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Excavation

  • San Martino del Piano
  • Fossombrone
  • Forum Sempronii

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    • 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 season’s excavations concentrated on the apsidal building on the side of the forum area (probable Augusteum).
      A mid 17th century manuscript housed in the Passionei Library at Fossombrone mentions that in 1660 a large building with a central nave and two aisles, an apse to the west at the end of the nave, was discovered in an area beside the Flaminia and uphill from the church of San Martino del Piano. Large quantities of marble slabs (_opus_ sectile) were removed from the building in eight carts (most of which then sold). The facing slabs for a statue base were found in the apse. They bear an inscription attributed by Bormann to Octavius Augustus (CIL XI 6113) and dated to the 5th-6th century A.D. A series of elements now make it possible to confirm that the gilded bronze statue of Victory in the Kassel Museum was removed from this building. Furthermore, the contextualization between the statue and the Emperor Augustus, mentioned in the inscription on the statue’s original base can also be confirmed. The described plan of an apsidal building corresponds in alignment (south-east/north-west), dimensions (12 feet is the width of the central part given in the manuscript) and location (at 12 feet from the consular road) with a monumental structure identified in a recent aerial photograph, in the zone connected with the town’s forum.

      A monumental building, c. 12 × 18 m, situated next to the via Flaminia, was excavated as part of this joint research project between the Archaeological Superintendency for the Marche and Urbino University. It was characterised by a plan with a reduced relationship between width and length, of 0.62, and was paved in a chequer-board pattern of white and grey marble slabs measuring two feet by three (c. 60 × 90 cm). It was noted that this paving is similar, for example, to the paving in the Forum of Augustus. The walls were also faced with large slabs of reddish marble at the footing and other colours and types that formed geometric figures, as the various pieces – of different size and shape – show. The monumental structure had two columns, 59 cm in diameter at the base, on the façade and two engaged columns in antis, with five steps preserved in correspondence with the central door, the same width as the intercolumniation. A small apse was preserved at the centre of the opposite side of the building. It was here that the bronze statue of Victory now in the Kassel Museum was found. It originally stood on a base with an inscription in honour of Augustus. During the 2013 excavations, a fragment of an inscription mentioning the seviri Augustales was recovered, which together with similar finds in the Roman town, can be attributed to the imperial cult there.

    • Oscar Mei- Università di Urbino, Dipartimento di Scienze della Comunicazione e Discipline Umanistiche 

    Director

    • Mario Luni - Università degli Studi di Urbino, Istituto di Archeologia e Storia dell’Arte Antica

    Team

    • Massimo Gasparini - AION Soc. Coop.
    • Laura Invernizzi
    • Lorenzo Cariddi
    • Chiara Delpino - Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici delle Marche

    Research Body

    • Univerista’ di Urbino

    Funding Body

    • Comune di Fossombrone
    • Univerista’ di Urbino

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