Happy Solstice, Welcome Yule, and All That!

photo from this post of 4 years ago

photo by Jill Warvel from this post of 4 years ago

Just a quick post to thank all of our readers and to wish you the very best in the year to come! May the winter solstice and all of the holiday season bring you many delights and few aggravations, and may the year to come bring you many many henges!

And of course, much happy henging. Now party on, and you know what to do with the extra cheese!

Granite Henge, Polperro, Cornwall

photos from PolperroCornwall.com, with permission

A new one for our list of large permanent replicas and our second henge in Cornwall (see Stonehenge in Treave and More Photos from Treave), this one may not be a Stonehenge replica in the strictest sense of the word. It is, for example, not round. Still, with its trilithon construction, with standing stones added to create an enclosure, we think it comes within the scope of this blog. And since this blog is a dictatorship, what we think is all that matters!

And anyway, it’s charming, in that way that Cornwall and other places known as holiday destinations tend to be. Granite Henge, in fact, is the name of the complex of twelve holiday cabins that surround this henge garden and the adjacent swimming pool. We’re told that a local builder, Derek Bishop, built the property and created the garden, using native Cornish granite to make the henge, in the early 1980s.

The garden is planted with many tropical and subtropical plants and sports a peacock or too, as well. Not much like Salisbury Plain, we must admit, but a fun environment for enjoying a henge! We could certainly be talked into staying there. Let’s hope the warm-climate plants survive this brutal winter!*

Score: 6 druids. This is fun and it looks like art to us!

*In an email, Kevin from Polperro says: “What weather??? I live in Florida from September to April. Looking forward to a picnic on the beach tomorrow.” Anyone have plane fare?

[Note: We’re now up to 60 large permanent replicas! Not only did we add this one, but we got word of a very nice little replica on the grounds of the new public library in the city of Pattaya, Thailand. (We’re seeking a photo for a post.) Since there was already a replica in Nong Nooch Gardens near Pattaya, that bit of Thailand is now the smallest area we know of in the world to have two large permanent Stonehenge replicas. There’s a bit of trivia for stumping your friends. And you heard it here at the Clonehenge blog!]

Fairy Stonehenge, another garden variation


photo by Merissa Barcomb, with permission [as with all pictures here, do not use without getting your own permissions!]

Down at the foot of the garden/ Hidden from everyone’s view/ There do the elves and the fairies/ Dance amidst blossoms and dew./ There, when the dusk has just fallen,/ Spells o’er the stones do they weave/ Until a small Stonehenge they’ve fashioned/ To loom in the glimmering eve.

Or some such. You know the drill. This is actually a charming little garden henge. As with so many, it is just a set of trilithons, which takes its score down a bit, but it certainly has ambience and possibly a gauze over the camera lens.

Score: 6 druids or 7 fairies.  A nice post for the spring season!

On another note, we regret to say that Clonehenge may be winding down. Of course we will continue to post new henges that are sent to us or that we stumble upon, but the long hours of internet searching are no longer paying off. Many requests for photo permissions are still out there and if they do come in, we will post them. Also, if you’ve sent us one and we somehow forgot to post it, please get in touch!

While our days of regular posting appear to be over, roughly 5 months after we began, we are still here, so do email or comment if you have any communication for us. See you around the web!

Pittsburgh’s Foxhenge: Stone Garden Replica


photo from last August’s Pittsburgh Magazine

We know the word Foxhenge sounds exciting, but think about it–how would you keep the foxes still?! This one is called Foxhenge, jokingly, because it is in a garden called Fox Chapel, built by Stephen and Kathleen Guinn. The article says, “the circle is composed of seven uprights, two of which are connected by a lintel to form a gateway.” A trilithon.

We’re not sure of the trilithon’s size, but we’re pretty sure this part of the article is true:  “While Stonehenge was surely an engineering feat in its time, the invention of the backhoe made Foxhenge somewhat less labor-intensive.” That is, unless it turns out Merlin did transport the sarsens magically!

ornament_foxhenge3The “henge” includes five other uprights. We include it to show that you can incorporate Stonehenge-like elements in your garden without being too literal about it. It’s not a real Stonehenge replica, but it certainly looks like a cool, peaceful place to be on a hot summer day.

Score: only 4½ as a Stonehenge replica. But we’re hoping we’ll see more garden megaliths as time goes on. We would also like to mention the Columcille Megalith Park near Bangor, Pennsylvania. Their beautiful megaliths are truly mega, including a wonderful trilithon, although it’s not a Stonehenge replica. A post on that will have to wait until the truer replicas run out–no time soon, it seems!

Dowdell Stonehenge Model, Wiltshire


photo by Rob Roy of the Big Stones Website, with permission

From the book Stone Circles by Rob Roy, “A number of years ago, a very accurate model of Stonehenge was built by Albert Dowdell, now deceased, just five miles from the real thing. Jaki, Darin, and I managed to track it down from an old book. The new owners, a young couple who had only owned the place for a year or two, were delighted to show us the model, and have us in for a cup of tea. We were very surprised to hear that we were the first people to stop and ask about Dowdell’s model. The ‘stones’ were cast in concrete in just the right shapes, the tallest not much over six inches in height.

We’re not certain whether this nice little model of Stonehenge still stands, but we are grateful to have a picture. We think it’s very well done for a small garden model, full of detail and with a sort of grace. Score: 8 druids!

Getting permission to use this picture put us in touch with the interesting people at the Earthwood Building School in upstate New York. More from them another day, but this passage on their site seemed to go straight to the heart of the phenomenon we chronicle here:

After visiting Stonehenge, I knew that someday I would have to build a stone circle of my own. Why? The only explanation I can give is that I was compelled to build it, just as the Richard Dreyfuss character in Close Encounters of the Third Kind was compelled to build a large replica of the Devil’s Tower mountain in his front yard. Incidentally, compulsion is a reason I have heard given by at least two other modern stone circle builders.

Aha! Compulsion does seem to be the key. And the Dreyfuss comparison is one we often think of as we work on this blog. Maybe the aliens are going to meet us at Stonehenge!

Wood Block Henge, and The Story of Garden Henge


photo by David Lewis, with permission

Garden Henge was a very mysterious place. No-one knew who had built it, or how long ago it had been built, and there were all kinds of stories told about strange things that happened at Garden Henge at night.” It may be made of wood and open to the public, but I think we all know the reference being made in this charming bit of a children’s story. To clinch it we have the pictures. We challenge anyone to name another circle of uprights with lintels or with trilithons in the center. Stonehenge has no peer!

This henge is made of blocks from a wooden tower play set by Garden Games. It is like a giant Jenga game, for those of you who are more familiar with that. Jenga blocks, too, end up in their share of henges. As do blocks of all kinds, sometimes with unrealistically peaceful stuffed animals!

We found the story simple and charming, with just the right balance of peril and comfort for a young child. The toppling arch is a good reminder of why people are kept away from Stonehenge most of the time. Score: 7 druids for the story and the henge.

Sad that the real situation of Stonehenge keeps it from being the sort of thing that children might stumble upon in a story, hide under in a storm, and get spirited away to another time and place in the time-honoured tradition of the children’s fantasy tale!

Another Henge for Your Garden, out of Ohio


photo and henge by Kelly Lawrence, with permission

Another day and another Stonehenge-for-sale, but what a difference a day makes! From Green Mantle Studio in the land of the Indian mounds comes this nice little fired, painted, and water-sealed Stonehenge. They are produced only when ordered, with individual care given to each piece.

Kelly, the artist, explains its origins: “One of my more popular pieces is a Dolmen Toad House which inspired one of my customers to commission me to make a full Stonehenge replica for his garden. He wanted it to represent the monument as it was not as it is today so there are 30 uprights and 30 lintels in the outer ring, 5 trilithons make up the horseshoe in the center and finally the set includes both an altar stone and a heel stone.

The ditch and bank are up to you. And if you buy one of these, believe me, we’ll be around to make sure you follow through! We are pleased that the dolmen came first and that this replica was someone else’s request. We also approve of a lack of Easter Island heads on the site!

Scoring: 6½ druids for this pleasing American henge. It’s tempting–just to see the looks on our neighbors’ faces. Does it come in Extra Extra Large?

Henges We Admire

We probably have 100 pictures in the Henge category on our bookmarks list. Many we hoped to post have proved elusive, most because emails and comments asking permissions for photos have gone unanswered. Since today has been a different kind of day in our world, here is a different kind of post. Normal posting will resume tomorrow, barring unforeseens. These are the best from among the  Stonehenge replicas we have been unable to post.

Plane Henge, another work by the Mutoid Waste Company, in Australia.

What appears to be a wooden Stonehenge model.

A mysterious miniature Stonehenge replica built on a little hill. If anyone knows where this is, please tell us!

iPod Shuffle henge.

A nice garden henge–with added Buddha and  Easter Island head! From, fittingly for today, the Obama Gardens of Hope.

Possibly the best-ever snow henge, those wacky Antarctica people once again! (Do we see bunny ears in there?!)

And one of our very favourites: a virtual glasshenge.

So there you are, some of the henges we’d been hoping to present. Maybe one or two of you will even decide to click on the links! Thank you for your continued interest. Aren’t people amazing? (And wouldn’t the inauguration ceremony have been enhanced by a Stonehenge replica set up somewhere on the Mall?!)

Stonehenge in Poland


photo from the Kurier newspaper

We don’t know much about this one, but we suspect there are hidden Stonehenge replicas like this scattered about in surprising places around the world. People get the bug or the thought, “I could build a Stonehenge in my garden!” We aren’t able to find them all, but let this stand for all the ones we’ve missed. We know there are hengers out there building or planning as we type this!

Here is all we can glean about where this henge is: “It is hard to find, hidden in the stands Krzakach, in one of podzdzieszowickich gardens.” We can’t help you with the pronunciation or meaning of that nice long word there. It gives us the strange feeling that the whole thing was written by WOL.

Clonehenge may go on hiatus for the weekend, so best wishes to all. Druids for this one, you ask? Oh, let’s say piec or szesc. These things need to be encouraged!