A round blue disc with circle and crescent moon shapes on it.

Past exhibition

17 February – 17 July 2022

Room 30

The Sainsbury Exhibitions Gallery

Organised with the State Museum of Prehistory, Halle/Saale, Germany

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For the catalogue, homewares and gifts from the exhibition, visit the British Museum Shop.

Towering above the Wiltshire countryside, Stonehenge is perhaps the world's most awe-inspiring ancient stone circle.

Shrouded in layers of speculation and folklore, this iconic British monument has spurred myths and legends that persist today. In this special exhibition, the British Museum revealed the secrets of Stonehenge, shining a light on its purpose, cultural power and the people who created it.

Following the story of Britain and Europe from 4000 to 1000 BC, visitors learned about the restless and highly connected age of Stonehenge – a period of immense transformation and radical ideas that changed society forever.

The human story behind the stones revealed itself through a variety of fascinating objects. Among these were stone axes from the North Italian Alps, stunning gold jewellery and astonishing examples of early metalwork including the Nebra Sky Disc – the world's oldest surviving map of the stars. A remarkably preserved 4,000-year-old timber circle dubbed Seahenge also took centre stage in the show, on loan for the very first time. All these objects offered important clues about the beliefs, rituals, and complex worldview of Neolithic people, helping to build a vivid sense of life for Europe's earliest ancestors. 

Informed by ground-breaking recent archaeological and scientific discoveries, this landmark exhibition offered new insight on one of the world's great wonders, bringing the true story of Stonehenge into sharper focus than ever before.



View the large print guide, which is designed for visually impaired visitors and provides all the exhibition text in large print. You can also view the plain English guide, which is designed for learning-disabled visitors and provides a description of 10 key objects from the exhibition in plain English.


Teachers' resources

Discover ideas for learning with free downloadable resources for teachers.

For students aged 7–14 (KS2–KS3).

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