THE Greek myth of Medusa may have originated on the Rock of Gibraltar, new evidence has suggested.
It comes after a clay picture of Medusa was dug up at Gorham’s Cave by top archaeologists, bringing to light the area’s special significance.
“The relationship between the Rock of Gibraltar and mythology is more than just coincidental,” culture minister John Cortes said.
“There is no doubt at all that the imposing feature of Gibraltar at the western end of the Mediterranean would have led to legend being developed.
“It is absolutely possible that this artefact was put there because the ancients believed that this was where it had actually happened.”
The pottery was found in a part of the cave which was quite well-excavated, dating back to the sixth or seventh century BCE.
“The clay sculpture occupied a prime place in the sanctuary at the end of the Gorham’s Cave gallery,” said Cadiz museum director, Jose Maria Gutierrez, who helped in the dig.
“This sculpture was only ever found in former Greek temples around the Mediterranean.”
Clive Finlayson assured the Olive Press that the artefact would remain at the Gibraltar Museum.
“It was a shrine, a place of worship for the ancient mariners,” he told this paper.
“We thought it was only holy for the Phoenicians but now we know it was also holy for the Greeks.”
In his presentation at this year’s Calpe Conference held at the university, the local archaeologist mentioned references to Gibraltar in Greek and Roman mythology.