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  • Nora, ex Area militare
  • Pula
  • Italy
  • Sardinia
  • Provincia di Cagliari
  • Pula



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Summary (English)

  • In 2012 the Universities of Padova, Milano and Genova and the Superintendency for Cagliari and Oristano reopened excavations in the ex naval base on the promontory of Nora (Pula), southern Sardinia. In the Roman period, the area situated on the isthmus linking the peninsula to the mainland was part of the urban area, while in an earlier period it must have been peripheral to the town and was used mainly as a cemetery area.

    In fact, in 1871 Col. A. Roych and Cav. M. Satto had explored a number of underground rock-cut tombs. The first systematic excavation was undertaken in the eastern sector between 1891 and 1892 by F. Nissardi. A total of 40 tombs were explored dating to the period at the height of the Carthaginian colony’s development, datable to between the mid 5th century and the end of the 4th century B.C.
    During the first excavations at the end of the 19th century a single cremation burial in a cist was also discovered. This burial was part of a Phoenician necropolis whose exact size and nature remain unknown. However, in 2011 excavations undertaken by the Superintendency in the area of the amphitheatre situated immediately north of the ex-naval zone confirmed the presence of an archaic cemetery.

    In 2012-2013, the University of Padova began a series of investigations that foresaw the creation of a complete digital topographical map of the area, something that previously did not exist. Once the area had been cleared, geophysical surveys were carried out using a mixed technique based on geo-electrical methods and ground penetrating radar. Two separate areas were surveyed: the first situated south-west of the “Casa della Guardiania”, between the latter and the fencing separating the ex-naval area from the fishing harbour, and covering an area of c. 30 × 60 m. The second was positioned along the north-eastern edge of the ex-naval area, abutting the sector in which the necropolis of chamber tombs is situated and covering an area of c. 25 × 60 m. Numerous and significant anomalies were registered in both survey areas.

    In the sector south-west of the the “Casa della Guardiania”, the survey seemed to indicate the existence, at shallow depth, of a bedrock surface with cavities cut into it. In the south-eastern area the anomalies were localized and very intense giving the impression of the presence of wide cavities cut into the subsoil, recalling the chamber tombs explored in the same area in the 19th century. Although the survey results suggest the presence of ancient structures, their topographical and structural nature will have to be confirmed by the excavations planned for 2014.

  • J. Bonetto 


  • Jacopo Bonetto


  • A. Bertelli
  • A. Mazzariol
  • R. Deiana
  • Jacopo Bonetto

Research Body

  • Università degli Studi di Padova, Dipartimento dei Beni Culturali

Funding Body

  • Università degli Studi di Padova, Dipartimento dei Beni Culturali


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