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The Etruscan Necropolis of San Cerbone-Casone, Baratti-Populonia. Archeodig Project.

Location: Populonia, Livorno, Italy

May 27, 2013 to June 22, 2013

Program Type

Field school

RPA certified



Superintendence for Archaeological Heritage in Tuscany, University of Florence, Earthwatch Institute, Past In Progress Association, Parchi Val di Cornia Society

Project Director:

Andrea Camilli (Superintendence for Archaeological Heritage of Tuscany),Giandomenico De Tommaso (University of Florence), Carolina Megale (Archeodig Project)

Project Description

The Archeodig Project was born in 2008 with the purpose of designing, managing and coordinating archaeological excavations. The research is structured as school/field work for the training of students, young archaeologists and volunteers, both Italians and foreigners.

The Archeodig’s main objective of is to fill as many of the gaps as possible in our knowledge of the history of Populonia and its territory, from the late Etruscan period to the late Roman age. Populonia, located in the region of Italy once known as Etruria, was one of the most important Etruscan cities, the only one overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea. The city was for centuries one of the most flourishing centres of iron smelting and trade in the whole of Mediterranean. 

Populonia is composed by a lower city, an area centred on the port and on the metallurgical activities (located outside the city walls), and an upper city, the Acropolis, with the houses and the temples, on the summit of the promontory. In the lower city are the monumental tombs (tumuli and aedicule-shaped) of the San Cerbone necropolis (7th-4th centuries B.C.E.)

The purpose of the research is to investigate a portion of the lower city still intact, where it have been identified traces of an early Roman building for iron smelting activity and, underneath, a portion of the Etruscan necropolis.

Period(s) of Occupation: From Etruscan (7th century BCE) to Roman Age (1st century CE)

The archaeological field program of Archeodig Project is a minimum 1 week, on‐site program conducted at the ancient Etruscan city of Populonia, the only one built overlooking the sea. The field program aims to introduce students and volunteers to the techniques and methods of the archaeological research through the direct, hands‐on experience. Archaeology in Tuscany. Etruscan Necropolis and early Roman buildings for iron smelting activity.

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 1 week

Minimum age: 

Experience required: 
No pre-requisites and no archaeological experience

Room and Board Arrangements

Students will stay in comfortable apartments in the quiet village of Populonia Station, about 5km/3.2 miles away from the research site. The apartments feature modern furnishings, single beds, hot showers, electricity and sockets to charge cameras, mobile phone, gas heat. There is a small kitchen in each apartment with an oven, hob and fridge. Rooms will be single gender, but apartments mixed gender. Participants will need to bring a towel and sleeping bag. 

€ 450,00 (approx. $ 585) per week

Academic Credit

Name of institution offering credit: 
Superintendence for Archaeological Heritage of Tuscany
Number of credits offered: none


Contact Information
Carolina Megale
Via della Pieve, 6
+39 339 7544894
Recommended Bibliography: 

A. Semplici, Baratti and Populonia Archaeological Park. A guide to discovering the landscape, 2008, Firenze.

G. De Tommaso, Populonia. A city and its territory. Guide to the Archaeological Museum of Piombino, 2004, Tavarnelle V.P. (FI).

A. Zifferero (ed.), L'archittettura funeraria a Populonia tra IX e VI secolo a.C.. Atti del convegno (Castello di Populonia, 30-31 Ottobre 1997), 2000, Firenze.

F. Fedeli, A. Galimberti, A. Romualdi, Populonia e il suo territorio. Profilo storico-archeologico, 1993, Firenze.

F. Fedeli, Populonia e il suo territorio, 1983, Firenze.