Europe is a treasure chest of ancient artifacts found not only on the surface of the earth but in the underground as well. There are thousands of hidden tunnels discovered which start in the Northern Scotland and lead to the Mediterranean. This 12, 000 year old underground network is absolutely tremendous.
Meanwhile there are still tunnels which haven’t been totally explored, and one of them is located 52 kilometers from Constanta, the oldest inhabited city in Romania. The discovered labyrinth is around 12 hectares and is located beneath the plateau of Limanu. The excavations at this site started in 1916, as a result the researchers discovered some traces left by humans, carved walls and ceilings, as well as very old ceramic fragments. According to the inscriptions left on the walls written in Roman and Cyrillic alphabets, it is certain that the cave was inhabited between 1st century BC until 10th AD. Due to the confusing and really long passages in the labyrinth ancient people used the marking system in order not to get lost.
Being around 4000 meters long, the labyrinth is so far the longest one in Dobrogea. There are several galleries inside which look like the street network. Some scientists believe that these galleries were made by humans, as some tool marks can be traced on the walls. If you have a look at this gallery you may get impression that it is like a city street map. The development of the entire underground city most likely was chaotic according to the pictures on the walls. The rectangular shape of some galleries show us that they were actually been carved by humans as signs of chiselling are visible. In order to avoid the collapse of ceilings, supporting walls and pillars were built in limestone slabs.
The most remarkable drawings in the galleries are those featuring horse riders. Some of them are depicted galloping and you can even see the face of the rider. The silhouettes resemble a lot of Dacian riders which were usually depicted on the pottery found in many settlements in the area inhabited by Thraco-Dacians.
From all the caves of Dobrogea, the Limanu is the only one that comes extremely close to Dio Cassius description of the legendary Ciris. The researchers found the proof that the cave was inhabited by local Dacians even in that time. So it is possible that these labyrinths were built as a defense measure against the Roman danger.
There were mysterious stories wondering around about the weird and frightening sound coming from the depth of the earth. They said the voice reminded of the guardian’s voice by the entrance who wants to lure in the profane. According to the science, the strange sounds might have been caused by the wind which was sweeping through dozens of underground galleries creating a noise which affects the human psyche. The cave has its own specifics as well, as it is located on the a complex of lakes and very close to the Black Sea. But it is so tough and solid that not even a drop of water went in.
The other name of mysterious caves in Caracicula, it is actually the old name of Limanu settlements, which means “icons” due to the numerous images carved in the stone which used to guard the entrance to mysterious labyrinths.