The Megalithic temples of Malta are the oldest standing stone structures which remain to us from ancient times. Excellently preserved they dated back to 5000 -3500 BC., which these temples older than than Stonehenge and the Egyptian pyramids. They rank amongst the earliest free-standing stone buildings in the world and are remarkable for their diversity of form and decoration. Ancient monuments were rediscovered and restored in the 19th century by European and Maltese archaeologists.
The dating of the site was done using radio carbon testing of pottery and bones found around those temples in Malta. According to Dr Nicholas Vella of the University of Malta until further evidence is found that will put Stonehenge or the Pyramids of Giza far into the timeline, he suggests the temples of Malta remain the oldest known temples still standing. Among the most well-known sites are temples of Ggantija on the island of Gozo, Hagar Qim and Mnaidra. According to folklore, Ggantija was built by a giantess who used it as a place of worship.
Totally are than 50 temples were found on Malta and most of them have similarities in construction and design: a central corridor with two or more chambers and an altar at the end. At the moment nobody knows how the temples were used but the common theory is that they were used as ceremonial places with possible sacrifice of animals or humans.
The evidence of possible sacrifice rituals have been found in one of the greatest remaining structures from prehistory the Hypogeum. It is basically multi-leveled catacombs became known as the “Hypogeum of Hal Saflienti”, named after the street beneath which they were discovered. A hypogeum is the Latin name for an underground structure. Series of ancients caves, excavated out of solid rock, contain rock-cut features such as a ‘speaking chamber‘, trilithons, lintelled-doorways, a large cistern and a ‘holy of holies’ surrounded by ’embryonic’ chambers. It is reported that from within these small cubicles, echoes from the ‘speaking’ chamber reverberate into a rhythm that is similar to the human heartbeat.
When it was first discovered, the skeletons of over 7,000 people were found near the inside chambers at the entrance, it believe they are victims of ancient sacrifice to “underworld gods”.
Today apparently only six skulls survive. They appeared ‘elongated‘ and one lacked the Fossa median (the join that runs along the top of the skull). It is known that some of the skulls were on display in the Archaeological Museum in Valletta. However, after 1985 all the skulls that had been found in the Hypogeum, along with other elongated skulls found across multiple ancient sites in Malta, disappeared without a trace, and have never been recovered.
According to NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC after skeletons were examined it appeared that the early inhabitants of Malta were race of long-skulled people of lower medium height, akin to the early people of Egypt, who spread westward along the north coast of Africa, whence some went to Malta and Sicily and others to Sardinia and Spain.
The official history says that in the past Malta has been the possession of many nationalities, and has been considered to be one of the most strategic areas on earth, being a port and an intersecting point between Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, etc. This 9-mile-long island was an ancient centrer of civilization at the time when the Phoenicians from Carthage invaded and began to rule it.
Is it possible that these chambers of unbelievable acoustic properties were built by ancient people with elongated skulls probably of the same origin with early people of Egypt? And mysterious disappearance of more than 7,000 skulls makes you wonder what a secret is still hidden in this unusual place.