Coddu Vecchiu is a Nuragic funerary monument located near Arzachena, dating from the Bronze Age. The site consists of a stele, stone megaliths and a gallery grave, and is one of the larger Nuragic Giants' graves on the island. The Nuraghe La Prisgiona is located nearby.
The site was excavated in 1966 by Editta Castaldi. Among the artifacts recovered were pans, bowls and plates with comb decoration, as well as vases with bent necks, and vase fragments of the early Nuragic Bonnanaro culture, suggesting the monument was constructed early in the Nuragic period c. 1800–1600 BC.
Coddu Vecchiu appears to have originally consisted of a cist, which was expanded during the middle Bronze Age c. 1800–1600 BC and covered with a gallery grave and the ornate stele portal stone and megaliths characteristic of Giants' graves. The stone forecourt consists of eleven granite stones arranged in a semicircle and measures about 12 meters across. It has been hypothesized that the semicircular arrangement of the stones may have been an attempt to harness the telluric current of the granite for rejuvenative purposes. The central stele stands about 4 meters high and contains the entrance into the tomb. The gallery grave extends behind the forecourt, measures about 10 meters long, and was probably once covered by a tumulus.
The upper portion of the stele was once taken by a local farmer and used as a plow, but it was soon recovered and restored to its place in the monument. Coddu Vecchiu is among the most well-preserved of Giants' graves, and continues to be a popular tourist attraction.References:
The Château d'Olhain is probably the most famous castle of the Artois region. It is located in the middle of a lake which reflects its picturesque towers and curtain walls. It was also a major stronghold for the Artois in medieval times and testimony to the power of the Olhain family, first mentioned from the 12th century.
The existence of the castle was known early in the 13th century, but the present construction is largely the work of Jean de Nielles, who married Marie d’Olhain at the end of the 15th century.
The marriage of Alix Nielles to Jean de Berghes, Grand Veneur de France (master of hounds) to the King, meant the castle passed to this family, who kept it for more than 450 years. Once confiscated by Charles Quint, it suffered during the wars that ravaged the Artois. Besieged in 1641 by the French, it was partly demolished by the Spaniards in 1654, and finally blown-up and taken by the Dutch in 1710. Restored in 1830, it was abandoned after 1870, and sold by the last Prince of Berghes in 1900. There is also evidence that one of the castles occupants was related to Charles de Batz-Castelmore d'Artagnan, the person Alexandre Dumas based his Three Musketeers charictor d'Artagnan on.
During the World War I and World War II, the castle was requisitioned first by French troops, then Canadian and British soldiers. The current owner has restored the castle to its former glory.