Culture And Media

Italy: Roman temple discovered in Tuscany

Parco della Maremma, 21 October (AKI) - A Roman temple dating from the fourth century AD was discovered inside the Maremma Park, located in the central Italian region of Tuscany. The rectangular-shaped temple was found by a group of archaeologists after three months of work about three kilometres from the beach of Marina di Alberese, in the province of Grosseto.

The rectangular-shaped structure measures 11.5 metres by 6.5 metres and was built using a Roman-building technique called 'opus testaceum'. A loose stone foundation covered by bricks which are then covered in slabs of marble.

According to archaeologists, the temple suggests there was once an important Roman settlement in the area, which served as a trading port that handled goods coming from Africa and from the entire Mediterranean basin.

The goods would then be transported north to the city of Siena and the Etruscan town of Roselle (Rosellae in Latin) or south towards the town of Heba (now called Magliano in Toscana) and the ancient town of Ager Cosanus, which is also located in Tuscany.

At the temple site, archaeologists found at least 50 Roman coins and a huge quantity of ceramic artefacts originating from all over the Mediterranean basin, but especially from Tunisia.

The team of archaeologists will be carrying out further excavations in the area, where they believe there is another temple, dedicated to the pagan goddess of hunting, Diana.

According to the group of archaeologists' Facebook page, the privately-funded project is directed by Elena Chirico, Matteo Colombini and Alessandro Sebastiani with the scientific co-direction of the Archaeological Superintendence of Tuscany.

"The archaeological project in the territory of Alberese, in the province of Grosseto, finds its aim in the comprehension and understanding of settlement patterns in the Roman and Late Antique period," said a statement on the group's Facebook page.

"The project will focus on the excavation of some key sites and on the preservation and valuing of the natural landscape of the Regional Park of the Uccellina."




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