THE story of Stonehenge and the mystery that surrounds it is familiar to most Salisbury residents, but one man has come to the city to tell people about an ancient circle of standing stones which pre-dates even Wiltshire’s World Heritage site.

Vardan Levoni Tadevosyan is an Armenian/Spanish historian of the occult who visited Salisbury last week to raise the profile of Carahunge, dubbed the Armenian Stonehenge.

He said: “It’s a very important monument, not just for Armenia, but for the whole world.”

Carahunge, meaning ‘speaking stones’, is located 200km from the Armenian capital Yerevan, near a town called Sisian. There are over 200 stones on the seven-hectare site and many of the stones have smooth angled holes in them, directed at different points in the sky, leading scientists to believe it is the world’s oldest observatory, dating back 7500 years.

Mr Tadevosyan is very passionate about wanting people to know more about Carahunge and has his own theories on its links with Stonehenge.

His research of the last four years is based on the work done by Professor Paris Herouni, a member of the Armenian National Academy of Science and president of the Radiophysics Research Institute in Yerevan.

Prof Herouni started investigating Carahunge more than 20 years ago and wrote a book, Armenians and Old Armenia, on his findings. He sent the book to Prof G.S. Hawkins, who had investigated Stonehenge, and he agreed with Herouni’s findings.

Mr Tadevosyan says that in neolithic times the Armenians were much more advanced than most other cultures. A carving found on rocks near Lake Sevan showed they knew the world was round, they could accurately measure latitude, and they were already skilled in astronomy, archaeology and engineering.

He believes the earliest population of Britain, who came from Armenia, brought the ideas of Carahunge to Europe with them and played some part in the creation of Stonehenge and other European sites.

He plans to put together a leaflet about Carahunge that can be available to the public at the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum and curator Adrian Green said he would be happy to display leaflets about the ancient site.

“I have a passion about it because the world has a not nice attention on Armenia. I want to publicise Armenian monuments and culture,” said Mr Tadevoysyan.