Skip to main content
×
×
Home

The cart ruts of Malta: an applied geomorphology approach

  • Derek Mottershead (a1), Alastair Pearson (a1) and Martin Schaefer (a1)
Abstract

The mysterious rock-cut cart ruts of Malta are here examined by geomorphologists. They find that the ruts could be caused by two-wheeled carts with a gauge of 1.40m carrying moderate loads. In wet weather the carts would gradually cut into the limestone and reach their ground clearance of 0.675m, causing the carriers to try another route – so there are plenty of them.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Abela, G. F. 1647. Della descrittione di Malta Isola nel Mare Siciliano con le sue antichita, ed altre notitie (facsimile edition by the Melitensia Book Club 1984, originally published in Malta by P. Bonacota in 1647). Valetta: Midsea Books.
Attewell, P. B. & Farmer, I. W.. 1976. Principles of engineering geology. New York: Halsted Press.
BBC. 1955. Buried Treasure 2: two Maltese mysteries; 13.06.55. BBC information & Archives: CC 052379.
Drew, D. P. 1996. Cart ruts and karren: karstification and human impacts in Malta, in Fornós, J. J. & Ginés, À. (ed.) Karren landforms (International symposium, Soller 1995): 403–20. Palma de Mallorca: Universitat de les Illes Balears.
Evans, E.M.P. 1934. Maltese cart-ruts. Antiquity 8: 339–42.
Fenton, E. G. 1918. The Maltese cart ruts. Man 18: 6772.
Gerrard, A. J. 1988. Rocks and landforms. London: Unwin Hyman.
Gracie, H. S. 1954. The ancient cart-tracks of Malta. Antiquity 28: 91–8.
Green, D. W., Winandy, J. E. & Kretschmann, D. E.. 1999. Chapter 4, in Wood handbook – Wood as an engineering material (Gen. Tech. Rept. FPL-GTR-113). Madison (WI): US Department of Agriculture.
Hughes, K. J. 1999. Persistent features from a palaeo-landscape: the ancient tracks of the Maltese Islands. Geographical Journal 165(1): 6278.
Oil Exploration Directorate. 1993. Geological map of the Maltese Islands. Valletta: Oil Exploration Directorate.
Parker, R. & Rubinstein, M.. 1984. The cart-ruts on Malta and Gozo. Malta: Gozo Press.
Pedley, H. M., House, M. R. & Waugh, B.. 1976. The geology of Malta and Gozo. Proceedings of the Geological Association 87(3): 325–41.
Pedley, M., Clarke, M. H. & Galea, P.. 2002. Limestone islands in a crystal sea: the geology of the Maltese Islands. San Gwann: Publishers Enterprise Group.
Pike, G. 1967. Pre-Roman land transport in the western Mediterranean region. Man: New Series 2(4): 593605.
Schneider, G. 2001. Investigating historical traffic routes and cart-ruts in Switzerland, Elsass (France) and Aosta Valley (Italy). The Oracle (Journal of the Grupp Arkeologiku Malti) 2: 1222.
Trump, D. H. 1993. Malta: an archaeological guide. Valletta: Progress Press.
Trump, D. H. 2000. Malta prehistory and temples. Santa Venera: Midsea Books
Ventura, F. & Tanti, T.. 1994. The cart tracks at San Pawl tat-Targa, Naxxar. Melita Historica 11(3): 219–40.
Winkler, E. M. 1975. Stone: properties, durability in man's environment. Wien: Springer.
Zammit, T. 1928. Prehistoric cart-tracks in Malta. Antiquity 11: 18125.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Antiquity
  • ISSN: 0003-598X
  • EISSN: 1745-1744
  • URL: /core/journals/antiquity
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Related content

Powered by UNSILO

Metrics

Altmetric attention score