World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0008367125
Reproduction Date:

Title: Thapsos  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Aetna (city), Eryx (Sicily), Erice, Hybla Heraea, Akrai
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Θάψος (Greek)
Thapsos had a large necropolis of cave tombs with vertical entrance shafts or dromos entry-corridors.
Thapsos is located in Italy
Shown within Italy
Location Priolo Gargallo, Province of Syracuse, Sicily, Italy
Type Settlement
Site notes
Condition Ruined
Ownership Public
Management Soprintendenza BB.CC.AA. di Siracusa
Public access Yes
Website Museo Archeologico Regionale Paolo Orsi

Thapsos (Greek: Θάψος) was a prehistoric village in Sicily of the middle Bronze Age. It was found by the Italian archaeologist Paolo Orsi on the small peninsula of Magnisi, near Priolo Gargallo. In its vicinity was born the Culture of Thapsos, one of the most important prehistoric cultures in Sicily (identified with the people of Sicani).


A rock-cut tomb in the necropolis
The site is very interesting for its village - the first known city in Sicily - and for its rich necropolis. David Abulafia writes:
A settlement at Thapsos, an offshore island in eastern Sicily, offers evidence of a sophisticated, imported culture, Mycenaean in origin. The settlers created a grid-like town with streets up to four metres wide, spacious houses built round courtyards, and tombs full of Late Helladic wares from the Greek lands, suggesting 'a veritable foreign colony on the site'. Indeed, the closest analogy to the layout of the houses in Thapsos is to be found at the other end of the Mycenaean world, on Cyprus, at Enkomi near Famagusta. It is almost as if a blueprint for a trading colony had been created and then transformed into reality at both ends of the Mycenaean world. Thapsos has yielded very many small perfume containers of Mycenaean origin. For it was a centre of industry, specializing in the production of perfumed oils for an 'international' market. But Thapsos was not simply an offshoot of Mycenae. It produced plenty of coarse grey pottery in Sicilian styles, indicating that Thapsos contained a mixed population.[1]


  1. ^ David Abulafia, The Great Sea:A Human History of the Mediterranean (Oxford University Press, 2011; ISBN 019975263X), pp. 34-35.


  • S. Tusa, La Sicilia nella Preistoria, second edition, Palermo 1992.

External links

  • Official website

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.