The Roman Age

 

Of the greatest interest is the Museum’s section where the Roman period in the Lower Val di Cecina is told. Findings show the strong economic development affecting the coastal plan around the river Cecina mouth from the Ist cent. BC. Leading actors of this tale are the members of the aristocracy of Volterra, people of Etruscan origin now deeply Romanized and involved in politics in Rome. The Caecina family, in particular, entered the Roman Senate and hold important administrative and military offices, becoming familiar to emperor Augustus and his successors.

IMG_8925 - Copia

Golden alabaster statue of the goddess Isis (Roman villa of San Vincenzino). (III cent. AD)

Wall painting with satyr and a panther from the Roman Villa della Pieve (Casale Marittimo). (Ist cent. AD)

Wall painting with satyr and a panther from the Roman Villa della Pieve (Casale Marittimo). (Ist cent. AD)

 

The fresco from the villa of Casale Marittimo, one of the few surviving findings from this rich residence, and artifacts from San Vincenzino’s villa excavations tell us about the time the aristocrats of Volterra spent in villas they owned along the coast.

Funerary inscription of the Volterranean knight Marcus Aniaenus Pharianus. From Bolgheri. (end of IInd - early IIIrd cent. AD)

Funerary inscription of the Volterranean knight Marcus Aniaenus Pharianus. From Bolgheri. (end of IInd – early IIIrd cent. AD)

 

Villas were not only place to be enjoyed; they were the center of large funds where grape was farmed; the wine was then sold in Rome, Etruria and in the western provinces of the Roman Empire, by means of amphorae manifactured in many kilns, also located along the coast. A huge pile of broken amphorae, discovered not far from the sea shore, has been recreated inside the Museum, effectively describing the intensity of these economic activities.

Dump of wine amphorae from the pottery workshop of La Mazzanta (Cecina). (End of Ist cent. BC - IInd cent. AD)

Dump of wine amphorae from the pottery workshop of La Mazzanta (Cecina). (End of Ist cent. BC – IInd cent. AD)

 

 

Around villas and potter quarters many small farms and cemeteries with simple tombs developed; some poor grave goods poor (small vessels, ointment glasses, oil lamps) are actually in the Museum, along with an amphora reused as a coffin once empty.

Lybian olive oil amphora, used for the burial of a woman. Necropolis of Campo ai Ciottoli (Cecina). (End of Ist cent. BC - IInd cent. AD)

Lybian olive oil amphora, used for the burial of a woman. Necropolis of Campo ai Ciottoli (Cecina). (End of Ist cent. BC – IInd cent. AD)

 

A part of the Roman section dedicated to underwater findings; bronze vessels, black-glazed pottery, wine and oil amphorae, a lead ingot and some lead anchors tell us about navigation and sea trade, particularly flourishing during the Roma age.