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At Biniai Nou there are two funerary hypogeums constructed during the Chalcolithic era (2100 B.C.). Both hypogeums are characterised by having one part, the chamber, excavated into the solid rock, their access or corridor built from vertical slabs, and a megalithic façade.
The Biniai Nou site is particularly important because it has provided the absolutely oldest dating of the prehistory of Minorca (2290-2030 B.C.), with some human remains that are the oldest documented to date.

Biniai Nou hypogeums

At Biniai Nou there are two funerary hypogeums constructed during the Chalcolithic era (2100 B.C.). Both hypogeums are characterised by having one part, the chamber, excavated into the solid rock, their access or corridor built from vertical slabs, and a megalithic façade.
The Biniai Nou site is particularly important because it has provided the absolutely oldest dating of the prehistory of Minorca (2290-2030 B.C.), with some human remains that are the oldest documented to date.



 
Detailed description

The Biniai Nou site consists of two funerary hypogeums constructed towards the end of the Chalcolithic period/ Early Bronze Age. Both are characterised by having one part, the chamber, excavated into the rock and a second (corridor) built with vertical slabs.

Monument 1 has a slightly concave façade with the door in the centre. This door leads to a corridor with double upper slabs. The chamber is oval and there is a kind of bench on the left. It contains the absolute oldest dating of Minorcan prehistory: 2290-2030 B.C.

Some 50 m from this monument is a "capada de moro" or cavity in the rock.

Monument 2 also has a slightly concave façade with central door that leads to a very low corridor. In this case, the chamber is circular but damaged by collapse of part of the ceiling, restored following its archaeological excavation. The excavation led to estimations that 81 individuals were buried in primary burials, and that when the collapse occurred it was in active use. Its use is defined by the absolute datings:

2140-1880 B.C.
1690-1450 B.C.
1530-1400 B.C.
1260-1000 B.C.

Classification:
Hypogeum with megalithic corridor

Municipality:
Maó

Chronological period:
Chalcolithic. Early Bronze Age - Middle Bronze Age?

Objects found:
- Pottery vessels, awls, radiolarite

Constructions:
- Two hypogeums with megalithic façade

 
Archaeological interventions

Part of the ceiling of the chamber of one of the caves collapsed and was later restored in an archaeological excavation conducted in 2000.

 
Legal protections

BIC no. of the Island Council of Minorca: 001298?BIC no. of the Balearic Islands Government: 7032-2-2-51-001906-0
BIC no. of the Ministry of Culture: R-I-51-0003515-00000?
Decree no. 2563/1966, of 10 September: 1870

 
Bibliography

GÓMEZ, J.L. 2000. Memoria de excavación del Monumento nº 2 de Biniai Nou (Campañas 1997-1998). In GUERRERO, V.M. & GORNÉS, S. (coord.), Colonización humana en ambientes insulares. Interacción con el medio y adaptación cultural. Palma: Universitat de les Illes Balears: 417-432.

MARQUES, J. 2001. Biniai Nou. Estudis de prehistòria menorquina a l’abast de tothom. Revista de Menorca, 85 (2): 181-186.

PLANTALAMOR, L. & MARQUÈS, J. (coord.). 2001. Biniai Nou. El megalitisme mediterrani a Menorca. Treballs del Museu de Menorca, 24. Maó: Conselleria d’Educació i Cultura del Govern Balear.

PLANTALAMOR, L.; MARQUÈS, J. & PONS, J. 2002. Els sepulcres de Biniai Nou I i II. Dues coves amb façana megalítica (Maó-Menorca). In AA.D., Pirineus i veïns al 3r mil·lenni. XII Col·loqui Internacional d’Arqueologia de Puigcerdà (10-12 novembre 2000). Puigcerdà: Institut d’Estudis Ceretans: 527-538.

Plantalamor, L.; Anglada, M. & Ferrer, A. 2012. Els aixovars dels sepulcres col·lectius de l’illa de Menorca: elements de tradició neolítica i calcolítica i evidències de relacions amb l’exterior. In Borrell, M.; Borrell, F.; Bosch, J. & Molist, M. (eds.), Actes del Congrés Internacional Xarxes al Neolític. Circulació i intercanvi de matèries, productes i idees a la Mediterrània occidental (VII-III mil·lenni aC). Gavà / Bellaterra, 2-4/2/2011. Rubricatum 5. Gavà: Museu de Gavà: 433-440.

 
Practical information

Access:
Access from the main Maó to Ciutadella road. At kilometre 5, on the right, a path leads to Biniai Nou. From here you have to follow the path on foot in northwest direction until you arrive to the site.

Parking:
None.

Visits:
Visits must be booked by electronic mail at info@biniainou.es

Ownership and management:
Private

 

 
 
 
Consell Insular de Menorca Govern Illes Balears
MINORCA TALAYOTIC - World Heritage Nomination
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