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The Giant on the Hill

 The National Trust has just found out that one of its rudest attractions is also one of its oldest. The Cerne Abbas chalk giant is almost as old as the kingdom England itself. Generations have speculated about the age and meaning of the club-brandishing giant hewn into a Dorset hillside. Was he a depiction of the legendary demi-god Hercules, an ancient fertility symbol, or even the soldier and statesman Oliver Cromwell? Another theory holds that the figure was carved around the body of a giant who was slain by local people after he terrorised the countryside.    Now, after state-of-the art sediment analysis jointly funded by the National Trust, the University of Gloucestershire, Allen Environmental Archaeology and the Pratt Bequest, National Trust archaeologists have concluded the giant was probably first constructed in the late Saxon period. I always found it rather odd that people thought anyone in the 17th century could construct a huge landscape outline of a club-wielding man wit

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