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Title: Headless 'Venus figures' of Stone-Age Malta
Authors: Almasy, Paul
Keywords: Megalithic monuments -- Malta
Malta -- Antiquities
Ġgantija Temples (Xagħra, Malta)
Tarxien Temples (Tarxien, Malta)
Hypogeum (Paola, Malta)
Ħaġar Qim Temples (Qrendi, Malta)
Venus of Ħaġar Qim
Venus figurines, Prehistoric -- Malta -- Qrendi
Temple period -- Malta
Bronze age -- Malta
Issue Date: 1972-02
Citation: Almasy, P. (February, 1972). Headless 'Venus figures' of Stone-Age Malta. The UNESCO Courier, 29-32.
Abstract: Where did the earliest people of Malta come from? To which ethnic group did they belong? When did they first tread the soil of Malta? These are questions which to this day remain unanswered, although it is thought that the first peoples must have settled in the island some 6,000 years ago. Tarxien is the most famous archaeological site in the archipelago. It was during the Tarxien prehistoric period that the ancient Maltese civilization reached its apogee. To their technical mastery the builders added artistic taste and feeling. Not only were the stone blocks carefully hewn and dressed; they were also decorated with designs in relief. Most of these decorations are carved in spiral patterns and other geometrical figures, though some motifs represent animals. The Tarxien group consists of three interlinked temples. Their existence was unknown to archaeologists until 1915 and they were eventually discovered by accident. The fact that they remained buried for centuries explains their perfect state of preservation. One discovery that immediately attracts attention is the statue of an enormously fat woman placed in the middle of the central temple. The statue is impressive, even though the upper part of the body is missing, and is probably a colossal representation of the goddess of fertility.
Appears in Collections:Melitensia Works - ERCGARAnt

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