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Professor Challenger and his Lost Neolithic World: The Compelling Story of Alexander Thom and British Archaeoastronomy
Author: Euan W. MacKieÜ. Paperback; 203x276mm; 158 pages; 81 figures (colour throughout). 131 2021. Available both in print and Open Access. Printed ISBN 9781784918330. Epublication ISBN 9781784918347.
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Professor Challenger and his Lost Neolithic World combines the two great passions of the authorís life: reconstructing the Neolithic mind and constructively challenging consensus in his professional domain. The book is semi-autobiographical, charting the authorís investigation of Alexander Thomís theories, in particular regarding the alignment of prehistoric monuments in the landscape, across a number of key Neolithic sites from Kintraw to Stonehenge and finally Orkney. It maps his own perspective of the changing reception to Thomís ideas by the archaeological profession from initial curiosity and acceptance to increasing scepticism. The text presents historical summaries of the various strands of evidence from key Neolithic sites across the UK and Ireland with the compelling evidence from the Ness of Brodgar added as an appendix in final justification of his approach to the subject.

About the Author Euan W. MacKie (1936-2020), was a British archaeologist who graduated with a degree in Archaeology and Anthropology from St Johnís College, Cambridge in 1959. He excavated at the Mayan site of Xunantunich in 1959-60 and was then employed at the British Museum Department of Ethnography before becoming Curator and Keeper of Archaeology and Anthropology at the Hunterian Museum at the University of Glasgow where he later obtained his PhD. His principal research areas were the brochs and vitrified forts of the Scottish Iron Age, and archaeoastronomy Ė the investigation of the astronomical knowledge of prehistoric cultures.

Reviews
'History matters, and this comprehensive volume sheds light not just on the particular period covered but on how its legacy lives on in colouring our view of archaeoastronomy today.'óLiz Henty, British Archaeology, May 2021


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