Fifteen years ago I commissioned a similar resistivity survey from the Ancient Monuments Laboratory for a TV programme, Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World. We, too, found evidence that lines just under the giant's left arm had been erased and that they had once formed the outline of an animal's skin; but we came to a different conclusion.
When we added the 'missing' outline to the picture, by courtesy of the National Trust and some temporary whitewash, the giant looked the spitting image of Hercules, the Roman god whose worship was decreed in England
by the Emperor Commodus in AD191. Hercules was traditionally portrayed with a club in his right hand and the skin of a lion he had just slain in the other. Could the 'severed head' Mr Castleden suggests may have been drawn near by have belonged to the wretched beast?
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