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Countless myths and legends attest to the ancient sanctity of the Isle of Avalon. Yet archaeologists have long been puzzled by the absence of material evidence for prehistoric activity upon the hills of Glastonbury. This book provides decisive proof of the island’s especial importance to our distant ancestors, by showing how its unique conjunction of landscape with key celestial movements would have indicated its extraordinary sanctity to Neolithic peoples, even to their Mesolithic forebears. Because of the intimate relationship between its holy hills and the pathways of sun, moon and stars, Avalon would have been understood as an exceptionally potent spiritual sanctuary, a place of otherworldly power.

Nicholas Mann and Philippa Glasson reveal the site of an ancient astronomical observatory at the heart of the Avalonian landscape. They show how prehistoric sky-watchers appear to have modelled key parts of the island, including the Tor and the summit of St Edmund’s Hill, to refine their celestial observations. The Isle of Avalon was truly an ancient “temple of the stars”.

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