Gavrinis (Isle of Goats), Brittany, France

Facade of Gavrinis chambered cairn at Entry to passage.    Photo copyright: John Palmer

Facade of Gavrinis chambered cairn at Entry to passage. Photo copyright: John Palmer

Gavrinis (Isle of Goats), Brittany, France

The Gavrinis chambered cairn, situated on the Isle of Goats, off the French coast of Brittany, is the most profusely decorated Megalithic site in Europe. The Gavrinis chambered cairn (about 177 Ft X 196 Ft, and 26 Ft high), with the longest passage (over 38 Ft) in Brittany, is a sanctuary constructed on a hillock at about 3500 BCE. Of its 29 upright granite stones, 23 are splendidly carved, chiefly with concentric patterns, spirals, axes, and symbols representing a Guardian Spirit, all executed in low relief. When looking from stone 19 at the chamber entrance towards stone 1, the orientation is 128 degrees; the alignment is towards the Mid- Winter Sunrise. The bearing of principal axis of the passage is 134 degrees, an alignment bearing to the Major Southern Moonrise. These two alignments intersect halfway in the passage at a height level with stone 7; this is an undecorated, white quartz stone, which is thus illuminated by the rays of sun and moon.

Written by John Palmer

 

Decorated artwork on stones in the passage leading to the chamber.        Photo copyright: John Palmer

Decorated artwork on stones in the passage leading to the chamber.        Photo copyright: John Palmer

 

Decorated Stones in the Chamber.     Photo copyright: John Palmer

Decorated Stones in the Chamber. Photo copyright: John Palmer

 

The remarkable artwork adorning the walls of Gavrinis, inspired John Palmer to create art using a variety of mediums.

Celebration of the Gavrinis Cairn. Oil on canvas, 1993. 40 X 45 inch.   By John Palmer.  This image may not be reproduced without permission from the artist.

Celebration of the Gavrinis Cairn. Oil on canvas, 1993. 40 X 45 inch. By John Palmer. This image may not be reproduced without permission from the artist.

 

Stones of Gavrinis. Brownprint (alternative photographic process) Image ca 14 X 18.  John Palmer (this image may not be reproduced without permission of the artist.)

Stones of Gavrinis. Brownprint (alternative photographic process) Image ca 14 X 18. John Palmer (this image may not be reproduced without permission of the artist.)

 

 

 

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