge replicas, including that on Wikipedia, mention Stroudhenge on the campus of East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania, but tantalizingly there were no pictures except for a fuzzy aerial Google Maps shot. This was unacceptable: even the Stonehenge replica at the Planetarium in Kuala Lumpur has a photo on the net! So today Clonehenge itself went on a field trip to East Stroudsburg to ferret out the truth. What you see above is what we found. (Note the Clonehenge-mobile in the background.)

A single trilithon with an odd assemblage of blocks scattered around it, this ‘henge’ turned out to be a sculpture by Ernest Shaw, entitled Arch Homage (Stonehenge), and not a true henge replica at all. Standing alone as it did, the trilithon caused us to reflect that the real Stonehenge might be seen as a series of gates or portals, each opening toward a different world. It would be interesting to know how students have interacted with Stroudhenge over the years. There was certainly no shortage of mud on the high ‘steps’ we climbed and no doubt the stones are cool places to sit on hot days.

Our score: 4 druids, but it is a nice sculpture for the grounds of the school.

The Hengiest Biscuit

custardhenge

Grainy photo taken in the heat of battle

The web page title screams, “Biscuithenge–the ultimate world record showdown,” and with that the contest for the world biscuit* henginess championship unfolds (with, in the author’s words, ‘the use of a very bad camera and a bottle of high quality booze,’ not hard to believe). It’s a short fun read, with Stonehenge itself quickly eliminated. “Stonehenge – The traditional favourite in the pagan pops was swiftly dismissed by the panel who described it as passe, inedible and overrun with tourists.”

To learn what manner of biscuit took the title by “embracing contemporary values and looking positively to the future, whilst upholding the majestic greatlitude and history befitting the henge tradition” take a look at the site. Four kinds of biscuits compete, each with its own henge picture, and with an unexpected victor. This had everything we look for in a henge page except, well, adequate photography.  Score: 8½ druids for the web page, awarded for keeping the right attitude in the henge wars!

*biscuit translates as ‘cookie’ in American

Bamboo henge, Rotterdam

rotterdam-henge-2

Bamboo Stonehenge replica built in Rotterdam for an arts festival. What a great cooperative effort! We couldn’t find much text about it in English, but there are several videos, including this one, and some sites with photos, here and here. Look at it lit up in the night:

rotterdam-henge

Along with the Doorhenge video, this makes the idea of cooperative building of large henge replicas look very appealing.  What it lacks in likeness to the original Stonehenge it makes up by bringing in the group dynamic that must have been involved in the building of the original, in a way we have seen with no other replica. Score: 8 druids!

Straw Echo Henge

Rare item: a henge replica at Stonehenge! This lucky person, Leon Reed, saw this 12 years ago and fortunately for us saw the meta-henge possibilities. We have found no other pictures so far in which a henge replica stands close enough to Stonehenge to appear in the same picture. Thank you, Mr. Reed!

Have to give this one a good bunch of druids, for the situation and a game attempt at reproducing the current state of the monument. 7½ druids for this straw henge, partly for the haiku-like visual juxtaposition of megalithic timelessness and the fleeting seasons of the field.

The henge watch

stonehenge-lyt_11

Christmas, I mean Yule, shopping? Here’s something for the megarak* on your list. “A great leap backwards in time telling!” Or as Yahoo News said, “Is that a megalithic monument in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?”

Yes, you get a tiny henge monument and a compass to help you use it to figure the time. “Every astronomical function that was intended by the original builders of Stonehenge can be accomplished with the watch.” Or so the makers claim. In case you’re not good at telling time with shadows, the outside of the watch has an analog watch face marked with Roman numerals.

There’s no denying this is a nifty thing. But how many druids does it score? Feeling generous after a big meal and an afternoon with family, we will award it 8 mini-druids. And it will fit in a stocking hung on your mantlepiece!

*megarak: portmanteau word formed from megalith and anorak, meaning one who is very interested in (possibly even obsessed by) megaliths, standing stones, stone circles, etc.