4,000-Year-Old Megalithic Tomb in Spain Vandalized with Harry Potter References
A vandal has defaced a fine specimen of an ancient dolmen tomb, made of large rock slabs, in Vigo, Galicia, Spain. The graffiti vandal spray-painted the word “Always” and arcane symbols, both references to the Harry Potter movies.
According to the Olive Press website, the dolmen of La Casa dos Mouros is one of the top tourist attractions in Vigo. Mayor Oscar Dominguez clearly was not too concerned about the graffiti, telling Olive Press: “Maybe J.K. Rowling dropped by to promote her latest spin-off. Either way, it is clear that the graffiti was carried out by an amateur in the world of magic.”
Ms. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter book series, has a new movie that premiered in early November, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Olive Press explains the arcane symbol that the graffiti artist painted on an upright standing stone of the dolmen:
The Deathly Hallows motif, from the seventh Harry Potter novel, symbolises three brothers’ desire of death: a way to escape from death (the layer of invisibility); a stone to raise the dead (the resurrection stone) and the most powerful wand of all, an elder wand.
The estimated age of the dolmen is 4,000 years, which would place its construction during the Stone Age. The only thing the dolmen of La Casa dos Mouros is missing is the stone that would have lain across the top of the monument.
There was no written language at the time the dolmens and other types of stone tombs and structures were constructed across Spain, Europe and much of the world, so many archaeologists assume their purpose was for burial. Human remains have been found in dolmens. However, it is also highly possible that this was a secondary use for an already existing structure. Any rituals or festivities that may have been associated with them are lost to time.
The dolmen La Casa Dos Mouros before it was vandalized (Photo: galiciapuebloapueblo.blogspot.com)
In Antequera, a region of Spain, UNESCO granted dolmens there World Heritage Site status this past summer.
Expatica.com says of the Antequera dolmens:
The specific positioning [of the Menga dolmen] would have had mystical importance for the prehistoric tribes who built it. It is believed the architects were farmers who resided in the Guadalhorce valley during the Neolithic period and copper age. It would have taken the combined effort of several communities to source and transport the stones and to complete the constructions. They have remained remarkably intact having been built at least 5,000 years ago.
The distribution of standing stones and stone circles from the Neolithic era in Europe. (Map by Cromwell)
In 2015, Ancient Origins did a special report, ‘Legends say Mysterious Women Built the Megaliths of Portugal’, a country neighboring Spain on the Iberian Peninsula. That article, which featured information from archaeology scholar Henna Lindström of the University of Helsinki in Finland, states:
Prehistoric Europeans told legends about powerful, mysterious female makers of European stone tombs called dolmens and cromlechs. On the one hand, they were said to bestow riches and fertility on individuals, and fantastic gifts like brewing beer and farming; all they wanted in return was a little milk. On the other hand, they were described as angry snakes guarded by bulls, cursing people and hoarding the very gold of the sun. They were imagined as beautiful cloven-hoofed snake- or bull-women, who guarded the dolmens and could speak with the dead, spin the rays of the sun, and even create the world.
Since the dolmen of La Casa dos Mouros has lasted at least 2,000 years, it’s likely it will last many years more and the elements and time will wear away the vandal’s paint and eventually leave no trace at all of the graffiti.
Featured image: The graffiti vandal spray-painted arcane symbols and the word “Always” and the symbol <3 (an emoticon for “heart”), some of which are references to the Harry Potter movie series. (Screenshots from video from La Voz de Galicia website)
By Mark Miller