>>--- On Mon, 29/9/08, Brigalex <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
If Neolithic structures serve some purpose, other than making a mark on the landscape, compare them to large and lavishly decorated church or cathedrals. Were these built out of fear under a tyrannical ecclesiastic dynasty....
I think many would argue that they were!
The church in the medieval, and in many countries today, formed a powerful lobby within society.
The choice between building a cathedral or going to Hell might have provoked some animated response.
Cynical perhaps but I don't think many of the great cathedrals were constructed on the decision of the masses. The Church ordered their construction, as with the monastries, paid through unwanted levies and taxes by the masses who at most were an underclass of those within the Church.
I imagine if you lived in medieval Britain and you refused to cooperate in helping have a nice highly decorated cathedral constructed in your neighbourhood then something quite horrid would happen to you, and perhaps your family too!