Hagar Qim is a group of temples situated on high, open wasteland near the southern seacoast of Malta. In this, it's different from the other temples which are usually sited in the inhabited areas of the island. The temple site was discovered under a mound of rubble and debris in 1839. The group consists of two units: the earliest was originally a five apse structure which was eventually modified and extended to form a fan-like series of four irregular apses. No other temple has this curious feature.
Hager Qim (meaning 'standing stones') was originally built in the Ggantija period and extended largely in the Tarxien temple period around 2700 BCE. The floor plan seems less regular than its predecessor at Ggantija. Six large, circular rooms are connected by an interior passage. Most of the rooms also have outside entrances, and an open-air shrine is set into the outer wall. Hagar Qim has an impressive entrance: one solid wall of megaliths with the portal in the middle and a stone benches along the walls. You can almost picture the inhabitants on those benches. This temple is the one that's in the best condition. As you can see on the aerial picture, there are remains of a few more temples.
The site was excavated in the beginning of the 19th century CE and it produced seven 'fat figure statuettes' (See: Magna Mater) and the unparalleled four sided althar with a styulized representation of a potted plant on each side. But remarkeable was that Hagar Qim had a smal section of corbrelling or oversailing walls illustrating the constructing technique used to narrow the span of the roof, the same technique that was in use more than 1,000 years later in the 'tholoi' of Mycenae.
Sun & Moon Alignments
At the main temple of the Hagar Qim complex are alignments with the sun. On the morning of the summer solstice the sun passes through a hole (known as the 'oracle hole') and enters into an apse of the temple. At sunset on the same day, the sun sets in line with the entrance of the high apse, and lights up the back of a small niche through a stone window.
Another alignment that has been observed at Hagar Qim is the alignment of the main axis of the temple with the Northern and Southern maximum declination of the full moon. Since the cycle of the moon is very long, 18.6 years, probably this alignment is coincidental, and not intentional. Yet it is curious that Hagar Qim is the only temple on the Maltese islands that has two entrances along the full moon's alignment.