Stanton Drew in Somerset is the location of one of England’s largest and most mysterious stone circles. Little is known about the three Bronze Age stone circles and the three-stone ‘cove’ which comprise the site. Recent surveys have revealed that what remains of Stanton Drew was part of a much more elaborate site, the stones themselves arranged above a series of underground burial chambers.
John Aubrey (1626-97) and William Stukeley (1687-1765) both made Stanton Drew the object of their antiquarian researches, as did Sir Richard Kaye (1736-1809), the antiquary who employed Samuel Hieronymus Grimm to produce this drawing. Grimm’s drawings and watercolours at the British Library number in their thousands. Two and a half thousand alone were produced for Kaye, who, over twenty one years, commissioned the artist to tour Britain and to record ‘everything curious’.
- Article by:
- Sam Smiles
- Antiquarianism, Country, Science and nature
Britain's prehistoric landscapes are depicted in prints and drawings across the British Library's collections. Sam Smiles, Emeritus Professor of Art History, University of Plymouth, explores further.