Ġgantija is a megalithic temple complex on the Mediterranean island of Gozo (part of Malta), constructed by the Sicani tribe from the Italian island of Sicily, when the people first inhabited Malta. The two temples of Ġgantija on the island of Gozo are notable for their gigantic Neolithic structures, which were erected during the Neolithic Age (c. 3600-2500 BC). At more than 5500 years old, the Ġgantija temples amongst the world's oldest free-standing structures and the world's oldest religious structures. The temples were possibly the site of an Earth Mother Goddess Fertility Cult, with numerous figurines and statues found on site believed to be connected with that cult.
In the Maltese language, Ġgantija means "belonging to the giants". According to local Gozitan legend, the temples were built by the giants who resided in Gozo during ancient times. It is said that the temples themselves were used by the giants as watchtowers.
By adrbr @ 2008-06-01 09:16:46