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  • Sassogrosso
  • Vacone
  • Italy
  • Lazio
  • Province of Rieti
  • Vacone



  • 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)

  • The continuation of research on the site of the Roman villa at Vacone (RI) – already known for the presence of standing structures and excavated in the 1980s – provided new data and ideas about the occupation of the area where excavations have been undertaken by Rutgers University (NJ, U.S.A.) since 2011. The preceding campaigns mainly concentrated on the so-called central terrace and provided data regarding the villa’s plan during the various occupation phases until its abandonment, which as things stand is dated to a period post 3rd century A.D., and important evidence for the post-Roman occupation of the site, which continued until the early medieval period.

    This season, excavations took place on the main terrace and the south portico and revealed a number of rooms at the SW end of the villa relating to the bath complex. Some had suspensurae, and all were filled by substantial dumps of material containing pottery, marble slabs, stucco fragments, and a Doric capital. It was possible to further define the villa’s plan in the early imperial period thanks to the discovery of a stretch of the colonnaded portico to the east, paved with a mosaic and with remains of the wall decoration still in situ. Therefore, the villa had an L-shaped portico on its east and south sides. At the SE corner, room 8 opened onto both wings and was of considerable size (13.5 × 8 m). Room 35, facing onto the south wing of the portico was of particular interest as it was paved with the only figured mosaic found to date: a bi-chrome mosaic with a central emblem depicting a kantharos with vine branches coming out of it, which are populated with birds. This attests the phase of restructuring that took place in the 2nd century A.D. Recent digging for agricultural purposes revealed, below the early imperial paving (1st century A.D.), new parts of the late Republican villa, known from segments of floors and walls here and there on the upper terrace where the planting took place.

    Investigations at the NE corner of the so-called upper terrace, up against the terrace’s containing walls where the production area was situated, led to the identification of a portico paved in opus spicatum, built at a right angle to the east portico. This area was of particular interest as regards the post-Roman occupation. In addition to the oven found in 2017, in 2018 three infant burials and another oven, built abutting the terrace wall, were found in the same area. Lastly, room S8 in the lower level seemed to originally have been built as a catchment basin or cistern below the bath complex and was later enlarged to fill the entire room, in order to supply various needs as they occurred.

  • Gary D. Farney, Rutgers University, U.S.A 
  • Dylan Bloy, University of Tennessee, U.S.A. 
  • Tyler Franconi, University of Alberta, Canada  
  • Candace Rice, University of Alberta, Canada 


  • Gary D. Farney, Rutgers University, U.S.A


  • Candace Rice, University of Alberta, Canada
  • Dylan Bloy, University of Tennessee, U.S.A
  • Tyler Franconi, University of Alberta, Canada
  • Federica Pollari, SISBA
  • Andrew McLean,University of Edinburgh
  • Giulia Bellato, University of Cambridge
  • James Page, University of Edinburgh

Research Body

  • Rutgers University

Funding Body

  • Rutgers University


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