• Reuters


If you listen carefully — and with the right app — you can still hear the prehistoric acoustics that swirled around Britain’s ancient monument Stonehenge over the last 5,000 years.

A team of researchers spent eight years creating an app that allows you to hear the different noises the stones generated at various points over thousands of years, long before the traffic noise in the southwestern English county of Wiltshire took over.

While most modern archaeologists generally agree that Stonehenge was some sort of prehistoric temple aligned to the movements of the sun, the researchers from the University of Huddersfield said the stones also had surprisingly sonorous properties.

“You have a sense of reverberation, a bit like a gigantic bathroom,” lead researcher Rupert Till said amid the ancient ruins.

“People say, ‘Well, you hear that anywhere.’ But not 2,000, 3,000 years ago; there weren’t any large stone buildings. So this would have been one of the few human-made places where you’d have heard these kind of acoustic effects.”

The app, released this week, allows listeners to wander amongst the standing stones while listening to an interactive soundscape — including the sound of birds and the wind moving through the stones.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.