Sunday, December 12, 2010

Ħaġar Qim, Malta

A great UNESCO card from Malta, showing the Ħaġar Qim temples. That first word is a troublesome one to read :)

Some days ago I was thinking that I should update my list of received UNESCO's, but unfortunately, I havent been keeping track of those, and I would have to go through all my received cards, one by one, to make sure i dont miss something...and that would be really time consuming, so as usual, I put it off again....if only I had a magic wand to solve this for me :)

Ħaġar Qim, which in English means 'standing/worshiping stones', is a megalithic temple complex in Malta, dating from the Ġgantija phase (3600-3200 BC). These Temples are amongst the most ancient religious sites on Earth,described by the World Heritage Sites committee as "unique architectural masterpieces. They were inscribed on the UNESCO whs list in 1992.

The Ħaġar Qim complex consists of a main temple and three additional megalithic structures beside it. The main temple was built between 3600 and 3200 BC; however, the northern ruins are considerably older. The outside entrance serves as an interior passage and connects six large chambers. The right apse is constructed as an arch to prevent the upright slabs falling inward. The outside wall, built of huge upright blocks, projects inwards, thus creating an extremely solid building. This entrance passage and first court follow the Maltese megalithic pattern but as building progressed, this design was considerably modified. The northwesterly apse was replaced by four independent enclosures.

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