• Carlos Vermeersch

Torralba d'en Salord

Updated: Aug 26, 2019

Main article: Prehistory and history of the Balearic Islands: Menorca

Chronology

Level I: 1286 AD (conquest by Alfonso III of Aragon)

Level II: Roman Imperial period

Level III and IV: 1800 BC (Proto-talaiotic) — 200 BC


It was undoubtedly a big walled village, as attested by the many preserved buildings it possesses, like a taula, two talaiots, one of which is circular and placed on top of a platform, a hypostyle and several hypogaea. It was founded during the Proto-talaiotic period, ~1800 BC. Most datations obtained vary between 1310 to 1238 BC, meaning the village reached its peak during the Talaiotic I period.


The taula


Dimensions

Pillar: 4.3 m (height) × 2.4-2.5 m (width) × 0.4-0.6 m (thickness)

Capital: 3.7-3.8 m (length) × 1-1.2 m (width) × 0.7 m (thickness)


Torralba d'en Salord is home to the best preserved taula, as well as one of the largest and most gorgeous. According to the findings, the sanctuary that it encloses has been dated to around 1000 BC. The precinct has elements of a typical taula sanctuary. The taula is large and beautifully proportioned. The monolithic pillar is slightly broader in its upper end and has a reinforcing "spine" on its back. The capital is shaped like the trunk of a reversed pyramid, and has a groove in which the pillar is fixed.


The taula has a typical morphology, and the sanctuary consists of 15 monolithic pillars and 11 niches in its walls, with three steps that descend into the precinct. Thick layers of ashes around and in front of the Taula harboured bone fragments of animals, which is evidence of animal sacrifices in bonfires. The artefacts that were found included a bronze figurine of a bull and a terracotta figurine of the Phoenician goddess Tanit.


In an astronomical sense however, the taula is very atypical. While most taulas have their façade oriented towards the south, the one at Torralba d'en Salord has its façade pointing east. It is thought this orientation was preferred since the slope desdends towards this direction and therefore the horizon is clearly visible. This causes a completely different astronomical alignment: this taula is the only one with a precinct of which the entrance is aligned with the equinox.


The well of Na Patarrà


Chronology

Talaiotic I (1400-1000 BC)


Near the village there is a 47 m-deep well. It has 9 sections of stairs that descend zigzagging along one of the walls and 199 steps, that were used to collect water from the phreatic zone and redirect it to the basin located at the bottom of the well. Each step has a width of 1.2 m and starting from the second stairs there is a banister 50 cm wide. It is truly a remarkable feat of engineering of Prehistory.


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San Cristóbal de La Laguna, S/C de Tenerife, Spain

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