Archaeological investigations were undertaken at the castle of Castiglione di Tornimparte between July 2005 and July 2008.
The structure’s plan characterizes it as a castle-enclosure with a roughly triangular layout surmounted by a turreted keep at the apex, and houses scattered around the base along the hill slope.
The castle’s defensive function was made particularly clear by the archaeological evidence.
The keep was surrounded by a curtain wall of notable thickness and resistance which had only two openings, one of which constituted by the remains of a monumental gate facing the settlement. The signs of battle were still visible along the walls and inside the rooms. In fact the castle’s summit presented the complete collapse of the perimeter walls from an early phase, probably substituted by a quadrangular tower which emerged during the excavation. The latter presented several phases each built on the collapses of the preceding ones, evidence for a continuous sequence of alterations, one of which datable to an intervention on the part of queen Giovanna II in 1380. All the finds from the excavation date to the epoch of the queen. Numerous fragments of throwing weapons, such as spherical sling and catapults shots, spear heads and crossbow bolts and even a dagger emerged from the stratigraphy.
On the summit, inside the keep, traces of the walls defining the aristocratic area of the castle emerged. The stratigraphy produced finds which provided a preliminary dating for the latest chronological horizons (14th and 15th century). The investigations in a room adjacent to the keep’s southern curtain wall brought to light the stratigraphy which pre-dated the construction of the walls around the castle. The finds and stratigraphic relationships date this phase to the full 12th century, presumably in relation to the first phase of incastellamento in the area which the Catalogus Baronum dates to 1173.
- Martina Pantaleo - Università degli Studi dell’Aquila
- Fabio Redi - Università degli Studi dell’Aquila, Dipartimento di Storia e Metodologie Comparate
- Erika Ciammetti - Università degli Studi dell’Aquila
- Ilaria Luchetti
- Università degli Studi dell’Aquila – Dipartimento di Storia e Metodologie comparate
- Comune di Tornimparte
- Regione Abruzzo
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