Paestum, three ongoing excavations in the archaeological area

Three excavations have resumed in Paestum that aim to deepen knowledge about the ancient city.

Excavations in thearchaeological area in Paestum have resumed. As of Sept. 10, three ongoing construction sites have resumed: at the Athenaion (excavation conducted by the University of Salerno), the Agora (Paestum Foundation) and the Archaic House (University of the Oriental Studies of Naples). These are three construction sites aimed at advancing topographical and architectural knowledge about the city.

In particular, the Athenaion site, directed by Fausto Longo and coordinated in the field by Marialuigia Rizzo, aims to investigate the southern part of the sanctuary where the so-called “sanctuary stipe,” with thousands of ceramic objects, pottery and metals, was found in the 1920s and 1930s. From the study of the bronze objects, especially the weapons (shields, helmets, spears, javelins and much more, now on display at the Archaeological Museum in the exhibition The Weapons of Athena), and the attempt to reconstruct the context of origin (and thus the sanctuary’s earliest history) came the plan to intervene in the sanctuary, now ninety years after the excavation directed by Amedeo Maiuri, dating back to 1928.

In the agora, the excavation directed by Emanuele Greco, coordinated in the field by Federica Di Biase, intends instead to continue the study of the long Porticus, a columned building of Roman age that obliterated older buildings. The investigation these days (and in the coming years) aims to learn more about the monument in detail, but above all to recover more information about the Archaic and Classical phases.

Finally, the excavation of the Archaic house found west of the Athenaion is directed by Laura Ficuciello: it is the only Archaic-age house we know of in Paestum and one of the few found in Magna Graecia. The three teams include students from the University of Salerno, the University of Orientale in Naples, Rome-Sapienza and Padua, working in a highly collaborative atmosphere.

Pictured: the excavation of the Athenaion

Paestum, three ongoing excavations in the archaeological area
Paestum, three ongoing excavations in the archaeological area

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