Giurdignano: the Megalithic garden

Tenuta Centoporte

Making a few steps, in Giurdignano, it is possible to trace a route, that brings back to the first signs of civilization, in the place named "the Megalithic garden"; eighteen menhir and seven dolmen, in addition to many other sites which have not been studied yet, whose remnants represent a huge and significant heritage for the research of the first settlements in Salento, the last ones going up to the pre-Christian age.
The menhir officially registered are, as it has been said, 18, some of them still without a name; among the others we remember the menhir of Vico Nuovo in the town centre, or the menhir Croce della Fausa, placed on a circular basement or the menhir of Costantinopoli or of San Vincenzo. The menhir of Saint Paul is astonishing, showing the interesting example of religious fusion between pagan rites and Palo-Christian first settlements; according to the others it is built on a East-West board and characterised by a small hole that can be seen on top with an inside painting that depicts the theme of Saint Paul and the "taranta", expression of the religious - magic rite of "tarantismo".
The presence of numerous Dolmen like the one of "Orfine" is also very important, probably having the purpose of a grave or the dolmen Stabile, probably used as an old altar. Moreover the dolmen Peschio and the Chiancuse are very big ones. Furthermore, the dolmen "Stabile" is also rather significant, it is located towards the town of Giuggianello, and used, like the previous one, as an altar. This Dolmen shows on top one of the engravings put towards the points when the sun rises and sets in the day of soltice during the Summer.