Urban Archaeology - Augusta (SR)
Project leader: IBAM - CNR
Field director: Daniele Malfitana (IBAM - CNR)
Participating bodies: CNR-IBAM (Giuseppe Cacciaguerra; Licia Cutroni; Annarita Di Mauro; Giovanni Fragalà; Giovanni Leucci)
Date of activity: From 2012 onwards
Brief description: The town of Augusta is situated on the eastern coast of Sicily between Catania and Syracuse. Originally it stood on a peninsula but the narrow isthmus linking it to the mainland was cut during the last quarter of the 18th century and today access is provide by two bridges. It was founded by Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor between 1232 and 1239, and had a castle and a port.
In the medieval period, the area of the public gardens was at the centre of the town, close to the castle and until the end of the 18th century was occupied by two blocks of buildings.
In 1670, they were demolished in order to improve the line of fire. This caused the definitive disappearance of an important part of the medieval and modern town, rich in monuments, churches, and public buildings. The combined archaeological and geophysical investigations have made it possible to reconstruct the layout of the demolished blocks and to identify several structures belonging to religious buildings, confirming the presence below ground of a substantial archaeological stratigraphy.
Site typology and date: Roman and medieval period
Student participants: Yes
Archaeology students from the course in “Methodologies, material culture and craft working production in the classical world” at Catania University take part in the activities.