Stone 15a, West Kennet Avenue - (March 2023)


This image shows the best neolithic stone carving anywhere in the British Isles. Avebury itself offers strong competition for this title, but the sheer visual power of this face is quite stunning.  An astonishing sculpture, difficult to find. I walked past it for years, yet one night I inspected 15a by torchlight and found it by chance, you really have to get in there with the light.  In terms of the character depicted it reminds me of a Babylonian king, even though I know it isn't.

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I suspect that this monolith originally sported a natural roothole that the sculptor enlarged artificially, leaving a characteristic "terraced" effect around the newly enhanced eye. The forehead, nose and implied mouth would then have been chipped into existence at the appropriate distance from the semi-natural eye. A similar construction process may well have taken place on Stone 10 visible here.


Image copyright David Baldwin Night Photography