Archaeologists believe to have discovered a megalithic structure that once served as an astronomical observatory in Mudumal village in Telangana’s state, India.
The site contains about 80 big menhirs as tall as 3,5 to 4 metres, and about 2000 alignment stones of about 30-60 centimetres high. The experts say that no other site in India has so many menhirs concentrated at one place. At the site a depiction of Ursa Major was noticed in small cup-sized pits on a vertically planted squarish stone with a slanting face. About 30 of such cup-marks were arranged in a pattern similar to the appearance of Ursa Major in the sky. Not only the prominent seven stars, but also the peripheral groups of stars are depicted in a faithful way. An imaginary line drawn through the top two stars point to pole star or the North Star.
Two such marks, representing the stars Merak and Dubhe (forming the Ursa Major constellation) are aligned almost exactly on North-South axis. In the days when magnetic compass was not available, people used to fix a point to identify North. The site encompasses the area of over 32 hectares with the largest concentration of menhirs in the central area. At present nearly half of the menhirs in the central portion have fallen, but still remain in situ. One of the northern stone is worshipped by the locals as “Thimmappa” a male village deity. Another shorter menhir in black stone close by is worshipped as “Ellamma“, a different, female deity
The site was studied by archaeologists of the Hyderabad Central University and the Andhra Pradesh Department of Archaeology and Museums. A team of archaeologists from Korea, will be visiting the site in December to assess the the authenticity of the discovery.
(after Bangalore Mirror)