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Politica ricerca e sviluppo

 

Politica ricerca e sviluppo

 

ARCHEOLOGICAL MISSIONS

Scientific coooperation, above all, occurs in the field of archaeological research, which is carried out with the most modern techniques provided by nowadays’ technology. Italy operates in Cyprus through various Institutions. Currently, the Italian Ministry for Foreign Affairs finances the following archeological missions:


Pyrgos Mission (CNR)
The CNR (Italian National Research Council) Archaeological excavations have been carried out in Pyrgos (Limassol) and have revealed important discoveries regarding the history of Cyprus dating back to the Bronze period. Furthermore, CNR has supplied its collaboration providing hi-tech equipment for the sector of monuments’ restoration.
 

Nea Paphos Mission (Catania University)
From 1988 the Archaeological Mission of Catania University, under the direction of Prof. Filippo Giudice, carries out annual excavations in an area corresponding to about a quarter of the ancient city, and publishes regularly the results on the Reports of the Department of Antiquities, Cyprus and elsewhere. Students, post-graduate and Ph students, archaeologists, mainly from Catania University, participate in the excavations.
At the beginning of the Italian excavations, only the vast chambers of an underground Hellenistic sanctuary were known. The subsequent archaeological investigations led to the discovery of other underground rooms and of a long dromos leading to the sanctuary.
The Italian excavations, moreover, discovered an Early-Christian basilica that, exploiting the pre-existing pagan structures, superimposes itself on the sanctuary. Around the basilica, Early-Christian houses have been also discovered.
It is not yet clear the divinity to which the sanctuary was dedicated, although there are interesting clues; a series of lucky finds has instead permitted to link the construction of the Early-Christian basilica to the memory of the holy hermit Ilarion from Gaza that in Paphos, according to Saint Jerome, preaches «near the ruins of a very ancient sanctuary » and dies at the end of the fourth century.


Nicosia Mission (University of Molise)
Prof. Paolo Mauriello of the University of Molise, in co-operation with the Nicosia Masterplan, is working in geo-physic analysis of the old centre of the town in order to locate buried infrastructures where architectonic works are planned. Over the past few years, the mission of Prof. Mauriello has conducted analysis in the area of the old hospice at Famagusta gate. He is currently working in Eleftheria Square and Solomon Square.


The following other Italian missions are currently operating in Cyrpus: 

Archaeological researches in the Kouris Valley Area (Universities of Florence and Chieti-Pescara)  

Kouris River Survey  
The Kouris River Valley survey started as a joint expedition by the Universities of Florence and Chieti-Pescara since 2007. The core of the project aims to outline the development trends of the settlement patterns and the land use within the valley area, in order to set up the ancient peopling strategies from Neolithic to the Roman, Post-Roman and Medieval periods. The work on field in 2007-2008 allowed to identify 14 sites, different in function as well as in the chronological sequence of the occupation. Generally the hilltop sites, mainly used as control points for the local road network, show a longer occupation and develop from time to time different peculiar relations with the near sites located along the lower valley terraces (cemeteries, workshop areas, small river harbour, rural settlements), which have been differently inhabited for a shorter period. The whole data have been summed up within a multilayers GIS system, which allows a speed and complete data processing producing an interesting model for the study of the settlements and land use changes throughout the long history of the valley.  

Excavations at Erimi: the site of Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou  
From 2008 a focus investigation have been carried out on the area of Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou. The site has been firstly identified during the 2007 survey of the north-eastern slope of the river, and it is located on the border between Ypsonas and Erimi villages, just southward the modern Kouris Dam. The collection of diagnostic sherds and surface materials on the site lead the archeologists to hypothesize a strong occupation during the Middle Cypriote period. The preliminary results paved the way to new geo-physical investigations, an intensive survey, as well as four trial trenches on the site area. The results confirmed the evidence of a medium size settlement surrounded by a double circuit wall, with two main phases of occupation: the first one being the MCy-TCy I period, the second from the Hellenistic to Roman period. The circuit wall outline an hilltop area (Area A), where a complex workshop, characterized by a series of inter-related basins directly carved within the limestone bedrock, have been found out, and a lower terrace (Area B), where scanty evidences of wall structures (possibly domestic units) have been documented. Near the outside wall a small cemetery area has been identified (Area E), where a series of three rock-cut graves has been excavated. The tombs show a single inhumation chamber with a small dromos leading to: one adult burial and a multiple inhumation of a male, a female and a child has been here recorded from two of the tombs. Few vessels and small objects (decorated spindle-whorls, picrolite disks) have been buried as grave-goods offerings; the pottery and objects repertoire points to a general date from late MCy to the beginning of TCy I period.


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