Saturday, July 6, 2013

Highlights of week 2

The second week of activities at Gabii has just come to a a very successful end. Digging progressed in both excavation areas, revealing important new features that attracted a steady flow of colleagues and visitors to the site.

View of one of the rooms of the Archaic compound
The staircase of the Area F building
In Area D, the excavators continued unpeeling the occupation layers of the Archaic compound, reaching what seem to be the abandonment deposits of the previous settlement phase. Clusters of burnt adobe have been found in several spots, which may be related to the destruction of one or more huts that occupied the area in the seventh century BCE and earlier. Concentrations of rubble, which perhaps correspond to the foundations of these huts, are also beginning to emerge. Miniature votive terracottas representing food offerings (cakes; loaves of bread etc.) have also been retrieved from the excavated levels.

In Area F, other parts of the large ashlar building have been brought to light under the leveling layers that obliterated the complex in the early Imperial period. Most notable is a staircase that connected the upper and lower terraces, and a series of rooms featuring decorated mortar floors and tufo pavements. The front and west sides of the Republican building are partly masked by concrete additions, but extensive portions are preserved under the later features, which will be the object of investigation in the coming days.

Mario Torelli (to the right) with Nic Terrenato and 
Anna Gallone visits Area D.
On July 2nd we received a visit from Mario Torelli, who also acts as one of the scientific advisors of the Gabii Project. His original take on the most recent finds at Gabii appears in an article he just published on the Italian newspaper "La Repubblica", titled Il tesoro di Gabii (Gabii's treasure). We gratefully acknowledge his vital contribution to the Project's outreach efforts.


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