• Via Sepolcri
  • Torre Annunziata
  • Oplontis
  • Italy
  • Campania
  • Naples
  • Torre Annunziata


  • failed to get markup 'credits_'
  • AIAC_logo logo



  • No period data has been added yet


  • 100


    • The restoration of the so-called villa of Poppea, sumptuous imperial residence, is being carried out by the architect Bruno Sammarco. The project is aimed at the preservation and mise en valeur of the monument. It includes the consolidation of parts of the structure, the replacement of some of the roofs, the checking and reordering of the guttering and the repair of damage provoked by the infiltration of rainwater, The stuccoes, mosaics and paintings will be consolidated and cleaned, while the principal causes of their deterioration, principally infiltration, will be eliminated (Lorenzo Fergola).
    • We present the results of the Oplontis Project's first two seasons of field work. The Oplontis Project is conducting a systematic study of Villa A at Oplontis (Torre Annuzianta, Italy). Although numerous articles and guide books have been published on the villa since its initial excavation (1964-1980), to date no comprehensive publication has appeared. The Oplontis Project seeks to provide the first full publication of the villa. This study considers construction history, social function, material culture, and ensembles of decoration. The project addresses several questions raised by the remains of the villa: 1) what is the exact chronology of the villa, and how did its appearance change over its history? 2) Did this villa have direct access to the sea, and if so, was it built on an artificial platform, or did it take advantage of the natural topography? 3) Was this complex always used as a villa, or did its function change during its later history? 4) How were the villa's spaces used and experienced by its owner(s), invited guests, clients, freepersons, and slaves? The team completed an initial season of study in January and May of 2005 and conducted a full season of work in May and June of 2006. This initial fieldwork, which included excavation, masonry analysis, and a comprehensive wall painting study, has discovered new evidence for the history of villa's construction and decoration. (J.R. Clarke, M. Thomas)
    • In 2007, we expanded one of these restoration trenches and designated it as OP3. This trench, located at the SW corner of the swimming pool, produced further ceramic evidence as well as numerous fragments of the same cocciopesto pavement found in the swimming pool. Excavation here also discovered a significant deposit of demolished wall painting, architectural stuccos, and a segment of a brick column. One of the more remarkable finds from OP3 was fragment of a Third-Style painted frieze that we know came from room 8. On the basis of visual analysis, John Clarke had noted in his earlier study (Clarke, 1987) that the existing painted decoration of room 8 consists of an original phase decorated in the Third Style of 1-15 CE on the north and south walls with a careful imitation of the Third-Style scheme on the east and west walls. The fragment from OP3 was indeed a piece of that demolished Third-Style wall decorative scheme. Despite the fact that room 8 is 100 meters from our trench and the fragment emerged at the depth of 1.5 m, it is clear now that workmen filled this area to the south of the pool with the plaster from walls dating back as far as 1-15 CE. In 2007 we also excavated a small (1x1 meter) trench inside the southern wall of the pool (OP4) in order to study the pool’s pavement and sub-pavement. Interestingly, this trench found a Fourth-Style painting fragment below the pavement of the pool\'s south end, suggesting that at the very least the pool was repaved after 45 CE.
    • The 2008 season focused on the excavation of OP5, located to the south of OP3. This trench sought to further explore the southern area of the pool and attempt to date the foundation wall of room 87, the large diaeta to the SW of the swimming pool. The finds here were similar to those from OP1 and OP3 with extensive evidence of demolition. Of great significance here was the documentation of a beaten earth work pavement which coincided with the top of the shuttered section of room 87’s eastern foundation wall. Above the level of the beaten earth pavement the foundation’s construction was in opus reticulatum. The importance of this discovery lies in the presence of a foundation trench for the reticulate section that cut into the beaten earth pavement. Therefore we believe that the material below the beaten earth pavement was deposited before the construction of the reticulate wall. Though the ceramics from below the beaten earth pavement are still undergoing study, numerous pieces of Fourth-Style painting provide a terminus post quem date of 45 CE for this pavement and the reticulate wall. It is also worth noting that the foundation wall went down to a depth of just under 3 meters.
    • The Oplontis Project continued its systematic study of Villa A at Oplontis in 2009. This was the most prolific season to date, due largely to the funding provided by the National Endowment of the Humanities Collaborative Research Grant and the University of Texas at Austin. Teams from the University of Texas (OP trenches) and the Kent Archaeological Field School (OPK trenches) excavated a total of 15 trenches between May 2009 and June 2010. A particular focus of these trenches is the hydraulics of the villa, including supply, fountains, drainage, and pools.
    • This past summer the Oplontis Project began its own study of Oplontis B. As with our work in Villa A, here we will excavate below the 79 CE levels. In collaboration with the Swale and Thames archaeological team from Britain, Ivo van der Graaff of the Oplontis Project, supervised the opening of trench, OPB1 in the courtyard area of Oplontis B (in green on the plan). The goal of the trench was to document stratigraphy of the courtyard, with the hope of finding further information about the building’s chronology and function. The trench stretched the entire width of the courtyard from the southern colonnade foundation to that of the northern. We discovered the original pavement of the courtyard, made of large basalt boulders filled in with amphora sherds and topped with a layer of concrete to create a smooth surface. The pavement rested on a pyroclastic flow datable to the last Bronze Age eruption of Vesuvius. In fact the northern profile of the trench revealed a sequence of alternating paelosols and eruption strata, the earliest of which dates to the Avellino eruption of 1700 BCE. Of interest is a particular paleosol datable to circa 1500 to 1000 BCE. This level preserves what appear to be plough and cart- or sledge-marks along with scattered remnants of mudbrick; all of these point to Bronze-Age activity in the Oplontis B area. Up against the colonnade foundations at the north and south ends of the trench, we discovered interesting details of construction. The foundations consist of a thick tufa stereobate atop spaced tufa blocks, laid perpendicular to the stereobate. Within the foundation trench for these blocks at the south end, we found several sherds of Campana A Black Gloss ceramic, whose broad range of production includes the entire 2nd century BCE, a range consistent with our preliminary estimates for date of the courtyard building. Under the colonnade, at the northeast corner of the courtyard, we excavated another smaller trench where Ground Penetrating Radar had shown a clear anomaly (OPB 2, also in green on the plan)., this trench was labeled OPB 2. Excavations revealed that the anomaly was a drainage conduit or perhaps an aqueduct. A pit abutting it to the south was filled with amphorae fragments, further evidence of the great number of amphorae used at this site.
    • The 2013 excavation at Villa B included six trenches aimed at investigating various aspects of the complex. Much of the work primarily concerned clean-up operations aimed at reaching and understanding the original level of 79 CE. The units focused on a sewer system in the SW corner of the central couryard (OPB3 and 8), rooms to the west of the courtyard (OPB4), a street and town houses to north of the courtyard building (OPB5 and 7), and the potico on the south side of that building (OPB6). The units revealed a much more complicated sequence of events than we discerned last year. The two distinct floor levels in the peristyle were perhaps the most important discovery of the season. They correlate to at least three distinct phases of occupation. The second floor level in particular existed for some time before the insertion of the water system uncovered in units opb3 and 2. Although difficult to quantify, a measure of accumulation suggests that the floor was in use for a considerable amount of time before the insertion of the water feature. The channels themselves also seem abandoned by the time of the eruption, but only further excavation and analysis of the artifacts can assess any dating sequences. It may very well be that the earliest floor level we discerned is related to the first construction of the complex. In this case it may correlate to the original floor paving of the courtyard, whereas the second floor level associates with the accumulation lying above it we discerned last year. Only further excavation, however, can ascertain this sequence. A thorough review of the GPR results is necessary to assess whether we can plan out the water supply system without much more excavation. If anything the trenches this year have shown a highly sophisticated drainage and supply system brought in after the first construction of the building. A further expansion of OPB 3 would help clarify the nature of the channels. An interesting proposal would be to chase the southern channel and explore the area just east of the so-called latrine. A number of questions remain regarding this area of the peristyle. A thorough clean-up of the entire southeastern corner would help to gain a better understanding of the peristyle, its use, and any associated phasing.
    • This season the work concentrated on five units (OPB 9,10,11,13, and 14) and the cataloging of stored materials that remain from previous excavations. We cataloged some 600 amphora, and the boxes also yielded fresco fragments, plaster casts, part of an inscription, and_tegulae_ _mammatae . OPB 9 The primary aim of this unit was to understand the entrance on the eastern side of the peristyle. We recovered two pavement levels, a possible mechanism for a gate closing the peristyle, and wheel ruts resulting from cart traffic. The wheel ruts were so distinct that their presence almost seems purposeful. Inside them we distinguished a thick incrustation of crushed pottery; it may represent a re-paving or may be the result of usage and accumulation. OPB 10 The aim of this unit was to determine the presence of a well in the north western corner of the peristyle. Here the foundations of the colonnade were deliberately cut to follow the wellhead. During the final phase of the building the well was clearly filled in as the structure went out of use perhaps in conjunction with the construction of the water system. Its depth and the confined space impeded us from reaching the bottom. The well did not preserve any sort of lining suggesting that it was robbed out in antiquity or decayed. OPB 11 This unit investigated the western side of the peristyle. Room 22 revealed a shallow floor (B11003) covering a drain (B11011, B11012) that had collapsed and was abandoned in antiquity. The drain ran north-south and likely connected to the one running east-west which we previously recovered in units OPB 2 (B02010) and 3 (B03014) on the south side of the peristyle. Room 22 displays a walled up entrance on the western end suggesting that it was reorganized after the drain collapsed. In the southern corner of the unit excavations recovered the remains of the drain that ran east-west through the peristyle (B11028, B03014, B02010) and a small settling tank that was completely filled with amphora fragments. Its bottom was broken through, suggesting that it was deliberately put out of use in antiquity. We also discovered the remains of two pilasters (B11005) that once supported the second floor. OPB 13 and 14 These units recorded the full extent of the holes in the floor of rooms 26 (unit 13) and 41 (unit 14) in antiquity. The clean-up revealed an abandoned cistern at least 2.5 meters high x 1.5 wide and some 15 meters long. Unit 14 preserved the eastern edge of the cistern which contained with a broken amphora neck once channeled water into the cistern (B14036). To the south are the remains of a small wellhead (B14004) which allowed water to be drawn from the cistern. The wall separating spaces 17 and 41 (B14007) truncates the structure indicating that the cistern was abandoned well before the eruption. Conclusion The sum of the evidence points to at least three distinct phases associated with the complex. The storage rooms on the southern side of the building are a late addition. They truncate a cistern that likely functioned together with the well in unit OPB 10. The well and the cistern probably ceased to function with the introduction of the water channels recovered in units OPB 2, 3, 9, and 11. In a further phase part of the water system went out of use. In the courtyard we recovered at least two pavements and a thick incrustation stratum which suggests long period of accumulation associated with the final phase of the building.
    • The operation carried out in the two week 2015 season aimed to investigate the phasing and the development of the complex. As a result we concentrated our efforts in three main areas: The houses on the north side, the rooms around the peristyle, and the barrel vaulted rooms on the south. On the north side the situation is different to the rest of the complex because the rooms here are independent housing units that lined a roman street. A simple visual survey in room 46 indicated that an original doorway into the room was walled up in antiquity. At the same time a wall to the adjacent room 47 was opened indicating that the two independent housing units were merged into one. In order to better understand the sequence and date the structure we opened OPB 16 in room 46. A major factor to understanding the complex is to identify any previous phasing in the rooms around the peristyle. To this end we targeted a few areas that would give us a better insight. Starting on the northern wing we opened OPB 17 to straddle the demolished wall that once separated rooms 2 and 3. On the southwestern side a visual survey highlighted how the division walls between rooms 21, 39 and 18 were demolished in antiquity. Room 18 in particular, preserves a walled up door on its northern end. For these reasons we opened unit 18 to investigate any phasing in the area. A similar situation exists on the eastern side of the peristyle where a door walled up in antiquity once opened directly onto the peristyle. In order to get a better sense of these rooms and their relationship with the courtyard we excavated OPB 18 in room 18 and trench OPB 19 in room 16. The southern side of the complex constituted our third main area of investigation. In particular, a visual survey of room 49 (10bis on the old plan) indicated the presence of various phases in the walls including evidence that the barrel vault of the room represented the latest addition of the area. We decided to sink OPB 15 here to understand its sequence and retrieve datable evidence from the wall foundations. Outside of the rooms we reopened trench OPB 6 to gain a better understanding of the complex of drains, surfaces, and wall features we recovered at the end of the season in 2013. Though the findings and materials from the 2015 campaign are still under study, the initial results point to several different phases—up to four—in the complex. A full report of the findings will follow.
    • The aim of our 2016 excavations was to continue to record and clean up the site, as well as better understand the development of the various sections of the excavated complex. The results of the past seasons had made it clear that the excavated site had three main areas: the northern town houses, the central courtyard and its dependencies, and the barrel-vaulted storage spaces on the south. The main conclusion reached this season is that each area seems to have undergone a different development. Work during the 2016 season focussed on the excavation of 6 trenches. Trench OPB 15, Space 49 We decided to re-open this area because of the number of foundation walls we recovered last year. In principle most of our early conclusions did not change very much, with the exception that we found an even earlier phase in the form of a cross-wall (US 15141) that acted later as a foundation for another wall (US 15131). The results indicate that Space 49 received a number of reorganizations. However, it seems that the spaces to the north (Spaces 34, 15bis, 15, and 14) were distinctly separate; some sort of dividing line must exist because the stratigraphy is so entirely different. Trench OPB 19, Space 16 We only re-opened a part of this trench in order to check for further floors and their relationship to trench OPB 20. We also intended to look for the remains of any possible foundations or drains that could continue from trench OPB 15. We purposefully kept the trench only to the very western edge of what we opened last year. The trench did not reveal any further foundations. However, we did recover at least two previous occupation levels. As a result we have now documented four to five phases of occupation. Trench OPB 20, Space 36 The aim of this trench was to find more of the drain that runs through the latrine feature in the southeast area of the courtyard and to see where it met up with any further conduits. We were also seeking to understand its relationship with the drain in OPB 15 and any possible previous wall foundations or phases. A further aim was to understand the little wall extending from the adjacent space 16. Trench OPB 21, Space 35 The primary purpose for this trench was to clean up and record the remains of the house associated with space 35. Unfortunately we discovered that the area was disturbed during the reconstruction of the 90s: about half of the space included a modern foundation trench for the southern wall. The clean-up did reveal that space 35 is almost a mirror image to space 48. In particular we documented a base composed of upside-down roof tile. It undoubtedly served some sort of utilitarian function perhaps for cooking or washing. Together with this feature we recovered a hard floor level which covered most of the space where it survived
    • The 2017 season of excavation stretched for 2.5 weeks starting 5-31-17. The aim of our work was to gain further insight into the development of the complex as well as understanding its layout at the time of the eruption. For this we excavated a total of 6 trenches (opb 25-30) during our season. The following paragraphs summarize the initial results from each unit. OPB 25 We excavated this unit in the narrow corridor of space 15bis. Our initial approach to this area was to see whether the two drains running in OPB 15 in space 10bis continued through the wall dividing the spaces. After recovering various layers of fill we decided to stop the excavation for a lack of any architectural remains. This means that the previous drains through the area were thoroughly demolished when workers built the rooms on the southeastern side of the complex. What these drains were serving remains unknown for now. OPB 26 We located this unit in room 14 in order to chase the drain continuing south from the channel we recovered in unit opb 3 a few years ago. Our aim was to understand the relationship between the walls of space 14 and the drain and therefore the relation of these spaces with the wider complex. At this point it is clear that the walls—those separating room 14 with the peristyle and room 14 from 8bis-- respected the drain and therefore must at least be contemporaneous to its operation. Nowhere in the masonry is there an evident sign of breakage or reconstruction of the walls. The drain itself sat beneath at least four separate surfaces. The oldest was a thin layer of white calcium, which seems to be related to the drain’s first construction. Above this surface, we recovered a fill/prep layer used for another floor level. A further fill seems to have functioned as a prep layer or bed for the final cocciopesto floor in the room. We cannot discount that the prep layer was part of an earlier floor that was in use for some time. OPB 27 The aim of this unit was to clean up and recover the ancient floor level on the NE side of the peristyle (space 18bis). We recovered three floor levels, each very thin. The stylobate of the colonnade revealed another cistern-head just as the one located to the west and excavated with unit 10. OPB 28 The aim of this unit was to examine the roman floor level on the exterior of room 10 bis where in past years we excavated unit 15. It was clear right from the beginning that we had to dig through a thick layer of eruption debris, which the Italian excavations had left in place undisturbed. After removing the floor and its layer of fill, we recovered another surface of hard concrete that seems unrelated to the barrel vaulted spaces. Beneath it was a firm floor of coccio-pesto floor. In the eastern portion of the unit, we recovered two foundation walls, which are the continuation of the two major foundation walls recovered in unit 15 to the north. OPB 29 This unit was located in space 48, which is the western most of the town houses. By far it is the most complete and undisturbed stratigraphy of the spaces in this area of the site. We cut two slots through the either side of the house in order to examine the various floor levels and periods it contained. We identified at least two distinct floor levels associated with the house, with a possible earlier third. OPB 30 The aim this unit was to chase the top of the walls separating space 37 and 29, and to find the extent of the building on its eastern side. Unfortunately, we did not obtain many results because the pyroclastic was still and unexpectedly very deep.
    • In the 2018 the aim of our work was to gain further insight into the development of the complex as well as understanding its layout at the time of the eruption. For this we excavated a total of 7 trenches (opb 31-38) during our season. OPB 31 We opened this unit with the hope to find valid construction cuts for the north and east walls of Room 4. The trench therefore spanned the eastern part of the room with a width of 2 meters. The floor of the room was no more than a thin veneer of plaster. OPB 32 We placed Trench 32 in room 28 to get a window on the western portion of the site. After scraping through the modern accumulation, we encountered a highly stratified deposit of a waterlogged sandy clay. This kind of deposit is characteristic of a superheated water deposit that is heavily laden with volcanic ash. Beneath this sedimentary stratum the team encountered a layer of highly degraded cocciopesto. OPB 33 This was a small unit 1.5x3 meters meant to pick up any of the architecture we encountered in the neighboring room 49 bis. Within this small unit we found the remains of the water conduit recovered in unit 15. Most of the architecture sits just below the surface. OPB 34 The aim of this trench was to investigate a long strip on the south side of the building. The long strip of 2x9 meters was a means to investigate the broader context of this area. On the western edge of the trench the excavation recovered a large drain running in a north south direction. It has a clear function to drain water from the roof of the building. OPB 35 Trench 35 found a place in the southern portion of space 39, adjacent to space 18. Our aim here was to better understand the function of this area. We recovered the remains of a small kiln. The kiln was cut into an earlier surface which was ephemeral composed of loose soil and not a proper pavement. It also cut through an earlier cut that reached a more solid pavement. This pavement more likely has to do with the wall recovered in the adjacent trench opb 4. OPB 36 This unit was a 2 meters slot cut against the southern side of space 11. The reason to site it here was to gain a sense of the construction sequence of the walls in this area of the building. The pyroclastic layer found elsewhere in this area of Oplontis B emerged rather quickly and the stratigraphy was rather shallow. Much of it was dug through with large pits which we left undisturbed. OPB 37 The aim of trench was to explore the development of space 6 and its relationship with the rest of the complex. The unit consisted of a two-meter strip on the eastern edge of the space, where we hoped to encounter the foundation trenches for the south north and eastern walls. Set within this deposit were the remains of a shallow wall that must relate to a much earlier structure unrelated to the current building. OPB 38 This trench had as primary aim to recover more of the ancient street on the north side of the complex. While cleaning the surface of the street part of it collapsed into an ancient sewer that runs beneath the street and it was still hollow.
    • The Oplontis Project conducted a much smaller excavation operation in the 2019 season than in previous years. The limited excavations were aimed at answering some open questions about the development of the site, as well as further recording the structure. The excavations focused in two areas: the central courtyard, which included the adjacent room 15, and the open space (44) to the south of the barrel-vaulted rooms. OPB 32 The reopening and expansion of trench OPB 32 was a principal objective of the season. Its primary aim was to uncover more of the architecture recovered at the end of last season (2018) and see if it connected in any way to the foundations recovered in trench OPB 35 to the north. In the area on the southwestern side of the trench, the team reached and continued to excavate the lowest and earliest foundation wall recovered in the area. Ancient builders must have used the wall to even out this slope with a series of terracing fills. The wall may have functioned as a terracing structure for an earlier version of the courtyard structure. A series of walls emerged on the eastern side of the unit that signal the next major phase of occupation in the area. The northern side of wall 32126 ended abruptly against a further structure (wall 32136) brought in later. This newer structure featured a T-shaped junction composed of a wall running east-west and another masonry wall heading north into the baulk. OPB 39 The objective of OPB 39, located on the eastern side of space 44, was to connect the last piece of the large trench excavated on the exterior of the building that includes OPB 6, 28, and 34, and 39. The team excavated about .5 m of eruption lapilli still in place that had remained unexcavated. A thin layer of earth ranging between 10-5 cm thick made up the floor level on the exterior of the barrel-vaulted rooms. The following surface beneath the 79 CE layer featured a matrix of concrete on the eastern side of the trench that disappeared toward the west as it transitioned into an earthen surface. A deposit of well-rounded beach pebbles, about fist size in dimensions acted as a construction fill for both surfaces. OPB 40 The principal aim of trench 40 in room 15 was to see if any of the architecture recovered in the rooms to the south and southeast continued in this area of the site. The team began to excavate out the cocciopesto floor that was in situ at the time of the eruption. The team soon encountered a unique floor after the removal of the cocciopesto. It featured a series of large badly fired bricks about 330mm long x 310mm wide and 90 mm thick. The pavement respected the layout of the room as it reached the outer walls, indicating that they functioned together. Numerous adjustments in the brick pattern suggest that a number of corrections occurred as the workers put the floor together. The pavement is still fully in situ and the team did not excavate it farther. OPB 41 Trench 41 sought to continue the clean-up and recording operations of the pavement on the western side of the courtyard. Our aim was to understand any possible dynamics of cart traffic and use of the building through any possible marks of wear or traffic as well as repair or leveling events. The pavement itself displayed two compositions, indicating at least two paving events
    • The 2021 season was relatively short with only two weeks of actual digging happening on site. In addition, the covid pandemic resulted in a reduced crew with only seven full time field staff present on site. OPB 42 Trench OPB 42 had as aim to recover more info about the exterior space 44 on the south side of the complex. The team proceeded to remove a layer of pumice ejected from the eruption of 79 AD. A new layer consisting of a hardened pyroclastic flow emerged from beneath the lapilli. A wall oriented north-south was embedded in this context. The team proceeded with the removal of the brown soil associated with the final occupation of the area. Beneath it a new layer emerged consisting of a hard packed concrete floor with an almost opus signinum kind of consistency. The removal of the concrete floor level revealed more architecture in the form of a new concrete wall foundation running north-south. The floor that covered it featured many rounded pebbles and ceramics as a packing that in turn lay upon a fine layer of crushed ceramics and rocks. Further digging on the southeastern corner of the trench also revealed a previous floor level, likely associated with the first use of 42008 as well as another wall below it. OPB 43 Trench OPB 43 was located in the southeastern corner of the peristyle. Its aim was to examine the development of the area as well as any possible stratigraphic relationships with the interior spaces. The ancient surface contained patches and traces of burning. It also displayed a heavy viscous matrix likely because of the amphora pitching operations that happened in this area of the site. The team then proceeded to remove this floor level, which seems to have witnessed several build up deposits over time in the form of micro strata associated with its use. Below the fill level related to its construction, the team recovered another floor composed of a broken white plaster stamped down on the beaten earth. This floor was badly broken and somewhat inconsistent throughout the unit., suggesting its ephemeral use and perhaps its association with the construction of the complex. This same layer of broken plaster covered the brick floor in room 15-suggsting their contemporaneous use. Below the earlier floor level, the team removed a fill of heavily broken and destroyed CBM deposited in antiquity as a fill layer and packing level. It lay on a broken and beaten pyroclastic flow that presented evidence of numerous punctures.
    • In the 2022 season excavators worked on three trenches. Two of these trenches, OPB 4 and OPB 6, were old ones that we reopened and extended. Another, trench OPB 44, focused on an unexcavated room 38 that we had only partially investigated as part of OPB 4 in the past. OPB 4 The excavation of trench 4 began with the removal of a substantial layer of backfill that was the result of our previous excavation. This process included the removal of the backfill on top of the badly degraded cocciopesto floor of space 21. The 79 AD surface was pockmarked with a series of drill holes that were the result of the corings carried out with the construction of the school. The excavation of the western portion of the unit occurred in room 39. It is here that the removal of a degraded portion of the 79 AD floor that acted as the threshold to room 21 produced an important series of finds that help us date this portion of the building. The first was a Dupondius minted under the emperor Caligula in 37-38 AD. It lay in a layer of rubble composed of intentionally deposited demolition of four style fresco schematically imitating the second style. These finds securely date the pavement between these two space to after 45 CE. The continued excavation of space 39 revealed the continuation of the foundation wall (04104) uncovered previously. The finds associated with this wall indicate a pre-Augustan date although further study is necessary. OPB 44 The excavation here began with the removal of modern overburden that covered the ancient floor level. Our aim was to understand the composition of that floor and the buildup of the area with the walled-up door between space 22 and 38. The floor of the space was simple beaten earth floor cut in both corners with ancient intrusions. These allowed of our further exploration of the area. The team first encountered an earlier floor associated with the previous use of the spaces. Beneath this we encountered a much earlier wall that had little or nothing to do with the current arrangement of spaces. The wall ran through the unit and featured a prominent return to the south, suggesting an earlier space, perhaps the presence of a workshop. OPB 6 On the south side of the complex the team continued its excavation of space 44 with the re-excavation and extension of trench 6 toward the east. The eastern extension revealed the richest evidence as we sought to clarify the course of a wall running in a north-south direction uncovered in our previous exploration of the unit. The team first encountered a thick layer of ash and pyroclastic flows in the eastern part of the unit. Some of this context spilled over at a steep angle over to wall supporting the colonnade on the southern part of the unit. We were able to chase it over the wall up to a depth of about two meters before it became too dangerous. The final context was one that featured pumice mixed in with beach sand, indicating the presence of a shore and that the colonnade wall was a seawall. The seawall also cuts the n-s wall, which in turn, prevented us to recover the extent of the previous building. The seawall also cutoff of the sewer suggesting that the main water lines feeding the complex to the north, including the latrine, were largely out of action at the time of the eruption. It is possible that the drain was rerouted in this phase.
    • In the 2023 season the team reopened one trench (OPB 11) and excavated five others: Trench OPB 45 in space 44, OPB 46 in room 1, OPB 47 in 20, OPB 48 in 18bis, OPB 49 in 36, and OPB 50 in space 30. The aim was to clarify the various phases of the complex and to document the pavements of 79 AD. OPB 11 The team first excavated unit OPB 11 in 2014. By the end of the excavation the unit had revealed a channel running N-S in the eastern quarter of room 22. In 2023 the excavation of the trench ended when the team uncovered a hard volcanic pyroclastic layer belonging to a pervious eruption. Two foundation trenches for the southern and western walls of the room cut through it to reach another pyroclastic flow. Among the finds within the foundation trench was a rim of a Dressel 1c amphora indicating that the room dates to no earlier than the first half of the first century BCE. OPB 45 The team opened trench OPB 45 on the last large section of uninvestigated area in the southwestern area of space 44. Italian workers had dug a hole for a water collector to drain the site outside of spaces 42 and 43. The team conducting this construction effort found a wall at the time and subsequently moved the collector slightly to the south where our team encountered it in 2021. The team thus sited trench OPB 42 to recover some of the remaining stratigraphy and document the wall. OPB 46. Trench OPB 46 had as aim to investigate room one facing the peristyle. The room presented a cocciopesto floor belonging to the final phase before the eruption. In places it displayed holes inside which were fragments of terracotta tiles. These fragments turned out to be roof tiles placed upside down to create an earlier floor in the room. It featured at least forty-four such tiles laid next to each other and covered with a thin patchy layer of lime. OPB 47 Trench OPB 47 spanned space twenty to meet the thresholds of spaces 12 and 13. The aim was to ascertain if there were multiple phases present in terms of floors. The excavation of the trench ended on a pyroclastic layer. Workers had cut through the layer on the southern and northern sides in antiquity to build the foundations for the southern wall and the northern stylobate. OPB 48 Trench 48 aimed to investigate the area outside of space two. The unit stretched about 1.5m wide and covered the width of the peristyle. Here too the unit ended on a definite layer of pyroclastic flow as recovered on the south side of the peristyle. The unit presented multiple cuts through the pyroclastic deposit including a foundation trench for the stylobate. OPB 49 The aim of trench OPB 49 was to explore the area outside of room 8. This space was one of the few areas where previous excavations had not reached the bedrock pyroclastic layer. After recovering two surfaces the trench reached bedrock. A well-head appeared on the southern side of the unit that was sealed off in antiquity. OPB 50 Trench OPB 50 had as its aim to investigate the development of room 30 on the eastern side of the complex. The unit displayed two earlier surfaces, the earliest of which was composed of rubble


    • Michael L. Thomas, Ivo van der Graaff, Paul Wilkinson. 2013. The Oplontis Project 2012-13: A Report of Excavations at Oplontis B. FOLD&R Italy: 295.
    • Ivo Van der Graaff - University of New Hampshire, Nayla Muntasser, John R. Clarke University of Texas at Austin, Paul Wilkinson- Swale and Thames, UK, Michael L. Thomas, University of Texas at Austin, Jennifer L. Muslin - University of Texas. 2016. Preliminary Notes on Two Seasons of Research at Oplontis B (2014-2015). FOLD&R Italy: 362.
    • Ivo Van der Graaff - University of New Hampshire, Michael L. Thomas, University of Texas at Austin, Paul Wilkinson - Swale and Thames, UK, Jennifer L. Muslin - University of Texas, John R. Clarke University of Texas at Austin, Nayla Muntasser, Giovanni Di Maio. 2019. First Results of Three Seasons of Excavation at Oplontis B (2016-18). FOLD&R Italy: 430.
    • I. van der Graaff - J.R. Clarke - M.L. Thomas - Z. Schofield - J.L. Muslin - N.K. Muntasser - G. Di Maio - G. Bruner - J. Galloway. 2023. Field Notes on Three Campaigns of Excavations at Oplontis B: 2019, 2021, and 2022 . FOLD&R Italy: 554.


    • A. De Franciscis, 1973, La villa romana di Oplontis, in La Parola del Passato 153: 453-466.
    • A. De Franciscis, 1982, Oplontis, in La Regione sotterrata dal Vesuvio, Studi e Prospettive, Napoli: 907-925.
    • Ae M. De Vos, 1982, Pompei, Ercolano, Stabia, Bari: 250-255.
    • L. Fergola, 1996, La villa di Poppea a Oplontis, in Pompei - Abitare sotto il Vesuvio, Ferrara: 134-141.
    • L. Fergola-M. Pagano, 1998, Oplontis-Le splendide ville romane di Torre Annunziata-Itinerario Archeologico Ragionato, Napoli: 20-70.
    • L. Fergola-P.G. Guzzo, 2000, Oplontis-La villa di Poppea, Milano: 15-25.
    • J.R. Clarke, M. Thomas, 2008, The Oplontis Project 2005-2006: New Evidence for the Building History and Decorative Programs at Villa A, Torre Annunziata, in P.G. Guzzo – M.P. Guidobaldi (a cura di), Nuove ricerche archeologiche nell'area vesuviana (scavi 2003-2006), Atti del Convegno Internazionale, Roma 1-3 febbraio 2007, Roma: 465-471.
    • Thomas, Michael L., and John R. Clarke, 2009, “Evidence of Demolition and Remodeling at Villa A at Oplontis (Villa of Poppaea) after A.D. 45”, in Journal of Roman Archaeology 22: 201-209.
    • .
    • Thomas, Michael L., and John R. Clarke, 2007, The Oplontis Project 2005-6: Observations on the Construction History of Villa A at Torre Annunziata, in Journal of Roman Archaeology 17: 223-232.
    • Thomas, Michael L., and John R. Clarke, 2011, “Water features, the atrium, and the coastal setting of Villa A at Torre Annunziata,” Journal of Roman Archaeology 24: 370-81.
    • Thomas, Michael L., and John R. Clarke, 2009, “Evidence of Demolition and Remodeling at Villa A at Oplontis (Villa of Poppaea) after A.D. 45.” Journal of Roman Archaeology 22: 201-209.
    • .
    • .
    • Thomas, Michael L., Ivo van der Graaff , Paul Wilkinson . 2013. The Oplontis Project 2012-13: A Report of Excavations at Oplontis B. http://www.fastionline.org/docs/FOLDER-it-2013-295.pdf
    • G. Elaine, J.R. Clarke, 2016, Leisure and Luxury in the Age of Nero: The Villas of Oplontis Near Pompeii. Ann Arbor: Kelsey Museum Publication.
    • T.L. Michael, 2015, “Oplontis B: A Center for the Export and Distribution of Vesuvian Wine.” Journal of Roman Archaeology 28, 403-13.
    • J.R. Clarke, N.K. Muntasser, 2014, Oplontis: Villa A (“Of Poppaea”) at Torre Annunziata, Volume 1. The Ancient Setting and Modern Rediscovery. New York: ALCS.
    • T.L. Michael, I.van der Graaff , P. Wilkinson, 2013. The Oplontis Project 2012-13: A Report of Excavations at Oplontis B.
    • Clarke, John R., and Nayla .K. Muntasser, eds. Oplontis: Villa A (“of Poppaea”) at Torre Annunziata, Italy. Volume 2. The Decorations: Painting, Stucco, Pavements, Sculptures. New Yok: American Council of Learned Societies, 2019. https://hdl.handle.net/2027/heb.90048.
    • Clarke, John R., Ivo Van der Graaff, Giovanni Di Maio, Adele Lagi De Caro, Michael L. Thomas, Jennifer L. Muslin, and Kristina Killgrove. “Oplontis: The Ancient Landscape, the Structures, and Their Relationship with the Resources of the Vesuvian Region.G. Di Maio, A. Lagi De Caro, M.L. Thomas, J.L. Muslin, A. Pecci and K. Killgrove.” In Extra Moenia: Abitare Il Territorio Della Regione Vesuviana, edited by A. Coralini, 103–15. Rome: Scienze e Lettere, 2021.
    • Van der Graaff, Ivo, Regina Gee, Jennifer L. Muslin, and John R. Clarke. “The Row Houses at Oplontis.” Journal of Roman Archaeology 33 (2020): 113–28.
    • Muslin, Jennifer L. “Between Farm and Table: Oplontis B and the Dynamics of Amphora Packaging, Design, and Reuse on the Bay of Naples.” Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, 2019.
    • Van der Graaff, Ivo, Michael L. Thomas, Paul Wilkinson, Jennifer Muslin, John R. Clarke, Nayla K. Muntasser, and Giovanni Di Maio. “First Results of Three Seasons of Excavation at Oplontis B (2016-18).” FOLD&R 430 (2019): 1–25.
    • Clarke, John R. “The Three Contexts Provided by the Oplontis 3D Model: Real-Time Viewing, Database Exploration, and Reconstruction.” In Context and Meaning : Proceedings of the Twelfth International Conference of the Association Internationale pour la Peinture Murale Antique, Athens, September 16-20, 2013, edited by S.T.A.M. Mols and E. Moormann, 307–13. Leuven: Peeters, 2017.
    • Pecci, Alessandra, John R. Clarke, Michael L. Thomas, Jennifer Muslin, Ivo van der Graaff, Luana Toniolo, D. Miriello, G.M. Crisci, Mauro Buonincontri, and Gaetano Di Pasquale. “Use and Reuse of Amphorae. Wine residues in Dressel 2-4 amphorae from Oplontis Villa B (Torre Annunziata, Italy).” Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports12 (April 2017): 515-521. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2017.02.02
    • Clarke, John R., and Elaine K. Gazda, eds. Leisure and Luxury in the Age of Nero: The Villas of Oplontis near Pompeii. Exhibition catalogue. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor; The Museum of the Rockies, Montana State University; Smith College, 10 February 2016-31 August 2017. Ann Arbor: Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, 2016.
    • Clarke, John R. “3D Model, Linked Database, and Born-Digital E-Book: An Ideal Approach to Archaeological Research and Publication.” In 3D Research Challenges in Cultural Heritage II: How to Manage Data and Knowledge Related to Interpretative Digital 3D Reconstructions of Cultural Heritage. Edited by Sander Münster, Mieke Pfarr-Harfst, Piotr Kuroczyński, and Marinos Ioannides, 136-148. Berlin: Springer, 2016.
    • Van der Graaff, Ivo, Jennifer L. Muslin, Michael L. Thomas, Paul Wilkinson, John R. Clarke, and Nayla K. Muntasser. “Preliminary Notes on Two Seasons of Research at Oplontis B (2014-2015). Fasti Online Documents & Research (FOLD&R) 362 (2016). Permalink: http://www.fastionline.org/docs/FOLDER-it-2016-362.pdf
    • Barker, Simon and John R. Clarke. “Evidence for Wooden Wall Revetment and Marble Decoration in Diaeta 78 at Villa A (“of Poppaea”) at Oplontis (Torre Annunziata, Italy).” InAtti del XII Colloquio AIEMA (Association Internationale pour l’Ètude de la Mosaïque Antique), Venice, 11-15 September 2012, edited by Giordana Trovabene, 501-504. Verona: Scripta, 2015.
    • Clarke, John, Stefano De Caro, and Adele Lagi. “Oplontis e Le Sue Ville.” In Città Vesuviane : Antichità e Fortuna : Il Suburbio e l’agro Di Pompei, Ercolano, Oplontis e Stabiae, edited by P. G. Guzzo and Gianluca Tagliamonte, 142–55. Roma: Treccani editrice, 2015
    • Clarke, John R. “Retrieving the Decorative Program of Villa A (‘of Poppaea’) at Oplontis (Torre Annunziata, Italy): How Orphaned Fragments Find a Home in the Virtual-Reality 3D Model.” In Beyond Iconography: Materials, Methods, and Meaning in Ancient Surface Decoration, edited by Sarah Lepinski and Susanna McFadden. Selected Papers in Ancient Art and Architecture. 1: 97-108. Boston: Archaeological Institute of America, 2015.
    • Cline, Lea. “Painted Pavements: Illusion and Imitation at Villa A (“of Poppea”) at Oplontis.” In Beyond Iconography: Materials, Methods, and Meaning in Ancient Surface Decoration, edited by Sarah Lepinski and Susanna McFadden. Selected Papers on Ancient Art and Architecture.1: 205-218. Boston: Archaeological Institute of America, 2015.
    • Gee, Regina. “Fourth Style Workshop Deployment and Movement Patterns at Villa A (“of Poppaea”) at Oplontis.” In Beyond Iconography: Materials, Methods, and Meaning in Ancient Surface Decoration, edited by Sarah Lepinski and Susanna McFadden. Selected Papers in Ancient Art and Architecture. 1: 127-48. Boston: Archaeological Institute of America, 2015.
    • Van der Graaff, Ivo, John R. Clarke, Michael L. Thomas, Jennifer L. Muslin, Nayla K. Muntasser, Zoe Schofield, Giovanni di Maio, Garrett Bruner, Jess Galloway. “Field Notes on Three Campaigns of Excavations at Oplontis B: 2019, 2021, and 2022.” FOLD&R 554 (2023): 1-27
    • Van der Graaff, Ivo, John R. Clarke, Michael L. Thomas, Zoe Schofield, Jennifer L. Muslin, Giovanni di Maio, Nayla K. Muntasser. “Oplontis 2021, Relazione di Scavo” Rivista di Studi Pompeiani 33 (2022) 216-18.