Clonehenge – a blend of facts and fun

Interactive Larval Stonehenge, Taipei, Taiwan Photo : Taipei Public Art section of Taiwan government site

Searching on Google can sometimes take you straight to what you were looking for. More often you get hopelessly distracted and waste hours surfing from one website to another. Researching an article recently I typed the word ‘Stonehenge’ into Google. I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised when it produced about 34,700,000 results! But one caught my eye … is an American website which claims in its own words to be “a blog about Stonehenge Replicas. We kid you not. This is the most complete list of Stonehenge replicas on the internet, nay, marry, in the wide world!” Despite its light-hearted jokey style, hunebed-hunters will find that this site fulfils a serious and useful purpose – “a searchable list of Stonehenge replicas from the megalithic follies of the 1800’s to the present”.

And not only replicas, because the site has a section headed ‘Links for the Real Stonehenge’ which takes you to other serious websites about the real prehistoric site, such as those of UNESCO, English Heritage and The Megalithic Portal.

The first post on the site in November 2008 was about Foamhenge, coincidentally the very topic I was researching! This was a full-size temporary Styrofoam construction erected as a serious experiment for Channel 5 TV by Mike Pitts (author of the new book How to Build Stonehenge).

Foamhenge, built for a Channel 5 TV programme with archaeologist Mike Pitts Photo: Mike Pitts

The main part of the website consists of a list of ‘100 Large Permanent Replicas’ from many countries of the world from Europe to Asia to North America and Australasia. Some are large-scale constructions, such as these in Java and Australia.

Stonehenge Merapi in Java, built in 2016. Photo Google Maps
Esperance full-size Stonehenge replica in Western Australia, photo from Esperance Express

Others are much less ambitious and are really no more than trilithons, such as this one at a holiday park in Austria.

Photo from the Landgasthof Feichthub website

The main editor of this American site is a lady called Nancy Wisser. She awards points to the listed replicas, including some of the more far-out examples, based on her own eccentric scoring system of ‘druids’. Her comment on this one in Taiwan is “We’re in awe, the kind that includes humorous disbelief! Scoring? Seriously? How? We’ll give it 6 baby druids – that’ll have to do”.

Interactive Larval Stonehenge, Taipei, Taiwan Photo : Taipei Public Art section of Taiwan government site

Postings are encouraged and there are many weird Instagram postings under headings like Carhenge and Foodhenge. This last includes models made out of candy, bananas or even ….. sausages! And I haven’t even begun to look at the Archive of monthly postings from November 2008 to August 2022! You can spend (or perhaps waste) a lot of time browsing this website but all in all Clonehenge is a great mix of serious information and entertaining fun. See it for yourself!

Text Alun Harvey

Photos Clonehenge website


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