Friday, October 15, 1999 Published at 09:48 GMT 10:48 UK
Stonehenge face mystery
Silently watching us for 4,000 years?
By BBC News Online Science Editor Dr David Whitehouse
Has the face of the creator of Stonehenge been staring at us unrecognised for more than 4,000 years?
A British archaeologist claims to have seen a face carved into the side of one of the mighty stones at Stonehenge.
It was recognised by Terrence Meaden, an archaeologist with a fascination for the ancient standing stones of the British Isles.
"I just happened to be there at the right time of day because only when the light is right can you see it properly. During the summer months it is only obvious for about a hour each day around 1400."
It is amazing that it has never been recognised before.
Dr Meaden believes that it was missed because previous researchers concentrated on the fronts of the standing stones and not their sides.
"But once you see it it's obvious," he says.
It seems to carry a serious expression, almost a frown, as it looks across the Salisbury plain.
Stonehenge was built about 2450 BC but why does Dr Meaden believe the carving was made at the time and was not done much later.
"Why would anyone do that?" he asks, "The type of stone, Sarsen, is the hardest stone know to man. It would have taken hundreds of hours working on a platform to do it. Why bother?"
Meaden's photographs are being evaluated by other archaeologists.
He also claims that other faces can clearly be seen on the Avebury stones not far from Stonehenge.
But who is the face of Stonehenge?
"We will never know," says Meaden, "He could be the patron of the monument or even its architect. Perhaps the designer of Stonehenge has been looking at us for four thousand years and we didn't see him."
Terence Meaden can be contacted by email at email@example.com.