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 Location: Gozo Island.  Grid Reference: 36° 1' 16.3" N, 14° 15' 15.3" E..

 

      Ta' Cenc: (Dolmen).

This small, unimposing dolmen is located on the South coast of Gozo Island.

Ta' Cenc is the junction point of two alignments on Gozo. It overlooks the Xewkiga Church (The third largest dome in Christiandom and itself built over a dolmen), behind which lies the Ggantija/ Xarghra complex. The three form an alignment across the island of Gozo. It also forms an alignment to the Qala Menhir through the Tal-Qighan cluster of megaliths.

 

 

 

   Ta' Cenc:

On the northern lip of Ta’ Cenc, looking across towards Xewkija, three tombs assumed to be of the Early Bronze Age Tarxien Cemetery phase can be found, if carefully sought. The first consists of two rows of upright slabs, perhaps once the walls of a gallery grave. Close to them is a more typical dolmen, with a capstone supported on other blocks. The third is similar, built into a more recent field wall 600m to the east. There may once have been a fourth well off to the south east, but this can no longer be found. (1)

Ta Cenc (ancient-wisdom.com)

 

The Ta' Cenc - Ggantija/Xaghra alignment: (15°-193°)

This alignment runs from Ta' Cenc through the Xewkija Church and onto the Ggantija/Xaghra complex. Although the present church at Xewkija is new, it is built on the same site as previous churches in the centre of the village, which is claimed in the local guide book by Mgr. Dr. Anthony Gauci, Gozo - A Historical and Tourist Guide to the Island (1969), to be the first to be inhabited in Gozo. The book also reveals that up until the seventeenth century a large dolmen was visible on the site of the present church. It had a 15 foot square capstone and four uprights about five and a half feet high, and was used as part of the church's foundations, along with a 25 foot menhir and assorted other stones. The Ggantija/Xaghra complex conforms to the circle/mound theme found at many important megalithic sites across Europe.

(More about the Circle/Mound theme at prehistoric European Complexes)

 

The Ta' Cenc - Qala Menhir alignment (70° -250°)

The local name of the 'Qala Menhir is "Il-Hagra l-Wieqfa". It is a pock marked stone, rectangular in plan, about five and half feet on its longest sides and 13 feet tall, forming a 'needle' shape if viewed from a distance which, unfortunately is no longer possible as it is hemmed in on all sides by modern houses.  Between Ta' Cenc and the Qala Menhir is the Tal-Qighan (Borg Il-Gharib) site which is on the floor of the valley plain east of Xewkija on the road to Qala. There are two groups of megaliths on either side of the road. They are in a poor state of preservation, compared to Ggantija at least, but are so close together that they may have formed part of the same structure, perhaps a 'temple' or major observation centre. They are apparently unexcavated and little is known about them. One group of stones forms a rough circle whilst the other is a horseshoe with the open end looking towards the 13ft high QalaMenhir.

 

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References:

1) http://www.gozo.gov.mt/pages.aspx?page=745

 

 

 

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