Summer solstice brings druids, pagans and thousands of curious people to Stonehenge

Summer solstice brought thousands of people, including druids and pagans, to Stonehenge to celebrate the longest day in the Northern Hemisphere.

The gathering: Devotees and tourists gathered at Stonehenge to express their devotion to the sun or to have communal fun.
* Visitors participated in activities such as chanting, playing acoustic guitars, and performing dawn rituals in traditional white robes.
* Alcohol and sound systems were prohibited, and there were restrictions on sleeping bags and climbing on the stones.

Historical significance: Stonehenge has been a place of great importance to druids and pagans for centuries, and is associated with the cycle of life, death, and rebirth.
* The site, built in stages starting 5,000 years ago, is one of the world’s most famous prehistoric monuments and a World Heritage Site.

Possible meanings: Various interpretations exist for Stonehenge’s purpose, including a coronation place for Danish kings, a druid temple, a cult center for healing, or an astronomical computer for predicting eclipses and solar events.
* English Heritage, a charity that manages the site, says the most generally accepted interpretation is a prehistoric temple aligned with the sun’s movements.

View original article on NPR

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