Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

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Ian Pegler
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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

A Lunar Ley?

In the Bronze Age the major southern lunar standstill position was further south than in recent times (e.g. the one in 2006). By trawling through a lot of data generated by NASA I came up with the following date: October 11th 1997 B.C. which in Stellarium you enter as -1996 10 11. Coincidentally (?) this date is very close to the Autumnal Equinox. At around 16:40 on this day the Moon rises at the major southern standstill position.

Unlike the 2006 standstill, the Moon remains partially concealed by Corndon Hill until it reaches the peak, at which time it is in alignment with the mini Watkins-style ley that runs from Corndon to Mitchell's Fold.

CTRL + click to see a larger image:

Image

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

Here's an interesting one...

Recently I came across the following in A guide to the stone circles of Britain, Ireland and Brittany
by Aubrey Burl:
Aubrey Burl wrote:"The tallest stone is at the south-east end of the major axis, standing, perhaps by coincidence. close to the line
of the major southern moonrise."

Well not if my Stellarium simulation is correct! As you can see from the image in the previous post, the Moon rises well to the south of this - by nearly 30 degrees!

Well they can't both be right...!

Also in the same book he says that the stones "stand in an ellipse" !! Hmmm, I'd like to see his geometry plan...

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

As you can see from the image in the previous post, the Moon rises well to the south of this - by nearly 30 degrees!

Well they can't both be right...!
I've double-checked my settings (longitude, latitude, altitude etc.) and run the simulation on Cartes du Ciel and ZET 9 Lite - I get exactly the same results as with Stellarium. Changing the altitude to Burl's 330m doesn't make any difference either.

Scratching my head over this one...!

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

Scratching my head over this one...!
Some sources give Mitchell's Fold a more recent age estimate of around 3000 years, so I wondered if this would make any difference to the problem above. Trawling through yet more NASA data I came up with the following date, for which the Moon has a large negative declination value: Nov 15th 1086 B.C. (which in Stellarium you type in as -1085 11 15).

Result: almost exactly the same as before, but the Moon very slightly higher, so that when it reaches the ridge of Corndon Hill you can see the whole orb, just about. So there's really not much difference at all, in spite of the large date difference.

Still working on it!

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Malcolm »

I really like Mitchell's Fold, have been there several times.

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

Malcolm wrote:I really like Mitchell's Fold, have been there several times.
Glad you like it.

The folklore linked with Mitchell's Fold is pretty much identical to the folklore associated with other stone circles including Callanish (or should I say Calanais) in Scotland. Here I'm talking about the story of the Hag who milked the Dun Cow with her sieve.

Other sites with similar stories include the Hag's Milking Fold (Buches-y-Wrach), Speckled Cow's Crib and Caer Drewyn in North Wales, also Dunsmoor Heath.

The Speckled Cow's Crib (Preseb y Fuwch Frech) was a stone circle destroyed in the 1800's. Caer Drewyn is also linked to Gwyn ap Nudd.

Very often you find pubs called The Dun Cow in the areas where you have this folklore.

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Helen-Healing »

I found a good photo of a Mitchell's Fold stone on Flickr - here.

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Grahame »

An interesting blog post here from Tim Daw that questions the age of Mitchell's Fold, citing Bur's report of aerial surveys that seem to show medieval ridge-and-furrow plough marks running right through the ring, which would suggest that the stones are a later addition:
The date of Mitchell’s Fold stone circle has been called into question in modern times when aerial photography revealed mediaeval ridge-and-furrow plough-marks that not only go up to the ring, but also go straight through it indicating the circle was constructed later than the plough marks and may not be prehistoric at all.
Report from HERE.

There's a more in-depth analysis of this theory HERE:
Ridges and furrows that are clear evidence of recent agricultural use.

Gauging those furrows by their depth, these deep wounds to the soil are surely from powerful, modern ploughing. Indicating recent cultivation of the land under the Circle; certainly not the legacy of Neolithic man.

Furthermore, on closer scrutiny, some of those plough-marks pass actually beneath the standing stones themselves!
This is a good question for dowsing - how old do you think it is?
Grahame
The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it - Terry Pratchett.

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by Ian Pegler »

Here's what I said on FB:
No mention of Alexander Thom, who surveyed it and found it to be a good match for a "Type A flattened" circle (see Megalithic Rings, p24). So if it was "constructed in the 18th century by Druid Temple enthusiasts" how did the hoaxers know about Thom's geometry more than a century before Thom was even born? Did they rediscover all of that geometrical practice themselves and if so how? Thom only arrived at his own conclusions after painstaking measurements at numerous Scottish sites as I'm sure you know. It was Thom's survey which was utilised to reconstruct the circle after a farmer vandalised it in the 1990s.

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Re: Mitchell's Fold (stone circle in Shropshire, England)

Post by mike »

Mitchell Fold stone circle I dowse the site to be a Sacred site with energy Leys from north to south and east to west crossing the exact centre and having a spring 60 feet under its middle, and dowsing the stones they are not ancient but much more recent I believe.What I think happened is the stones were replaced about 300 years ago, as the stones DONT match the active circle of influence in the ground today.And the hill to the south has almost a mirror image of this site, being another Sacred site with energy Leys and forces there with the energies very old some 3000 years when they become active here.

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