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date: 17 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The Maltese islands offer an unusual opportunity for the analysis of the interplay of light and dark in a prehistoric context. The potential is provided by the excellent preservation of the architectural monuments which permit the framing of different scenarios of light and dark, tempered by the need to reconstruct tentatively some missing elements such as the roofs. A number of features, such as the intense sunshine and the dramatic storms, have probably remained reasonably constant since prehistory although the modern pluvial patterns may have only developed from about 2200 bc. Other components such as sources of artificial light require archaeological information for their reconstruction. The most difficult task, however, is to understand the reception of light and dark by the prehistoric communities; but the detailed evidence that survives has offered the best possible chance to achieve this objective.

Keywords: islands, Mediterranean, Malta, weather, lightning, caves, monuments

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