A huge monument that has remained hidden for centuries has been discovered in a farmer’s field in Ireland after a drought revealed its outline. While the nature of the site is still shrouded in mystery, experts are already hailing the find as “exciting.”
Anthony Murphy, an author, photographer and founder of Mythical Ireland—a website dedicated to the ancient myths and monuments of the island—uncovered the circular enclosure, or “henge”, near the renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site of Brú na Bóinne (also known as the Boyne Valley), located around 30 miles north of the capital, Dublin.
He made the find in an area close to a previously known archaeological site—dubbed Site P—after being notified by University College Dublin (UCD) archaeologist Stephen Davis that it may be worth investigating.
The dry spell that Ireland has been experiencing in recent weeks was crucial to the identification of the henge, according to Murphy. He had read intriguing reports in some U.K. media outlets describing how new monuments were being discovered in Britain because of the drought there. So, hoping to find something, Murphy went out with his camera-equipped drone to image the fields near Site P, accompanied by a photographer friend, Ken Williams.
While the pair were flying their drones, a strange, circular shape appeared on Murphy’s camera feed, which took them aback.
“We couldn’t believe it to be honest,” Murphy told Newsweek. “It soon became apparent that were looking at something very very exciting.”
The images taken by the drone showed an enclosure made up of two main concentric rings—consisting of what looked like post holes—with a diameter of about 200 meters. This led Murphy to conclude that the feature was some sort of giant henge-type monument.
Finding a previously unknown henge in this area makes the discovery especially significant, according to Murphy, because not only has the Boyne Valley been extensively studied but these types of monuments are relatively rare.
“I was aware of the possibility that previously unrecorded things might show up, but I didn’t think they’d show up in the Boyne Valley because it’s been under intense scrutiny for the past few decades by archaeologists,” he said.
The monument has likely never been seen before because the archaeological features are buried beneath the surface where crops are growing, according to Murphy.
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SOURCE: Newsweek, Aristos Georgiou