WerisA long, long time ago I bought a pamphlet entitled ‘Itinéraires des megaliths en Wallonie’, published by the Société Royale Belge de Géographie in the series Hommes et Paysages. It proposes two tours, one of 142 kilometres and the other of 221 kilometres, taking in various sites of Neolithic man. I have long had those tours on my ‘to do’ list. Today, having realised I would probably never find the time to do a complete tour, I cut to the quick and visited one of the best sites in Belgium, the dolmens and menhirs of Wéris. Among the first human constructions in what is now Belgium, these structures are massive and deeply moving. The dolmens were built between 2,500 and 3,000 years ago as burial chambers. The bodies have long since disappeared, but the spaces they occupied are still there. A prevalent theory holds that the constructions mimic the female body. Neolithic civilisation was sedentary, having discovered and developed agriculture, and I find the theory convincing  – not just because of the forms, but also because it is easy to imagine primitive religious beliefs in which man returns to the womb of the earth. Another prevalent theory, based on the alignments of the various sites, posits that, taken together, the various stones were earth-bound representations of constellations above and even early calendars. In any case, it is difficult to imagine that the location of the sites was a matter of pure chance, especially given the massive effort and huge amount of manpower that would have been necessary to haul and manhandle the stones into position. They may not, by our standards, have been very sophisticated civilisations, but they surely knew something that we no longer do.