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  • Contrada Vela
  • Crotone
  •  
  • Italy
  • Calabria
  • Provincia di Crotone
  • Crotone

Credits

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Monuments

Periods

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Chronology

  • 730 BC - 350 BC
  • 50 AD - 200 AD

Season

    • The archaeological investigations during the summer and autumn of 2009 in _contrada_ Vela were carried out following an order to stop modern building work and control the damage it may have caused to a small, but important, area of the northern quarter of Kroton. The area lies on the eastern slopes of the hill _della Batteria_, where at the beginning of the 20th century a stretch of the town walls and a monumental entrance to the _polis_ had been recorded. Both were later destroyed during the construction of the industrial aqueduct. Trench 1 measures circa 2,00 x 6.50 metres: the largest of the trenching carried out with mechanical means is over three metres in depth. Despite some serious _lacunae_ consistent traces of an intense frequentation were recognized, which is not exclusively residential. Occupation seems to have begun from the foundation of the _apoikia_, and continued until the first half of the 4th century BC; some indications of reoccupation in the early imperial period strengthens the hypothesis of an agricultural use of the old urban quarter, which underwent a rapid ruralisation after the definitive abandonment from the 3rd century BC. In this context, the existence of a road in beaten earth mixed with fragments of pottery and gravel whose width (4,80 metres) coincides with that of the axes which intersect the _plateiai_. But this road, which runs in a roughly east-west direction, has a different orientation to the general one of the quarter, which diverges by 60 degrees east from the astronomic north. Unfortunately it is impossible to ascertain if the road was laid down before or at the same time as the construction of the thick boundary wall in blocks of local limestone built at the end of the 6th century BC. along the southern side. The construction of the latter is linked to an equally monumental structure, only partially brought to light, which is also compatible with the hypothesis of a _temenos_ relating to a sacred area and to the related buildings. Behind the excavations have identified the houses _alpha_ (mid 5th century BC) and _beta_ (end 5th – beginning 4th century BC), although unfortunately the nature of the frequentation in the archaic period is still unknown. On the opposite slope, the more modest walled structure which marks the northern limit of the street intercepts a hole full of pottery fragments similar to other nearby holes, which in the 6th century seem to have been excavated in the earth above the substantial level full of pottery of the end 8th-7th centuries BC which had obliterated, after it had been partially levelled, a sort of walled chest, perhaps quadrangular in form. The latter, which lies at a much lower level than the late archaic remains, could be related to the presumed cultual use of the area in the first centuries of the life of the _polis_. In this context, the picture offered by the ceramic classes is rich and heterogenous not only for the abundant evidence regarding imports (kotylai and skyphoi of Corinthian manufacture of the early and mid Protocorinthian phase predominate, while _lekythoi_, _pyxides_ and _olpai_ appear only from the second half of the 7th century BC), but also and above all for the new evidence for local sub-geometric productions (first half of the 7th century BC) which, although they depend heavily on protocorinthian models, stand out in the panorama of the contemporary productions of Sybaris and of the areas of Siris and Metapontum.

Bibliography

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