Villa Magna Project

Villa Magna

The Villa Magna Project aims at the investigation by excavation and survey of a large imperial Roman villa known from letters of Marcus Aurelius and its estate, and the subsequent life of the site, its fortification in late antiquity and the creation of a monastery among the ruins in the 10th century. The site of the villa where this rural idyll took place is known today as Villamagna and lies just south of Anagni, some 40 miles south of Rome, at the foot of a steep hill that must be the one referred to in the text. Covering at least a dozen hectares, the site of the villa today shows little of its former splendour.

The project is sponsored by the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (Mediterranean Section), the British School at Rome, and the Soprintendenza ai Beni Archeologici del Lazio, with core funding from the 1984 Foundation, the Comune of Anagni and the BancAnagni Credito Cooperativo.

The international project is directed by Elizabeth Fentress, with co-directors Andrew Wallace-Hadrill (Cambridge) and Sandra Gatti (SBAL). Associate directors are Brian Rose and Ann Kuttner of the University of Pennsylvania, excavation field directors are Caroline Goodson (Birkbeck) and Marco Maiuro and Sophie Hay (APSS/BSR) led the geophysical survey.