sarsen


sarsen

noun

  1. any of numerous large sandstone blocks or fragments found in south-central England, probably remnants of eroded Tertiary beds.

noun

  1. geology a boulder of silicified sandstone, probably of Tertiary age, found in large numbers in S England
  2. such a stone used in a megalithic monument

n.“large sandstone boulder,” 1640s, properly sarsen stone, i.e. “Saracen stone,” from Saracen in the old sense of “pagan, heathen.” The same word was applied to the ancient leavings outside Cornish tin mines, also known as Jews’ pits, those being the terms that came to mind once to describe any ancient features, based on the Bible.

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