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Composing Avebury

Aaron Watson
World Archaeology
Vol. 33, No. 2, Archaeology and Aesthetics (Oct., 2001), pp. 296-314
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/827904
Page Count: 19
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Composing Avebury
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Abstract

Avebury is one of the largest Neolithic monuments in the British Isles. Enormous earthworks define a vast enclosure on the Wessex chalkland, and within its boundaries are settings of standing stones which reach into the sky. The sheer size of this place is difficult to comprehend on the ground, and to enter the enclosure is to move into a space that contrasts entirely with the surrounding landscape. On one level, Avebury is a monument of chalk and stone. On another, these materials served to define spaces and create experiences which are less often the subject of archaeological analysis. This paper will consider how an appreciation of aesthetics might begin to dissolve these differing approaches to the material evidence.

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