Ancient Origins IRAQ Tour

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Reconstruction of a Guanche settlement of Tenerife (Wouter Hagens/ CC BY-SA 3.0)

The Fan Pyramid of Tenerife, A Guanche Stone Solstice Marker

A peculiar pyramid with a ‘fan structure’ stands as an ancient stone solstice marker in Icod de los Vinos, a municipality on the island of Tenerife, in the Canary Islands (Spain). The precolonial inhabitants of Tenerife came to be known as the Guanches, sharing common origins with the Berbers of the North African coastline, probably the northern Africa Amazigh clans, mainly from Tunisia, Morocco, Mauritania and Libya. It is believed that they arrived on the archipelago some time during the first millennium BC.

Guanche kings of Tenerife surrendering to Alonso Fernández de Lugo. (Public Domain)

Guanche kings of Tenerife surrendering to Alonso Fernández de Lugo. (Public Domain)

Icod de los Vinos

The Municipality of Icod de los Vinos was one of the nine Guanche territories, before the Spanish conquest, which came to an end in Northwest Tenerife, Canary islands, in 1496.  The Guanche name for the region, Benicode means "place of the black, or burned, stones” and refers to the abundant lava fields and black sands of the region which houses a very valuable archaeological, ethnographic, cultural and natural heritage. From its caves, such as the Cho Gaspar, abundant aboriginal material has been recovered (charcoal, wood, pottery shards, bones and skeletons) dating from the eighth century BC, comprising some of the oldest artifacts from the archipelago.


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