Location: Castiglione del Lago, Perugia, Italy
The Trasimeno Archaeological Field School provides a curricular concentration in Archaeology and History based in Castiglione del Lago, a charming medieval town situated in Umbria, along the southwestern shores of Lake Trasimeno between Umbria and Tuscany, close to renowned historical cities, such as Orvieto, Perugia and Cortona.
The program runs for 6 weeks, from the beginning of June till mid July, and it consists of two courses. This curricular concentration aims to provide students with a comprehensive overview of up-to-date theories and methods of archaeological fieldwork and research as applied to the civilizations that shaped the history and culture of central Italy.
The course ARFW 350: Archaeological Field Workshop is an archaeology practicum. Students will work alongside professional archaeological staff to uncover artifacts and learn essential excavation and cataloging skills. Course Credit: 3
The course ARCL 340: Archaeological Heritage of Lake Trasimeno, the program’s theoretical component, introduces students to the region’s excavation history and provides context for the archaeological initiatives of today. Course Credit: 3
Both courses are non-prerequisite and mandatory. They include fieldtrips to various archaeological and cultural sites, including an overnight trip to Rome. Fieldtrips are designed to enhance student understanding of the territory’s history, while also providing the opportunity to study and visit neighboring archaeological sites and major museum collections.
The excavation will focus on two different areas of Castiglione. The first is located inside and around the medieval walls, towards the southern shore of the lake. Recent geo-magnetic surveys of this area have indicated the presence of a rich archaeological site: possibly a Roman building and Etruscan tombs. Further investigations concern the ruins of a small medieval church built atop the previous structures.
The second site lies on the shore of the nearby Lake of Chiusi, where the remains of a Roman cistern will be excavated.
The goal of the campaign as a whole is to assess the original function of the entire area in order to understand the origins of the settlement of Castiglione, and to follow its development from Etruscan, through Roman, to Medieval times. The project is an instructive example of how different civilizations built upon one another other in the same geographic area.
In keeping with the Umbra Institute’s academic philosophy, the Archaeological Field School is collaborative and aims to involve the community of Castiglione in a long-term relationship. Students will collaborate with a local archaeological association and will help the municipality of the town to catalog findings and establish a new archaeological museum.
The Trasimeno Archaeology Field School is run by the Umbra Institute in cooperation with the Archeological Superintendency of Umbria, with the Comune of Castiglione del Lago and the Archeological Research Company Intrageo.
Period(s) of Occupation: Etruscan, Roman and Medieval Age
Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 6 weeks
Room and Board Arrangements
Students will live in modernly furnished studio apartments (2-3 students each) directly on the lake shore, a short walking distance from supermarkets and the archaeological site. All apartments include kitchens. Castiglione has a lively outdoor life and students will have the opportunity to enjoy the everyday life of a typical Italian community. Bus and train services directly connect Castiglione to other cities, including Rome and Florence, making it easy to travel over weekends. A renowned summer location, Castiglione is an international venue for relaxing vacations, swimming and sun-bathing on its beaches, or for practicing a variety of sports.