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Excavation

  • San Calocero al Monte
  • loc. "Monte", reg. "Miranda"
  • San Calocero
  • Italy
  • Liguria
  • Provincia di Savona
  • Albenga

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Credits

  • 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 complex of San Calocero is one of the most significant late antique and Early Christian sites in north-western Italy. Nino Lamboglia began the first excavations here in the 1930s, and gained his first experience of stratigraphic archaeology on this site. Between the 1980s and 1990s, the Archaeological Superintendency of Liguria, carried out a series of excavation campaigns directed by Dr. G. Spadea and Prof. P. Pergola.

    The aim of the 2015 campaign was to continue excavating the facade area (Trench VI b), and to open a new area, which – although small – served to investigate a sector of the central nave (Trench X).

    Trench IV b:
    A masonry-built vat-shaped structure was uncovered on the west side of the sondage, interpretable as the site of a cremation (_bustum_) of late imperial date.
    A preliminary study of the grave goods suggests a date between the mid 3rd century and the early 4th century.
    Subsequently, in the late antique period (c. within the 6th century), a series of burials were placed in a privileged position facing the entrance to the funerary church.
    The discovery of the late imperial bustum appears to indicate that the area was already used as a cemetery in antiquity.

    Trench X
    The most important evidence comes from a context that also seems to be late imperial. In particular the surviving portion of a cobblestone surface was exposed at a level compatible both with the razing of the late-Roman enclosure (probably a funerary monument), on which the Early Christian church was built, and with that of a drainage hole made in the wall itself, showing that there must have been a drainage system just below floor level.

    What remained of a walled rectangular structure opening up against the northern edge of the trench and almost completely removed by Lamboglia in 1938 can be dated to the late antique period. Although doubts about the function of this structure remain, it should be noted that stratigraphically it lies in an intermediate phase between the late Roman cobble surface and the foundations of the 6th century church.
    This structure was on the same alignment as the late Roman bustum, while the 6th century church seemed to have a different orientation. This would suggest a rather early date for the structure, perhaps within the 4th century.

    Another tomb structure was uncovered that had been completely and carefully emptied of skeletal remains. It was from a later period which is difficult to date for the moment (late antique/early medieval?). Further excavation and the phasing of the various burials will provide a more precise interpretation of this structure.

    Lastly, a burial dating to between the 9th and 14th centuries presented marked anomalies: the bones appeared to have been completely burnt at another site. The remains were then buried in a grave covered by a heap of stones.

  • Philippe Pergola - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana - Città del Vaticano 
  • Stefano Roascio - Università di Aix-Marseille - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana 
  • Giuseppina Spadea - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici della Liguria 
  • Elena Dellù 
  • Gabriele Castiglia - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana 

Director

  • Philippe Pergola - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana - Città del Vaticano

Team

  • Elena Dellù- Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
  • Gabriele Castiglia - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana
  • Giovanna Ganzarolli - Università degli Studi di Padova
  • Giuseppina Spadea - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici della Liguria
  • Stefano Roascio - Università di Aix-Marseille - Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana
  • Riccardo Valente

Research Body

  • Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana, Città del Vaticano

Funding Body

  • Conad Albenga
  • Fondazione De Mari di Savona
  • Fondazione Nino Lamboglia onlus

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