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Pantalica

The Cult of Ibla: Pantalica

Most of the writers of antiquity, however, agree that only three were the Ible in Sicily [1], and there are many who indicate the three Ible in:

Ibla Maggiore;

Ibla The small;

Ibla Minor.

The Maggiore was perhaps called Tiella (or Stiella) and it is widely believed to place the site near Paternal. The small was also called the Minima, whose site is supposed to be that of Megara Iblea which, as it is known, is south of Augusta, as far as Ibla Minore is concerned, many agree that Ibla Erea has also been appealed because it is located on the erei mountains, perhaps mistakenly also called Ibla Nera, Gibla or Nibla, and yes thinks the site is that of Ragusa Ibla.

For a couple of years we have begun to think that Pantalica, a place located approximately halfway between Palazzolo Acreide and Syracuse, where a large prehistoric necropolis was found, has the right to be appealed as Ibla, even if it has not sure, in case he is also entitled to one of the aforementioned nicknames, which of these to associate it with. The fact that Pantalica is in the mountains that have been chianmati Erei, could suggest that the nickname is Herea, thus removing this privilege from Ragusa, or in trying to solve a question that has been going on for centuries one might think of Galeote, in fact in the past much confusion has been made in the attempt to assign a site to Ibla Galeote, and the attempt made so far by historians has not been the most fortunate. Beyond the name, a series of elements reinforce the hypothesis that Pantalica was one of the Sicilian Ibles.

Pantalica - North Necrpolis

Tucidite [2] tells that a contingent of Megarese settlers would have founded their own city by concession of Iblone Sicilian king of Ibla, to which they gave the name of the mother country Megara and the appellative of Iblea to remember the gift of the land made by the king, Thucydides himself fixes the chronology to 729 BC The archaeological excavations so far do not seem to disprove Thucydides, in fact most of the remains can be dated from the VIII to the V century. BC The excavations on Megara and Pantalica seem to agree with Thucydides, in fact, if the archaeological remains in Megara are mainly Greek and do not seem to indicate a large settlement prior to the eighth century BC, everything in Pantalica seems to indicate the opposite, in fact the site of Pantalica can be considered as one of the most important protohistoric settlements in eastern Sicily. From the necropolis of the inhabited area two periods of Sicilian protohistory take their name, that of the final bronze of Pantalica Nord (XIII-XI) BC and that of the iron of Pantalica Sud (850-730 BC), some terraces erected to support a building have been found monumental on the top of the hill, which has been defined as the seat of the prince of the town.

Prince's Palace

More than 5000 tombs have been found surrounding the town; those in the north and west are from the 850th and 730th centuries BC, the group of tombs to the south belong to 1000,850-XNUMX BC, while others are from the intermediate period (XNUMX BC).

Pantalica: Necropolis of Filipporto

The fact that an indigenous center existed near Megara Iblea of ​​the Greeks, could be confirmed by the not rare custom of the Greeks, to establish themselves not far from an indigenous center, keeping their territory distinct from that left in the hands of the indigenous peoples. What seems very strange is that the inhabited area seems to disappear concurrently with the foundation of Megara Iblea and Syracuse, which would suggest that the inhabitants have suffered the same fate as the Sicilians expelled from the island of Ortigia, pushed towards the interior of Sicily. Traces have been found that would indicate a minimum of attendance after the arrival of the Greeks, a small sanctuary frequented in Greek and Roman times, could be the sign of the continuation of an indigenous cult, traces of Byzantine attendance were also found in the building that it is supposed to have belonged to the prince of the Sicilian town.

For the details of the Cult of Ibla and of the Ible of Sicily see the card "Ibla" 

Card insertion: Ignazio Caloggero

Photo: web, Ignazio Caloggero

Information contributions: Ignazio Caloggero, Region of Sicily

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