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History of the necropolis of Li Muri: The Neolithic

The Neolithic age in Sardinia is a very important period for man (6000-2850 B.C.), thanks to its new social and technological innovations implemented in agriculture and livestock, from which the first stable settlements were born based on a productive type of economy, the progress in the use of stone to make different types of tools, as well as the clay processing documented by a rich ceramic production.

Even a unique territory such as that of Gallura, had an active role in the trade of lithic material which from its shores reached the West Mediterranean, via Corsica.

The inhabitation of the Gallura area is evident from the Early Neolithic, as is proved by the traces near the coast concerning places and workshops for processing Sardinian obsidian and flint used in the production of weapons and utensils for daily use, connected to commercial traffic of these raw materials gravitating in the Western Mediterranean route through Corsica (fig. 1).

Fig. 1 - Flint blades from Li Muri Arzachena (from MANCINI 2011, p. 15).

IThe population consolidated during the Middle and Late Neolithic ages with the presence of permanent settlements consisting in villages made up of huts (Pilastru, Arzachena), or rock shelters (Mont'Incappiddhatu, Arzachena) and oriented towards an agro-pastoral economy and, in particular, with the emergence at first of characteristic forms of funerals (megalithic circle necropolis ), and subsequently with a wide geographical distribution, which see dolmens as the development of Megaliths, that is of funerary monuments built with large stones (fig. 2).

Fig. 2 - Mont’Incappiddhatu, Arzachena (from

In fact, funeral buildings, and dolmens in particular, determine the sense of belonging of a community to a territory and probably limit the boundaries of the inhabited area which is used because of its natural resources (fig. 3).

Fig. 3 - Dolmen Li Casacci of Arzachena (from MANCINI 2010, p. 24).

Considered one of the first manifestations of megaliths in Sardinia, the funerary circles of Li Muri were chronologically classified in the transition facies of San Ciriaco dated to the first half of the fourth millennium B.C., which precedes the well-known neolithic Culture of San Michele of Ozieri (3200-2850 B.C.).


  • ANTONA A., Arzachena. Pietre senza tempo, Sassari 2013, pp. 10-15.
  • MANCINI P., Gallura Orientale. Preistoria e Protostoria, Olbia 2010, pp. 21-24.
  • MANCINI P., Gallura Preistorica, Olbia 2011, pp. 10-23.
  • TANDA G., Il Neolitico recente, in La Preistoria e la Protostoria della Sardegna, Atti della XLIV Riunione Scientifica, Firenze 2009, pp. 59-71.
  • USAI L., Il Neolitico medio, in La Preistoria e la Protostoria della Sardegna, Atti della XLIV Riunione Scientifica, Firenze 2009, pp. 49-58.