Villa del Vergigno Archaeological Project 2020; Application Deadline Extended

This listing expired on August 31, 2020. Please contact for any updated information.

Location: Montelupo Fiorentino, IT

Season: June 29, 2020 to July 31, 2020

Session Dates: June 29, 2020 (arrival date for participants) - July 31 & August 1, 2020 (departure date for participants) * participants can attend for partial periods within the project dates for a pro-rated cost, space permitting.

Application Deadline: April 30, 2020

Deadline Type: Rolling


Program Type:
Field School, Volunteer

RPA Certified:

University of Wyoming; University of Waterloo; Sistema Museale di Montelupo Fiorentino

Project Director:
Dr. McKenzie Lewis

Project Description:

The Application Deadline has been extended to April 30, 2020.

We are closely monitoring the safety of travel to Italy during the summer excavation season and are currently anticipating that this summer’s field school will proceed as planned.

Participants’ Deposit and Program Fees will be fully refunded in the event that the university cancels overseas programs to Italy due to health concerns.

The Villa del Vergigno Archaeological Project is a field school and volunteer opportunity to excavate a first century B.C.E. – fifth century C.E. Roman villa near the town of Montelupo Fiorentino, approximately 15 miles west of Florence, Italy.  Participants will receive hands-on training in excavation techniques, survey methods, site mapping using Geographic Information Systems, and learn to process and conserve artifacts discovered during excavation.


Details of the 2020 Excavation:


In the 2020 Field School Season we will reopen two or three trenches for focused excavation in the Villa’s bath complex and area of iron and ceramic production. The overall objective of this season is to study the Villa’s phases of construction and production, to analyze and conserve the associated artifacts, and to complete our interim publication of the site: Excavations at the Villa del Vergigno 2013-2020.


We welcome participants interested excavating and participating in the stratigraphic analysis of several important areas of the Villa. Experience in laboratory or fieldwork not required, as instruction will occur on site.

We also welcome participants interested in working with excavated artifacts in the laboratory, by learning to study, catalog, conserve, and restore materials discovered in the last seven years of fieldwork. Participants may also contribute toward our exhibition and publication by conducting material analysis and preparing a museum exhibition.

Regardless of experience and background, participants will become acquainted with and learn how to excavate in the field and in the lab: catalog, conserve, and restore a range of different ancient artifacts, such as fine ware ceramics, courseware ceramics, amphora and storage vessels, bronze objects (tools and jewelry), coins, as well as other domestic and decorative objects. Additionally, participants will have an opportunity to learn techniques of digital mapping and digital imaging via photogrammetry.

Period(s) of Occupation: Etruscan and Roman Periods

The Villa Romana del Vergigno is a large villa rustica inhabited from ca. 100 BCE to 400 CE, located near Montelupo Fiorentino in the mid-Arno Valley of northern Tuscany, approximately fifteen miles west of Florence. In the 2019 field season we will excavate both the domestic area of the villa complex, as well as the agricultural and industrial production areas that include kilns, a grape press, and pottery production. Participants will receive training in excavation techniques, survey methods, site mapping using Geographic Information Systems, and will take part in artifact conservation. Housing is in a large, multi-suite historic villa located in the center of Montelupo Fiorentino, approximately ten minutes by car from the excavation site, twenty minutes by train from Florence, and walking distance to the train station, grocery stores, cafes, shops, and restaurants. There will be 2-4 people per room/sharing amenities.

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 2 weeks

Minimum Age: 18

Experience Required: No Experience Required

Room and Board Arrangements:
Accommodations are in a recently-remodeled, large historic villa in the center of Montelupo, a few minutes' walk from cafes, grocery stores, shopping, and train service directly to Florence. Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner are provided Sunday - Friday (light breakfast and lunch only on Saturday). Wi-fi, kitchen, and a washing machine are free on the premises.  Cost: $4,800 : Contact McKenzie Lewis for an application for summer 2020.

Academic Credit:
1-6 credits offered by University of Wyoming; Participants from any institution are welcome.

Contact Information:

McKenzie Lewis at U Waterloo

200 University Ave.



N2L 3G1


Phone: 919-360-1903

support Us

The AIA is North America's largest and oldest nonprofit organization dedicated to archaeology. The Institute advances awareness, education, fieldwork, preservation, publication, and research of archaeological sites and cultural heritage throughout the world. Your contribution makes a difference.

Post a Fieldwork Opportunity