Visit the Grotta del Genovese

Travel back in time to prehistory in Sicily

lisola residenceGenovese Cave is an extraordinary vestige of our past, and set destination for all tourists and archaeology lovers. Levanzo engravings can be compared, for rarity and beauty, only to those discovered in two Pyrenean caves, Altamira in Spain and Lascaux in France, which have dozen of paleolithic paintings very similar to the Sicilian ones.  Here are some free information from the site www.grottadelgenovese.it.

“The karstification has given an indented morphology to the cave, in fact it is composed by a big entrance hall, called “ante-cave”, from where it is possible to get in the “back-cave”, through a low and narrow tunnel. The “back-cave” is less higher and more longer than the “ante-cave”. In this latter there are the rests of a lime kiln of late medieval age. In more recent ages it was used by the farmers as cattle shed and farming tools shed. On the other hand the “back-cave” was still unexplored. Inside this latter more than one hundred definable figures are kept. These are the most important italian inheritances of prehistoric illustrated expressiveness. Nobody entered in this place except some ferret in order to rouse the rabbits, in fact was known by the islanders just as a great hunting position.

However, among the islanders some rumours going about the presence of some “inscriptions” inside the dark room. Those rumours were probably the echo of an old tale of an explorer unaware to be in front of such important prehistoric pictures.

lisola residenceThe discover and the divulgation of this extraordinary patrimony of wall inscriptions of the “back-cave”, goes back to the 1949, and it's thanks to Francesca Minellono, a Florentine painter who was having an holiday on the island. After that she heard those rumours about the paintings, pushed by curiosity, the driving force of each great discovery of men, she slipped into the narrow tunnel dragging herself on the belly up to reach the “back-cave”. Of this astonishing discovery were informed first the professor Paolo Graziosi of the Human Paleo-ethnology of Florence University, and then Jole Bovio Marconi, the supervisor for the antiquities of Western Sicily.

After a short time the first scientific research started in Levanzo. The tracing of the drawings were made, as well as some stratigraphical digs, and a series of archaeological explorations inside many caves of Levanzo and Favignana.

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