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Walking on the Berkshire Downs
Featured sketch above:
Uffington White Horse
A4 ~ Charcoal sketch on coloured paper.
J & I have been out for a walk around the Berkshire Downs, we have arrived at the fantastic Uffington White Horse. What a beautiful piece of stylised design.
A 1990 excavation led by Simon Palmer and David Miles of the Oxford Archaeological Unit, found that silt from the horse dated to the Late Bronze Age – 1380 and 550 BC. They also, found that the Horse had been dug three metres into the hillside. As part of a local fair, the Horse has been ‘scoured’ from time immemorial, to keep the chalk clean.
Up close as we are, you get much more abstract forms as it is obviously intended to be viewed from across the vale.
Pencil sketch on coloured pencil ~ A4
Continuing our walk along the Ridgeway we came across Wayland’s Smithy.
A Long Barrow with four large sarsen stones at the entrance. The barrow dates from the Early Neolithic period. However, the Saxon’s appropriated the site, naming it after ‘Wayland the Smith’ being a Smith God of Norse mythology.
According to legend, a rider whose horse has lost a shoe can leave the animal and a silver coin on the capstone. On returning the next morning he will find that his horse has been re-shod and the silver coin is gone.
A very atmospheric place alongside the lonely ancient trackway of the Ridgeway.
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