Skip to comments.Phoenician Tombs Found In Sicily
Posted on 08/23/2006 6:12:18 PM PDT by blam
Phoenician tombs found in Sicily
40 sarcophagi unearthed at necropolis near ancient colony
(ANSA) - Marsala (Trapani), August 23 - Archaeologists have unearthed 40 sarcophagi in what was once the sacred Phoenician burial grounds of Birgi, near the ancient colony of Motya .
The tombs were discovered by chance by a group of construction workers excavating the foundations of a house close to the westernmost tip of Sicily near Marsala, culture officials said .
Archaeologists said the sarcophagi were made of simple stone slabs and resembled those found on display outside the museum on the neighbouring island of Motya (present-day Mozia), site of a prosperous Phoenician colony .
"The tombs were of different dimensions, including several used to bury children, and spread apart in irregular order," archaeologists said .
Although they failed to find objects inside the sarcophigi, archaeologists unearthed several vases of different sizes and shapes in the field .
"The vases were most likely used during propitiatory rites just before the burial took place," the experts said .
According to the experts, the tombs had clearly been ransacked by tomb raiders or perhaps by Joseph Whitaker, an archaeologist related to a noble British family that produced and exported Marsala wines from Sicily in the 19th Century .
Whitaker, who was responsible for the rediscovery of Motya, built a house on the island and moved all his finds there in 1908 .
His house now serves as the archaeological museum .
Motya - whose name means "wool-spinning centre" was founded in the 8th century BC, about a century after the foundation of the most famous Phoenician colony in the ancient world, Carthage in Tunisia .
Greeks also began to colonise Sicily at the same time as Motya's foundation and conflicts broke out between Greek and Phoenician settlements .
The Greek tyrant ruler of Siracusa, Dionysius I, destroyed Motya in 397 BC .
Half a century later, Rome's intervention in the Greek-Carthaginian conflicts led to the Roman conquest of Sicily, which became Rome's first province .
The Phoenicians were a trading people who formed a massive commercial empire across the Mediterranean from their bases in modern-day Lebanon .
Among the Italian cities they founded is today's capital of Sicily, Palermo .
Other colonies included Cadiz and Malaga in Spain, Tangiers in Morocco and Tripoli in Libya .
Late last year, archaeologists announced they had found the remains of an ancient Phoenician temple off Motya, saying it was "unique" in the West .
"You have to go all the way to Amrit in Syria to find a similar one," said Lorenzo Nigro of the Rome University team, who headed the digs .
The temple came to light after a portion of a lagoon surrounding Motya was drained .
The pool began to fill up again and a fresh-water spring was found - a fact Nigro believes proves it was used as a holy place .
They also discovered some spots where these ancient people hun ted ducks from.....the origin of Phoenician blinds
" the origin of Phoenician blinds..."
The left overs from Atlantis.
They used to have to tie them to keep them up and so,
The tie that blinds.
I think my uncle in the 1940s had one similar he used to wear to bars.
Roman intervention in the Greek-Carthaginian Wars in Sicily led to the three Punic Wars.
Alright, Phoenician tombs are fairly rare.
Other colonies included Cadiz and Malaga in Spain, Tangiers in Morocco and Tripoli in Libya.And Mogador, etc.
Thanks for posting this -- very interesting!
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Were the Phoenicians Related to the Hittites? -- the genetic origin of the Phoenicians & the epicenter of Indo-European languages
Phoenicians are not Arabs, Israelis, or sub-Saharan (black) Africans;
Canaanites are Phoenician Canaanites, Punic (North African & Spain Phoenicians)
Quite common in Italy, even today. A good friend who grew up in the province of Molise described the artificacts he and some friends found in an Etruscan tomb. The Italian landscape is an archaeological museum. Artificats found are to be turned over to the 'Belle Arte".
Canaanites/Phoenicians are the ancient People of Lebanon who navigated the Mediterranean, invented the Alphabet and built Kings David and Solomon Palaces.
The Bible tells us about the first women who believed in Christianity and became the first convert outside the Jews to be a Phoenician women. From the Northern Phoenician ports Saint Peter left to Rome and built the first church there.
The fifth century witnessed the birth of Maronite Christianity. Saint Maroun (also Maron) found a refuge in the northern mountains of Lebanon, and a great portion of the Phoenicians/Lebanese became Christians and were called after him. Mronites later had a great contribution in Lebanese history, independence and culture. Gradually, the area named Phoenicia gave way to Mount Lebanon or simply Lebanon.
Phoenicians - The Ancient People of Lebanon
Good thing about those Phoenician blinds, too, because otherwise, it would be curtains for us all...
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They seem to find those little red X’s all over the place.
But not as rare as Carthaginian tombs. ;^)
:’) Especially the tombs of Carthaginian kids. ;’)