Stonehenge's pieces slot together like Lego bricks, rare photo shows

'Ah, where it all began,' the toymaker joked of the image

AMESBURY, ENGLAND - MARCH 20: A deserted closed Stonehenge on March 20, 2020 in Amesbury, United Kingdom. English Heritage, which manages the site said, ”Our first priority is the health and wellbeing of all visitors, volunteers and staff, and we hope you can understand why we have taken this unprecedented step," it said. "We appreciate this is a very important time for druids, pagans and other spiritual people and hope you will still be able to celebrate the spring equinox in your own special way.” English Heritage said it would "continue to plan for the summer solstice in the hope it will still take place". (Photo by Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images)

As far as wholesome social media exchanges go, it does not get much better than Lego and Stonehenge, who had a little back-and-forth on Twitter earlier this week.

The team that runs the social media accounts for the famed prehistoric stone monument in the south of England tweeted a photo from the top of one of the landmark's protruding stones, pointing out that they work a little like the popular Danish toy brand's blocks.

"This is a rarely seen view of the top of one of the giant sarsen stones," Stonehenge teamwrote.

"The protruding tenons are clearly visible and the corresponding horizontal lintel stone would have had mortise holes for them to slot into. A bit like early Lego!"

The toy brand replied a few days later, tweeting: "Ah, where it all began", with a heart emoji.

A diagram from the Historic England archive demonstrates the way that the Lego-like joints slot together. It is much more common to find these joints in woodwork than stonework.

STONEHENGE  Reconstuction drawing by Peter DUNN showing tongue and groove and mortice and tenon joints used to link and secure lintels

Stonehenge is considered to be one of the most important ancient monuments in Britain, with construction dating back to between 3000 BC to 2000 BC. The site was added to Unesco's list of World Heritage Sites in 1986.

English Heritage explains: "The first monument at Stonehenge was a circular earthwork enclosure, built in about 3000 BC.

"A ditch was dug with simple antler tools, and the chalk piled up to make an inner and an outer bank. Within the ditch was a ring of 56 timber or stone posts. The monument was used as a cremation cemetery for several hundred years.

"In about 2500 BC, the site was transformed by the construction of the central stone settings. Enormous sarsen stones and smaller bluestones were raised to form a unique monument. Building Stonehenge took huge effort from hundreds of well-organised people."

In line with UK government guidelines aimed to curb the spread of Covid-19, Stonehenge is currently closed to the public.

A Lego Stonehenge 

As it stands, you cannot buy a Lego version of the British monument to build at home. However, there are plenty of Unesco World Heritage Sites that can be recreated with the little bricks.

India's Taj Mahal can be scaled down and duplicated in 5,923 bricks; Italy's Leaning Tower of Pisa comes as part of a less-intricate 345-piece set; and the Great Wall of China (or at least a portion of it) can be built at home with 551 Lego bricks.