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  • Regio VII, insula VI and Villa delle Colonne a mosaico
  • Pompeii
  • Pompeii
  • Italy
  • Campania
  • Naples
  • Pompei



  • The Italian Database is the result of a collaboration between:

    MIBAC (Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali - Direzione Generale per i Beni Archeologici),

    ICCD (Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo e la Documentazione) and

    AIAC (Associazione Internazionale di Archeologia Classica).

  • AIAC_logo logo

Summary (English)

  • In June and July of 2015, the Via Consolare Project conducted stratigraphic excavations and analysis of standing remains in the area of the Villa delle Colonne a mosaico as a part of on-going research into the chronology, urban development, and utilization of the properties along the Via Consolare, from Pompeii’s surburbium to its forum.

    Excavation involved the continuation a trench initiated but not completed in 2009 (AA005). This trench, measuring 10.5m by 2.5m, was situated within the raised platform upon which the Villa sits, between the core of the Villa proper and a row of six columns on its southern side. Running centrally through the trench, an apparently unpublished earlier sondage had removed ancient stratigraphy but for the western and northern sides of the area. This permitted relatively deep excavation to be undertaken via stepped removal of the modern backfill. Excavation produced 58 stratigraphic units, recovering traces in section of a volcanic sand deposit that likely overlies natural soils.

    The general phases of activity recovered in the excavation began with a relatively deep natural topography, and some early levelling deposits. Phase 2 witnessed the primary construction of the central Villa core with walls and use surfaces more than a meter below the current Villa thresholds. Phase 3 saw the addition of a raised platform and six columns on the southern side of the Villa along with several additional columns inside the core structure and a drain running southward from its centre. Evidence of the construction process for the western retaining wall were preserved in the form of layout lines scored directly into the Villa’s exterior. At a point after this, the Villa was hemmed in by the construction or reconstruction of a row of shops and associated back rooms to the west, which perhaps shortly thereafter received a water pipe that ran through the portico. At this point too, another drain was added, putting the previous drain out of use. These changes appear to relate to the addition or modification of upper stories to the Villa and the transformation of the core of the Villa into a service wing, activities which may be provisionally and circumstantially dated to roughly the Claudian period. Continued floor raising and related modifications to the second drain characterised the final ancient phase observed in AA005 (Phase 6), a period that throughout the Villa witnessed the creation of some of its most distinctive characteristics, including the large viridarium that occupied the backs of the tombs and the eponymous mosaic columns. A final phase of change visible in these walls involving yet more upper storey access, was not reflected in the deposits of AA005.

    Overall, investigations in 2015 have revealed important information about the surprising depth of the original topography of the area, suggesting that much of what is now observed is the result of large-scale levelling activities. Traces of further ‘Oscan’ burials such as were found in the area of the viridarium, have not yet been recovered in the area of the Villa.

  • Michael Anderson - San Francisco State University, USA  



  • Caitlin Callahan
  • Christy Schirmer - University of Texas, Austin
  • Clare O’Bryen – University of Queensland
  • Kazu Suzuki - University of Arizona
  • Annalisa Capurso
  • Charlene Murphy – University College London
  • Robyn Veal – University of Cambridge
  • Claire J. Weiss - University of Virginia
  • Erin Pitt – University of California, Berkeley
  • Richard Hobbs – The British Museum
  • Victoria Keitel – University of Reading
  • Vincenzo Sabini – Soprintendenza Archeologica di Pompei

Research Body

  • San Francisco State University

Funding Body


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