PYRAMIDS IN SICILY
Foreword by Nenad Djurdjevic
Sicily, throughout history has been a place where more cultures have converged than any other in the world. From the Arabs who first settled there, to the Greeks, the Romans, the Carthaginians, the Byzantines, the Normans and the Spaniards, Sicily has been a melting pot and battle ground of culture, tradition, art and architecture. The ruins located throughout Sicily are numerous, vast and incredible. For thousands of years, Sicily has shared its spirit with travelers from many lands. Situated in the center of the Mediterranean, Sicily has served as a meeting place for three continents, each of which has contributed to Sicily's unique history and culture.
Thucydides, a Greek historian and author of the 'History of the Peloponnesian War', wrote that the first inhabitants of Sicily were the Sicanians, followed by the Siculians, from whom the island's present name derives. The isles name is also found in Homer’s Odyssey and Dante Aleghieri's Divine Comedy, where Sicily is called Thrinakie and Trinacria, which means isle of triangular form, a name that later changed in Trinakria which referred to the three promontories situated on the island: Capo Peloro in the North-East near Messina, Capo Boéo (or Lilibéo) in the West by Marsala and Capo Passero (or Spartivento) in the South-East.
Sicily is Italy's largest region and the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Separated from Calabria by the Strait of Messina, it includes the islands of Pantelleria and Ustica as well as the Aeolian, Egadi and Pelagian Islands. The Aeolian Islands [MAP], with the Archaeological Museum of Lipari and the remains of the prehistoric villages of Cala Junco on Panarea, are of undisputed interest for scholars who study the prehistory of the region. South from Syracuse, located on the Iblei mountain plateaus to the east, is a true prehistoric town: the Pantalica necropolis. In Castelluccio and Cava d'Ispica there are still numerous furnace-shaped necropolises, while on the island of Pantelleria megalithic funerary monuments known as "sesi" rise almost fully intact.
According to suppositions of orthodox archaeologists, the occupation and settlement of Malta by modern humans began approximately 7000 years ago, when the first Neolithic farmers crossed the 93 Km (approx. 50 miles) wide straits that separate the islands from Sicily and began building Europe's oldest free-standing structures, which are generally considered the oldest such structures in the world. These megalithic temples, built by Neolithic people culturally similar to the society of the Stentinello culture near Syracuse, are known under the names of Ggantija, Mnajdra, Hagar Qim, Tarxien etc. These temples predate by millennia the Egyptian pyramids and such structures as Stonehenge and similar megalithic monuments in Europe. Today we know little of these earliest Sicilians, though they were probably part of an influx of Neolithic settlers who arrived in the central Mediterranean from the East sometime before 10000 BC, identified genetically with Y Haplogroup J2 (M172).
Indeed, it seems that the earliest known inhabitants of Malta arrived from Sicily and they quite literally laid the foundations of a culture which in many ways have been far more sophisticated than anything else in Europe or the Mediterranean region at that time. Incidentally, they also invented the earliest rudimentary wheels, initially rounded stones which fit easily into the semicircular wedges carved into the bases of large rectangular megaliths, thus facilitating the rolling transport of these huge stones. Not only they have erected massive circular megalithic temples aligned to the position of the sun at key points during the year, these Neolithic Maltese of Sicilian origin left behind realistic sculptures of the human figure in a range of sizes, from small clay figurines to life-size statues carved out of the native limestone. Some are detailed enough to give us an idea of the fashion of that time and many of these sculptures are more than 5000 years old.
The Maltese temple builders had frequent contact with Sicily, as well as Lipari and Pantelleria, where they obtained flint, obsidian and red ochre.
Pantelleria, the biggest of the islands off Sicily by 3000 BC was occupied in great part by groups of Neolithic people akin to the Early Bronze Age Sicilian cultures. The remnants of their ancient culture are still visible in the Mursia area: massive defensive walls, foundations of old houses, overlooked by dozens of stepped-burials up to 6 meters high, locally called ‘Sesi’ in which they are narrow tunnels (Photo B) giving access to the burial chambers. More than 50 megalithic burials of such kind have been located on the island so far, or better, what left of most of the rectangular burials and elliptical towers built of massive lava blocks, since no particular attention has ever been given to their preservation and conservation by the local and national authorities. The best preserved of these structures is known as ‘Sese Grande’ (Big Sese), also called the King’s Sese (Photo A). Its similarity with other known structures in Sicily and the Canary Islands cannot remain unnoticed.
It is curious to note that orthodox archaeologists still continue to declare that nothing similar to the Maltese temples has been discovered in Sicily itself. They still believe that Maltese temple-building culture represented a singular moment in the development of Neolithic culture and technology in a relatively isolated environment and that Sicily's own Proto-Sicanians developed nothing nearly so sophisticated. But then, who were the builders of the amazing structures in Sicily, the Sicilian Pyramids?
The evidence suggests the contrary. Whilst Sicily is the largest and perhaps most geographically diverse island in the Mediterranean, archaeological survey has been slow to develop there and has had little impact on general accounts of Sicilian prehistory. Discussions of prehistoric settlement distribution in the island have still to contend with uneven data obtained by different means and limited evidence. Available data point to contrasting settlement patterns between the fourth and first millennia BC (Copper, Bronze and Iron Ages) and new accounts of Sicilian prehistory in which traditional historicist paradigms are at least complemented by a more open-minded research approach which place a stronger emphasis on relationships or dynamics within the specific island context should be promoted.
While orthodox archaeologists are still convinced that the Sicilian pyramids are just “mere observation places”, some Western scholars of alternative history still fumble in the darkness and haven’t brought to the attention of the public more valid evidence in favor of their “extensive civilization-territory” theory. For sure, while orthodox archaeologists lacked awareness of Sicilian constructions being pyramids, quiet identical to those found in the Canary Islands, some Western scholars of alternative history seem doubtless afflicted by scientific bias and myopia. Alas for them, their theory remained "just a theory".
Let's take the following example:
Photo C: shows an example of concrete floor in the pavement of the Ggantija temple on Gozo, Malta. Although the idea of ancient concrete was not accepted for a long time by orthodox archaeologists, Maltese archaeologists are now of the opinion that Torba (as it is called on Malta), was formed by compacting crumbled rock and rock dust then adding water, creating a tough and durable rock-like material on par with the best and strongest concrete used today.
Photo D: The architectural layout of the pavement at Sonda 20 on the Bosnian Pyramid of the Moon in Visoko is almost the copy of the Maltese example. In the case of the Bosnian Pyramid of the Moon, ancient man used sandstone as raw material, while in the case of Ggantija temples, the builders used Torba. It is well to remember that also in Visoko ancient man has recoursed to the use of ancient concretes (e.g. see Pyramid of the Sun).
An obvious question that arises from the presented evidences is:
Which of these ancient cultures has influenced architecturally the other?
However, it should be no surprise anymore that in the heart of the Mediterranean, and in the heart of Bosnia once known as Old Europe, at much deeper levels than the great known cultures, much older voices lie unheard, and their echo has only been retrieved by rare and not very thorough diggings. May these treasures of Europe’s forgotten past reveal themselves to those who dare to dream, think and strive, to those who know where and how to seek them, and to see them in their nameless mystery.
PYRAMIDS IN SICILY (RELOADED)
The unbelievable resemblance between the Sicilian constructions and those of the Canary Islands disclose the history of a people that has its origin in the most remote past. Wher they the Sicans to build the Pyramids of the Alcantara Valley?
by Lorena Bianchi
The pyramid is a type of architecture present all over the world, to the point to be hypothesized a common cultural source that has inspired these monuments. An ancestral megalithic civilisation widespread all over the world, and its presence millennia older than thought by the official History. But two islands exist that virtually introduce identical constructions that can give us the key of reading this mystery. The distance that separates in fact Sicily from the island of Tenerife, in the Canaries, it is of thousand of km, but if we observe the terraces pyramids realized in volcanic stone in both these places, we realize of the existance of a common heritage. The Sicilian Pyramids are known from about ten years but only recently their antiquity is understood. In the Valley of the Alcantara river, to the northern slopes of the Etna Volcano, near Catania, they are at least ten, and all show the same structures. About ten meters height and twenty-thirty wide, are composed of black volcanic stones methodically positioned without concrete, according to a scheme exceptionally accurate.
The pyramids of Sicily show terraces, staircases and in some cases a shape strongly lengthened, typical of pyramidal temples as those present in Mexico andin Peru, and they were not built in recent times. It is not possible to build similar works without the joined job of about hundred of workers and technicians specialized in the placing of the rocks. Sicily is full of dry walls (without concrete), but these ones are formidable to absorb the earthquakes and the popular stories could narrate a periodical restauration. The antisismic function and the general sturdiness of these sacred buildings, directed to the cardinal points, it is common to other famous insular pyramids, those present in the Canaries Isles, precisely in the island of Tenerife.
The Pyramids of Güimar are situated in a specific place on the oriental coast of the African islands but of Spanish sovereignity. Considered likewise to the Sicilians ones only farmers product, in reality they show exceptional astronomic connotations that were discovered by the explorer Thor Heyerdahl. This famous Norwegian researcher went to the Canaries in the Sixties to show the possibility to cross the Atlantic with boats typical of ancient Egypt or like the Phoenician ones. But what mostly surprised Heyerdahl and his collaborators, were the megalithic structures that were present in Tenerife. The astronomic language so familiar to our ancestors was present on the top of the Pyramids of Güimar: in the day of the summer solstice from the base of the highest pyramid the people was able (and are able still today) to observe the Sun go down behind the peak of a mountain to the horizon, to go beyond it and to plough a last piece of sky before definitely disappearing behind the adjacent peak. To the morning of the winter solstice on the pyramids instead it is possible to climb following the run of the Sun through a stairway on their western side. Heyerdahl, explorer and not archaeologist, didn't want to express himself on the people that could have built similar works, but he affirmed that the pyramids of Güimar could have a connection with the mythical Atlantis.
The position of the Canaries Islands in the middle of the Atlantic ocean is linked to its mysterious people, the Guanches, who lived up to the arrival of the Spaniards, before succumbing, genetically boundless by intermarriages. But from the archaeological discoveries and above all from the Genetics, today we are able to know a lot of this stock and the connection with the people that built the Sicilian pyramids. The Guanches were known since the antiquity from the Phoenicians and from the Carthaginians, that discovered the Canaries during their trips. This people had evident Caucasian characteristics of Crô-Magnon origin: very tall, white skin and blonde or red hair, the Guanches lived in caves on slant of the mountains but they had great skill in manifacturing; pacific people, matriarchal, proud of the liberty and oftheir relationship with Nature, they adored stellar divinities, a Mother Goddess and the God of Sun as the Egyptians, and they practised the art of the mummification. According to the thesis more affirmed based on genetic tests of the mitocondrial Dna, the Guanches were strongly similar to the Berbers of Nordafrica and in fact these populations are today still representatives of a original Indo-European stock. The Crô-Magnon variant of the Homo Sapiens Sapiens in fact, was born in Africa around 50000 years ago and spread beginning from 40000 years ago in Asia and Europe. In North Africa people that would be subsequently became Berbers, crossed the Strait of Gibraltar and established in Spain, giving origin to the Preindo-European civilization of the Ligures. In the same period likewise other people Pre-Berberes crossed the line of sea between the coast of Morocco and the Canaries, giving origin to the people of Guanches. An extreme thesis? Certainly in Europe the migratory tides were at least two, one through Spain and the Mediterranean coast up to Italy, and the second one through the Middle East and Balkans. Both these tides, if it doesn't deal with the same population, they were bearers of advanced astronomic and religious notions and they were characterized for the systematic erection, in particular places, of heavy megaliths and the modelling of semi-natural pyramids. The same could have happened in the Canaries, where these primitive people however were isolated and without the possibility to effect commercial and cultural exchanges.
But an ethnic base ancient about ten thousand of years however brings us to the people of the Sicans, the first inhabitant of Sicily. The History teaches us that the Sicans, were not Indo-European people (this is false, according to us the Sicans are Crô-Magnon), lived the area in the south of Spain corresponding to the modern Andalusia. Fighting, always according to the historians, with the autochtonous populations of Ligures, the Sicans directed toward Sicily, where they installed around 3000 BCE. Numerous studies exist regarding the Sicans, the most interesting of which, affirms that, contrarily than held, there are some strong physical and genetic similarities between these first Sicilians and the Berbers. The Berbers, once more! The white population of Crô-Magnon native in the North Africa tightly seems related with the Sicans, that after all they were native of southern Spain, therefore a step away from Africa. In prehistoric times, preceding the end of the last Glaciation happened 12000 years ago, Sicily was notably closer besides to Africa following the lowering of the sea level, making possible a colonization directed from Tunisia to Sicily.
It also it is necessary to say that the Sicans and the Ligures had a common housing nucleus in the area where the city of Rome would have risen. The two populations deducted to be of common stock: the Roman installation had important functions of union among the north Preindo-European people, the Ligures, and those in the south, the Sicans. We have many evidences that show the similarities both of the Ligures people and those of Sicans: we ask ourselfs if these first inhabitants of the Mediterranean were a homogeneous people? The caves of Mount Olgisio, near Piacenza, those of Pantalica on the Iblei Mountains and those of Cassibile next to Syracuse, are only some examples of identical housing conformation. In the fact, caves and grottoes, often dug into the canyon wallsand precipices. Analogous troglodytean structures are found in the Canaries, it is obvious, but also in other African areas, for example in Morocco on the Atlas mountains, or more southward, in Mali, on the cliffs of Bandjagara inhabited by the Dogons. Other similarities are present in the caves of the whole Asia. But this people of Berber origin finds further derivations. The Ligures were so named by the Greeks, but their original name was Libui or Libi, a name that introduces an unbelievable assonance with the territory of Libya, as if they were native of that region. However, they were certainly the first inhabitants of Italy, with their presence from 20-25000 BCE right in the region that takes the name from them, Liguria. The Berbers have been populated the Nordafrican area from at least 40000 years and the Sicans probably occupied Sicily much longer before of how hypothesized by the historians: here is the people that built the pyramids! The pyramids of Sicily, certainly, but not only, perhaps. Evidences of the Bosnian area of Visoko could potentially confirm of 36000 year-old ancient pyramids, and we also see affinity with the Egyptian people. This people were very multiethnic and some pharaoh had Indo-European characteristics (the clearest example is that of Ramses II, with a notable stature and red hair).
However, the genetic Berber affinities of Guanches, Sicans and Iberians, Ligures and so many other primordial people should not forget us that the testimonies of that incredibly ancient epoch are vivid and present still today: only the mental idleness or the excessive care prevent from seeing the widespread megalithic traces.
The island of Sicily shows many others structures of pyramidal shape: for example the Pyramid of Pietraperzia (Photo E), near of Enna. It deals with a construction of rectangular plant, 55 metres long, 30 metres wide and 13 metres height, that shows in the outskirtses traces of inhabited caves, laboratories for the workmanship of the flint. For the first times scholars and archaeologists will make a comparative study with the Spanish site of Güimar. It deals with a first valid approach to these structures, but it needs that archaeologist put aside their medievalism and attribute to the correct epoch these pyramids, that little by little are coming out in the whole Sicily.