Cerne Abbas, Dorset. Open Gardens and stroll


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This is a walk around the hill and with a good view of the giant. The gardens in Cerne Abbas are open to the public for the weekend. Usually a wonderful show.

The Cerne Abbas Giant is a hill figure near the village of Cerne Abbas in Dorset, England. Made by a turf-cut outline filled with chalk, it depicts a large naked man with an erection and is typically described as a giant wielding a club. The figure is listed as a scheduled monument in the United Kingdom and the site where he stands is owned by the National Trust.

The origin and age of the figure are unclear. It is often thought of as an ancient construction, though the earliest mention of it dates to the late 17th century. Early antiquarians associated it, on little evidence, with a Saxon deity, while other scholars sought to identify it with a Celtic British figure of the Roman Hercules or some syncretization of the two. Archaeological evidence that parts of the drawing have been lost over time strengthen the Hercules identification. The lack of earlier descriptions leads modern scholars to conclude that it probably dates from the 17th century, and perhaps originated as political satire.

Regardless of its age, the Cerne Abbas Giant has become an important part of local culture and folklore, which often associates it with fertility. It is one of England's best known hill figures and is a visitor attraction in the region.



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