Karahunj, an Ancient Observatory
Sirius and the stars of Orion shine above the moonlit stones of the mysterious Karahunj (or the Speaking Stones). Also known as Zorats Karer (Zorats stones) the pre-historic megalithic structure is located near the city of Sisian in Armenia. The site consists of hundreds of vertically constructed boulders situated in a deliberate arrangement covering over 3 hectares. At first glance they appear to be randomly scattered but aerial views reveal a surprisingly arrangement of these giant stones. Most probably Karahunj dates back to the second millennium B.C while there are claims for much older origin of the structure. The arrangement of stones, like other major henges in Europe (such as Stonehenge), was most probably meant for astronomical observation and for keeping the time as a large calendar. But other speculations describe this as a part of an ancient city with the temple of the ancient Armenians’ main God, Ari (the Sun), situated in the central part. In total, there are 203 stones in Karahunj and 76 of which have 5-7 cm diameter holes bored through them which might be an observing viewpoints to locate where the Moon and the rise on different dates. The largest of the boulders weigh more than 50 tons and were hauled from a quarry situated several kilometers away.