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Areas Social action Culture and Historical Heritage Es Cap de Barbaria II dig site, prehistoric life on Formentera

Es Cap de Barbaria II dig site, prehistoric life on Formentera

Jaciment Es Cap II foto premsa EDITEarlier today councillor of patrimony Susana Labrador, together with staff specialist Jaume Escandell, paid a visit to the archaeological dig site called Es Cap de Barbaria II. Since 29 February and until 18 18 March, a group of 17 specialists have been overseeing “the consolidation and restoration of structures within areas one and three of the Cap de Barbaria II site”. The areas, as Labrador pointed out, were the only two still unrestored by archaeologists over the last two years. The current phase of activity is  the fifth and last part of a project entitled “Prehistoric Formentera communities. Archaeology, patrimony and society” (“Les comunitats prehistòriques de Formentera. Arqueologia, patrimoni i societat”). The project began in 2012 and is codirected by Pau Sureda (Universitat Pompeu Fabra), Edgard Camarós (Institut Català de Paleoecologia Humana i Evolució Social), María Ana Cueto and Luís Teira (Instituto Internacional de Investigaciones Prehistóricas de Cantabria – Universidad de Cantabria).

Restoration and consolidation work is being carried out by a crew that includes Margalida Munar, Bernat Burganya and Antoni Puig. It is also supported by the Formentera Council offices of culture and patrimony. According to Councillor Labrador: “The cleaning, maintenance and conservation of dig sites is included in the local directive on the management of cultural heritage sites”.

The restoration crew works under a team of scientists involved in the research project. From the beginning, organisers had anticipated the current activity for the project's final phase. Plans for the project received favourable review by the Council's Comissió Específica d'Arqueologia and were authorised by a government commission accord.

Specifically, the work include putting rocks back in their original place, binding together the structure's uppermost rows of stones, consolidating certain parts of the foundation, filling the interior of walls with rubble and pebbles for added reinforcement, consolidating the inner areas of the site with lime mortar and levelling the site's inner floor. The total cost is €4,418.40.

Restoration and consolidation work has been taking place at the entire north-west portion of the site since 2014. According to Camaròs, the activity has helped researchers determine the nature of life on Formentera when the site was used in prehistoric times, some 3,200 years ago. There were shared living spaces and areas used by entire families for sleeping, said Sureda, who calculates that between 20 and 30 individuals lived at the site. He added that the inhabitants appear to have enjoyed equal social conditions and said class differences between members of the group were unlikely. To conclude the project, the researches will now draft a report compiling the data they have collected.

Conference and exhibition

Tomorrow at 7 p.m. in the municipal gallery (sala d'Exposicions) of the old town hall, Sureda will impart a conference entitled “Prehistoric metallurgy on Formentera. Technology, interaction and society” (“La metal·lúrgia prehistòrica a Formentera. Tecnologia, interacció i societat”). The opening of the exhibition “Formentera in metallurgic networks during the late Bronze Age” (“Formentera en les xarxes metal·lúrgiques del bronze final”) will take place afterwards. The archaeologists involved in the project have also proposed a site visit to explain to Formentera residents how these prehistoric inhabitants lived.


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