Ministero della Cultura

You are in: Home / Museums

The Pre-Nuragic altar of Monte d’Accoddi


The extraordinary pre-Nuragic complex of Monte d’Accoddi is considered as a unique monument in Europe and the Mediterranean Basin due to the different architectural techniques used during its construction.
The complex is composed of an altar – which resembles the Far Eastern Ziggurats – and the nearby village which can be reached by a ramp that is more than 40 metres long. On the east side of the ramp one can see a big slab used for offerings and sacrifices; on the opposite side there is a menhir that is 4 m. high.

The History

Archaeological excavations at the site began in the Mid-20th century and brought to light monumental buildings, including a structure with two overlapping temples belonging to late Neolithic and Eneolithic cultures.

The research conducted so far shows that the altar was built in two phases: the first phase of the so called “red temple” dates back to 3000 B.C., which was later included in the second phase’s monument dating back to 2700 B.C. In the nearby area it is also possible to see the ruins of a village that go back to the Ozieri Culture (the pre-Nuragic culture that occupied Sardinia from 3200 to 2800 B.C.).

The most ancient human signs on the plateau of Monte d’Accoddi date back to recent Neolithic (3500-3200) but only later, during the Ozieri Culture of the final Neolithic, did the site become a human settlement. The huts were located around a sacred area composed of various menhirs, offering slabs and spheroid blocks whose meaning is still unclear.
During the mature phase of the Ozieri Culture a big sanctuary was built in the shape of a truncated pyramid preceded by steps leading to a rectangular space. All surfaces of this edifice are plastered and painted red-ochre (hence the name “red temple”), even though other colours can also be found, such as yellow and black.
Around 2800 B.C. the remains of the red temple were covered with large limestone blocks which constitute the outer surrounding walls.
The complex of Monte d’Accoddi is managed by the Municipality of Sassari, who is responsible for its use and enhancement.


Strada Statale 131 - Km 222, 200