SU0968 : Silbury Hill

taken 5 years ago, near to Avebury Trusloe, Wiltshire, Great Britain

This is 1 of 22 images, with title Silbury Hill in this square
Silbury Hill
Silbury Hill
Silbury Hill is a dramatic and evocative man-made mound dating from the late Neolithic period having been completed about 2400BC, significantly later than nearby Avebury stone circle, it is (relatively) one of the younger features of this ancient landscape.
At 129' (39.3m) it is approximately the same size and height as the smaller Egyptian pyramids at Giza, with which it is roughly contemporaneous. It is the tallest and largest artificial prehistoric mound in Europe with a diameter at its base of 550' (167.6m)
It is thought that originally it would have been clad in blocks of white chalk which would have made it stand out like a beacon in the gently undulating landscape.
It is a very atmospheric place and along with nearby Avebury and the other associated relics and monuments (such as West Kennet Long Barrow) forms a fascinating glimpse back to the distant past of these Isles.
For conservation reasons, it is no longer possible to climb the hill. It can be viewed from the point at which I took this photo, or seen beside the main A4 as you drive past.
There have been three separate tunnels bored into the hill to try to discover what lies at its heart - but the answer seems to be very little - certainly no burial, relics nor treasure have been discovered. Unfortunately, some of this earlier archaeological investigation was not carried out as painstakingly carefully as would be done now - and so some damage has been caused to the site over the years, such as the top of the hill caving in! However restorative works have now been carried out and the hill is cared for by English Heritage.
Precisely what its purpose was is still open to much speculation, but its proximity to the many other Neolithic monuments suggests it was part of a huge ritual or religious site - but we will probably never know for sure.
It forms part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site LinkExternal link LinkExternal link
EH Ancient Monument listing LinkExternal link
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SU0968, 66 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Sunday, 8 May, 2016   (more nearby)
Monday, 16 May, 2016
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Religious sites 
Period (from Tags)
Place (from Tags)
Silbury Hill 
Primary Subject of Photo
Ancient Site 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SU 0997 6853 [10m precision]
WGS84: 51:24.9421N 1:51.4814W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SU 09749 68558
View Direction
EAST (about 90 degrees)
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Image Type (about): geograph 
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