The Cave: Mediterranean Funerary Archaeology

Location: Es Mercadal, Menorca, Balearic Islands, Spain

Friday, April 20, 2012 to Thursday, November 22, 2012

Session dates: 
1) April 20 - May 9; 2) May 12-31;, 3) June 3-22; 4) June 25 - July 14; 5) July 17 - August 5; 6) August 8-27; 7) August 30 - September 18; 8) September 20 - October 9; 9) October 12-31; and 10) November 3 - November 22, 2012

Application Deadline: 
Monday, October 1, 2012

Flyer: the_cave_dig_2012.pdf

Program Type

Field school


The Sa Nitja Association and Ecomuseum of the Cape of Cavalleria

Project Director:

Fernando Contreras

Project Description

The Cape of Cavalleria Ecomuseum in Menorca, Spain, has scheduled for 2012 the excavation of funerary deposits made by the first inhabitants of Menorca. The excavation is directed by Fernando Contreras, director of the Cape of Cavalleria Ecomuseum in collaboration with other specialists in physical anthropology and conservation. The course runs 7 hours a day which is divided between excavation of the cave and laboratory work; study and conservation of the human remains and other materials recovered from the burial site. The fieldwork focuses on the spatial distribution of the individuals and the objects related to their rituals and grave goods. Students will also participate in lectures, classes, exercises and excursions related to the course material. For every seven course days there are two days off. Participants will learn and apply excavation techniques used in physical anthropology when excavating the cave tombs. In the laboratory, participants will follow guidelines set by an anthropologist and other specialists for the classification, study, and conservation of human remains and other related material found. Participants will also be given lectures on methodology, roman archaeology, physical anthropology and classification of archaeological materials. Participants will visit other archaeological sites on the island through organized excursions. Courses are given in both English and Spanish.

Period(s) of Occupation: Bronze Age

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 20 days

Minimum age: 
18 (contact with questions about age)

Experience required: 

Room and Board Arrangements

Participants will stay in the Ecomuseum's student residence in Ciutadella (air-conditioned), within walking distance of the historic center, port, and beaches. Ciutadella is an enchanting Mediterranean town, lively with caf├ęs and outdoor terraces hidden among narrow cobble stone streets. Transportation to and from the excavation site and planned excursions are included. Cost includes full room and board, transportation, accidental medical insurance, planned excursions, application fee and administrative cost. Airfare not included.

Between $1,300 and $2,600 per session

Academic Credit

Number of credits offered: none


Contact Information
Lana Johnson
Es Mercadal
(34) 699 69 55 80
Recommended Bibliography: