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International Archaeological Reports since 1974

The Phenomena of Argyll Stone Rows Revealed Through 3D Computer Simulation

David A. Fisher
Publication Year:
194 pages, Illustrated throughout in colour and black and white. 40 tables, 101 figures (86 in colour). With additional material online (animations and discussion).
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In this book, David A. Fisher combines methods including Geographic Information Systems (GIS), GPS, computerised three-dimensional modelling and astronomical formulae in order to reconstruct the world as it was seen by the builders of Scottish megalithic sites within the region of Argyll and Mull. These sites have no associated archaeological artifacts that allow us to determine the dates of their construction. Through the employment of these methods, however, the sites’ astronomical orientations may be visualised and used to predict a feasible date range for their construction more accurately than has been possible in past research. New discoveries made via computer simulations/animations showing 3D recreations of the sites through the course of a single year, or over millennia (available as a digital download accompanying this book), show that the sites are 800 to 1000 years older than previously stated, and new hypotheses as to how the sites were employed are also suggested. For the first time, the author offers the definitive conclusion that stars formed an important part of megalithic history

David A. Fisher is a retired Executive Consultant and Chief Information Officer, now applying his business re-engineering analytics to the investigation of the Archeoastronomic possibilities of Megalithic sites of the Neolithic period. He earned a PhD in this discipline from the University of Wales, Lampeter St David. As a fellow of SEAC and member of the American Astronomical Society, he has published a number of papers in their annual conference proceedings.

‘Not only is [this] the first in-depth use of highly detailed and contextualized 3D reconstructions to gauge connections between prehistoric sites, landscapes and skyscapes, but the methodology … will give scholars in the fields of archaeoastronomy, archaeology, anthropology and history food for thought regarding the use, meaning and shape of standing stones.’ Dr Fabio Silva, Institute of Archaeology, University College London

‘The book's computer simulations, which should be of interest both to specialists and to the general public, are significant contributions to the field of archaeoastronomy.’ Dr J. McKim Malville, Professor Emeritus, University of Colorado

Table of Contents (B647_9781407316802_ToC.pdf, 153 Kb) [Download]

Introduction (B647_9781407316802_Introduction.pdf, 239 Kb) [Download]