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Externsteine: Germany’s Sacred Stone Formation

By Carolyn Emerick

What is Externsteine?

Externsteine is an unusual sandstone rock formation near Ostwestfalen-Lippe in the northwest of Germany. It is unique among other monolithic sites in Europe because it is a natural formation that has been altered by human hands. Whereas Stonehenge was built by people, Externsteine was built by Nature and then manipulated by people.

It is unclear who were the very first people to use Externsteine. There are many theories, and no clear consensus among researchers. What everyone does agree on is that the site has been used by many different groups for strikingly different purposes throughout the ages.

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