For centuries people have wondered about the mystery of how the stones at Stonehenge England arrived there. There are several dozen huge stones arranged in a circular pattern with some rocks resting horizontally high atop the other rocks, each piece weighing several tons. Experts claim that the stones originate from Wales. I recently visited Stonehenge. I was no further enlightened.
It seems however that some light may now be shed on the mystery as construction workers digging near the courthouse in nearby Salisbury have come across some court records which reveal a legal action that took place centuries ago. The story will show that times have not changed.
The following narrative is taken from the judgment of the trial judge:
Flintsone J.: The plaintiff, the Druid Orthodox Temple, brings this action against the defendant Jock the Mover. It seems that the plaintiff hired the mover to move its temple from Wales a couple of hundred miles south to a site near Salisbury. The plaintiff claims that many of the rocks were not delivered, some were returned damaged and the temple was not properly set up.
A month or so before the move a sales representative of the mover, one Ehrlick, visited the Druids to price the move. He dealt with one Bork, the Temple's ritual slaughterer and accountant.
The two struck a deal to move the entire temple rock by rock and reset it up at Stonehenge.
The move was to start the following week and take three days. Ehrlick's testimony however was that he specifically advised Bork that the mover was also moving a second nearby temple shortly and that it would move the two simultaneously "as there's no sense travelling all that distance for just one temple".
Unfortunately the move was plagued by misfortune from the word go.
On November 26 the Druids waited patiently for Jock's team of movers to arrive. To their chagrin what came were three drunken men in a broken flatbed wagon. They circled the temple once and left, indicating they would be back after lunch. The move was not started completed until the following July.
While the movers were unloading an altercation erupted. The man in charge, one Leon, requested payment before completion of the set up, indicating that terms of payment were C.O.D. Bork refused to pay at that point and the movers left, retaining with them a number of rocks as security, pursuant to the Moving and Warehousing of Places of Worship Act.
The Druids claim that many rocks are still missing or damaged and they sue for 100,000 Crowns.
The mover argues that it is not at fault, saying that on route its vehicles were ambushed by a bunch of outlaws while passing through Sherwood Forest. The bandits made off with the driver's purse, his wagon and about twenty-five eight-ton rocks. They also snatched his pet beagle Pokey.
The Sheriff of Nottingham eventually recovered a couple of the rocks from the homes of the poor. The Sheriff charged them with possession of stolen property. The accused apparently alleged that they picked the rocks up at a local flea market.
The Druids also claim that the temple is now ruined. Bork points to a sketch of rocks arranged in a circle and says, "Where is the roof?"
The structure indeed appears roofless. Ehrlick denies that the temple ever had a roof. He points to the bill of lading which lists what was being moved and he says that there is no mention of a roof.
Bork on the other hand insists that there was a cover, "as you can hardly light up a sacrifice when it rains if there is no roof."
The mover says that if there was a roof, then maybe the outlaws pocketed it. His lawyer points to a clause in the contract that absolves the mover from "unlawful acts of the King's enemies."
I did not spot this clause initially but I now see it with the aid of my magnifying glass. Bork denies ever seeing the clause at all. Furthermore he claims he doesn't read Latin. I don't accept the mover's argument that Latin is similar to Druidese. I can't believe that for any Druid "Latin is a piece of cake".
There will be judgement for the plaintiff.
I trust this helps explain the mystery of Stonehenge. But nobody knows what ever became of Pokey.
When I am not busy watching temples being moved, I practice family personal injury and insurance law. Please visit www.striglaw.com. I am bilingual (English and French, not Druidese.)