# Avebury

30 31 People often think of our ancestors as cavemen or prophets but they were also sophisticated astronomers. Robin Heaths recent work on Avebury shows just how clever they were. Every eight years, Venus Goddess of Love and Beauty, and our closest planet draws an amazing fivefold flower shape round the Earth opposite below right. But also, every eight years, there are exactly 99 full moons. The numbers are 2921.9 days for eight years, 2920 days for the Venus cycle and 2923.5 days for 99 full moons. Perhaps the 99 stones of the outer circle each represent one Moon of the flowery eightyear Venus cycle. Islam is a religion which also emphasises Sun, Moon and Venus you often see Venus as a star beside a crescent Moon on Islamic flags. There are also 99 names of Allah, each one a reflection, or full Moon, unifying the Sun and Venus. But what about 27 and 29 Well, for a start, the Moon takes 27.3 days to return to any given star, and there are 29.5 days between full Moons These are key lunar numbers. 27 and 29 stones also add up to 56, the number of Aubrey holes at Stonehenge, and the secret number for eclipse prediction. The picture opposite shows Aveburys precise position one seventh of a circle up from the equator, and a peculiar relationship between Avebury and the Great Pyramid. The heAvenly sCIenCes 27, 29 and 99 stones 31