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“As Piscinas”

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AS PISCINAS

The basaltic pools of Golgo, not far from the church and the chasm, in which rain water stagnates all year, are called “As Piscinas” (“the pools”) by the Baunesis. According to scholars, they are natural basins whose shape was altered by the Nuragici so that they could be used in the metalworking process. It cannot be excluded, moreover, that due to the presence of water throughout the year, the location may also have been the site of magical-animistic cults for a long time.

The fact that the site had a religious significance in ancient times is also confirmed by the presence of a “megalithic circle”, a structure consisting of a series of rocks positioned vertically to create a circle, in the vicinity of “As Piscinas”. According to archaeologists, megalithic circles like the one in Golgo, are special funerary monuments, dating back to an age preceeding the Nuragic era. In more recent times, the area of ”As Piscinas” was especially important because these singular pools represent an appreciable supply of water during the summer season, since in an area of limestone such as Baunei, which is virtually without springs out in the open, even the smallest amounts of drinking water are precious.

This particular hydrogeological situation forced herdsmen to develop a specific expertise in making small rainwater collection pools, usually obtained by adapting the cavities within the limestone itself. When a herdsman identified one of these cavities in a suitable location, in terms of slope and the characteristics of the surrounding rocks, in order to collect rainwater the herdsman would use stones of various sizes to plug any cracks which, unless this was done properly, would have prevented the stagnation of the precious liquid. These very special pools, which the Baunesis call “pressos”, allowed the herdsmen and their animals to negotiate the dryness of the summer season. Usually, “us Pressos” were covered with juniper branches, both to prevent the evaporation of water, as well as making sure that animals didn’t fall into the pool. Regular and proper maintenance has allowed many “pressos” of the Supramonte to survive intact to this day, and still satisfy the needs of herdsmen who still roam these mountains.

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