The Giants in Sicily: the Places of the Myth

Who I am
Lluis Enric Mayans

Author and references

Stories, legends and rumors, books and historical narratives, even testimonies have told us, and still tell us today, that Sicily was once inhabited by a population ... a little out of the ordinary. Let's call them by their name: i Giants.
What culture hasn't had a popular story about the Giants? David and Goliath made school, as did Polyphemus, but these are only the "ambassadors", indeed, the "front men" of a lineage that includes many illustrious members.
And what better place to give breath to stories and stimulate the desire for a holiday, for a "mythical" and mythological tour, if not the Sicily? After all, many before today have already defined Sicily as the land of the Giants: Boccaccio tells us about a skeleton 100 meters high found in Sicily in 1371, Ovid calls the Giant Tifeo, Virgil calls him Enceladus, and the latter even finds he confirms in Ludovico Ariosto's Orlando Furioso, which in a passage of his work says "where the Etna mountain treads on the electrocuted Enceladus behind".
Do you still want more proof? Well, I'll tell you about them.


  1. The Faraglioni of Acitrezza
  2. The Etna Volcano
  3. Lu Fusu of la Vecchia
  4. User questions and comments

The Faraglioni of Acitrezza

Once upon a time, long ago, there was a Giant named Polyphemus ... he belonged to the lineage of the gods Cyclops, terrible anthropophages recognizable by the only eye on their foreheads.
Together with his brothers, he lived in a cave 130 meters above sea level, near the Catania coast, sacking and destroying everything that came within his reach.
One day, I land on the island Ulysses, along with the other Argonauts: these, thanks to a shrewd deception, mocked the Cyclops, blinding him and fleeing on their ship. In anger, Polyphemus began to hurl huge boulders at them, in bulk, with the hope of hitting them. Ulysses and his companions managed to escape, and the boulders formed what are known today as i Faraglioni of Acitrezza, in Cyclops Riviera.

The Etna Volcano

At the time when the world was ruled by the Gods, they lived on Mount Olympus and they were masters of the destinies of humanity, sometimes decided on the basis of the moods and whims of one or the other.
On the earth lived the Titans, enormous and very powerful giant sons of Uranus and Gaia, the mother earth.
Fed up with the tantrums of Zeus and his companions, they attempted rebellion and the climb to Olympus, to defeat the Gods. But the father of the Gods violently hurls lightning and bolts against them, aided by Hephaestus who forged weapons suitable for the fight. The Titans were thus defeated, and as a punishment, forced to hold forever the forge of Hephaestus: the Etna volcano.
The continuous eruptions and turbulent activities of the volcano are unequivocal signs of the continuous attempts by the Titans to escape, even today, the sad destiny reserved for them.

Lu Fusu of la Vecchia

Near the current Selinunte, in the province of Trapani, once lived two populations of Giants: i Feaci and Lotophages, originating respectively from the current Camarina and the current Corfu.
In Selinunte they found a fertile and ideal territory for the inclinations of both: the Phaeacians in fact, were skilled navigators, while the Lotophages were devoted to pastoralism and agriculture, and fed only on the fruit of the Lotus.
Together with the young giants, there lived an old woman "giantess", the only one able to weave armor and woolen clothes for the giant children: no young woman had in fact managed to learn the secrets.
In reality, it seems that the secret of the old woman's skill lay in the tool she used: her "spindle" to spin the wool, over 16 meters high and with a diameter of 10, was in fact built with the unbreakable boulders of the first titans, Uranus and Gaia, which they used to build their homes.
This is why the old giant was so jealous of her instrument and absolutely did not want others to use it.
Finding this out, the young giants got angry, and tried to destroy the Spindle. They did not succeed, but the old woman died of pain.
Since then, the giants have been forced to walk around naked or cover themselves in unprocessed animal skins. IS "Lu Fusu of la Vecchia", it still resists today, among the ruins of gigantic shattered temples, still completely intact.

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