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Stonehenge, Trilithons E And C And Part Of Outer Circle

Stonehenge, Trilithons E And C And Part Of Outer Circle

Photographer: Ordnance Survey Department, under Colonel Sir Henry James

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1867

Shelfmark: 10351.i.2

Item number: 5

Length: 22.9

Width: 18.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

View of Stonehenge in Wiltshire, taken by the Ordnance Survey under the supervision of Colonel Sir Henry James. The image is one of eight photographs of the monument illustrating Colonel James’ 1867 book ‘Stonehenge, Turusachan and Cromlechs’ and was published as plate 8. He wrote: “The structure, when complete, consisted of an outer circle of thirty large stones, upon which thirty other large stones were laid horizontally so as to form a perfect continuous circle…All the stones in the outer circle and in the trilithons are of an indurated tertiary sandstone, which is found upon the chalk in the neighbourhood, and more particularly near Avebury and Marlborough, where they are known by the name of the 'Sarsen' stones, and the 'Grey Wethers'.”


James (1803-1877) was Director-General of the Ordnance Survey between 1854 and 1875. He was quick to understand how the new technology of photography could be applied to its operations, in particular how maps could be enlarged or reduced in scale, and set up the first photography studio in the Survey office at Southampton. He is associated with the invention of zincography (though in fact it was developed by two of his staff), a quick and cheap photomechanical printing process which contributed to the completion of the survey of Britain in 1870.

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