Talk:Glastonbury Tor/GA1

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GA Review[edit]

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Reviewer: J Milburn (talk · contribs) 18:00, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

A great topic; definitely worthy of GA status. Happy to offer some thoughts. J Milburn (talk) 18:00, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

  • "a Scheduled monument" Why the capital S?
  • Changed - I think this is a hangover from Scheduled Ancient Monument - which was a special term - doesn't seem to be any more.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "from the Iron Age to Roman eras." And then nothing afterwards? I know you continue in the next paragraph, but this is jarring
  • What do you mean by "early medieval periods"? Worth linking to Early Middle Ages?
  • Linked.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "several times. Several" Repetition. And again in the next sentence
  • Changed (several times)— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "At this time" At which time?
  • I think Glastonbury, Glestinga and burg are words as words, so should be italicised. Also, the link on Glestinga isn't particularly useful, though I think it would be a valuable link elsewhere.
  • As far as I can see these are italicised. Do you suggest removing the link?— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Bridport Sand Formation" Why italics?
  • Changed.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "and Dyrham Formation,[13] The" Fullstop? It's also not quite clear what all these formations are.
  • "The iron-rich waters of Chalice Well, a spring, flow out as an artesian well impregnating the sandstone round it with iron oxides that have reinforced it.[14] Iron-rich but oxygen-poor water in the aquifer carries dissolved Iron (II) "ferrous" iron, but as the water surfaces and its oxygen content rises, the oxidized Iron (III) "ferric" iron drops out as insoluble "rusty" oxides that bind to the surrounding stone, hardening it." Could this be rephrased? What's an aquifer? Why the capital 'I's?
  • This was written by a geologist following an earlier discussion (see talk). I've changed the capital "I"s but what phrasing do you think it should be changed to?— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "low lying" low-lying?
  • Done.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "in the Arthurian legend" There's more than one; remove "the"?
  • Done— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "of lias stone" Is lias a proper noun?
  • Not sure I will investigate.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • On Lias Group it appears to be capitalised. NB User:Eric Corbett is now editing the grammar etc so I'm sure it will improve rapidly.— Rod talk 20:50, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "make ploughing for crops easier" Ploughing for crops? Odd phrase.
  • "breaking up the ground to grow corps" perhaps - would that be better?— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "the north, which" north side?
  • Changed to "northern side".— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • " none of the other slopes of the island have been terraced" What slopes? What island?
  • It used to be (more or less) an island when the levels were covered in water for part of the year.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Alternatively the flattened paths may have been produced by the hoofs of grazing cattle." Comma? Isn't the plural hooves?
  • "hooves" used - where does it need a comma?— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • " Other Iron Age hill forts" Why "other"?
  • Because we are comparing the Tor with other hills.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • " However, the normal form of ramparts are a bank and ditch, however there is no evidence of this arrangement on the Tor. Additionally, South Cadbury, as one of the most extensively fortified places in early Britain had three concentric rings of banks and ditches supporting an 18 hectare enclosure. By contrast, the Tor has seven rings and very little space on top for the safekeeping of a community." Difficult to follow?
  • However and Additionally removed - is that better?— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • " Interpretation of the dyke is not clear" What does this mean?
  • Archeologists and historians don't know why it was built.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "the Dark Age occupation on Glastonbury Tor. The 1970 excavation suggests the 12th century or later." What occupation? What excavation? Is occupation really the right word?
  • I think occupation means humans living there - as opposed to just visiting
  • "Hutton suggests" Who?
  • I've added "The historian Ronald Hutton...— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "throughout human prehistory" Hardly!
  • Changed.— Rod talk 20:56, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "what was an easily defended island in the fens" We need more of a description, here- this was an island?
  • I don't understand this one.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "dedicated to St Michael" Link
  • Done.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "from which post holes have since been identified" Odd
  • Why odd, 20th C excavations have identified where the post holes were.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Monastery of St Michael on the Tor" Why italics?
  • I think this was as a special name - but now removed.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Post dissolution" Post-dissolution?
  • I've never been good at whether these things should be hyphenated. Do you mean in the sub head? I can ask for advice on this one.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Hyphen added.— Rod talk 20:50, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

I'm left feeling that there should be more about the tower itself, as this seems to be the article about the structure as well as about the hill. I also wonder whether the history section should be moved to before the geography section; it's of more historical interest than geographic interest, and knowing the history will help in understanding the geography. I still need to take a proper look at the sources and images, but this will hopefully give some pointers on what needs to be worked on. J Milburn (talk) 18:57, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for comments so far. Yes the article is about the tower as well as the hill as they are intimately related - what else would you like to see? I always put geology before human history because of chronology and without the hill there would not have been anywhere for people to built the church etc. I think it is the geology (prominent hill above local lowlands) that helps us to understand aspects of the human activity. I've done some of the above but need to check sources etc & come back to some of the others.— Rod talk 20:20, 5 December 2013 (UTC)


Ok, just taking a look at the references;

  • "The Tors of Dartmoor". Legendary Dartmoor. Retrieved 27 October 2013. - Surely we could easily find a better source for the etymology than this? If not, I'd question its accuracy!
  • Others refs added - any of these any good?— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Glastonbury Tor Conservation Statement". Glastonbury Retrieved 25 October 2013. - Is this needed? We already have another source for the height?
  • It does provide other relevant info.— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Morgan, Vicky (December 10, 2002). "Ponter's Ball Dyke". Ancient Village or Settlement in England in Somerset. Megalithic Portal. Retrieved 12 April 2011. Definitely reliable?
  • Replaced with Somerset Historic Environment Record source from County Council.— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Jump up ^ Michell, John. "The Gigantic Mysteries of Glastonbury Tor". New Light on the Ancient Mystery of Glastonbury. Gothic Image. Retrieved 26 October 2013. Again?
  • Added some more (not sure they are any better) + sentence from Huttons latest book (Nov 13) rejecting the theory.— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Frome Hoard finds new home at the centre of new Somerset Museum". Culture 24. Retrieved 27 October 2013. Again?
  • I think Culture 24 is OK as an index of Museums, exhibitions etc (sponsored by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport ).— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony Explained". Eternal Idol. Retrieved 27 October 2013. Again?
  • Removed - covered by lots of other refs.— Rod talk 17:51, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • "Introducing Glastonbury Tor". Glastonbury Tor. Retrieved 25 December 2007. Again?
  • I've added another ref - si this any better?— Rod talk 18:17, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Caine, Mary. "The Glastonbury Giants". Mary Caine. Retrieved 26 October 2013. Again?
  • "The Glastonbury Zodiac". Bad archeology. Retrieved 2 December 2013 Again?
  • There are lots of sources but probably all of similar level of reliability. I think this is a problem when dealing with Fringe theories.— Rod talk 18:17, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Unless it's a fringe theory that has been talked about in a decent publication, it's probably not worth including. J Milburn (talk) 18:44, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
  • The source formatting isn't perfect, but that's not too much of a problem for GAC. The only thing I'd say is this- try to keep your book titles capitalised! Somerset Place Names, rather than Somerset place names. (Alternatively, if you'd rather not capitalise them, then that's OK, but consistency is good.)

I'm not saying those sources are definitely unreliable, but it'd be good to check them/replace them if possible. I've no doubt that there are plenty of very good sources out there, so trying to avoid poor ones shouldn't be too hard. If a particular theory can't be found in any good sources, then that does say a lot about the theory... J Milburn (talk) 16:57, 8 December 2013 (UTC)

On a quick scan I'd say Culture 24 is reliable for museums & exhibitions etc. I will look at the others.— Rod talk 17:08, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
I've had a go at most of them but I'm having problems with some of the Fringe theories finding reliable sources. I would be happy to see some of this stuff removed but, because they get widespread discussion, the article would not be comprehensive without them.— Rod talk 18:47, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
Only discussion in a decent source really counts- if no legitimate academic (be they historian/geographer/folklorist or whatever) has felt the need to discuss the theory, we don't need to include it, and we can be comprehensive without it. J Milburn (talk) 18:50, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
This has taken me out of my comfort zone looking at sources I wouldn't normally go near, but I've added some references to peer reviewed journals and books. Would you be kind enough to take another look and let me know what still needs further citations?— Rod talk 21:04, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
One good source is always going to outweigh several mediocre ones; having checked the OED, your etymology of tor seems questionable. I'll add the source myself. J Milburn (talk) 17:34, 10 December 2013 (UTC)
Are you happy with the refs I added? Thanks for the etymology addition - surprisingly Eilert Ekwall doesn't include it in Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-Names.— Rod talk 20:33, 10 December 2013 (UTC)

Just wanted to apologise if I'm being so slow here- I want to approach the article in the right mindset! J Milburn (talk) 21:10, 10 December 2013 (UTC)

No worries.— Rod talk 07:53, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

The labyrinth theory is still supported by what look to be pretty dire sources; the Mitchell book doesn't exactly look scholarly (to put it one way) and Fairy Room just seems to be a fantasy blog. "The Tor came to be represented as an entrance to Annwn or to Avalon, the land of the fairies.[66][67]" and "Another speculation is that the Tor was reshaped into a spiral maze for use in religious ritual, incorporating the myth that the Tor was the location of the underworld king's spiral castle.[66]" are also reliant on questionable sources. Folklore is certainly potentially a scholarly subject, but folklore that no decent publisher has taken account of shouldn't be in the article! I'll have a look around and see what I can find... J Milburn (talk) 20:24, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

I've removed Michell and Fairy Room & added MacQueen and Bowden-Pickstock for the labyrinth theory. Hopefully these are better?— Rod talk 10:22, 12 December 2013 (UTC)

Sourcing again[edit]

There have been definite improvements, but the sourcing still seems a little worse than it could be, considering the subject matter. So much has been written about the tor by all kinds of academics; for GA status, I really think we need to base the article on better sources.

  • I can't access; who runs it? A reputable body/academic?
  • Who is Mary Caine? What makes her personal website a good source? (Again, I'm having trouble accessing the page right now.)
  • I was willing to let the Glastonbury Abbey site slide, as it seemed to be an official museum resource, but looking at the writing... Again, could this be replaced?
  • The sentence cited to the Abbey website - Myths & Legends does have another citation to Palden's Glastonbury Tor site - do you want me to look for another one which mentions fairies?— Rod talk 19:38, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
    • Can't say that I see the Abbey site as an RS, the front page says "Then 2000 years ago Joseph of Arimathea (Christs uncle) is supposed to have brought the young Jesus here. On Joseph's second visit, after Christs death, he built the first Christian church, at Glastonbury Abbey, appointing twelve Christian hermits to look after it." If that's the approach they are pushing, I don't trust any of it that isn't about physical details of the site. Dougweller (talk) 20:15, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
  • How about this one for Annwn & fairies etc?— Rod talk 20:22, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
  • Bad archeology remains. If we really don't have a better source for this claim, it needs to go.
  • I've replaced bad archeology with this more academic paper which cites it sources. Better?— Rod talk 19:38, 19 December 2013 (UTC)

The rest look OK, I think; moving away from newspapers and towards peer-reviewed journals would be the next step, but, for GA purposes, this should be enough. J Milburn (talk) 18:30, 19 December 2013 (UTC)

Given a choice between the Archaeology Officer of North Hertfordshire District Council and a paper written for partial completion of an MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology , I can see no reason why we shouldn't go for Bad Archaeology. Fitzpatrick-Matthews is an expert in archaeology, an MA student who has probably never studied archaeology or related subjects and has written an essay or short dissertation is not. I'm not sure what the objection is to using an archaeologist as a source. We certainly shouldn't be using this paper on "sacred space as a human construct" as one. Dougweller (talk) 20:04, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
All of the stuff on myths and folklore is outside my normal sources (see above for my comments on whether some of this stuff fits in Fringe theories so I'd be happy to be guided.— Rod talk 20:08, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
Agreed; I'm not really keen on citing an MA paper. Properly published peer-reviewed articles and academic books from decent publishers are the ideal; less good but still acceptable are general interest books, newspaper and magazine articles or webpages maintained by reputable organisations. Passable but should be avoided are blogs/personal websites of individuals with some genuine credentials (like having published peer-reviewed work on the subject), but, given the nature of this topic, I don't think we'd need to sink that low. Not acceptable is any fairy magic "release your soul through the power of the zodiac" bullshit, personal websites maintained by people with unclear credentials, or books released through vanity presses. If you can't find any decent sources for a given belief, it doesn't need to be in the article. J Milburn (talk) 12:09, 22 December 2013 (UTC)
OK I've removed the spiral path stuff due to lack of reliable sources & some other dodgy refs.— Rod talk 12:43, 22 December 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I know I'm probably sounding like a broken record, but I'm still seeing you leaning on some pretty questionable sources. Bad Archeology is a blog and Mary Caine is a blogger (a blogger who has written some fairy magic books, but that hardly fills me with confidence...). Others aren't ideal, and would have to be replaced before FAC, but they're alright for GAC. J Milburn (talk) 19:42, 1 January 2014 (UTC)
There are loads of other sources discussing the lack of evidence for the zodiac (egs 1, 2, 3, 4) but I would not consider any of them reliable. This may be better but it is always difficult to prove a negative ie that it doesn't exist. It does get a short mention in Rahtz's book for English Heritage and his book with Watts - I will add them & perhaps you could then remove any you still feel are not RS? The comment above from Dougweller suggests that Bad Archeology - even if a blog - is by a reputable source. We could just remove the paragraph about the zodiac theory, but I think this would mean we were not being comprehensive in coverage as so many people have written about it.— Rod talk 20:47, 1 January 2014 (UTC)
I appreciate the difficulty here; I'll have a mess around and see what I can do. As an aside, the Rahtz 2003 source doesn't match anything in the bibliography; I assume you mean Rahtz & Watts 2003, but I thought it best to check. J Milburn (talk) 18:35, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
Any help appreciated. Yes the 2003 book is Rahtz & Watts, some of the text is the same as the earlier Rahtz book but some new material is included. Unfortunately neither contain much the rebuttals of the zodiac theory just describing it as a myth - although the 2003 book does support the assertion that many of the features used are modern rather than ancient. Interestingly it does include a disclaimer saying that the foundation Maltwood established had funded some of Rahtz's work! — Rod talk 18:44, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
I've had a browse around and a think. Naturally, most archeologists/historians aren't going to bother refuting claims like this- they're just clearly false. Further, the authors of Bad Archeology do seem to seem to be people with some credibility- as far as a self-published source goes, it isn't bad. As for the Mary Caine source... As long as we're clear that the idea's ridiculous, I don't think it's bad as a primary source for what people holding the belief say. If the 2003 book mentions that some of the features are modern, I'd add it in addition to Bad Archeology. J Milburn (talk) 19:22, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks - I agree that its ridiculous (as would most) however because some believe & several have written about it we do need to cover it. I've added the Rahtz & Watts book & the ref now works.— Rod talk 19:29, 2 January 2014 (UTC)

Bowman source[edit]

I've come across a fairly recent scholarly article which lists some of the myths around the Tor. Hopefully, these quotes should be able to cover some of the folklore you've been talking about. J Milburn (talk) 20:43, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

  • Bowman, Marion I. (2005). "Ancient Avalon, New Jerusalem, Heart Chakra of Planet Earth: The Local and the Global in Glastonbury". Numen. 52 (2): 157–190. JSTOR 3270462. 

p. 178 "But at the foot of the Tor, the chalybeate Chalice Well is sacred to some for its association with the Grail (its red waters rep- resenting the blood of Christ shed for humanity) while for others it is clearly the menstrual flow of the Goddess. Opposite Chalice Well is the calcite staining White Spring, which for a period in the 1990s became "revived" as an ancient Pagan rag well. Some see the proximity of the red and white waters as indicative of the bal- ance of male and female energies (red representing blood, white semen) associated with the Michael and Mary leylines which are said to intertwine at the Tor; for others, as red and white are the colours of the Fairy King Gwynn Ap Nudd, the waters indicate the site of the entrance to his kingdom beneath the Tor."

p. 180. "The Tor is significant to Catholics as the site of the hanging of Abbot Whiting and two monks at the brutal dissolution of Glaston- bury Abbey, while His Holiness Gyalwa Jampa claims that Glastonbury Tor is one of the points where God's will enters the earth (two other such points being the Great Pyramid and the Washington Monument). The Tor is variously regarded as the spiral castle of Celtic legend; a Goddess figure; the Grail Castle; a crystal filled communication beacon for extra-terrestrials; and part of the phoenix figure representing Aquarius on the Glastonbury Zodiac. Some see the Tor as a prehistoric, three-dimensional ceremonial maze, and in typical Glastonbury fashion great claims are made for it"

p. 185. "Ideas of interconnectedness are also embedded in concepts of earth healing, and the ability - indeed duty - some perceive of act- ing locally at significant places like Glastonbury in order to have a global, spiritual impact. His Holiness Gyalwa Jampa, for example, claims that "if holy people go back to holy sites, the site re-awak- ens and the whole earth can be healed" (interview 2 September 2003), and that is one reason he feels he has to be active in Glastonbury. On 16 August 1987 there was the great global project of the Harm- onic Convergence, when hundreds gathered on Glastonbury Tor as people attempted to "activate" sacred sites around the world.7"

pp. 186-7. "No one version of Glastonbury has a complete monopoly, and although the current simultaneity of belief and practice might seem very much a product of contemporary spirituality, I would suggest that it finds antecedents in vernacular religion. For example, there is a story that I have been told on a number of occasions, both in relation to fairy belief and to the Tor, concerning either St. Collen (a 7th century Welsh saint) or more vaguely an Abbot of Glas- tonbury. Baldly told, this Christian was on the Tor when he en- countered two small persons who requested that he returned at midnight, as their lord was keen to meet him. When he met them at the summit of the Tor at the appointed hour, he was suddenly transported into a fabulous palace, magnificently decorated, with fine food piled on golden platters, and full of small people dressed in red and white (fairies). There he met King Gwynn Ap Nudd, who invited him to partake of the feast. Knowing that to eat fairy food would imprison him in fairyland, the Christian declined the offer, drew out a bottle of holy water, scattered it all around him, and suddenly found himself back on top of the Tor. While this tra- ditional tale appears to demonstrate the superiority of Christian power, it underlines a rather important point - that although Christian- ity was in the ascendant, the fairies were still there, literally below the surface."

Same author, different journal: J Milburn (talk) 20:53, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

  • Bowman, Marion (2004). "Procession and Possession in Glastonbury: Continuity, Change and the Manipulation of Tradition". Folklore. 115 (3): 273–85. JSTOR 30035212. 

p. 280 "A distinctive feature of the Catholic Pilgrimage is that it starts with hymn singing in the Tor Field, followed by a procession from the Tor through the streets of Glastonbury and into the Abbey ruins with the statue of Our Lady of Glastonbury. The Tor is the starting point of the Catholic pilgrimage, in memory of Abbot Whiting and the two other monks who were hanged there at the time of the Dissolution; as one Catholic woman said, "The Tor has particular significance for us." Thus, while there are visually similar aspects between the Anglican and Catholic pilgrimage processions (the carrying of the statue of Our Lady of Glastonbury, the display of banners, and an obvious hierarchy of male clerics), significantly more of the town-from the ruined chapel of St Michael (destroyed by an earthquake) on the Tor to the Abbey ruins-is encompassed by the Catholic pilgrimage than the Anglican one. Both physically and metaphysically, the Catholic pilgrimage might be said to cover more ground"

p. 281. "In the very landscape of Glastonbury some discern the representation of a Goddess figure. They see the siting of the Lady Chapel of Glastonbury Abbey on the area they consider to represent the Goddess's vagina as a deliberate act of usurpation and an attempt to suppress the power of the Goddess. The Tor is seen as one breast of this figure, and the thirteenth-century earthquake that destroyed St Michael's chapel is interpreted as the Goddess simply shaking off this accretion. Some say the Tor itself is a figure of the Goddess, with Chalice Hill as her belly, and the red waters of Chalice Well her menstrual flow. Furthermore, some discern in the contours of the Tor an ancient three-dimensional ceremonial maze. As the 2004 Goddess Conference publicity material..."

p. 282 (continuing from above) "Walking into and out of the Labyrinth in the correct way is an activity offered in connection with the Goddess Conference. I have been told that at the first Goddess in Glastonbury Conference, a group of Goddess-loving women threaded their way up the maze, and within a year some of them were pregnant with a female child. Thus it is now a "tradition" that if a woman wants a female child, she should walk the Tor labyrinth in the appropriate way!"

p. 282 "However, the most obvious tradition connected with the Glastonbury Goddess Conference is undoubtedly the Goddess in the Cart Procession. This procession through the streets of Glastonbury and up the Tor originally included a large effigy of the Goddess (constructed at the conference) pulled in a cart. Each year in rotation a model of the goddess in one of her three aspectsmaiden, mother or crone-was made and then displayed in the most public aspect of the event, the procession on the last day of the conference."

I had previously found and included the 2005 Bowman paper. The 2004 ref is very similar to the book chapter already cited (2008). I've added & rearranged a little bit more of the mythology section. I have not included the menstrual flow or breast of the Goddess - do you think this needs to be included as well?— Rod talk 10:40, 12 December 2013 (UTC)
Your call, really. As long as there's some mention of Goddess worship... (sorry, I didn't see you'd already cited Bowman- I just thought it conveniently covered a lot of what we were talking about). J Milburn (talk) 10:44, 12 December 2013 (UTC)
Short para on the goddess added. I wasn't sure on the link Goddess worship is a dab page, but either Mother goddess or Triple Goddess (Neopaganism) might be relevant.— Rod talk 11:17, 12 December 2013 (UTC)
I've not read the article in detail, but I assume Goddess movement will about cover it. J Milburn (talk) 11:21, 12 December 2013 (UTC)
Thanks - done.— Rod talk 11:26, 12 December 2013 (UTC)

Courtesy note[edit]

Comment As a quick courtesy, just wanted to you know that this GA nominee is being watched by a rather hostile on-again/off-again editor who happens to write a smug anti-Wikipedia blog. A recent blog post criticised this article, particularly the scientific/geological material in the article. [1]. --ColonelHenry (talk) 05:26, 17 December 2013 (UTC)

He must be very unhappy when he runs into academic articles or books that don't agree with each other. Dougweller (talk) 20:08, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
I wouldn't dwell on this, if I were in your position. J Milburn (talk) 09:36, 20 December 2013 (UTC)

Another read-through[edit]

Ok, I'm now convinced that the sourcing is OK for GA purposes. I'm going to have another read through the article, fixing bits as I go, and I'll note anything that needs fixing.

  • Now, I know this wasn't written by you, so you may want to contact the author, but the paragraph on the geology is very hard to follow. I admit that I'm not a scientist, but as this is not an article specifically on geology, I'd hope not to struggle so much.
Hi, I took a look and would agree. Though I contributed to the opening sentences those regarding the Chalice Well are not mine (starting The iron-rich waters . . . and I'm unclear myself what their bearing on the site is. Though of course it may be the opening couple of sentences which are seen to be problematic?! cheers Geopersona (talk) 21:58, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
That's to say, they're not originally mine though I did suggest some tweaks! As to the capital 'i's - that is the notation for different oxidation states of (in this case) iron (as used widely in Wikipedia reflecting standard scientific useage). cheers Geopersona (talk) 22:13, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
Geopersona- if you've some knowledge of the area, could you perhaps trim/expand/simplify as required? Right now, I'm struggling, as a non-specialist, to follow. J Milburn (talk) 22:25, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
I can take another look. cheers Geopersona (talk) 22:31, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. That would be great.— Rod talk 22:53, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
I've made some changes to what is now the second paragraph in the section. For what it's worth, I'd remove the content of the first paragraph to the lead and retitle the section 'Geology'. The fourth pargraph could perhaps also be re-homed. I haven't made any further alterations to the Chalice Well material as I've no access to the reference which is cited. I have presumed that this brief account of iron oxides helps to explain the locally consolidated nature of the Bridport Sands which form the harder upper parts of the hill but which elsewhere are, it seems, less durable. But I don't know that. cheers Geopersona (talk) 08:27, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. I've wikilinked strata but think it reads more clearly. Lets wait and see what J Milburn says - but in the meantime can you give a reference for the last sentence of the para "The Bridport Sands have acted as a caprock protecting the lower layers from erosion." which currently stands out (to me) as lacking a reference?— Rod talk 08:50, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm struggling to understand the relevance of the Chalice Well stuff, and struggling to understand the distinction between the Tor and the hill on which the Tor sits. J Milburn (talk) 13:31, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
My understanding is that the Tor is the hill, however there is a line of lower hillocks (must be a better term) stretching east to west above the surrounding levels. The Tor itself standing on the westernmost bit of that line. I also think the bit about the water from the well/spring being high in iron is that this binds the soil/rock together making it harder and therefore less likely to erode than the surround soil.— Rod talk 13:53, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
Indeed, the extensive flat Somerset levels are as a whole typically around sea level or just a few metres higher. Out of these flatlands of coastal and estuarine sands, gravels, silts and peat rise 'islands' and 'peninsulas' of higher ground such as the one on which the town of Glastonbury sits. It is upon this hill (which, the Tor apart, rises to around 100m) that the striking elongate cone of Glastonbury Tor (topping out at 158m) sits like a cherry on half a bun on a plate if I may conjure up that image. The Chalice Well stuff does indeed need to be integrated and perhaps the editor who originally inserted it can be persuaded to do that?! cheers Geopersona (talk) 18:24, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
I've joined the two paragraphs and tried to clarify the iron being significant in the formation of the caprock. J Milburn Does this help?— Rod talk 18:37, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "In a more recent book, Hutton writes that "the labyrinth does not seem to be an ancient sacred structure.[32]" Speech marks need closing
  • Done.— Rod talk 21:19, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "Some Neolithic flint tools recovered from the top of the Tor show that the site has been visited and perhaps occupied throughout human history." No they don't. The neolithic is prehistoric, and neolithic occupation is obviously consistent with it not being the case that "the site has been visited and perhaps occupied throughout human history".
  • I've changed it to prehistory but there must be a better way to phrase it.— Rod talk 21:19, 2 January 2014 (UTC)

Once these things have been looked into, I'll go ahead and promote! J Milburn (talk) 20:44, 2 January 2014 (UTC)


Alright- this has been a surprisingly long review, but I'm going to go ahead and promote now. While I do feel that the article remains a way away from FAC-ready, I do think it makes a solid good article. In terms of future improvement-

  • Aim to have as many of the sources as books from decent presses and peer-reviewed journals as possible. Some of the sources are a long way from ideal.
  • Expand. I suspect that there is a lot more to say about the history of the Tor and the church. There's perhaps more to be said about the spirituality and such, but I'd stick to what's been reported in decent sources.
  • Aim for more consistent reference formatting. I'm seeing inconsistent capitalisation and unwarranted italics, for instance.

Anyway, they're just some bits to think about if you're aiming at FAC. For now, this makes a decent GA. Great work! J Milburn (talk) 19:43, 6 January 2014 (UTC)