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  • Spina
  • Spina, Valle Lepri
  • Spina
  • Italy
  • Emilia-Romagna
  • Provincia di Ferrara
  • Comacchio



  • The Italian Database is the result of a collaboration between:

    MIBAC (Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali - Direzione Generale per i Beni Archeologici),

    ICCD (Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo e la Documentazione) and

    AIAC (Associazione Internazionale di Archeologia Classica).

  • AIAC_logo logo

Summary (English)

  • The 2015 excavations at the Etruscan settlement of Spina aimed to check the plan of the rectangular timber building dating to period XII (first half of the 5th century B.C.) and to excavate the mound outside this structure towards the northern channel.

    Period XII
    The removal of a thick layer of clay revealed a complex stratigraphy of timber constructions, both relating to the building and the bank towards the north. The timbers were in a good state of preservation and the stratigraphy clear, thus it was possible to identify two construction phases for the building and surrounding area. The pottery finds date this period, which can be divided into two phases, to within the first half of the 5th century B.C.

    An unusual and complicated cross-shaped timber structure was excavated towards the northern channel, made from trunks of differing sizes and stakes, probably necessary for fixing and stabilizing the bank and house. The structure was on the level of the two channels, to which it is closely linked, and had an open space in the central part, where several postholes and a timber plank suggest the presence of a small bridge. The oak trunks form a system that was built at the same time as the lateral palafitte structures of the channels.

    Phase one
    The excavations exposed the horizontal foundation beams for all four sides, the corner posts, and the posts situated at the mid-point of the four sides of the phase one house. The building was almost square (c. 6 × 7 m). The presence of a horizontal beam, positioned as an extension of the north wall reaching as far as the edge of the west channel suggests the building extended as far as the channel itself. Towards the north-western part of the centre of the building, a sub-oval area with traces of a burnt surface was exposed that can be interpreted as a hearth. The numerous animal bones together with the presence of a hearth, the types of pottery, and several loom-weights confirm the identification of the structure as a house in both its phases.

    Phase two
    The later phase reused the building but was very different in the part towards the west channel, where the well-preserved remains of a rectangular roof (3 × 6 m) were uncovered. Six timber posts resting on planks positioned in rectangular housings supported the roof. The remains of a wooden loom and several loom-weights were found in the space under the roof. Inside the house, by the hearth that had been moved slightly towards the north-west corner, a perfectly rectangular opening (96 × 70 cm) was identified in the baked clay. It was bordered on at least three sides by small planks. This ‘empty’ rectangular element, surrounded by the remains of baked clay and lying slightly obliquely, may be interpreted as part of the north wall with a window.

  • Christoph Reusser - Istituto di Archeologia dell'Università di Zurigo 


  • Christoph Reusser - Istituto di Archeologia dell'Università di Zurigo


  • Assistenti, dottorandi e studenti delle Università di Zurigo e di Firenze
  • Martin Mohr- Istituto di Archeologia dell'Università di Zurigo
  • Luca Cappuccini- Università di Firenze

Research Body

  • Istituto di Archeologia- Università di Zurigo

Funding Body

  • Ufficio federale della cultura


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