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Excavation

  • Pani Loriga
  • Nuraghe Diana
  •  
  • Italy
  • Sardinia
  • South Sardinia
  • Santadi

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Summary (English)

  • Pani Loriga is situated on a low hill delimited by the course of the Riu Mannu, within sight of the modern town of Santadi. The region is characterised by various types of resources: woodland, agriculture, hunting and mining, which have favoured settlement here from very ancient times. In the 3rd millennium B.C. Pano Loriga was used as a burial site, in fact there is a domus de janas tomb here.

    The site was identified by Ferruccio Barreca during a survey in the mid 1960s. It was known that a nuraghe (Nuraghe Diana) existed on the site but the survey undertaken in 1965 also revealed the remains of a Punic settlement of considerable size, of a rock-cut necropolis and of a sacred area.

    The first investigations took place between 1968 and 1969 and were directed by Barreca, assisted by honorary Inspector Vittorio Pispisa. The work concentrated on the excavation of the structures on the “acropolis” and the so-called casemates, but subsequently concentrated on the Phoenician necropolis of cremation burials, discovered by chance during digging for the construction of a new access road to the site. During the course of 1969 numerous tombs (circa 150) were identified, of which only a small number were investigated. The tomb groups from the burials were acquired by the National Museum of Cagliari and are being studied by the ISCIMA.

    In July 1970 and from 1973 to 1976 the Phoenician necropolis was investigated by Giovanni Tore on behalf of the Cagliari Superintendency for Antiquities. The materials recovered from these excavations are at present housed in the Santadi Civic Archaeological Museum and have been published in part (Tore 1975, 1995, 2000). The finds from the surveys and excavations attest not only the antiquity of the Phoenician foundation, which can be dated back to the end of the 7th century B.C., but also the exchange network, probably organised from the coastal colonies, which imported from both the Greek and Etruscan worlds.

    In 2005 ISCIMA, in collaboration with the Superintendency and the Santadi Civic Archaeological Museum, began archaeological and topographical surveys. Subsequently, in 2007, excavations were undertaken on two sectors of the hill: one on the plateau situated on the south side of the hill (Area A), the other on the northern slope (Area B).

    In Area A structures pertaining to the Punic settlement came to light. Resting directly on the bed-rock these were elongated nuclei of rooms opening onto uniformly laid-out roads. The excavation of one room uncovered perfectly preserved floors covered with materials sealed in place by the collapse of a mud-brick wall which could be precisely documented thus providing a reconstruction of a cross-section of settlement life. A preliminary examination of the finds (commercial amphora, cooking pots, cups plates, stands) dated the sudden abandonment of this nucleus of rooms to the beginning of the 4th century B.C. and a partial new occupation to the Hellenistic period.

    In Area B, never previously investigated, the data collected identified two occupation phases in rapid chronological succession. The first, dated to the 6th century B.C., was attested by faint structural traces and scarce materials. In contrast, the second phase presented monumental characteristics, both in relation to the room modules and their construction technique. The latter attested a major constructional undertaking probably due to the strategic importance that the site already held from the initial phases of the Carthaginian presence in Sardinia. During 2008 and 2009 a large building with an irregular quadrangular plan (11/11,70 m x 9,30/9,60 m) was uncovered. Based on the corners it was orientated to the north and divided into three rectangular rooms. The lower courses of the structure were built using a composite technique in which piers and large squared blocks were dominant. It seemed to have been definitively abandoned during the course of the 5th century.

  • Massimo Botto - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche 
  • Ida Oggiano - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche 

Director

  • Massimo Botto - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche

Team

  • Donatella Mureddu - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici delle province di Cagliari e Oristano
  • Maria Rosaria Manunza - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici della Sardegna
  • Federica Candelato - a contratto in Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
  • Tatiana Pedrazzi - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
  • Ida Oggiano - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
  • Massimo Botto - Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche
  • Remo Forresu - Museo Civico Archeologico di Santadi
  • Studenti e dottorandi: Università degli Studi di Pisa, Roma, Torino, Viterbo, Verona, Cadice, Valencia, Lisbona.

Research Body

  • Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà Italiche e del Mediterraneo Antico (ISCIMA) del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche

Funding Body

  • Comune di Santadi
  • Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche

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