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OtleyLad

Fact or fantasy - what's your take?

I had missed Sacred Wonders of Britain so had a look on iplayer. Oh dear, what a lot of baloney Rolling Eyes
Starts off at Cresswell Crags where Neil Oliver is shown a rock-painting of a deer. He then goes off on a fantasy trip how the deer is painted onto the rock to somehow gain control over it. Based on this 'fact' the cave is now referred to as a religious site/a temple and thus a sacred site (the first in Britain!).
Utter guff! This isn't the way science is done - this is speculation with not a single scrap of evidence brought forward to back up the claim. Its a pretty good painting, but as to it having any religious significance, well make up your own story - it appears this is what Oliver has done here.

Of course I love speculating about the lives of people who left us these rock-carvings - but I leave it at that. This sort of stuff really makes me spit nails.

What say you?
mochyn

We've been talking about this on FB. If a modern-day chap doesn't understand why a thing was done it seems to be the default that it was 'sacred' or 'ritual'. Sometimes, I believe, things were done for fun, becausee it looked/felt right, was the easiest/most efficient way to do something...

There probably were ritual sites, but if people like Oliver are to be believed, ancient man must have spent more time praying (or whatever) than catching things to eat!
robkb

I'm afraid I agree with OL on this. What could have been an interesting programme was damaged by Oliver's determination to force things to fit his theory (eg the 'messiah' figure he was sure existed in (I think )the Orkneys, despite the actual archeologist chappie steadfastly saying over and over that there was no evidence for it at all).
Lorrainelovesplants

Again, I agree.

Watched a prog about the woman who does the aerial photography. Great photography and lots of 'possibilities' came up, but the programme(not the woman) was stating things as fact without ANY further archaeology. Shocking.

But not so shocking as the crap that showing bBlackAdder episodes is wrong. Heard a snippet of Tony Robinson defending teachers who were using the episode as ONE part of discussions on WW1.

The education minister was being a complete plonker. But then whats new?
Chez

It's the reason I decided not to pursue a career in academic archaeology.
dpack

i abandoned the prog rather quickly ,all one can say from a picture of a deer is that the artist could or could not draw and that they had probably a reason to draw it .to ascribe a particular reason to a small sample is speculation without contextual knowledge backed by evidence.
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