Open main menu
This page needs to be proofread.

They are distributed over the whole island, but are perhaps most frequent towards the centre and in the Nurra. They seem to be almost entirely lacking in the north-east extremity, near Terranova, and in the mountains immediately to the north of Iglesias, though they are found to the north of the Perda de sa Mesa. In the district of Gennargentu they occur, rarely, as much as 3600 ft. above sea-level. The tombs of their inhabitants are of two classes— the so-called tombe dei giganti, or giants' tombs, and the domus de gianas, or houses of the spirits. The former are generally found close to, or at least in sight of, the nuraghe to which they belong. They consist of a chamber about 3½ ft. or less in height and width, with the sides slightly inclined towards one another, and from 30 to 40 ft., or even more, in length; the sides are composed sometimes of slabs, sometimes of rough walling, while the roof is composed of flat slabs; and the bodies were probably disp sed in a sitting position. At the front is a large slab, sometimes carved, with a small aperture in it, through which offerings might be inserted. On each side of this is a curve formed of two rows of slabs or two small walls; the semicircular space thus formed has a diameter of about 45 ft., and was probably intended for sacrifices. The tomb proper was no doubt covered with a mound of earth, which has in most cases disappeared.

Among the most curious relics of the art of the period is a group of bronze statuettes, some found at Uta near Cagliari and others near Teti, west of Fonni, in the centre of the island, of which many specimens are now preserved in the museum at Cagliari. It is thus clear that in the Bronze Age Sardinia was fairly thickly populated over by far the greater part of its extent; this may explain the lack of Greek colonies, except for Olbia, the modern Terranova, and Neapolis on the giggliest coast, which must from their names have been Greek, though we do not know when or by whom they were founded. Pausanias (x. 17. 5) attributes the foundation of Olbia to the Thespians and Athenians under Iolaus, while Solinus (i. 61) states that he founded other cities also. In any case the Phoenician settlements are the earliest of which We have any accurate knowledge. The date of the conquest by Carthage may perhaps be fixed at about

following the chronology of Justin Martyr (xviii. 7) inasmuch as up till that period colonization by the Greeks seems to have been regarded as a possible mon AA enterprise. The cities which they founded -Cornus, Tharros, Sulci, Nora, Caralesare

all on the coast of the island, and it is

Ca, $ ' doubtful to what extent they penetrated "" "' ' "° "' ' /'i' "/V ' '7"f" 'f"~.'/F "-Zz is into the interior. Even in the 1st centur "' -f ' "J" 'i""~ " ' ' B C there were still traces of Phoeniciah f '> ' - .L-: F- . ' -.V, i 7 influence (Cicero, Pro Scauro, 15, 42, 45). f§ '1e;; ' f - ~ias~;-~ -53L""""""'-“'" There are signs of trade with Etruria as —"”' ~n.¢v»m°~ fs mf sm. early as the 7th century B.C. The Carthaginians made it into an important grain producing

centre; and the Romans set

7 foot in the island more-than once during

j; % 7' ' the First Punic War.

V '-" ' ' ' ' ~, .¢m, : in 238 B.c. the Carthagiman mercenf A' I .<»..m»w. I -, cg aries revolted, and the Romans took A . mm: advantage of the fact to demand

" '°" "" '/ Q, ,, ., ,, ' I that the island should be given 52,7285 ¢, .°, ,.5b. up to them, which was done. The native tribes opposed the Romans, but

i9 were conquered after several campaigns; s , the island became a province under the government of.a praetor or pro praetor, to 1 whose jurisdiction Corsica was added soon afterwards. A rebellion in 215 B.c.,

" ' ' * nm., " fostered by the Carthaginians, was quelled "" """°"' '“""'“°'° /j. '—lem "~ by T. Manlius Torquatus (Livy xxiii. 40). > ""' After this the island began to furnish con», I

From Papers oflhe British School at Rome, v. p. 119, Eg. rt. FIG. 4.-Giant's Tomb of Srigidanu.

slabs or two small walls; the 'semicircular space thus formed has a diameter of about 45 ft., and was probably intended for sacrifices. The tomb proper was no doubt covered with a mound of earth, which has in most cases disappeared. Close to these tombs smaller round enclosures, about 4 ft. in diameter, covered with a heap of stones, like a small cairn, may sometimes be seen; these were possibly intended for the burial of slaves or less important members of the tribe. Dolmens (probably to be regarded as a simpler form of the tomba dei giganti, inasmuch as specimens with chambers elongated after their first construction have been found) and menhirs are also present in Sardinia, though the former are very rare-that known as Sa Perda e S'altare, near the railway to the south of Macomer is illustrated by A. Taramelli in Bullettino di Paleoetnologia, xxxii. <1QO6), 268, but there are others. The latter, however, are widely distributed over the island, being especially frequent in the central and most inaccessible part. The domus de gianas, on the other hand, resemble closely the rock tombs of the prehistoric cemeteries of Sicily. They are small grottos cut in the rock. We thus have two classes of tombs in connexion with the nuraghi, and if these were to be held to be tombs also, habitations would be entirely wanting.1 1The whole question is well dealt with by F. Nissardi in Atti del Congresso delle Scienze Stofiche (Rome, 1903), vol. v. (Archeologia), 651 sqq.; cf. Builder, May 18, 1907 (xcii. 589). "§ ~1'- ' siderable supplies of corn; it was treated as a conquered country, not containing a

single free city, and the inhabitants were obliged to paya tithe in corn and a further money contribution. It was classed with

Sicily and Africa as one of the main

sources of the corn-supply of Rome. There were salt-works in Sardinia too as early as about 150 B.C., as is attested by an inscription assigned to this date in Latin, Greek and Punic, being a dedication by one Cleon salari(us) soc(iorum) s(ervus) (Corp. Inscr. Lat. x. 7856). We only hear of two insurrections of the mountain tribes, in 181, when no less than 80,000 Sardinian slaves' were brought to Rome by T. Sempronius Gracchus, and in 114 B.C., when M. Caecilius Metellus was proconsul and earned a triumph after two years' lighting: but even in the time of Strabo there was considerable brigandage. Inscriptions record the boundaries of the territories of various tribes with outlandish names otherwise unknown to us (Corp. Imcr. Lat. x. 7889. 7930). Some light is thrown on the condition and administration of the island in the 1st century B.c. by Cicero's speech (of which a part only is preserved) in defence of M. Aemilius Scaurus (q.v.), praetor in 53 B.C. Cicero, speaking no doubt to his brief, gives them a very bad character, adding “ ignoscent alii viri boni ex Sardinia; credo enim esse quosdam ” (§ 43). In the division of provinces made by ~


X 3


2 The large number of slaves is said to have given rise to the phrase

Sardz venales for anything cheap or worthless.