The Nuraghe Diana

Between history and legends

Mysteries, fights and discoveries

The Nuraghe Diana can boast a unique history, which carries along folk tales and mysteries, interspersed with real events and exceptional stories.

Over the millennia the monument has in fact inspired daring legends of pirates and treasures and witnessed bloody clashes between corsairs - the promontory at its feet is perhaps not by chance called is Mortorius, sinister name in spite of its beauty.

The events reach up to the modern era, during the Second World War, when the nuraghe was occupied by the military to be used as a lookout on the sea to protect the anti-landing batteries.

After the war, excavations began bringing to light a nuragic complex with a unique architecture donated by the ancient architects, revealing construction techniques that also challenge the laws of physics and are unusual. In some points it can be seen that the stones positioned at the top are larger than the lower ones, or the entrance follows the construction technique of the dolmen with an architrave and cyclopean side panels.

This nuraghe never ceases to amaze over the millennia.

Legend of the Pirate Capitana

Between imagination and historical context

Hundreds of thousands of footsteps have been imprinted in Sardinia by people living near and far, hosted over time by the welcoming land of Sardinia. Unfortunately, in the past, some individuals have proved ungrateful and disrespectful towards the inhabitants of the island. Just think of the historical period of the pirate invasions, during which the defenseless island suffered raids and devastation throughout the territory.

Once, a keen observer and skilled storyteller, came up with a story that later became known as “the legend of the Pirate Captain”.

It is said that a crew of Saracen pirates landed on the Quartese coast with the intention of raiding, plundering and conquering the place.

The leader of the venture was the dreaded captain Mujahid, who at first planned to seize the island due to its central position in the Mediterranean Sea but then it happened that his warlike soul soon softened, when he realized to be madly in love with his slave. The two of them, in fact, became faithful companions of raids and Mujhaid made her to all intents and purposes an equal to her, calling her "Capitana" (Captain). However, the crew soon had to leave by sea in search of other fortunes, so Mujhaid asked his beloved to wait for her return to the promontory of "Is Mortorius" from where she could see his ship coming back. To his beloved, the pirate Mujahid had entrusted a task of great importance: to guard the riches and spoils, result of their raids.

It is said that the treasure was hidden inside the Nuraghe Diana and guarded by the pirate Capitana day and night. It is said that anyone who tried to approach was badly beaten and tied with chains, until the pirate Mujahid would returned. The latter, however, never reappeared and the eyes of the Captain, full of tears, will call him desperately for eternity. It is said that, on the tip of the promontory of Is Mortorius, right where the Saracen tower was located before it was destroyed during the Second World War, you can hear the sound of her weeping and lamenting.

The legend is at the same time compelling, tragic and romantic, perfectly fitting in the charming the locations in which the story occurs. Although it is known that the Pirate Capitana did not really exist, otherwise some claim and even admit to having seen her spirit as she wandered inside the nuraghe, wrapped in a long cloak adorned with precious stones.

In the 1960s, gangs of grave robbers violated the Nuraghe led by a medium who promised them to find the treasure hidden by the pirates; so they dug illegally, partially compromising the archaeological stratigraphy and causing damage to the monument. Some said that the Pirate Capitana tied unwanted visitors, passing a chain inside two large rings, actually present in the Nuraghe; however, according to the archaeologists they were large rings placed by the soldiers, who settled in the area during the Second World Wae and operating in the "Carlo Faldi" anti-ship battalion which extended over an area of ​​about 7 hectares and which constituted one of the bastions of the "Fronte a Mare" of the Golfo degli Angeli and was the last anti-ship battery to be set up.

Even today, the character of the Pirata Capitana remains rooted in the Quartese people's memory, so much that attempts have been made several times to reconstruct her figure to prove her existence. It seems that nineteenth-century transactions acts have been found that indicate the presence of a certain buyer who signed with the name of “Pirata Capitana”. Around this myth there is a splendid atmosphere of mystery, which still surrounds the coastal area of ​​Quartu, the promontory of Is Mortorius and the enchanting hill where the Nuraghe Diana stands.

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Progetto realizzato con il sostegno di POR FESR 2014-2020 Azione: 3.4.1 -Programma di intervento: 3 - Competitività delle imprese