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Mysterious Stonehenge ancient tourist-attraction?

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Monday, May 12, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

LONDON — The mysterious Stonehenge was an ancient hub and tourist attraction, according to a University of Buckingham study.

Ground samples and excavated objects show evidence of worship, trade and agriculture.

“For years people have been asking why is Stonehenge where it is. Now at last, we have found the answers,” said David Jacques, an archaeology research fellow at the university.

The finding suggests that Stonehenge was built by indigenous Britons who had lived in the area for thousands of years. Previous theories held that the monument was built in an empty landscape by migrants from continental Europe.

The latest evidence suggests that before erecting Stonehenge, people living in the area set up gigantic timbers between 8820 and 6590 B.C. — a sort of wooden precursor to the stone monument. Jacques likened the area to a “Stonehenge Visitor's Center,” where “tourists” from far and wide came to feast and tour the site with local guides.

“The area was clearly a hub point for people to come to from many miles away,” Jacques said.

— From wire reports

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