Rupert Till, an expert in acoustics and music technology at Huddersfield University, West Yorks, says the standing stones had ideal acoustics.

He says the original Stonehenge, a national monument that has baffled archaeologists who have argued for decades over the stone circle’s 5,000-year history, probably had “a very pleasant, almost concert-like acoustic” that human ancestors slowly perfected over many generations.

Because Stonehenge itself is partially collapsed, Dr. Till used a computer model to conduct experiments in sound.

He says the most exciting discoveries came when he and colleague Dr. Bruno Fazenda visited a full-size concrete replica of Stonehenge, with all the original stones intact. It was built as a war memorial by American road builder Sam Hill in Maryhill, Wash.

“We were able to get some interesting results when we visited the replica by using computer-based acoustic analysis software, a 3D soundfield microphone, a dodecahedronic speaker, and a huge bass speaker from a PA company,” he told The Daily Telegraph.

“By comparing results from paper calculations, computer simulations based on digital models, and results from the concrete Stonehenge copy, we were able to come up with some of these theories about the uses of Stonehenge.

“We have also been able to reproduce the sound of someone speaking or clapping in Stonehenge 5,000 years ago.

“The most interesting thing is we managed to get the whole space [at Maryhill] to resonate, almost like a wine glass will ring if you run a finger round it.

“While that was happening a simple drum beat sounded incredibly dramatic. The space had real character; it felt that we had gone somewhere special,” he said.