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INTRODUCTION

Torralba d'en Salort (located in the municipality of Alaior) is one of the most beautiful and best preserved prehistoric settlements in Menorca. It is also one of the largest and most complete. It is made up of two talayots, a spectacular taula (a T-shaped stone monument), a unique hypostyle hall, several prehistoric houses, a cyclopean wall, underground silos and hypogea, as well as a medieval or early modern construction. The whole complex was acquired in 1990 by Fundació Illes Balears, which has taken care of it and encouraged visitors to explore the settlement ever since. This outstanding archaeological site was declared a “Site of Cultural Interest” (BIC) and is part of the candidacy of Talayotic Minorca for inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Hipogeus

HISTORY

Although there are doubts about the date of some elements of the site, we know that the heydays of the settlement were during the Punic expansion. However, there is evidence proving that the site was inhabited much earlier. The earliest date was determined using carbon-14 on the talayot annexed to the taula (the West Talayot), which dates from the 13th century BC. The taula enclosure was used as a sanctuary from the 4th century BC onwards. In short, the use of the Torralba d'en Salort site goes from the Early Bronze Age to the Middle Ages, including the Iron Age and Romanisation.

Recinte taula

ARCHAEOLOGY

Torralba d'en Salort is one of the most valued and studied sites by archaeologists in Minorca. The team of William Waldren and Manuel Fernández-Miranda carried out important excavations in the 1970s, mainly in the taula enclosure and the talayot annexed thereto (the West Talayot). Some of the most important finds include a bronze statuette of an ox (currently on display at the Museum of Minorca) and two terracotta figures representing the goddess Tanit. Other interesting pieces discovered at Torralba d'en Salort are the three legs of a bronze horse (located on a small stone altar), as well as remains of prehistoric, Punic and Roman ceramics. The main talayot (the East Talayot) has just begun to be excavated.