This research area is on Nick Hanks’ academic published research into patterns of sacred space (Irvine, Hanks and Weddle. 2012 ‘Sacred Architecture: Archaeological and Anthropological Perspectives’ pp.91-118 in Archaeology and Anthropology: Past, Present and Future. Association of Social Anthropologists monograph.) within Nick Hanks’ general website. On these webpages I explore:-






This research was triggered by the observation that most archaeologists understanding of how prehistoric ritual sites were used is somewhat lacking due to few of them having a background in ritual studies or performance. I have both. And having encountered Ronald L Grimes’ modes of ritual; Ceremonial, Liturgical, Magical and Celebratory, I wondered whether the different modes of ritual had different spatial requirements. If these could be discerned, by looking at contemporary practice, then perhaps when these were applied to the prehistoric sites a better understanding could be had of how they were actually used and the societies of the time, rather than just putting them in the catch all phrase of ‘ritual’. My research to date (see 2012 Publications) has shown a clear pattern for Liturgical ritual space, and preliminary work indicates there will be differences for other modes. It is hoped that with cases studies on other ritual spaces by myself or others involved with the CPASE (Contemporary Paganism and Alternative Spiritualities in Europe) research group and others will provide enough data to define the spatial requirements (if any) for these other modes.


What’s New  – Conference papers from 2014 “Bodies and minds in space” and from 2013 “Thresholds of space” have been added.

Cheers, Nick   2 August 2015