Maltese Prehistoric Religion

Caroline Malone and Simon Stoddart

in The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Ritual and Religion

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199232444
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Archaeology

Maltese Prehistoric Religion

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The small Mediterranean archipelago of Malta holds some of the best-preserved material remains of prehistoric religion in Europe. The rich potential of the parent limestone bedrock and the lack of alternative building material privileged stone construction. Over the course of time, this stone construction became increasingly more elaborate, and between 3600 bc and 2400 bc, substantial stone monuments were first constructed, and then maintained, for primarily ritual purposes. This article discusses the history of research on Maltese megalithic constructions, the historical development of Maltese megaliths, Maltese temples, funerary megalithic structures, the landscape setting of Maltese temple culture, the religion and cosmology of Maltese megalithic monuments, and the ending of the first megalithic tradition.

Keywords: megalithic constructions; Malta; religion; temples; funerary structures

Article.  7228 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology ; Prehistoric Archaeology

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