"Mothya, a 27 centuries history" Mozia by Noel_Leon

Mozia Travel Guide: 11 reviews and 23 photos

It all began when a rich businessman, Benjamin Ingham, owner of mines, shipping companies, railroads, came to Marsala in the first years of 19th century. He tasted the sweet wine which was produced here and he realized that it could have been a fine replacement of Portwine and Madera. Those wines were very popular throughout Europe but at the time Portugal was occupied by Napoleon’s troops and it was not possible to import them.
Because of his many occupations, Ingham needed some help to run the wine business in Marsala. He had no children so he turned to his sister to send one of her sons who died shortly after. Ingham wrote to his sister: "your son is dead, send another one".

Thus came Joseph Whitaker, who got married to a Sicilian woman. They had 12 children. Only 3 of them remained in Italy, including Joseph junior, who became the true successor of Ingham. He extend the Marsala winery business, but his real passion was archeology.
He bought Mozia, a 40 hectares island next to Marsala, in 1906. His excavations were impressive and returned the light to the remains of a great past.
It was discovered that Mozia was one of the most important Phoenician settlements in Sicily, destroyed and rebuilt several times.

A visit to the island will lead you to impressive remains older then 2300 years: city fortifications, pebbles mosaics in Greek style, two necropolis, a sanctuary where human sacrifices were carried out, houses, a road just below the sea surface which connected the island to the mainland.
Most impressive is an amazing discovery of 1979: the marble statue of a young man, the Ephebus of Motya, which is an absolute masterpiece. It is one meter 90 centimeters high and dates back to the fifth century BC.
The statue is on display on the island at the Joseph Whitaker museum together with many other artifacts found in Mozia and the neighboring area.

  • Last visit to Mozia: Apr 2009
  • Intro Updated Apr 22, 2009
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