THE NEWGRANGE-KNOWTH LEY - Martin Brennan
The importance of this ley (author's depiction on backcover) is that it provides clear and indisputable evidence that in the Neolithic period mounds and standing stones were purposely positioned in alignment, marking terrestrial lines over large distances. The facts that emerge from a study of this ley leave no room for doubt that not only is the alignment intentional, but a high degree of skill was utilised to attain the accuracy involved. Another significant factor is that this ley is terrestrial yet it runs directly through Newgrange which is a centre of numerous astronomical alignments. Thus we have a situation wherein terrestrial and astronomical alignments exist side by side.
Three enormous mounds dominate the Boyne Valley - Knowth, Dowth and Newgrange, Newgrange contains a passage which is illuminated at winter solstice. Knowth has two passages aligned directly east and west. These passages are undoubtedly illuminated at the equinox sunsets and sunrises. Dowth has two passages of which one is clearly aligned to Newgrange. This alignment is further augmented in that two of twelve large standing stones surrounding Newgrange mark this ley. Two of the other large standing stones mark the Knowth - Newgrange ley. These leys both criss-cross in the interior chamber of Newgrange precisely at a large stone designated R21.
R21 is the hub of a gigantic wheel. From this stone all of the twelve large standing stones surrounding Newgrange fall into terrestrial or astronomical alignments. One of these large standing stones marks the north-south meridian line giving the entire structure a solid base. Recently, a sceptical archaeologist who is proficient in surveying checked this alignment and found that it is precise and accurate. I noticed with amusement that he did not publicise his findings and wondered if that would be the case if his results were less than positive. Establishing the meridian line is an activity that cannot be fitted in to the accepted view that Newgrange is an elaborate tomb and the stones are arranged where they "look best". These ideas are so obviously erroneous and short-sighted that they need no comment.
Not only are the alignments in the Boyne Valley clearly evident, the remains suggest that an effort has been made to make the alignments very apparent. From R21 in the interior of Newgrange the standing stones are placed in alignment with Knowth and Dowth and in case this could be construed as accidental the builders have re-affirmed the alignments by extending the lines to standing stones on the other side of the mound leaving no doubt as to their intentions. This also demonstrates that the standing stones were positioned before the mound was built and that R21 was a standing stone before it became incorporated in the passage of the mound. This means that it is likely that Knowth and Dowth are older than Newgrange and consequently this shows how seriously misleading previous interpretations of these mounds have been.
What sort of evidence is required before it is generally accepted that alignments in stone dating from the Neolithic period exist? One of the kerbstones surrounding Newgrange is clearly incised with a vertical mark. It is called the Entrance Stone (Ed. See front cover) and it aligns with one of the large standing stones placed in front of it. R21 in the interior of the mound and kerbstone 52 at the other side of the mound which also bears an incised vertical mark. The entire arrangement is aligned to the rising sun at winter solstice. I have recently been informed that as far back as 1919 an old woman with a cane who was acting as a guide stated that she saw the rising sun illuminating the chamber. It wasn't until 1969 that an archaeologist verified this (taking full credit for the discovery).
It is still not recognised that the stones and the vertical marks are part of an alignment and in fact the winter solstice phenomenon is still regarded with a great deal of scepticism even though it has been photographed and finally filmed last year by BBC. We are told that it seems likely the grave was deliberately oriented in recently published material dealing with Newgrange.
I admire caution and a certain amount of scepticism is necessary in all scientific research but there is a limit. There is no point at which scientific research is hindered and proven fact is disregarded in order to preserve useless-although-accepted speculation. In view of the difficulties in accepting that Newgrange is a solar observatory I can foresee even greater difficulty in convincing archaeologists that it has an even greater function in recording the 19 year cycle of the moon. Even though I will have the opportunity to demonstrate this shortly and it will be photographed and filmed there still seems to be a mental block in accepting it. There is no way that the builders didn't know this - even the caretaker at Newgrange knows it will happen.
The Newgrange - Knowth ley stands in silent testimony every day of the year. It is remarkable and amazing, but what is becoming even more remarkable and amazing to me is the mental block which prevents people from seeing it. Undoubtedly, future generations of researchers will laugh at the fumblings of present day accepted interpretations of these mounds, but is it necessary to await future generations when significant advances are being made by a growing number of independent researchers now? With the exception of the Newgrange - Dowth ley, it is hard for me to imagine a ley more convincing and explicit than the Newgrange-Knowth ley. The mental blocks of modern man are not the real subject of megalithic studies, they are merely spin-offs. The real question is not whether the Newgrange -Knowth ley exists or not but how far the ley extends.