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Discovery of fragments of a Gorgoneion: a ceramic representation of the Gorgon Medusa from Gorham’s Cave Image

One of the classic stories in Greek mythology is the beheading of the Gorgon Medusa by Perseus. This intricate story in which Perseus finds his way, with the help ofthe gods, to the lair of the gorgon sisters and decapitates the most evil ofthe three – Medusa – appears according to tradition to have been set within the confines of the Strait of Gibraltar and adjacent regions of North Africa.

Today, scientists have revealed at the 2019 Calpe Conference, the discovery of fragments of a Gorgoneion, a ceramic representation of the Gorgon Medusa, from Gorham’s Cave in Gibraltar. The location of the finds, in the deepest part of the cave, appears to give support to the myth and its location.

Location of Gorgon Medusa within Gorham's Cave

The discovery is a major breakthrough in the link between classical mythology and archaeology. It indicates that, in the eyes of ancient mariners of the 8th and 7th Centuries BCE, Gorham’s Cave, situated at the base of one of the Pillars of Herakles, was the home of the Gorgon Medusa.


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