The archaeological excavation campaign of the villa ‘A’ of Dragoncello in the area of Ostia, the ancient port of Rome, conducted for the first time this year under the responsibility of the Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences of the University of Milan. The activities were organized as part of the Course in Archaeological Research Methodologies held by Prof. G. Olcese and were attended by students of the three-year degrees in “Sciences of Cultural Heritage” and in “Sciences and Technologies for Study and the conservation of cultural assets and information supports “, and of the Master’s Degree in” Archeology “of the University. During the excavation of the large Roman villa, which had an extension of over 25,000 square meters and is located in an area that had attracted the interest of people of the caliber of Cicero, various environments and wall paintings, mosaics and a small necropolis were brought to light. It was in this year’s campaign that the excavation of a large underground structure with a rectangular plan (20 x 11 m) consisting of 24 cells, whose function is not certain and for which different hypotheses are made, including also that of a food and grain storage area, has been completed. This finding represents a particularly interesting discovery as it does not seem to present comparisons with known structures. Another important result of this campaign is the highlighting of another sector of the villa characterized by the presence of some tanks connected to the work activities that were carried out on the site.
Thanks to the concession obtained up to the year 2021, the continuation of the activities are already planned, including the realization of surveys in the Roman countryside in territories of the Ostiense area not yet investigated and the site museum, already included in a program aimed at the discovery, at the enhancement and reconstruction of residential structures and the ancient agricultural landscape in the area between the Tiber and the sea, of fundamental importance for Italian history and archeology.
2016-2017 Sapienza – Università di Roma, Dipartimento di Scienze dell’Antichità
2019-2021 Università degli Studi di Milano, DiSAA
DIRECTION OF EXCAVATION: G. Olcese
Soprintendenza Speciale Archeologia, Belle Arti e Paesaggio di Roma (A. De Laurenzi);
A. Pellegrino, X. Gonzàlez Muro, M. Di Filippo (scientific collaboration)