You may love or hate them, but the truth is they are a typical symbol of our land, reminding a mysterious legend about love and revenge.
The ceramic hand-crafted, hand-made vases in the shape of a moor’s head are so widespread in Sicily that they have become one of the representative icons of the island. Today you can find them everywhere here, but the original place for ceramic production is for sure Caltagirone.
Have you ever wondered why they have exactly this shape?
It is said that during the Arab domination in 1100, a beautiful girl lived in Palermo who was very dedicated to the care of the plants on her balcony. One day a Moor (an Arab) passed by her house and on seeing her he fell madly in love with her, so much so that he decided to declare his love for her to the girl.
She was very impressed and immediately returned her feeling. One day, however, the girl knew that the Moor would soon go back to his country in the East where his wife and children were waiting for him, so feeling betrayed, during the night the girl cut off the Moor’s head, and with it she made a pot in which she planted a basil plant. Finally, she put it on display out on the balcony and all the inhabitants of the neighbourhood, envious of her, had terracotta pots built in the shape of a dark brown’s head.
…So, be careful with Sicilian women!!!