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:
Royal Palace of Naples was one of the four residences near Naples used by the Bourbon Kings during their rule of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (1734-1860): the others were the palaces of Caserta, Capodimonte overlooking Naples, and the third Portici, on the slopes of Vesuvius.
Construction on the present building was begun in the 17th century by the architect Domenico Fontana. Intended to house the King Philip III of Spain on a visit never fulfilled to this part of his kingdom, instead it initially housed the Viceroy Fernando Ruiz de Castro, count of Lemos. By 1616, the facade had been completed, and by 1620, the interior was frescoed by Battistello Caracciolo, Giovanni Balducci, and Belisario Corenzio. The decoration of the Royal Chapel of Assumption was not completed until 1644 by Antonio Picchiatti.
In 1734, with the arrival of Charles III of Spain to Naples, the palace became the royal residence of the Bourbons. On the occasion of his marriage to Maria Amalia of Saxony in 1738, Francesco De Mura and Domenico Antonio Vaccaro helped remodel the interior. Further modernization took place under Ferdinand I of the Two Sicilies. In 1768, on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Carolina of Austria, under the direction of Ferdinando Fuga, the great hall was rebuilt and the court theater added. During the second half of the 18th century, a 'new wing' was added, which in 1927 became the Vittorio Emanuele III National Library. By the 18th century, the royal residence was moved to Reggia of Caserta, as that inland town was more defensible from naval assault, as well as more distant from the often-rebellious populace of Naples.
During the Napoleonic occupation the palace was enriched by Joachim Murat and his wife, Caroline Bonaparte, with Neoclassic decorations and furnishings. However, a fire in 1837 damaged many rooms, and required restoration from 1838 to 1858 under the direction of Gaetano Genovese. Further additions of a Party Wing and a Belvedere were made in this period. At the corner of the palace with San Carlo Theatre, a new facade was created that obscured the viceroyal palace of Pedro de Toledo.
In 1922, it was decided to transfer here the contents of the National Library. The transfer of library collections was made by 1925.
The library suffered from bombing during World War II and the subsequent military occupation of the building caused serious damage. Today, the palace and adjacent grounds house the famous Teatro San Carlo, the smaller Teatrino di Corte (recently restored), the Biblioteca Nazionale Vittorio Emanuele III, a museum, and offices, including those of the regional tourist board.