Stonehenge was built by black Britons, a new children’s history book has claimed.
The illustrated work by Nigerian-born British author Atinuke, titled Brilliant Black British History, states that “every single British person comes from a migrant” but the “very first Britons were black”.
Readers of the newly released children’s book are told that Stonehenge was built while Britain was a “black country”.
The book published by Bloomsbury and promoted by the Arts Council-funded literacy charity the Book Trust states “Britain was a black country for more than 7,000 years before white people came.
“And during that time the most famous British monument was built, Stonehenge.”
The introduction to the book further states that “Britain has been a mostly white country for a lot less time than it has been a mostly black country”.
Black people’s presence
Atinuke’s book for readers aged seven plus takes the reader through a chronological overview of black people’s presence in Britain, beginning with claims that Cheddar Man, the oldest human remains found in Britain, had skin “as dark as dark can be”.
The claims made in the book have caused concern among some established historians that young people may be brought up reading “misinformation”.
Recent genetic analysis has shown that the inhabitants of Britain in the period when Stoenehenge was completed, around 2,500 BC, were pale-skinned early farmers whose ancestors had spread from Anatolia.
Leaders of 2018 research into Cheddar Man’s DNA clarified that it was impossible to know with certainty how this early inhabitant of the British Isles looked, and other researchers noted problems with attempting to predict skin tone from the genetic model used.
On a page featuring an image of a black Roman legionary fighting a white Celt, Atinuke’s book states that Rome “turned back to Europe and pushed north” to conquer Britain after first being unable to take the African kingdom of Nubia.
The book states that Roman historian Tacitus reported the Silures people in Wales were “dark-skinned and curly-haired”. In Tacitus’ full account, he theorised that they may have been from Spain.
By the Middle Ages, the book states that Britain was a “hodgepodge of people: original British migrants, Celts, Romans, Britons, Anglo-Saxons, Vikings, Africans and Normans”.
The book, which was the subject of a promotional article on the website of the Book Trust, a charity which provides books to families and schools, adds: “They spoke a hodgepodge language too - English”.
In the period of the Tudors and Stewarts, an incoming Muslim black population brought “new knowledge about textiles, medicine, maths and navigation”.
Bringing history up to the modern era, the book endorsed by the hate crime campaign group Stop Hate states that following the Second World War “Britain needed help” and so the “government asked people from the colonies to come”.
These included the Empire Windrush, and others from counties that had been “left poor after slavery and colonisation”.
It adds that everyone who moved to Britain after the war brought their skills , their cleverness and their hard work to help Britain get back on its feet.
The children’s book also includes a page on Black Lives Matter, which states that although “race does not scientifically exist” black people suffer “institutional racism”.
‘Evidence of brainwashing children’
The newly published book has caused concern among historians, with Dr Zareer Masani saying “seems typical of the kind of wokedom that’s been colonising our schools and universities”.
He added that it was “evidence of brainwashing children with outright lies, confusion and misinformation”.
However, David Abulafia, the historian and Cambridge emeritus professor, said: “The Nazis claimed that the cultural achievements of the north were the work of blond fair skinned folk.
“Making skin colour a criterion for judging great achievements like Stonehenge is therefore not a new idea. It is also rubbish. It only gets interesting if their skins were blue or green.”
Representatives of Atinuke have been approached for comment.