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Excavation

  • San Martino del Piano
  • Fossombrone
  • Forum Sempronii

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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).

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    Summary (English)

    • This campaign concentrated on two areas: the first was the so-called “Domus of Europa” and the second was in sector IV, to the east of the central baths and immediately north of the decumanus minor.

      Domus of Europa

      The entire area of the Domus of the “Europa and the bull”, excavated in 2004-2007, was cleaned.
      Excavations were undertaken in Sectors B2 and B3, towards the cardo “dei Seviri”, in room I and room O.

      Sectors B2-B3. In the southern part of this rich house the excavations uncovered three more rooms immediately west of room A. These three small, adjacent rooms were denominated, starting from the east, room P, room Q and room R. The walls were opus vittatum with a white plaster facing.

      Room P, partially excavated in 2007, had an entrance on the north side and was characterised by a simple beaten earth floor. It was probably a service room.

      In Room Q the removal of a layer of earth mixed with occasional tile and brick fragments revealed the remains of a badly damaged opus signinum floor. Only a small patch of this floor was found in situ. Along the eastern side of the room were the remains of four amphorae (only one was moderately well-preserved), arranged one beside the other. On the southern side a layer of ash was uncovered, whilst in the north an imbrex was noted, inserted into the wall to act as a drainage channel, linked to the drain situated immediately to the north on an east-west alignment and which ran under the threshold of room A. The drain had a brick covering. The amphorae, whose fill was removed in the laboratory, were also full of clean ash with no charcoal fragments. The presence of these amphorae and the drainage channel suggest that this room related to the fullonica of the domus.

      Room R was only partially excavated as the western part had been disturbed by a modern excavation for vine planting. A thick layer of collapsed material constituted by tiles, lime, bricks, amphora and coarse pottery fragments was uncovered. Below was a beaten earth floor which in some places had been reddened by burning. Along the northern wall were the remains of two large containers for dry foodstuffs resting directly on the floor and attesting the abandonment of this room. The room’s western perimeter was not identified, but was probably damaged by the modern digging mentioned above.

      In Room I excavation of the floor, partially destroyed to the east by the trench for a row of vines, continued. Following the removal of material that had collapsed from the walls, including fragments of white wall plaster, the floor was exposed. This was characterised by a ruderatio of lime and cobbles over which was a layer of cement mortar in which the tesserae were embedded. The mosaic had been completely removed in antiquity, no tesserae remained in situ, but their presence was attested by the impressions left in the make up.

      Sector IV

      Here work continued on the excavation of the late antique necropolis overlying the remains of Roman houses. A further 11 burials came to light, some a cappuccina, with a bed and covering of tiles, others in simple earth graves. Two particularities were noted: the presence of a number of burials delimited by simple low dry-stone walls and the presence of a reduction. In the latter the chronology of a series of three burials, one on top of the other, was clear: the first had been reduced by the moving of the tibias to make room for the second, whilst the third lay on top of the previous one. Many of the tombs were created using the walls from earlier structures. Some were on a north-south alignment, others east-west. No grave goods were present.

      At the centre of the decumanus minor, in correspondence with a monumental entrance situated on its northern side, a semicircular structure in opus vittatum came to light. This exedra, facing east and therefore towards the monumental entrance, was blocked by a badly-built stone wall, also in opus vittatum. A trench was dug in the north-eastern corner of the esedra which revealed the presence of two lime floor surfaces. Towards the back, the presence of a small drain and the opus signinum water-proofing of the structure, suggest the presence of a nymphaeum or fountain.

    • Mario Luni - Università degli Studi di Urbino, Istituto di Archeologia e Storia dell’Arte Antica 
    • Oscar Mei - Università di Urbino, Dipartimento di Scienze del Testo e del Patrimonio Culturale 

    Director

    Team

    • Claudia Cardinali
    • Giancarlo Gori - Museo di Fossombrone
    • Marcello Montanari
    • Roberta Leone
    • Paolo Quiri - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici delle Marche

    Research Body

    • Università degli Studi di Urbino

    Funding Body

    • Comune di Fossombrone

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