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menhir



Lundin Links standing stones
Lundin Links standing stones, Fifeshire, Scotland
A megalith consisting of a single large pillar. The term is also used for one or more columnar stone blocks, from 3 to 20 or more feet high. A menhir is also called a monolith, pierre fitte, a long stone, or a standing stone.

Menhirs are sometimes arranged in groups of two or four, placed at short distances apart, as at Lundin Links, near Largo, in Fife, Scotland, three of which are still standing (about 18 feet in height). Such groups if composed of a large number of stones may be arranged in the form of circles, or avenues, or alignments, or groups of irregular lines, converging slightly at one end. When arranged in the form of circles they are usually considered as belonging to a special class of prehistoric monuments or burial places known as stone circles.

Other groups of standing stones arranged in lines like those at Carnac in Brittany are of undetermined purpose. Smaller groups than the famous ones of Brittany are found in the north of Scotland, and are sometimes associated with burial-cairns. In Norway groups of standing stones arranged in triangular and rectangular forms occur, and are known by investigation to be iron age burial places.