The most famous of these standing stones are at Stonehenge, but as Scott Peck (1995) described in his recent book, these standing stones are everywhere, sometimes standing in the middle of farmer's fields. Yet, they are not torn down and carted away, but generally preserved as a reminder of times past, and times which are still somewhat mysterious in character.
While the standing stones are an example of the oldest kind of history, there are many other remnants of past eras in castles and parks which have been preserved during this century when taxes and other aspects of modernity made it difficult for individuals or families to retain them.
Also an important element of England's connection with its past is its royalty. While most other countries in the modern world have either divested themselves of monarchies, or relegated them to far inferior positions, England continues to deal with its royal family as a central aspect of the culture. It does not possess great political power, but it possesses symbolic power, and the power to both fascinate and appall the citizenry. The machinations of the royal family, the sex lives of its younger members, and the opinions and fashions of those individuals continue to create much furor in the country. In addition, the royal family still retains great wealth, and access to some of the largest and most luxurious castles and grounds in the country.