Saturday, 14 October 2017

Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum

The Sleeping Lady is now in the National Museum of Archaeology in Valleta but it was in the Hypogeum of Ħal-Saflieni that it was found

The Sleeping Lady

The Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum (underground cemetery) was discovered in 1902 on a hill overlooking the innermost part of the Grand Harbour of Valletta, in the town of Paola. It is a unique prehistoric monument, which seems to have been conceived as an underground cemetery, originally containing the remains of about 7,000 individuals. The cemetery was in use throughout the Żebbuġ, Ġgantija and Tarxien Phases of Maltese Prehistory, spanning from around 4000 B.C. to 2500 B.C.
Artefacts recovered from the site include pottery vessels decorated in intricate designs, shell buttons, stone and clay beads and amulets, as well as little stone carved animals and birds that may have originally been worn as pendants. The most striking finds are stone and clay figurines depicting human figures. The most impressive of these figures is that showing a woman lying on a bed or ‘couch’, popularly known as the ‘Sleeping Lady’. This figure is a work of art in itself, demonstrating a keen eye for detail. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/130

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