Verraco

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Bulls of Guisando, in El Tiemblo, Castile and León, Spain.
Verraco in Mingorría, Castile and León, Spain.
Verraco located in the Plaza mayor of Villanueva del Campillo. It is the Vettones's largest zoomorphic sculpture found until now in the Iberian Peninsula.
Verracos in Villatoro, Castile and León, Spain.
Mule of Villardiegua de la Ribera, Castile and León, Spain.
Verraco in Ciudad Rodrigo, Castile and León, Spain.

The verracos (English: boar) (Spanish: verraco; Portuguese: berrão), in the Iberian Peninsula, are the Vettones's granite megalithic monuments, sculptures of animals as found in the west of the Iberian meseta - the high central plain of the Iberian peninsula - in the Spanish provinces of Ávila, Salamanca, Segovia, Salamanca, Zamora, and Cáceres, but also in the north of Portugal and Galicia. Over 400 verracos have been identified.

The Spanish word "verraco" normally refers to boars, and the sculptures are sometimes called verracos de piedra (pigs of stone) to distinguish them from live animals. The stone verracos appear to represent not only pigs but also other animals. Some have been identified as bulls, and the village of El Oso, Ávila, named for "the Bear", has a verraco which supposedly represents a bear. Their dates range from the mid-4th to 1st centuries BC. There are some similar zoomorphic monument markers in lands of Poland from the same period or older.[citation needed]

Though they were perhaps not confined to a single usage, the verracos were an essential part of the landscape of the Vettones, one of the Pre-Roman peoples of the Iberian Peninsula. It has generally been assumed, from their high visibility in their original open fields surroundings, that these sculptures had some protective religious significance, whether guarding the security of livestock or as funerary monuments (some of them bear Latin funerary inscriptions). The verracos are particularly numerous too in the vicinity of the walled Celtiberian communities that Romans had called oppida.

Notable verracos[edit]

Portugal[edit]

  • Murça
    • Porca de Murça (literally the "Sow of Murça" in Portuguese, although the sculpture appears to represent a boar, i.e. a male rather than a female pig). The name has been taken to designate a red wine of the Douro district.[1]
  • Torre de Dona Chama
    • Berroa
  • Marvão
    • Verraco head (Portuguese: berrão) displayed in the Marvão Municipal Museum
      Head of berrão, with right eye clearly visible, found in the Abegoa area of Marvão. Today in Municipal Museum in Marvão.

Spain[edit]

Castile and León[edit]

Province of Ávila[edit]
Province of Salamanca[edit]
Province of Segovia[edit]
  • Segovia (2 verracos: a bull and a wild boar; today in the Museo Provincial).[2]
  • Coca (3 verracos: two in front the City Gate of the Town[2] and one embedded in the castle's walls).
Province of Toledo[edit]
Province of Zamora[edit]

Extremadura[edit]

Province of Cáceres[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • J. Leite de Vasconcelos, Religiões da Lusitânia, Imprensa Nacional Casa da Moeda, Lisbon.
  • Eduardo Sánchez Moreno, 2000. Vetones: Historia y Arqueología de un pueblo prerromano (Madrid: Ediciones de la Universidad Autónoma)

External links[edit]

  1. ^ "Concelho de Murcaport". rtsmarao.pt. 
  2. ^ a b MARTÍN, José Luis (1992). The Segovian sculpture. Segovia. pp. 231–235. ISBN 84-606-0909-X. 
  3. ^ City Council of La Puebla de Montalbán (2010). "El VII aniversario del Museo ‘La Celestina' acercará al público el verraco encontrado en La Puebla". Retrieved May 26, 2010.