• 11 Apr 2022
      • News,

Novatest’s Discovery of an Ancient City in Irpinia

In collaboration with the University of Salerno, Novatest participated in archaeological investigations at Civita di Atripalda, Avellino. Georadar surveys using drones and LiDAR drone surveys were conducted, contributing to the identification of remains of structures related to the ancient city of Abellinum.

The excavations were carried out by the Department of Cultural Heritage Sciences of the University of Salerno in collaboration with the SABAP of Salerno and Avellino and the Municipality of Atripalda. The research team also collaborated with the Department of Civil Engineering and the Department of Pharmacy of IMAA-CNR in Tito Scalo (PZ), the Department of Biosciences and Territory of the University of Molise, and the Department of Sciences and Technologies of the University of Sannio.

We report the interview given by Alfonso Santoriello, associate professor of landscape archaeology and archaeological research methodology at the University of Salerno, to the prestigious magazine “Archeo.”
“The excavation focused on the area west of the domus. The two trenches, within a large intervention area (370 sqm), which will be further investigated in terms of extension, revealed the continuation of the decumanus axis towards the west, the presence of buildings along the road, and the partial plan of another construction complex further north, at the edge where a small valley becomes steeper. The emerged stretch of road has an east-west orientation, with a change in slope after the intersection, on the southern side, with a north-south cardo. The layout of the decumanus, with sidewalks, was enriched with elements related to water distribution. Contemporary with the road phase are the two buildings facing it: a room with a brick threshold and floor, to the south of the road, and two perpendicular wall fragments to the north. Further north, within the second trench, a portion of a building composed of at least six rooms oriented with the decumanus and the domus was intercepted.

The rooms are arranged along an east-west wall, identified for over 8 meters, following a regular pattern, as suggested by the geophysical surveys conducted in the area. The construction techniques used are diverse and all find comparisons with those employed in the domus and tabernae. These are currently only some of the numerous points of reflection that emerged from the investigations: they deserve further in-depth study and verification through the activities planned by the project. However, it is evident that the position of the intersection, the presence of buildings along the decumanus and within the block to the north, along with their alignment, the domus, and the tabernae, represent significant factors for understanding the urban layout. This has allowed us to make some considerations regarding the paleotopographic arrangement of the site, the configuration of lots, the modularity of the urban grid, and, more generally, to develop an initial reconstruction of the urban landscape, which in this area had to adapt to the morphology and slopes of the plateau.”

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