Research-2014

2012 Excavations

The first season of excavations at Segni took place in September 2012, following the geophysical survey in June 2012. Over the course of the next 3 years (2012-2014) the project will explore three areas within the town: Prato Felici, Piazza Santa Maria and Piazza San Pietro.

A short report of the 2012 excavations can be downloaded here or viewed on the website of the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies, who generously helped sponsor the excavations.

Piazza San Pietro

In the proximity of the Temple of Juno Moneta, three test-trenches were excavated in order to assess the level of preservation around the podium. It was discovered that on the western side of the complex the level of the bedrock was extremely high, and in fact formed part of the podium. To the north of the temple a small trench revealed the area of a workshop, most probably medieval in date.

Prato Felici

At Prato Felici, a large open area towards the summit of the acropolis, the fieldwork focused upon two parallel walls visible on the surface. Following a gradiometer and georadar survey, the clearance involved the removal of a significant amount of topsoil that had accumulated on the terraces of the steep field directly above Porta Foca. The work revealed evidence for an enormous cistern or pool, which can be dated to the 2nd century BC, and whose construction technique for the walls and floor seem to be of enormous importance for the study of the evolution of this type of structure.

To the south of the structure, as well as beneath the cistern, the work revealed several stratigraphic layers which contained material associated to the earliest phases of settlement in the city, which can be dated with certainty to the late Bronze Age, as well as material from the late 7th century BC which continue through to the archaic period. Amongst this material was discovered an architectural decoration which perhaps indicates the presence of a second temple, separate from that of Juno Moneta.

Piazza Santa Maria

The excavation in the heart of Segni, in Piazza Santa Maria, was aimed at understanding the strong archaeological anomalies revealed by the georadar survey conducted by the BSR and APSS in June 2012. As hypothesised by earlier historical research, the excavation confirmed the presence of a large structure of the medieval period, of which was identified one of the possible side walls, sections of the floor preparation and other sections of walls.

Of particular interest was the discovery of a splendid ancient polychrome mosaic, well preserved in its northern portion whilst the rest lies hidden under the eastern limit of the trench: it is probable that this was reused by the later building, and which once analysed may shed further light of which buildings occupied the square when it formed the forum area.