LOCATION: Middle-East Sardinia, on the road to Dorgali.
PERIOD: Nuraghic Age – Early and Middle Bronze Age (1800 – 1600 B.C.).
One of the most fascinating mysteries of the nuraghi island is certainly that of the Tombs of Giants. The Tomb of Giants of S'Ena e Thomes is one of the most impressive and intriguing examples, maybe because it is one of the best preserved tombs. S'Ena e Thomes is mighty and imposing, still very similar to what it might have been like thousands of years ago. Its exedra ( the semicircle that probably draws a bull's horns) has a width exceeding 10 metres and its central stele is almost 4 metres high and weighs about 7 tons.
These huge dimensions explain why these nuragic funeral monuments have been called “Tombs of Giants”. S'Ena e Thomes' funeral corridor is almost intact, with flat-arch covering, that is made of stone slabs laid horizontally along the walls of the corridor.
But who had the honour of being buried in this tomb? If it is true that these monuments used to host collective sepulchres, then the possibility that they were considered real cemeteries is to be excluded. Probably the honour of being buried inside the tomb of giants was not reserved to all the dead people , but it is even true that, judging by the findings, it was noted how the bones were not buried following a hierarchical order. We can so assume that, for nuragic people, death did not discriminate, and who was worthy to be buried inside a tomb of giants, was not worthier than others. So even S'Ena e Thomes confirms how the kingdom of the deads has no regard for anybody.
However, the astronomical orientation of the tomb amazes us once more. The exedra of the major part of the Tombs of Giants is oriented towards south-east, the sunrise direction during the winter solstice. Other tombs look towards east, probably because of the sunrise during the equinoxes. The Tomb of Giants of S'Ena e Thomes however is oriented towards south, maybe in relation to the summer solstice sunset. And then: a research of three scholars of the Astronomical Observatory of Brera's National Institute of Astrophysics (L. Marchisio, A. Manara e A. Gaspani), revealed a big secret. The structure of S'Ena e Thomes, made entirely of granite, has an astronomical azimuth of its axis' orientation which is identical to those of the Tomb of Giants “Goronna” (in Paulilatino, in the Province of Oristano) and that of Baddu Pirastru (in Thiesi, in the Province of Sassari).
The three Tombs of Giants seem to be oriented towards the star Aldebaran (Alpha Tauri) in the constellation Taurus.
As every hypothesis, there is always someone who is sceptical. There will always be someone who say that these megalithic monuments are simple graves as ours. But when the coincidences are so many....well, as they say...”One coincidence is just a coincidence. Two coincidences are a clue. Three coincidences are a proof” Agatha Christie
HOW TO GET THERE: From Olbia take the SS 131 d.c.n. towards Nuoro, then take the junction to Dorgali. After 4,1 km, a road sign indicates the entrance to the archaeological area .
Park the car and walk for about 400m along the path.